Daily Insider for February 19, 2004

02/19/2004 AT 10:00 AM EST

February 19, 2004
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, PARIS
If every day is a party for Paris Hilton, how does she celebrate her birthday? To mark her 23rd on Tuesday, the celebutante rounded up her mother, Kathy, sister Nicky and best pal Nicole Richie for a celebratory lunch at place-to-be-seen eatery The Ivy in Beverly Hills. Afterward, the foursome made their way down trendy Robertson Boulevard, leaving hot boutiques Kitson, Madisons and Lisa Kline with bagloads of goodies. (The birthday girl's Kitson stash included two ruffled miniskirts by designer Jennifer Scott, a cashmere sweater with a bejeweled cupcake on it, a "Brooklyn Blonde" tank top and a T-shirt emblazoned with "Super Chick.") By nightfall, the only thing left to do was, well ... celebrate some more. The entire crew – along with Paris's beau, Nick Carter – turned up at Hollywood hotspot Nacional, where the entire seating area was adorned with pink balloons.

PARTY CENTRAL
At the Reebok after-hours party in L.A. during NBA All-Star Weekend, host Jay-Z joined girlfriend Beyoncé, her Destiny's Child bandmate Kelly Rowland, OutKast's Andre 3000, P. Diddy and Cedric the Entertainer on the floor of nightspot The Lot in West Hollywood. Their collective bodyguards formed a tight circle around the group so they could dance uninterrupted by fans and gawkers for an hour and a half. Waitresses with cocktails and snacks were the only ones allowed to penetrate the superstar circle.

WHO'S GOT STYLE?
LL Cool J added fashion plate to his actor and rapper credentials Tuesday night, serving as a presenter at the Elle Style Awards, held at London's Natural History Museum. "My style tip: Be yourself," said the Deliver Us from Eva star. "I can't tell you ... how to dress. Everybody's got to be themselves. Whatever makes you feel good." As for his fashion hero: "I'd have to say James Bond. I admire his flavor."

As for the awards themselves, Aussie pals Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts were big winners: Kidman (who didn't show) took top honors as Woman of the Year, while Watts, in a peekaboo black dress, picked up a most stylish actress statuette from presenter Benicio Del Toro. Jennifer Connelly's hubby, Paul Bettany (also a no-show), was named most stylish actor, and glam-rockers The Darkness took the most stylish music award.

Reported by: SEAN DALY, MARK DAGOSTINO and LAURA SCHREFFLER

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