Love The Swim You’re In!

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On July - 24 - 2009

shay-todd-show-at-w-south-beach-4For the fifth year in a row, the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Swim extravaganza splashed into town for five fun-filled, albeit exhausting, days of skin, swim and soirees. The year’s Fashion Week Swim saw the greatest number of designers ever, including, Tibi, ANK by Mirla Sabino, True Religion Swimwear, Ed Hardy Swimwear, Poko Pano, Xtra Life LYCRA®, Cia.Marítima, Luli Fama, L*Space by Monica Wise, (this season’s Mercedes-Benz Presents designer), Tibi, Caffé Swimwear, Marysia Swim, Crystal Jin, ANK by Mirla Sabino, True Religion Swimwear, Red Carter, Aqua di Lara, Tori Praver Swimwear, Mara Hoffman, Ed Hardy Swimwear, White Sands Australia, Poko Pano, Xtra Life LYCRA®, Vitamin A, Cia.Marítima, Luli Fama and V Del Sol.  Overall, the shows were a throwback to the 80s, with models sporting bizarre hairstyles, funky make-up, outlandish accessories, and of course, the requisite Michael Jackson (R.I.P.) songs on the soundtrack. 

The Suits

Many of the designers showcased retro-suits, featuring belts, knots, buckles, studs and hardware. Other common themes were bright colors and oversized, exaggerated accessories.  Standouts included Miami-based swimwear designer Red Carter’s eponymous line and Christian Audigier’s Ed Hardy show. 

Red Carter told The Daily that his inspiration for this year’s “Rock and Roll Space Hookers Circa 1984” came from his father’s Playboy magazine collection. red-carter-2010-runway-collection-6Carter’s show, which was rumored to be overbooked by 400, did not disappoint. Lots of eccentric looks graced the runway, including black-pink-and-gray animal prints, suits with studs, cutouts and splicing, thunder bolts and wide metallic belts on futuristic-looking models wearing black lipstick and funky hairstyles.

Similar to last year, this year’s Ed Hardy show was part rock concert, part frat party, and featured his trademark colorful, tattoo-inspired suits, complete with the signature skull and crossbones, unique embellishments and custom hardware.  Bright colors, sequins, and studs covered the suits that barely covered the models, who, in Mohawk-style hairdos and Joan Jett inspired make-up strutted down the runway in matching Ed Hardy patent leather pumps to the beat of Boom Boom Pow and M.J.’s Dirty Diana.  The retro 80s vibe filled the room as the models revved up the crowd by waving their arms in the air and swinging huge silk scarves to garner applause.  Everyone seemed to be having a blast, enjoying Audigier’s unique, audacious designs.

Story By: Mary Jo Almeida Shore
All photos by Mary Jo Almeida Shore


Posted by Maryanne Salvat On July - 20 - 2009

6Miami Social: Really?

By:  Mary Jo Almeida-Shore

 Bravo, the network that brings you train wrecks such as those annoying Housewives from here and there…(yawn) premiered its latest, Miami Social, a.k.a. the Real World, the Middle Aged Years, this week.  While the show’s got the blueprint for success, pretty people in a gorgeous setting and lots of sexual innuendoes and plenty of skin, the personalities and relationships seem quite contrived and chewed on to those of us who actually live here.  We did get a kick out of seeing the vistas of our hometown from every favorable angle, as well as the places we frequent and cameos from friends and acquaintances.  Interestingly, the divorced couples get along better than those in relationships (if only they could have figured it out while they were married).  One of the only realistic (albeit cliché) portrayals is that of the straight (or bi in Maria’s case) woman-gay man relationship- one of the few that actually works, in real life as well as in reality T.V.  While journalists and critics are filling pages by trashing the show, we thought it was actually kind of entertaining.  After all, we are a nation addicted to Facebook and Twitter, who makes a habit out of watching John and Kate plus 8, (John and Kate we Hate…), strangers get married to strangers on T.V. and eat bug/monkey brains to survive.  Miami Social is NOT intended to be a documentary about Miami social life.  It is what it is: a voyeuristic show about fairly regular, somewhat interesting, nice looking people and how they relate (or don’t) relate to each other.  Bravo threw a premier party for Miami Social last Thursday at Louis at the Gansevoort South.  Despite much hype- you would have thought Clooney and Pitt were in the cast, the event was not very well attended, with about 100 guests, tops.  As expected, all of the cast members were there to bask in their 15 minutes of fame (30, for reality show veterans, Katrina Campins and Hardy Hill).  DJ John Cash did bring the house down with old school favs, Michael Jackson (RIP), Madonna, etc. that kept the crowd on its feet the whole night.

