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- 12/28/14--21:00: _5 Restaurants You H...
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- 12/28/14--21:00: _Linda Eder to Open ...
- 12/28/14--21:00: _How Miami Became a ...
- 12/28/14--21:00: _Art Deco Diamonds t...
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- 12/28/14--21:00: _Q&A: Chef Jean-Geor...
- 12/28/14--21:00: _The Luxury Car Indu...
- 12/28/14--21:00: _Q&A: Rachel Silvers...
- 12/28/14--21:00: _An Exclusive First ...
- 12/28/14--22:00: _17 Ways Celebs Brok...
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- 01/01/15--21:00: _How Miami Will Chan...
- 01/02/15--01:00: _How 'Lost' Star Eva...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _New Year, New Face:...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _Wanderlista Boutiqu...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _Who Designed the Ne...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _Rainbow Accessories...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _Behind the Scenes w...
- 12/31/14--21:00: _Watches that Withst...
- 12/28/14--21:00: 5 Restaurants You Have to Try in 2015
- 12/28/14--21:00: Who's Going on the World’s Largest Dance-Party Cruise?
- 12/28/14--21:00: Linda Eder to Open the South Beach Broadway Series
- 12/28/14--21:00: How Miami Became a Hub for Artists
- 12/28/14--21:00: Art Deco Diamonds to Collect This Season
- 12/28/14--21:00: Lost Boy Dry Goods Continues the Alonso Retail Legacy
- 12/28/14--21:00: Q&A: Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten on His Newest Eateries
- 12/28/14--21:00: The Luxury Car Industry’s Green Future
- 12/28/14--21:00: Q&A: Rachel Silverstein on the Threats to Our Waters
- 12/28/14--21:00: An Exclusive First Look at the Edition
- 12/28/14--22:00: 17 Ways Celebs Broke the Internet in 2014
- 12/31/14--21:00: 6 Outerwear Trends You Can Wear in Miami's Winter
- 01/01/15--21:00: How Miami Will Change in 2015
- 01/02/15--01:00: How 'Lost' Star Evangeline Lilly Came to Terms with Hollywood Fame
- 12/31/14--21:00: New Year, New Face: Jaeger-LeCoultre Unveils Meteorite Dial
- 12/31/14--21:00: Wanderlista Boutique Owner Bends the Rules of Fashion
- 12/31/14--21:00: Who Designed the New Thompson Miami Beach Hotel?
- 12/31/14--21:00: Rainbow Accessories to Brighten Up Your Winter Wardrobe
- 12/31/14--21:00: Behind the Scenes with Evangeline Lilly
- 12/31/14--21:00: Watches that Withstood the Test of Time
With a new crop of restaurant arrivals, it’s clear that Miami's gastronomic evolution isn’t slowing down. Here are five must-try hotspots for 2015.
South of Fifth’s hottest new addition, Siena Tavern.
The spotlight shone brightly on Miami’s thriving food scene in 2014 with more than 50 restaurant openings. Celebrity hub Seasalt and Pepper welcomed universal power couple Jay Z and Beyoncé to its riverside stunner. Drunken Dragon, Mignonette, Oolite Restaurant & Bar, Basil Park, Il Mulino New York, and Shikany all took center stage as the city’s top new eateries. And capping off the year, Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto sanctified his shiny new digs at the Shelborne Wyndham Grand South Beach by slicing into a 120-foot sushi roll. The force was strong in 2014, but as 2015 kicks off with a slew of recent openings and a few highly anticipated spots announced for the very near future, Miami continues to climb in the culinary ranks. These are the five new foodie destinations not to miss.
