Posted by Maryanne Salvat On April - 2 - 2010
Mya and Mary J. Blige2

Mya and Mary J. Blige

Winter Music Conference coinciding with spring break and Sony Ericsson redefines the concept of March Madness every year, not to downplay the college hoops, we’re just saying…College kids dressed head to toe in neon (when did that resurrect from the 80s?), Ed Hardy, and multi-colored kicks (remember Punky Brewster?) fist-pumping day and night to global beats, in all their sweaty glory jammed the streets, pools, hotels and clubs of South Beach for the better part of last week.  A few happenings stood out, some even WMC related to those with an aversion to the March Madness described above, or basically anyone over the age of 20.

It’s no secret that we’re suckers for any party in a penthouse-even if it’s at the Holiday Inn.  So it came as no surprise that one of the best parties during the WMC, with the chicest crowd, took place at the Penthouse Extreme WOW Suite at W South Beach Thursday night for the launch of W Hotels’ new Symmetry CD, created by W’s recently appointed Global Music Director (and DJ extraordinaire), Michaelangelo L’Acqua, who spun at the party.  Guests mingled on the private penthouse rooftop taking in breathtaking panoramic views of Miami Beach while sipping on Veuve Cliquot.  Later in the evening New York City based electro-popsters, The Golden Filter, performed an entire concert.  Noteworthy attendees included Gigi Ganatra, Eva Ziegler (Global Brand Leader, W Hotels Worldwide), Jillian Jacobson-Altit, Michelle Leshem, James Wall, Dana Shear, Chris Oh, Jamie Jo Harris, Jeff Morr, Laure Heriard-Dubreuil, Suzanne Birbragher, James Wall, Aaron Resnick, Michael Comras, Daniela Swaebe, Anne Owen and Alan Roth, and DJ Mia Moretti

On the same night, Josette Wys, Andy Katz, and friends were entertained with a private set in Stephane Pompougnac’s Setai suite prior to his performance to a standing-room only crowd on Friday night at the Setai’s reflection pool.  Pompougnac played selections from his latest Hotel Costes Volume 12 CD, along with many of his classics while Wys, along with Marnie Howard, Michael Kirkland, Marco Marquez danced on the DJ platform all night.

Dangerous Muse at Cafeina

Dangerous Muse at Cafeina

Two noteworthy birthday celebrations took place on Thursday night as well.  DJ Erick Morillo threw a huge birthday bash at a

 private residence, where Kelly Bensimon, Carl Cox, Paulina Rubio, Sander Kleinenberg, Louie Vega, Jose Nunez, DJ Tiesto, and Felix da Housecat and several other VIPs partied and enjoyed Grey Goose Caipiroskas.  Every table at Vita was filled on Thursday, for several birthday celebrations, including girl-about-town, Natalie Murillejo’s, whose central table of more than a dozen beautiful girls included Marnie Howard and Beatriz Alvarez.

On Saturday night, Cafeina was the place to be for the Dangerous Muse performance. Hipsters of all ages gathered alongside intellectuals from New York to Paris and everywhere in-between at the Wynwood boite for a night of debauchery and fun.  Dangerous Muse’s performance was so “hot” that their smoke machine set off the fire alarm.  Cafeina’s owner, Ivette Naranjo didn’t seem to mind, posing for shots with Dangerous Muse’s, Mike Furey and guests instead.   



WMC:  The Day Shift

 The Alize’ Oasis at the Raleigh Hotel provided the perfect respite during WMC for VIPs and DJs from Wednesday through Friday.  Each day, about 150 lucky guests relaxed, dined, got massages and nail treatments from the Seven Seas Spa and were gifted a variety of goodies such as Penguin clothing and fashion accessories. Some guests were also treated to a vibrating Vida massager, otherwise known as a “luxury pleasure object.” We hear that “Real Housewife” Kelly Bensimon declined the buzzing toy citing that she “fornicates to procreate!”  Bensimon ended up taking one after all and Tommy Lee took four. Legendary producer Tommie Sunshine was even convinced to get his signature lengthy locks trimmed at the pop-up Barracuda salon.  Thursday featured a line up including John Suracci for Smashmode, and Steve Aoki.  The unmatched Macy Gray DJed for the better part of the afternoon on Friday- one of the best DJ sets we heard all week- she even had the otherwise “relaxed” attendees dancing in the rain. Other notables who came through included DJs David Guetta, Bob Sinclar, Paul Oakenfold, Mia Moretti, Little Boots, Belkys Nerey,  Louis Aguirre and Tara Solomon and the now Miami centric Jersey Shore cast. 


A few doors down in the W Hotel Bungalows, more VIP treatment took place at the Belvedere Sirius Music Listening Lounge featuring DJ sets by chart topping acts like Paul Oakenfold, Carl Cox, Liquid Todd, Bob Sinclar and Scumfrog.  We had the pleasure of meeting the delightful Mary J. Blige, and newcomer, Starshell, whom Blige just signed to her record label, Matriarch.  Gorgeous songstress, Mya, spent Friday afternoon trying to stay dry during the rainstorms between the Belvedere Sirius Lounge and Alize’ Oasis.  Other performers at the Belvedere Lounge included Agnes, Bob Sinclar, Crystal Method, DJ Ruckus, Kelis, and Macy Gray, to name a few.  Among the celebrities in attendance:  Behrouz, DJ Benny Benassi, Cedric Gervais, Dangerous Muse, DJ Erica Jayne, Estelle, Kelly Bensimon, Kimberly Locke, Lil Jon, Mark Farina, Nero, Paul Van Dyk, Randy Jackson, Tommy Lee.  The Lounge was so successful that Belvedere, Sirius and BMF will be back for WMC 2011.
Daytime music fun also took place at Café Bustelo in the Gansevoort Hotel and at the Clinton Hotel on 8th & Washington.

photo credits: Seth Browarnik/Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

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