Ocean Drive is All Grown Up

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On March - 21 - 2011

DSC_1611By:  Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

Chairman Jason Binn and Niche Media celebrated the 18th Anniversary of South Florida’s premiere luxury lifestyle publication Ocean Drive magazine with the best party they’ve thrown in a few years.  Billboard chart-topper and international music sensation Enrique Iglesias was the host at the invitation-only bash, presented by Bing at the gorgeous, new JW Marriott Marquis on Wednesday March 9.  Haley and Jason Binn, were joined by Editor In Chief Suzy Buckley and Publisher Courtland Lantaff as co-hosts of the event.

 By 8:00 p.m. the elevators at the JW Marriott Marquis were already packed, with throngs of models (most of whom are younger than the magazine) and other pretty people ascending up to the 19th floor to the hotel’s10, 000-square-foot NBA approved basketball arena, which was transformed into a striking white space, complete with carpeting and enormous white mobiles dangling from the ceiling and adjacent infinity-edge pool area.  Over a thousand guests, dressed in their Wednesday-night best, gathered in hopes of a brush with celebrity, for which Ocean Drive DSC_0558parties are well-known. This year’s party was definitely heavier on the on the star power to which we’ve grown accustomed over the years than last year’s, when all we got was a Kardashian (give or take a sports figure) but still paled in comparison to the  past.  Over the last 18 years,  the magazine’s signature parties have drawn celebs such as Seal, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, Kelly Rowland, (all of whom have performed at one Ocean Drive party or another) Jack Nicholson, Steven Tyler, Oliver Stone, Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, Eddie Murphy, Shaq, Emilio and Gloria Estefan, Heidi Klum, Jessica Simpson, Sly Stallone, James Woods, Bon Jovi, Colin Farrell, Pamela Anderson, Michael Bay, Lindsay Lohan, Cindy Taylor, Donald Trump, the Hiltons, Fergie, and P. Diddy to name a few. 
Famous faces at this year’s bash included our favorite local celebrity, Jeffrey Donovan from Burn Notice, MMA and UFC champ Chuck Liddell, recording artist, Pharrell, photographer Bruce Weber, former NBA star Dennis Rodman, Food Network chef Ingrid Hoffmann and singer Jon Secada. It took us a couple of minutes to recognize a svelte Jeffrey Donovan, with his longer, fluffier “do.”  Donovan explained that he has let his hair grow for his role as the late Bobby Kennedy in a new movie in which he is working with Leonardo DiCaprio. When we commented on his resemblance to Kennedy, he sneered, “You think so? Bobby Kennedy was like 5’9 and weighed like 160 lbs.” Yes, Jeffrey, you definitely are a taller, buffer, handsomer incarnation… 

DSC_0917Midway through the festivities, Jason Binn took the stage to officially welcome guests and share:  “It is so exciting to be celebrating 18 years as South Florida’s most prestigious and prominent publication with Enrique Iglesias.  Enrique is one of the first people I met when I moved to South Beach and started Ocean Drive in 1992.” Guest-of-honor Enrique Iglesias took the stage and expressed his congratulations and pride in being a part of such a special night.  Binn also gave a shout out to all of the celebrities in attendance and to DJ Irie, who kept the party going and going.

VIPs such as Paris-based recording artist, Uffie, NBA-star Dennis Rodman, Ken Gorin of The Collection, Market America’s JR and Loren Ridinger, Daniella Pellicciotti of CondoIdeas Miami, Matt Johnson of Sugarcane/Sushisamba, Scott Skorobohaty of BankUnited, Jared Anderson of Jarden CS,  David Grutman, AndreaDSC_0565 Eastaugh and Erik Guanche of Bacardi, Paul Bacardi, Diane and Alan Lieberman, Invicta Watches CEO Eyal Lalo, Tony Cho Metro1Properties, Shareef Malnik, David Siguaw, Lisa Pliner, Bernie Yuman, Lissette Gonzalez of CBS4, Nick Doyle of Premiere Beverage, Gary and Dana Shear, Amy Zakarin, Daniela Swaebe, Tara Solomon and Nick D’Annunzio joined in the momentous occasion. TV Real Housewives of Miami Lea Black, with husband, Roy; Cristy Rice, Marysol Patton and Adriana De Moura, were also in the house, enjoying their fresh fifteen minutes. 

 Conspicuous by their absence, for the second year in a row: the “Powers that Were”- Ocean Drive founder, Jerry Powers, his wife, Sandi and daughter Jacquelynn, both former editors of the magazine and many of the original crew who helped to shape the magazine into what it is today.  The Powers’ recently launched the first issue of their latest glossy lifestyle publication, Plum, which is currently available exclusively to select VIPs and at limited locations.

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Mary Jo Almeida-Shore,Jose Almeida,Maryanne Salvat
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