High life

High liferss

Ava Gardner: one of the ones that got away Photo: Getty

My four great loves were unrequited (though I had a chance with Ginger Rogers)

24 January 2015

I had a short chat with BBC radio concerning the actor Jack Nicholson, whom I knew slightly during the Seventies and Eighties. Alas, it had to do with age, his… Read more

Japanese soldiers searching through the debris, 2011 Photo: Getty

Let’s all become Japanese for a while

17 January 2015

This is a good time to write about a nation’s resilience in the face of calamity. I am referring to the stoic discipline with which the Japanese bore hardship and… Read more

Richard Ingrams with Christopher Booker and William Rushton at Private Eye Photo: Getty

Meet the people who can make me look like a saint

10 January 2015

 Gstaad The very end of 2014 laid an egg, and an expensive one at that. I missed David Tang’s bash in London because I thought it too much to fly… Read more

Dr. James Watson Photo: ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty

Warning: these books could seriously damage your health

3 January 2015

Welcome to 2015, the year that speaking and writing freely had to stop. Anything that might cause trauma to anyone of any race except the white one will be expunged,… Read more


Taki's Christmas gift to readers: a masterclass in the art of seduction

13 December 2014

Here is my Christmas gift to Spectator readers, one that applies mostly to unmarried males, but is also available to married ones who might wish to test if that old… Read more


Another New York institution bites the dust

6 December 2014

Except for sickness in one’s family or the loss of a life, is there anything sadder than to see a bookstore shut its doors? I used to live on a… Read more


Modern man looks like a homeless bum and reveals things one wouldn’t tell a shrink

29 November 2014

The leaves are falling non-stop, like names dropped in Hollywood, and it has suddenly turned colder than the look I got from a very pretty girl at a downtown restaurant.… Read more

Supermac and JFK, 1963 Photo: Getty

Snobbery, sneering and secret sniggers: the sad truth about the so-called 'special relationship'

22 November 2014

To the grand Herrera house on the upper east side of Manhattan for lunch in honour of Lord and Lady Linley. David Linley is over here to receive an award… Read more

Unlike the philistine sharks of today, Aleko Goulandris is an art collector of the old school

15 November 2014

Aleko Goulandris is my oldest and closest friend. We met in the summer of 1945, at the Semiramis hotel in a northern Athenian resort. The Allied bombing and the ensuing… Read more

Monica Lewinsky at the annual Norman Mailer event Photo: Getty

The difficult art of finding the right yacht

8 November 2014

To Newport, Rhode Island, the smallest state in the Union but one of the most beautiful. Driving north-east from the Bagel, there’s Long Island Sound on one’s right, and beautifully… Read more


The beauty of fire escapes and the vanishing of Edward Hopper's New York

1 November 2014

Autumn in New York: they even wrote a song about it that was a great hit 60 years ago. Last weekend the sky was awash in blue, Manhattan at its… Read more

Logan Lerman and Shia LaBeouf in Fury

My fury at Fury, a film only a vampire could love

25 October 2014

I have always believed that the mission of most movies made after the Fred & Ginger era has been to reduce, insofar as it is possible, the manners and morals… Read more


The battle for decency has been lost

18 October 2014

An intelligent letter from a reader, Stanislas Yassukovich CBE, warms my heart. It’s nice to know there are others as appalled as I am by today’s so-called elite’s ghastly manners.… Read more

Bill Kristol

America's sofa samurai are at it again

11 October 2014

The time-honoured saying that England’s great battles have been won on the playing fields of Eton is a lot of hooey. Blücher was the real winner against Napoleon at Waterloo,… Read more


I felt so awful I almost prayed that we would crash

4 October 2014

This is about life up high. Two weeks ago The Spectator had that rapscallion and mischief-maker Peter McKay writing about how great it is to pilot a plane. (He’s taking… Read more

A civilian victim of the Great Famine in Athens, 1942. Photo: Evans/Three Lions/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

My ghosts of Athens; a shooting and a royal wedding

27 September 2014

Athens This grimy semi-Levantine ancient city has its beauty spots, with childhood memories indelibly attached. There is a turn-of-the-century apartment building across the street from my house where in 1942… Read more

All things for everyone, everywhere. You can even buy the shop. Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images

What is to be done about a world where everything is for sale?

20 September 2014

Next time you read about an auctioneer’s gavel coming down on a $150 million painting bought by some flunkey representing the ruling family of Qatar, don’t ooh or aah, but… Read more


The Olympic spirit may be dead in Ibiza, but at least the hookers are world-class

13 September 2014

Ibiza This island is the Spanish equivalent of  the Greek sex rock of Mykonos, except its waters are murkier, its nightclubs and restaurants far more expensive. But its hookers are… Read more

Aristotle Onassis with Elsa Martinelli in Paris (Photo: Central Press/Getty)

Come back Aristotle Onassis – all is forgiven

6 September 2014

Back in the very early Sixties there was an uninhabited islet off the west coast of Greece by the name of Skorpios. It was wild, with neglected olive groves, and… Read more


You can't make friends with Uncle Sam and survive for long

30 August 2014

Can somebody tell me when America last got it right? Uncle Sam’s track record in selecting leaders in faraway places reminds me very much of my own where libel is… Read more


Anyone for a spot of how's-your-grandfather?

23 August 2014

 Gstaad In this freewheeling Swiss village of the 1950s, the unconventional was the norm and monumental drinking commonplace, but the manners of the players were always impeccable. Yes, there were… Read more

Jean-Claude Juncker (L), visits Prime Minister of Greece, Antonis Samaras Photo: Getty

How dare they sell the beaches where I played as a child

16 August 2014

 Porto Cheli Nothing is moving, not a twig nor a leaf, and I find myself missing the cows, the mountains and the bad weather. The sun has become the enemy,… Read more


Greece is calling – three more years and then I move south

9 August 2014

Porto Cheli I have been thinking about my children and my own strange boyhood as I gaze up at the clear blue skies of summer. Summers lasted an eternity back… Read more


Even Switzerland is turning lefty. Am I going to have to move to Wyoming?

2 August 2014

 Gstaad I am looking out of my window at the green landscape and forested mountains rising beyond, as peaceful a scene as there is in this troubled world, but this… Read more

A Palestinian boy inspects the damage from behind a shrapnel riddled piece of metal following an Israeli air strike  Photo: AFP/Getty

What Poland could teach Israel

26 July 2014

One event I regretted missing on my last visit to London was a party at the Polish Club, which has been refurbished and has a new Polish prince as its… Read more