Time Magazine - July 20, 1998

While you've been packing the RV for that cross-country drive with the in-laws, the world's power elite has been jetting off to more exclusive sleepovers. Last week Hollywood and Wall Street names trekked to Idaho for the Allen & Co. conference, one of a handful of camps at which ambition burns hotter than any campfire. Our guide:


WHEN HELD Early July each year.

FOUNDED New York investment banker Herb Allen, who specializes in media deals, organized the conference in 1983.

LOCATION The Sun Valley Lodge in the lush mountains of Sun Valley, Idaho, a winter ski resort about 6,000 ft. above sea level and accessible most easily by gas-guzzling private jet.

WHOM YOU'LL SEE About 300 of Wall Street's and Hollywood's most powerful and famous (and about 100 of their glittery offspring). This year: Rupert Murdoch, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Andy Grove, Barry Diller, Michael Eisner, Diane Sawyer (a longtime friend of Allen's), John Malone, Geraldine Laybourne, Diane von Furstenberg and Jerry Levin.

DRESS Very casual. "Jeans are the dress of the day," says a spokesman. And an Armani T shirt perhaps.

RECREATION Hiking, fly-fishing, an annual raft trip, golf, tennis and hanging out are all popular, but the most pressing activity is dealmaking (and posing for the annual Annie Leibovitz photo). The Disney/ABC merger originated after Eisner and Buffett met on a Sun Valley golf course. Any new deals at this year's conference? Stay tuned for the next few months.

SEMINAR TOPICS Mornings are for presentations on different companies and panel discussions. This year's presentations are on Nokia, America Online, Loral Space & Communications, Comcast and Disney, NBC, Coca-Cola and Microsoft.

HOW TO GET INVITED Be a company president, chairman or CEO at a multinational media concern. And plan to do lots of expensive deals in the near future.

EXCLUSIVITY RATING: 9 article/0,9171,1101980720-139584,00.html