Art Basel Miami 2012: Celebrity Take-over

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On December - 18 - 2012

157967695VA065_Haute_LivingBy:  Dr. Mary Jo Almeida-Shore Haute Living magazine kicked off Art Basel with an event Vogue called one of the most anticipated of the week. The dinner party hosted by Daphne Guinness, Dom Pérignon and Roger Dubuis in celebration of Guinness’ collaboration with Swiss watchmaker Roger Dubuis called The Velvet Collection, which was Haute Living’s Basel Issue Cover story. Sixty guests gathered in the courtyard of the posh Villa Azur restaurant on December 5, at a table covered with violet roses to matched Guinness’ Haute Living cover shot taken by Nick Knight. Even Martha Stewart could resist snapping a few photos of the table. The elegant party was crawling with celebrities, VIPs and A listers as guests included Martha Stewart, Karolina Kurkova, Russell Simmons, Ray Allen, Lea Black, Marysol Patton, Stephen Dorff, IWC President Gianfranco D’Attis,street artist, Alec Monopoly, DJ Irie and, of course,Ms. Guinness herself. Dom Pérignon showed off a bottle with a glowing label by fellow creative soul, David Lynch. Earlier in the day, Diane von Furstenberg’s launched her limited edition Evian bottle at a lunch at Soho Beach House alongside guests Russell Simmons, Chelsea Handler and Andre Balazs.

On Thursday, December 6 – the official start of art Basel 2012 and Tony Goldman’s birthday – Goldman Properties CEO Jessica Goldman Srebnick hosted a dinner at Wynwood Walls with the artists of the Walls, almost all of them past and present, to pay tribute to Tony, who passed away on September 11, 2012. Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by Maryanne Salvat On December - 12 - 2010

gerardbutler,serena,lorenalejandroBy:  Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

Those with an unrequited, inexplicable obsession with all things social, artistic, fashionable and fabulous got our annual fix last week during Art Basel 2010, where for seven straight days we were over stimulated from the rooster’s crow to the coyote’s howl-and are just slightly the worse for wear this week. At what other time of the year does the bar line at any given event seem transported from the Tower of Babel? Or does one’s daily conversation involve such derivatives of the word “Basel” as: Baseling, Baselites, Basel brain, Basel Tov, Basel hangover or Baselitis? And when else are you just as likely to bump into Academy Award winners, Sean Penn and Susan Sarandon as funny men, Steve Martin and Ben Stiller; social fixtures, Andre Balazs, Daphne Guinness, Nicky Hilton; designers, Calvin Klein, Christian Louboutin; music moguls, Russell Simmons and the Estefans, or singer, Pharrell Williams; swoon-worthy beautiful people, Gerard Butler, Isabella Rossellini, Naomi Campbell; sports figures, Alex Rodriguez and Serena Williams; art collectors Johnny Pigozzi, Sheikh Mubarak Al-Muhairi, or artistic genius Julian Schnabel, in mismatched clothing as if he’d just gone on a shopping spree at Goodwill? Far from exhaustive, here’s the short list of some of the Basel events that put the “ART” in P-ART-Y. Read the rest of this entry »

NYE 2010- Best Bets

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On December - 23 - 2009

champagne2On South Beach, where every night is New Years Eve (and/or Halloween for that matter), actually going to a party on the last night of the year seems like going to the Paris or Venetian hotels in Vegas in lieu of visiting the actual cities. Can we say overkill? Not to mention that the sticker price on most NYE events brings to mind the SNL Amy Poehler and Seth Meyers’ segment, REALLY???!!! “$300.00 for Lady Gaga, REALLY???!!.” “$300.00 for general admission, REALLY???!!” While we veterans still consider NYE to be amateur night, opting instead to cozy up with a couple of bottles of Dom and a few pounds of stone crabs (George Stone Crabs will even deliver them to your door: 1 (800) 273-CRAB) and to celebrate on the 30th or the 1st, we will admit that New Year’s Eve will deliver a champagne-soaked, celeb-filled debauchery, as promised. So for those of you who insist that two months salary is worth spending on a night you won’t remember, here’s a rundown of some of the best the final night of 2009 has to offer.

Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On December - 21 - 2009

marc_anthony_jennifer_lopez__ridingersArt! It’s the first word and what it’s all about right? Well, mostly…! In addition to works by Chagall, Picasso, Matisse, Miro, Botero, Calder and Warhol, all under one roof at the Convention Center, stand outs during Art Basel week included: Calix Gustav Gallery which held several receptions celebrating the unveiling of Grit: to endure a trying situation and continue on without complaint and “Monitoring Art;” urban impressionist Miguel Paredes’ “The Manifestation of Crossover Art” at a pop-up gallery on Lincoln Road; Carlos Betancourt’s “Lapidus Infinitus” at Diana Lowenstein Fine Arts; David LaChapelle’s “Cars and Money;” Kenny Scharf’s “Art White Collection” and William S. Chewning’s exhibition at Miami Art Group Gallery. Read the rest of this entry »

