What Do you See in this Photo?

Look at this charming photograph of a very swish dinner party,
held in New York City in 1956.
I found it the other day,
and it stopped me in my tracks,
because it says so very much more than just a happy snap.

The guests are not young, 
for starters.
There is a grace amongst them.
They are very much arranged in couples.
And the boys are doting on the girls. Or so it would seem. 

But what else do you see?
What stands out, looking at this image with the eyes of one living in 2013?
What makes this so very different to a cocktail party now?
I would love to know your thoughts.