Coming Soon: Bagatelle
New York, Los Angeles, St. Barth’s, and St-Tropez are not enough for this restaurant group. Instead, Villa Bagatelle will extend the brand’s joie de vivre concept beyond meal times and into a 30-guestroom overnight experience in the former Boulan space. Bagatelle, helmed by Matthieu Godard (formerly of DB Bistro), will fuse Southern French cooking with Japanese and Peruvian cuisines and bring its notorious party brunches to South Beach. 2000 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Made for TV: Siena Tavern
From the Bar Lab cocktails and local craft beer list that includes Wynwood Brewing Company and Funky Buddha, to the locally sourced seafood for crudos, to pizza dough that’s been reworked for Miami’s inescapable humidity, Chicago’s Siena Tavern has truly adapted to its newfound South of Fifth neighborhood. “The same problem you have with your hair I have with my pizza,” says Top Chef contestant and owner Fabio Viviani. To understand what the hype is about, try the caramelized Brussels sprouts and white truffle oil pie. 404 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 305-534-5577
The chic and upscale steakhouse took a little disco nap when the Perry Hotel shuttered for renovations. The reawakening of STK at the opposite end of the eco-friendly 1 Hotel & Homes brings former chef Aaron Taylor back to the kitchen to keep the legacy of bite-size wagyu burgers and lobster mac and cheese alive while also placing a focus on locally sourced seafood and Miami-inspired dishes. “We’re pushing culinary this time more than the scene,” says Taylor. 2301 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-604- 6988
Clean Oasis: Temple
Carnivores will be tempted to change their lifestyle when the plant-based sanctuary Temple debuts its second Miami location, this time in Wynwood, coming this summer. Three-time Ironman Olivier Jardon-El Hiny is the leading force behind the health-conscious and colorful South Miami eatery whose menu is fortified with (nondairy) magical milks, elemental elixirs, and energy pots. “We’ll blend and adapt according to the environment,” he says. “We want people to take time for themselves and give joy to the food they eat.” Wynwood location TBD; 5831 Sunset Dr., South Miami, 305-397-8732
Eager Anticipation: Beachcraft
Top Chef judge and cofounder of New York’s Gramercy Tavern Tom Colicchio will add Miami to his restaurant empire list later this year when his farm/sea-to-table concept Beachcraft opens in the same 1 Hotel & Homes property where STK is rekindling its flame. “We’ve been looking at Miami for a while,” says Colicchio. “It just so happened to be a ‘right-place, right-time’ sort of thing.”
Now in Its 11th year, the world’s largest floating dance party, the Groove Cruise, is cranking the EDM from Miami to the Caribbean.
English EDM DJ Michael Woods playing a set at last year’s Groove Cruise LA.
The two things Miami does better than anyplace else in the country is electronic dance music and cruises, so it makes sense that the hottest dance party of the New Year combines them both. The 11th annual Groove Cruise, the world’s largest floating dance music festival, departs from Miami on January 28, sailing to the Bahamas through February 1.
With more than 50 DJs mixing amid a top-of-the-line sound and light system, the Groove Cruise is the party to end all parties. Whet Travel, the team behind the event, will take over the entire Norwegian Pearl for three days on the water and two days on a private island in the Caribbean for a heart-pounding, fist-pumping bash that will whet your appetite for Winter Music Conference (March 24 to 28) and the upcoming Miami March madness. This year’s Groove Cruise lineup includes Arty, Thomas Gold, Aly & Fila, New World Punx, Oliver Heldens, and crowd favorite Erick Morillo, who will perform an extended set at sea. “Erick Morillo has been a favorite among our ‘captains’ and team for years,” says owner Jason Beukema. “We’ve wanted him on Groove Cruise since 2008, but scheduling hasn’t worked. We are thrilled that he’s coming onboard.”
“Captains” is the term used in the Groove Cruise world for passengers aboard this party express, and as expected, it’s a hot crowd of music lovers who are masters of a good time. “The crowd truly embodies beautiful, sexy, and, most importantly, mature people,” he says. “Once you set sail with the Groove Cruise, you automatically join the year-round Groove Cruise family. Our captains stay in touch throughout the year and even host their own meet-ups and events.”
That’s how the Groove Cruise started in the first place—as a group of 125 friends cruising together in 2004. It’s always been about bonding over a love to party, but now the social circle expands globally, with 2,500 captains from all over the world expected onboard this year. In addition to the world-class EDM performances, the trip includes everything from beach, pool, and theme parties to shore excursions, crazy sporting competitions, and sexy onboard fashion shows. For its efforts, the Travel Channel named the Groove Cruise the number-one place in the world “to get your groove on,” and Whet Travel was recently ranked the fourth-fastest-growing company on the South Florida Business Journal’s 2014 list.
With all of their success, Beukema and company make sure to give back to the communities they visit. “Most people don’t associate music festivals or cruises with charity, but we have designed two amazing programs that both tie into Whet Travel,” he says. The Whet Foundation works in the Miami area, shaping the leaders of tomorrow through various youth programs centered on positive involvement in the community. Additionally, passengers bring clothing, shoes, and other goods to be donated to a local Caribbean orphanage. On every trip, the party breaks in order to participate. So while captains will spend these five days bumping and grinding to tracks from world-renowned DJs—as well as enjoying the Norwegian Pearl’s bowling alley, 16 restaurants, 13 bars and lounges, casino, spa, pools, and fitness center—they’ll also be helping someone else. “Despite the nonstop music and partying, our amazing volunteers still wake up for our 7 am departure to wherever our destination donation program takes us,” Beukema says.
