Shark Week is Here

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On March - 26 - 2009

Well it is finally here, Winter Music Conference, the dance musicwmc2009 equivalent to Shark Week. WMC, which can also be expanded to mean, “Where’s My Car?” and “What, More Clubs?” at any point along the144-hour extravaganza, is regarded as the singular networking event in the dance music industry, drawing over 62,000 event participants from over 70 countries, who will take over just about every club, hotel, and pool area on South Beach, and quite a few in Downtown Miami as well. Unfortunately, by the time you no longer need a fake ID to attend many of the WMC events, you are simply too old to go. But if you insist on channeling your inner spring breaker, get some Red Bull, take your One-a-Days and check out the line-up of some of the best WMC events below.


The Opium Group has got a fantastic WMC roster once again this year, scattered throughout their various venues. On Thursday: Laidback Luke presents Super You & Me at Louis; on Friday, at SET, Grey Goose presents Bob Sinclar, “World, Hold On…” (You’re singing it in your head right now, aren’t you?) and on Saturday, Ibiza’s famed F*** ME I’M FAMOUS party will feature Cathy and David “Love is Gone” Guetta at Mansion, featuring an exclusive live performance with Kelly Rowland. For a complete listing of events and to purchase tickets, go to: www.theopiumgroup.com/wmc09 .

Mokai is bringing back legendary Paul Oakenfold on Thursday night, as part of their weekly Front Page party. WORD TO THE WISE: Arrive early- last year Mokai was at double-capacity just after midnight and a coveted spot in the club set you back at least a thousand bucks, as there was a 4 bottle minimum per table. No kidding!

Over at the Setai, several events are being held which combine Funkshion’s fashion shows, (many of which are also being held at the Main Tent on 10th street) with WMC events. Francophiles will be delighted on Friday night at the Setai, when the famed Parisian landmark, Hotel Costes, takes over and brings us their resident DJ, Stephane Pompougnac. The party begins at 9:00 p.m., alongside the Maya swimwear/Davidoff/Vogue after party.

The Delano, in conjunction with Giant Step, is hosting events poolside as well as at the Florida Room. On Friday and Saturday, poolside performances begin at 6:00 p.m. and every night, beginning at 10:00 p.m., from Thursday through Saturday, the Florida Room will host guest DJs including WALE, Melanie Fiona, Pete Rock and Jus Ske on Thursday; Deviation, with Benji B, direct from the UK on Friday; and Questlove and Felix da Housecat on Saturday.

New on the WMC front this year is the Fontainebleau, which is hosting an all-star line-up at both LIV and Blade. On Thursday, the cool kids from 1 OAK in NYC, Richie Akiva, Scott Sartiano, Ronnie Madra and Jeffrey Jah, bring us DJ AM and Steve Angello. Other big acts at LIV: S.K.A.M. artist DJs, which include Sky Nellor, Irie, Ross One, Mr. Mauricio and a slew of others on Friday and Eric Morillo on Saturday. For the full line-up and to buy tickets, please call 305.674.4680 or email FLaGrassa@fontainebleau.com.

In addition to all of the evening events, just about every hotel is hosting pool parties featuring world-renown DJs during the day. To name a few: the Catalina, Shelborne, Delano, Fontainebleau, Doubletree, Gansevoort and the Royal Palm. Most of these parties go from 12:00-6:00 and are free. Contact the hotels directly for more information. More daytime fun can be had at the Webster boutique, which is hosting a Femme Fatale DJ series daily from 4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., starting today. The line-up includes: DJ Cinnamon, DJ Baby Dre of Miami Ink, and Gabby of NYC’s LOVE Parties & Les Coquettes.

Ahhhhh

Back again this year, is the refuge otherwise known as the A/X Music Lounge, at the Raleigh penthouse, a VIP DJ and talent lounge that serves as a welcomed respite for artists, media and celebrities from the mayhem and exhaustion that accompanies WMC. Brought to us by BMF Media Group and Armani Exchange, the chic lounge features snacks and libations, over 100 internationally known DJs and some pretty terrific gifts, compliments of Armani Exchange, West Elm (which designed the place), Crunch Fitness and Stanton among others. Last year at the A/X Lounge, internationally acclaimed DJs including; Paul van Dyk, Sasha & Digweed, Bob Sinclar, Carl Cox, Dubfire and Tracy Young enjoyed the VIP amenities, including the “chill bar’ sponsored by Belvedere Vodka. The A/X Lounge was also the place where international sensation, Lady GaGa, made the Miami debut of her hit song Just Dance.

Ready, SET, Kardashian

On Friday night, reality star, Kourtney Kardashian hosted the 944 Magazine/ Grey Goose party, which featured a fashion show by local designer, Lei Marco, at SET. The event started at the early hour of 10:00 p.m. and went on all night. The eldest of the Kardashian clan enthusiastically introduced the fashion show, which consisted mostly of gorgeous nearly-naked people (Iguess that’s always in fashion) and then retreated to a corner table, where she spent most of the night hanging with friends and sipping on flavored Grey Goose.

Coming Up

You’ve got about a week to recover from WMC and train for the Second Annual Nautica South Beach Triathlon on April 5. This year, Michelle Williams, formerly of Destiny’s Child, will sing the National Anthem to kick things off for the thousands of competitors including: Anna Kournikova, “The Bachelor’s” Andy Baldwin, six-time Ironman champion, Dave Scott, former “Biggest Loser” winners, Alison Vincent and Michelle Aguilar, and Sarah Burke, US Open and Winter X games gold medal skier. The triathlon, which raises money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, is comprised of a half-mile ocean swim, 19 mile bike ride and four mile run. To register, go to www.SouthBeachTri.com and hurry, because the race is limited to 1,500 participants.


Celebrity Sightings

Thursday night, five-time winner of the James Beard award and chief judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef”, Tom Colicchio, shared recipes and stories at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Art as part of the Celebrity Chef Series. Both Friday and Saturday nights, Vincent Pastore – formerly known as “Big Pussy” from HBO’s The Sopranos, took over Hot Tuna, where he canoodled with the Hot Tuna servers, posed for photos with fans and even made sushi rolls. Actor, Vincent de Paul was also at Hot Tuna. Last Saturday, B.E.D. hosted a belated 28th birthday celebration for R&B singer LeToya Luckett, formerly of Destiny’s Child. Luckett partied with with rapper Fat Joe, members of Diddy’s “Making the Band 4” Day 26, Kansas City Chiefs’ Larry Johnson and DJ Irie, who provided the tunes for the night. Over the weekend, supermodel, Elle McPhearson was in the crowd at the Homestead-Miami Speedway for the Ferrari Challenge, cheering and looking on as Fontainebleau heir Jeff Soffer raced.

As published in the SunPost March 26, 2009

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