  Celebs Fete Sweet Mary

On Wednesday, multi-Grammy award winning singer/ songwriter Gloria Estefan hosted a book signing cocktail for her friend, two-time Pulitzer Prize winning author Liz Balmaseda.   Celebrities including Andy Garcia, Cindy Taylor, Steven Bauer and Tim Hardaway joined Gloria and Emilio Estefan at the circle bar at the Eden Roc Hotel to celebrate Balmaseda’s first novel, Sweet Mary (her Pulitzers were for her writings on the plight of Cuban and Haitian refugees and for her role in covering the story of Elián González). In honor of the book, Atlantico Rum created Sweet Mary Mango Sour specialty cocktails which kept notable guests,  Belkys Nerey, David Siguaw, Greg Cook, Marysol Patton, Frank Amadeo, Willard Shepard and Brian Antoni, among dozens of others milling about the crowded circle bar long after the official cocktail was over.  After the party, the Estefans, Andy Garcia and wife, Marivi, Carole and Oscar Seikaly, Marysol Patton and Frank Amadeo, the President of Estefan Enterprises, darted over to Solea at the newly-opened W South Beach for dinner.

A Breather before the Bathing Suits and Groove

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On July - 9 - 2009

fireworks2Fourth of July weekend blew through town offering those who had um, lost their invites to Diddy’s White Party in Malibu or missed the bus (or car service) to the Hamptons a heap of fun in the way of boating, beaching, parades, fireworks and swanky parties, such as those over at Mondrian, Viceroy and Red.  Other than the grilling and patriotic stuff, it was a fairly quiet week- a much needed repose from all of the exciting social events that have kept the summer calendar chock full, and a breather before the exciting weekend and week to come, which brings us The Groove (formerly Zo’s Summer Groove) and the annual carnal-val otherwise known as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim, produced by IMG Fashion.

W South Beach puts the Ws in WOW

whotelsouthbeachWhile its sister to the north opened with a ROAR last month, the W Hotel South Beach opened with a whisper on Thursday.  It comes as no surprise, that the hip hotel, located in an ideal spot on the beach at 22nd Street is in itself a work of art, being that it is the end product of some of the world’s most creative minds, including conceptual landscape artist, Paula Hayes, Anna Busta of Studio B Design, Rock ‘N Roll photographer, Danny Clinch, Yabu Pushelberg and Costas Kondylis.  Developer David Edelstein, behind Lincoln Road and New York’s famed Park Laurel building, can now add this masterpiece to his roster.

Among the W’s offerings are Solea, the stylish new Mediterranean restaurant by Karim Masri and Nicola Siervo, owners of Quattro and Mokai and the fabulous Living Room, where we spent the better (BEST) part of last weekend. Definitely not your ordinary living room, or hotel bar for that matter, the chic lounge is more like a literary salon, where you can mingle with a sophisticated in-the-know crowd, sip delicious, unique and masterfully crafted libations by Israeli-born mixologist, (with a photographic flavor memory) Elad Zvi of Bar Lab,  and actually carry on a conversation.  Svi revolutionized our cocktail mentality, which consists exclusively of “Absolut splash of soda,” by creating his perfect mixes of rare liquors and fresh-squeezed juices and infusions.  Definitely check out the W Essencia, the United Nations of cocktail ingredients, (Japanese cucumber, Israeli mint and Lebanese pomegranate and tequila) and Rasparose (orange blossom, rose-infused honey and champagne).  Or just do like we did and tell him to surprise you. You won’t be disappointed! In the very near future, W South Beach will be home to the city’s first Mr. Chow, the internationally renowned restaurant with counterparts in London, Beverly Hills and New York City and WALL, the brainchild of club impresarios, Nicola Siervo and Karim Masri and Francis and Eric Milon, of the Opium Group, whom we include among the “Lords of South Beach.” Talk about a meeting of the nightlife masterminds, and merging of two South Beach empires.

Coming Up:

Zo Groovy !