Downtown Dos

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On September - 17 - 2009

mark-leventhal-jamie-jo-harris-and-nick-d-annunzio-at-wall-003So it seems that anyone with a star on Hollywood Boulevard, recording contract or fashion line was either in Toronto for the film festival or in New York for Fashion Week, the US Open and/or the VMAs, thus rendering our “Celebrity Sightings,” section null and void.  Not sure that next week will be a whole lot better, being that the Emmy’s, with their requisite pre and post parties are taking place, points west of the 305.  However, being that the name of this column is the “411,” and that those of us in the know consider Miami the “sixth borough,” we feel obliged to inform you that on Saturday night, Andre Balazs opened up the Boom Boom Room, in his Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking District.  Touted as the “Biggest opening since Studio 54” by celebrity photographer, Patrick McMullan.  So, to make ourselves feel just a little bit less bummed (all right, slightly bitter) about not being there, and so that we (you) can talk about it as though you actually were (after a few vodka sodas, who really knows the difference?) we will expand our “Celebrity Sightings” for the week to include some of the fun NYC. 

Mama Mia!

Here in Downtown, Miami, there are definitely a few spots worth mentioning.  Mia Biscayne opened with much fanfare in the form of searchlights, throngs of people outside the velvet ropes and special musical guests last Wednesday.  This latest addition to the downtown club scene features
a restaurant, live music venue, nightclub and outdoor terrace that just screams “happy hour” to those who work and/or play in the downtown/Brickell area.  Conceptually, it’s a like Karu and Y, but with a cozier feel, better service and much more convenient (read less life threatening) location.  The premise is that Mia is an ideal place to spend an entire evening, where you can grab a good meal, have some cocktails and stay to dance until 5:00 a.m. Upon arrival, we were personally greeted by the adorable Executive Chef, Gerdy Rodriguez, a young-Tyler Florence type, who looks like he stepped out of one of those reality cooking shows.  Rodriguez credits his Cuban upbringing for his flavorful fusion concoctions, which include the Mia roll, lobster topped with spicy tuna, crispy plantains (yes, mariquitas), scallions and avocado cream (our favorite), Kobe sliders and piping hot Manchego cheese and Serrano ham croquettes (close second).  Another highlight unique to Mia Biscayne is the I-Bar, a translucent runway installation that club goers control by touching, kind of like laser light show meets giant IPOD touch.   Talk about ADHD helper- now if only we could send texts on the thing.  Hunky award-winning actor/singer, Jencarlos Canela, and American Idols Christina Christian performed live, and DJ George Morel provided the sounds for guests such as Dr. Sanford Ziff; Tara Solomon and Nick D’Annunzio, and notable political figures, Mayor of West Miami, Cesar Carasa, Commissioner, Rebeca Sosa, Commissioner Tomas Regalado and Mayor of Hialeah, Julio Robaina – all of whom presented the owner of MIA, Luis Arias, with a proclamation to the city.

 Get Stoned

Another terrific downtown offering is mySpa at the InterContinental Miami, where we got one of the best massages ever.  While admittedly not a spa person due to limited attention span, (I was tempted to roast weenies on the little grill in the sauna and channeled Seinfeld’s Elaine Benes in the steam room) I enjoyed the simplicity and elegance of mySpa and the hot stones massage got the creative juices flowing (I mentally wrote 2/3 of this column on the table)!  My only complaint:  that the massage didn’t last all day.  Hopefully they’ll consider our suggestion and create a 24 hour massage.  A definite bonus for “football widows”, who will have reason to look forward to Sundays this season, is that mySpa is offering the Sunday’s Fabulous Football Survival Package, which includes a 60 minute myMassage (we definitely recommend the hot stones) followed by a 60 minute True Transformation Facial, for $160.00, a 20% savings, not bad considering the price of a game ticket these days.   ”Widows” can “grieve” together by taking advantage of all spa amenities including sauna, steam, fitness center or just relax poolside with a cocktail in hand.  Now that’s what I call a support group!  For more information, visit

Disco Baby

Badrutt’s Place, coined ”the European gem in the heart of Brickell,” premiered Disco Baby Supper Club on Saturday, with Master DJ, Mark Leventhal spinning all the songs we grew up loving and pretending to hate during the failed “Disco Sucks” campaign.  During the party, guests enjoyed full menu items as well as delicious tapas, including Chef Mario Da Como’s signature selections, such as shrimp, Carpaccio, crab cakes, cheeseburger bites, spicy meatballs, and pepper crusted beef medallions with horseradish sauce.  We must warn you that while the food is delicious, you may be too busy dancing to even notice it. So don’t over order and wear comfortable shoes.  Badrutt’s plans to throw the 70s themed party on a regular basis, so start grooming your afro wig and buffing your platforms, Disco Baby!  Stay tuned for upcoming dates.


