By: Mary Jo Almeida-Shore
There are a multitude of ways to celebrate a summer birthday in Miami- hosting a
“Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” party is simply the most “obvious;” especially if you are a seasoned party pro whose party planning rap sheet spans the globe. Such is the case for PR Guru, Nick D’Annunzio, and author, Brian Antoni, (a self-professed party addict) whose themed birthday parties have become the climax of the summer each year. This year’s bash at Cafeina was no exception- with a theme to entice even the least enthusiastic partygoer, as evidenced by the more than 800 guests who channeled their “inner” harlot or just threw on a plaid shirt and boots and gathered throughout Cafeina’s haystack-laden, two story lounge, outdoor garden and gallery, which just happened to have a mechanical bull as its centerpiece. Perhaps it was the whimsy- the toy cap guns and cowboy hats, which were gifted to all of the guests, or maybe it was the two-liter bottles of Svedka, which were generously poured and consumed, but folks lined up by the hundreds for a chance to be flung from the aforementioned bull.
The rest of us enjoyed incredible music by adorable DJ, Troy Kurtz, who won us over a couple of years ago during Nick’s 80s themed birthday blowout and played equally great music on Saturday. As expected, one of the party’s highlights came courtesy of International Diva Extraordinaire, Elaine Lancaster, all gussied up like Mary Anne from Gilligan’s Island, who performed the Dolly Parton classic “Nine to Five” to the delight of the crowd. We know what you are thinking, “That song was from an entirely different Dolly Parton movie….” No-one seemed to mind or notice, as they sang along at the top of their lungs. Songstress Maryel Epps serenaded the birthday boys by belting out the “Happy Birthday” song, as only SHE can, before the duo blew out the candles on their gorgeous rodeo-themed cake.
Notable cowboys, cowgirls and harlots in attendance included Deco Drive’s, Louis Aguirre; WSVN news anchor, Belkys Nerey; socialite Ingrid Casares; Cristy Rice of Real Housewives of Miami; artist Carlos Betancourt; designers Donald and Lisa Pliner; Miami Beach Vice Mayor Michael Gongora; photographer Iran Issa-Khan,; filmmakers Alfred Spellman and Billy Corben; real estate maven Alicia Cervera; Jose Ortiz; authors Carolina Garcia Aguilera, James Cubby and John Lantiga; interior designer Lily Zanardi; jewelry designer Charles Albert; Walid and Suzy Wahab; Hello Campos; Merle and Danny Weiss; singing sensation, Maryel Epps; Malinka Max; Sotheby’s International VP, Michael Valdes; business mogul Ryan Esko; and South Beach plastic surgeon Dr. Leonard Tachmes.
And of course, what’s a party without a few great queens? TARA, Ink. Principal, Tara Solomon- Nick’s fiancée and the perennial Queen of the Night, was joined by South Beach Royalty, Lady Bunny and Kitty Meow- who made a special trip for the occasion.
Artist Martin Kaupp was also on hand and presented D’Annunzio with a custom pop art portrait of the birthday boy, which was on display in the gallery, the image of which was on the fans used by guests to keep cool. In lieu of gifts, guests were asked to make a donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida.
Nick shared the following quote about the party, “The party was great! Everyone had a blast. It was so wonderful to be surrounded by so many friends in a mid August Miami night. The weather was nice and just about everyone came dressed. Those who didn’t received a cowboy hat, gun and my ever present fans to keep cool with an image of my face created by the talented artist, Martin Kaupp. I really loved the music Troy Kurtz played. It was awesome to see everyone dancing and riding the bull. I cannot thank Svedka enough for donating the liquor, which made it possible to raise lots of money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida.”
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