Or maybe they don’t get up at 7 a.m.—maybe they stay up until 7—either way, the Groove Cruise is the dance fever fiesta where everybody goes home a winner. The 2015 Groove Cruise sails from Miami January 28 to February 1; tickets are now on sale online.
The South Beach Broadway Series brings three stage superstars to Miami, kicking off this month with the legendary Linda Eder.
Admired chanteuse Linda Eder has made a name for herself on the cabaret concert circuit.
People tend to think of Linda Eder as a theater person, but she begs to differ. “I was just a nightclub singer who met a guy who did theater,” she says. “I played this part, and that’s how I ended up getting into theater.”
And while she hasn’t been back on the boards for a long run since her star-making turn in Frank Wildhorn’s Jekyll & Hyde in 1997-’98, Eder, an all-in performer with a large, powerful voice, has built an enviable career for herself since then as one of the most admired chanteuses on what might be called the upscale-cabaret concert circuit.
This month, Eder plays the Colony Theatre in Miami Beach January 30 and 31 to open the inaugural South Beach Broadway Series being produced by Matthew Lombardo and Rick Murray. Also in the lineup for the series is Tony Award winner Betty Buckley (Cats) on February 27 and 28, followed by Billy Porter, who picked up a best-actor Tony last year in Harvey Fierstein and Cyndi Lauper’s Kinky Boots, on March 20 and 21.
“Listening to Linda Eder sing is a religious experience,” says Lombardo, recounting how he was “mesmerized” by her Jekyll & Hyde performance. “Each of the performers in our series has the kind of talent we call God-given; it’s so special and so unique. With Linda, I could listen to her sing anything. And she can sing anything.”
Eder, 53, began performing on the nightclub and casino circuit after high school. She made her first big splash with a 12-week victory run on TV’s Star Search in 1987. That caught the attention of Wildhorn, beginning a collaboration that led to Jekyll & Hyde as well as a six-year marriage, which ended in 2004 (their son, Jake, is 15 and “incredibly musical,” according to his mother).
Eder’s discography dates to 1991 and includes 15 recordings, the most recent of which, issued on Eder’s own label (“I found out kind of late in life that I’m a bit of a control freak”), is called Linda Live. The Colony show will be based on that record and features songs from her earliest years (Jessi Colter’s “I’m Not Lisa”) to Broadway (Mitch Leigh’s “Man of La Mancha”) and the Great American Songbook (Harold Arlen’s “Over the Rainbow”). She’ll be accompanied by a four-piece rhythm section led by Billy Stein, her longtime musical director. The show also will include Wildhorn songs (“Someone Like You,” “Vienna”) that have become staples for the singer, who enjoys an enthusiastic fan base in Miami.
And surely audiences’ devotion is also because of Eder’s refusal to play the diva, as she’s been urged to do. “I’m a people person by nature,” she says. “It never occurred to me that I wouldn’t stand there at the stage door until every person had left, to take every picture, to sign every piece they wanted, to hear their stories. It’s just always what I’ve done. I could always only be myself, and that, in the long run, has worked in my favor.” Linda Eder appears January 30 and 31 at the Colony Theatre, 1040 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, 305-434-7091
Miami has a growing number of vigorous artist residency programs aimed not only at fueling creativity, but also the city’s cultural legitimacy.
Alexis Diaz at Fordistas. The Puerto Rican-born artist studied drawing and painting, but soon left the studio for the street. “Art is for the people,” he says, pointing out the fact that a city wall will be seen by infinitely more eyes than a painting for sale in a gallery. Today Diaz is internationally known for his surreal zoological mash-ups painted on city walls. For instance, in Vienna he painted a submarine made up of an octopus, a fish, a bird, and a human hand. Although he travels constantly these days, a few months at the Fordistas Residency Program gave him some much-needed time to relax and reflect on the past few years. “Wynwood launched my career,” he says of his experience painting a mural in 2011 that led to invitations to take part in international street art gatherings. “Wynwood is a place where hundreds of thousands of people acknowledge street art. People come from all over.”
People say Miami is a transient place as if that’s a bad thing. This city, like all cities, is built on the whir of people and ideas. Nowhere is this more necessary, or more vital, than in the art world. As artists fly in and out of Miami, a handful of local organizations are doing their best to let them stay just a little longer to, yes, create art, but also to impact the city’s cultural fabric.