Spin Spin Sugar


Socialite/singer/songwriter Jamie Jo Harris rocked the tables (Mac book) at Wall on Friday night, joining the ranks of gorgeous DJ Divas:  Tracy Young, Eve Salvali and Sky Nellor and showing, yet again that girls can rule the tables too, with all due respect to our favorite local guys, Irie, Dert, Leventhal, Kurtz, Johnny the Boy and Ruckus.  VIPs including Fabian Basabe, Eric Meier, Jose Ortiz, Lance Burstyn, Rich Santelises, Jerry Powers, Nicola Siervo, Karim Masri, Eric Levin, Tara Solomon, Nick D’Annunzio, Mark Leventhal and Harris’ parents, Fran and Mel Harris, danced to her chart-topping singlejamie-jo-harris-spins-at-wall-001 “U Turn Me On,” a pop duet alongside Barry Gibb, and other hits masterfully mixed by Harris. Absent from the spinning debut was Harris’ collaborator, nine-time Grammy Award-winning music producer Rudy Perez, who was summoned at the last minute by superstar client,  Beyonce Knowles (darn VMAs on the same weekend !).


In other spinning news:  David Barton is kicking off his new spinning program with his Tour de Barton spinning competition, in keeping with his goal of helping you, “look better naked.”  On Saturdays through the end of September, members and non-members will spin to win prizes including memberships, spa treatments, guest passes, apparel, and more. To sign up contact DavidBartonGym at

Gansevoort South (305) 534-1660.

Celebrity Sightings:

Seen getting down at the Boom Boom Room:  Madonna, Jon Bon Jovi, John Stamos, Josh Hartnett, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Jude Law, Lindsay Lohan, Nacho Figueras, Nicky Hilton, Rachel Zoe, and Tory Burch, to name a few.  At Marc Jacobs’ after party at Hiro Ballroom: Janet Jackson, Lindsay Lohan, Mischa Barton, Rachel Zoe, Russell Simmons, Ciara, Estelle and Rufus Wainwright joined the 700 (of 1000) invitees who were allowed into the hot, sticky party, where Lady Gaga performed toned down versions of “Just Dance” and “Poker Face”  Notably absent, Madonna, who attended the show but skipped the party.

A few local celebrity artists joined forces to help the Miami Children’s Museum celebrate its first annual Family Carnival on Sunday.  Romero Britto, Alex Yanes and the guys from Ruthless and Toothless joined young fans in creating murals that will be displayed at the museum.


By:  Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

Out and About: Swim Week

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On July - 24 - 2009

Celebrity sightings:

Entourage‘s Perrey Reeves (AKA “Mrs. Ari”) attended the kick-off party at the Raleigh and her sister-in-law, Marysia Reeves’s show. Cindy Taylor strutted her stuff on the catwalk at the inca 2010 cruise collection show at the W South Beach on Thursday night. Seen at W on Thursday and Friday for the Shay Todd show, Tara Reid, who didn’t mind the rain one bit. “It’s only water? What’s all the fuss about?” she said. After the show, she partied with her boyfriend, Michael Axtmann at the Wall.

Olivia Palermo and Whitney Port from The City attended Mara Hoffman’s show.  Port was also front row at L Space and seen lounging by the W pool on Monday. Donald and Lisa Pliner enjoyed Red Carter’s show on Friday.

Burn Notice star Jeffrey Donovan was seated first row at Ed burn-notices-jeffrey-donovan-at-mercedes-benz-star-lounge-after-ed-hardy1Hardy and later seen drinking Patron shots out of champagne flutes at the Mercedes Benz Star Lounge.   Bravo’s ubiquitous Real Housewives, Kelly Killoren Bensimon (New York) and Dina Manzo (New Jersey) were all over the place.  Bensimon attended the kick-off party at the Raleigh Hotel on Wednesday, Caviar Kaspia at The Webster on Thursday, the Wall on Saturday and numerous shows.  She was also seen at the Mercedes Benz Star Lounge. Manzo followed suit attending many shows and hanging in the Star Lounge with her daughter. 

Hotelier Andre Balazs was front row at the L Space show and hit the Wall at the W South Beach on Saturday. Artist, Romero Britto, director, Michael Bay, and rapper, Lil’ Jon, also took in shows during Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Swim.

At the Living Room on Saturday, Belkys Nerey celebrated her birthday alongside good friend, Marysol Patton. Supermodels, Angela Lindvall, Erin Wasson and Nicole Trunfio were seen at the Standard throughout the weekend.  Andy Roddick’s wife, model Brooklyn Decker, attended a few shows and had brunch at Asia de Cuba at the Mondrian Sunday afternoon. Lennox Lewis dined late along with a group of 15 at Smith & Wollensky. Latin Pop Star, Elvis Crespo and starting third baseman for the Florida Marlins and 2007 World Series MVP, Mike Lowell attended the smash-hit show, Fuerza Bruta, as did Miami Heat Coach Eric Spoelstra over the weekend.