The Summer Groove promises a weekend jam-packed with fun including golf, comedy, music, a gala dinner, block party and all-star basketball game. NBA Champs Alonzo Mourning and Dwyane Wade join forces this year (ergo the name change from just “Zo’s Groove” to “The Groove”) to benefit the Alonzo Mourning Charities and Wade’s World Foundation. The Groove kicks off on Thursday, July 9, at 9:00 a.m. with a Golf Tournament at Doral Golf Resort & Spa with the opportunity to golf alongside Alonzo Mourning, Dwyane Wade and a host of their friends from the sports and entertainment worlds, and runs through Sunday, July 12, from 1:00- 6:00 p.m. as Zo presents his notorious Block Party at the American Airlines Arena.  This event is and is followed by the ZSG All-Star Basketball game; during which NBA Champions Alonzo Mourning and Dwyane Wade challenge many other basketball greats.  Tickets range from $5.00-$60.00 and are available through   For additional information about all of the ZSG events, including the comedy show, concert and gala at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, please visit

Splish, Splash, Swim Week is here

Boasting the greatest number of shows ever, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim sweeps into town next week, setting up camp at the historic Raleigh Hotel for five days of sexy, sweaty, swimwear fun. From July 15-19, designs from 10 newcomers will be presented on the runways alongside prominent swimwear designers and brands such as Tibi, ANK by Mirla Sabino, True Religion Swimwear, Ed Hardy Swimwear, Poko Pano, Xtra Life LYCRA®, Cia.Marítima and Luli Fama. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim kicks-off with a poolside show by Bohéme Boutiques and party on July 15th, followed by four consecutive days of shows and presentations featuring L*Space by Monica Wise, this season’s Mercedes-Benz Presents designer, Tibi, Caffé Swimwear, Marysia Swim, Crystal Jin, ANK by Mirla Sabino, True Religion Swimwear, Red Carter, Aqua di Lara, Tori Praver Swimwear, Mara Hoffman, Ed Hardy Swimwear, White Sands Australia, Poko Pano, Xtra Life LYCRA®, Vitamin A, Cia.Marítima, Luli Fama and V Del Sol.  For the most up to date information, please log on to our website at

The Webster and ERES swimwear are partnering up for this year’s Swim Week. ERES will be setting up shop on the third floor of The Webster showcasing its 2010 Swimwear Collection from July 18th– 20th.   Appointments are a must, and can be made by calling The Webster at 305 674 7899.

On Sunday, July 19, Gerber Group and the newly opened W Fort Lauderdale Hotel will bring a taste of Miami Swim Week to Ft. Lauderdale Beach by presenting Amaya Swimwear during “Salvation Sundays,” it’s weekly pool party.  Designer Lila Nikole Rivera will be showcasing her collections throughout the afternoon.  This event is fun and free to the public.

Merrick Park Goes to the Dogs

Beginning Sundays in July, the pet-friendly Village of Merrick Park invites locals and tourists to bring their dogs to the center lawn for “doggone afternoons dedicated to the four-legged” during its “Doggie Days of Summer” series. The events will take place every Sunday from 2:00-4:00 p.m., during which shoppers are invited to have their photo taken with their beloved pooch with any $25 purchase from the mall. The event series kicks off on Sunday, July 12th with a Pooch-A-Palooza of doggy action including a dog parade judged by local luminaries.

Celebrity Sightings:

Carlos Ponce, and Romero Britto partied at Club 50 at the Viceroy for Level magazine’s one year anniversary party on Wednesday. On Thursday, “Real Housewife,” Bethenny Frankel was at W South Beach. Wilmer Valderrama had dinner at Hakkasan on Friday night before heading to LIV to listen to DJ Vice who spun a special Independence set for the crowd. Vivica Fox hung out poolside at the Gansevoort on Saturday.  Julio Iglesias Jr. spent the evening at Living Room at W South Beach on the fourth of July. Tracy Mourning dined at Houston’s in Coral Gables with son Trey and daughter, Myka Sydney, on Sunday. The Mournings made the announcement that Tracy is pregnant with their third child at the SoBeFit magazine cover party on Thursday night.  Tito Puente Jr., son of famed Latin jazz and Mambo musician Tito Puente (“El Rey de los Timbales” or “King of Latin Music”), gave guests a live and intimate performance at Solé on the Ocean over the weekend.  Also spotted at Sole, former New York Jets linebacker Marvin Jones, former Cincinnati Bengals running back Rudi Johnson and former New York Giants wide receiver and “bad boy” Plaxico Burress. This Friday night, Playboy magazine international cover girl-turned-DJ, Tamara Sky, will perform at Solé’s Friday night “Alba” party from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.