A Break from Spring Break

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On April - 9 - 2010

Heavenly Bodies

By: Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

Pitahaya_Swimwear_show_for_Funkshion_at_the_Setai_HotelIf you spent any time in Miami Beach the last few weeks you may have noticed the spring break takeover.  One dead giveaway that it was in full force was the shear number of half-naked/bikini clad bodies on the beach, not to mention shopping on Lincoln Road and Washington Avenue, where some shoppers donned nothing but a bikini (ever heard of a sarong?) a purse, heels and big sunglasses!  While most of these sightings warranted a fashion citation (or ten), several heavenly bodies graced the runway at the Setai Hotel for the closing night of Funkshion last week, where Colombian swimsuit designer, Chechy Benedetti, debuted her 2010 Pitahaya Swimwear,  collection.  A chic crowd turned out for the show and after party.


Topping off the St. Regis


Gingi Beltran, Carlos Betancourt, and Alicia Cervera

 More than 300 guests were greeted at the valet area by St. Regis Butlers and whisked through the shops up to the third floor, where they were welcomed by another St. Regis Butler and escorted to the “front desk” for check in during the topping off celebration for the St. Regis Hotel and Residences in Bal Harbour last Wednesday. The event theme and décor, conceptualized by Sharon Rauvola, resembled a chic, tranquil hotel setting, complete with check-in and concierge desk. Out on the terrace, where the party took place, staff and models were outfitted by the Bal Harbour Shops’ 100 % Capri collection to compliment the theme, while guests enjoyed champagne and delicious bites by Le Basque, with the beautifully lit St. Regis towers serving as the perfect backdrop. Live music was provided by DJ Shlomi. One of the evening’s highlights was the unveiling A Gilded Ascension, a new work by visual artist Carlos Betancourt.  Betancourt was exclusively commissioned by the project’s developer, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, to commemorate the completion of vertical construction – “topping off” – of all three 27-story towers.  The entire project is scheduled for completion in 2011.  Guests in attendance included: Louis Aguirre, Gingi Beltran, Susie Wahab, Arin and Christina Getty Maercks, Susanne Birbragher, Carlos Betancourt, Gigi Ganatra, Carol Bell, Serge Rivera,Jillian Jacobson Altit, John and Nancy Batchelor, Maya Ezratti, Tara Elias-Schuchts and Shari Liu, to name a few.


 People We Love at Cafeina


Brian Long, Ivette Naranjo, Ivana Berendika, and Todd Codder

 Miami Beach publicist and philanthropist Brian Long celebrated his birthday last Thursday night at Cafeina with a who’s who of guests including International “IT” girl and model Ivana Berendika, the wife of Netscape co-founder Thomas Jermoluk. Long played host to the lounge’s first installment of its “People We Love” party series, which honors Miami’s influencers, taste makers and community leaders. International mix-master DJ Joe Dert kept the birthday bashers dancing into the early hours of the morning, when Berendika joined Long and his partner, Todd Codder in singing “Happy Birthday.” Lily Zanardi will serve as the host for the Wynwood hotspot’s April 15 installment of “People We Love.”

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