Kathryn and Dan Mikesell have decided to house artists in a leafy neighborhood a stroll away from Biscayne Bay. Their Fountainhead Residency, which operates out of a 1950s Miami modern house in Morningside, hums at all hours, seven days a week, as artists from all over the globe paint in the garage, write computer programs in the living room, and hold potlucks in the kitchen. Since 2008, more than 300 artists have passed through, coming from places like South Africa, China, and Estonia, staying for four to eight weeks, exposing their art to Miami’s palm-fronded horizon.
Travel is covered, as is shelter, “as is alcohol,” jokes Kathryn, who makes a point to press-gang the artists into a very busy social calendar. Those trips to parties and openings often lead to new opportunities. “The Miami artist community is very open and interested in communicating and potentially collaborating with residents,” says Dan. In lieu of payment, the couple asks for a token work of art.
Toni Meña at The Fountainhead Residency. Meña was born in El Salvador in 1972 with “three dimensions in his blood,” as his grandfather was a longtime sculpture teacher. But it wasn’t until the artist returned home after a decade in Europe (he studied painting at the University of Barcelona) that his work took on its present form. Confronted with pollution clotting the once-pristine shores of his homeland, he began utilizing garbage as sculptural material. Using techniques of assemblage pioneered by Arman and other artists associated with Nouveau Réalisme (Europe’s version of Pop), Meña began gathering plastic, sorting it by color and look, and condensing it into what he calls “accumulations.” This fall, he brought 80 pounds of trash with him for his six-week residency at the Fountainhead, which provides artists with affordable, flexible studio space and, in some cases, housing. Those objects, and others he found while working on South Beach, will come together to form an installation looking at the ecological and aesthetic effects of floating islands of plastic in the world’s oceans. 7338 NW Miami Ct., Miami, 305-776-8198
The Mikesells plan a year in advance, filling the rooms with artists whose work speaks to them personally, or who have been recommended by an intimate (if far-flung) art world coterie. Hew Locke, whose hanging installation of toy boats, For Those in Peril on the Sea, filled the lobby of the Pérez Art Museum Miami, stayed at The Fountainhead Residency.
Kathryn says she’s looking for “an openness to diversity. You’re living with people you haven’t met. You have to be inquisitive.” But she equally may be talking about her adolescent son, Galt, and daughter, Skye. “Our children are seeing the world, first hand, through the artists’ eyes.” This interaction goes into overdrive during Miami’s busy season, when the residency spills over into the Mikesells’ home. “For us, it’s a way of life,” Kathryn says about putting up artists in her guest bedroom. “To bring people into our home is an honor.” This openness also extends to the community—visitors are welcome at the Fountainhead, although appointments should be made before popping in for a studio visit.
A few miles to the south, in the diamond grit of Miami’s downtown, Chris Cook samples a microbrew at The Corner, the art scene’s watering hole, a stone’s throw from PAMM, across the street from CIFO (Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation), and downstairs from Cannonball, the arts agency that he runs. Cannonball began in 2003 as LegalArt, a legal advisory firm offering pro-bono or cut-rate help to artists. Since Cook took over in early 2012, the budget has more than doubled to $540,000, and the organization now also offers grants and hosts the Research.Art.Dialogue seminar series as well as a residency. Why expand a law clinic into a rooming house? “Miami, like any city, needs a constant infusion of different points of view, different ways of working,” says Cook.
Yemenwed at PAMM. The rotating group Yemenwed is hard to pin down, shifting its focus and aesthetic from commission to commission. The art collective was formed by three artists (it now consists of six) in New York City in 2006; in 2014, they came to Miami three times as part of the Pérez Art Museum Miami’s Researcher-in-Residence program. One of the members of Yemenwed, Paul Kopkau, praised the residency, saying that it “has given us time, and more resources than we’ve ever worked with before.” Working within an institution has its benefits, and it also has its challenges. For its three visits, Yemenwed held a lecture, a lecture with a performance, and finally, “Heavy Flow,” a high-production spectacle that imagines the tidal inundation of PAMM. It’s not acting out a fantasy, but rather responds to a long history of artists making works about museums. “We wanted to do something based on Ed Ruscha’s painting The Los Angeles County Museum on Fire,” says one of the members. below, from left: Yemenwed members Megha Barnabas, Melissa Ip, Busy Gangnes, Paul Kopkau, and Jonathan Turner (not shown: Shawn Maximo). 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-375-3000
Upstairs are six units, constantly filled with a rotating group of artists, writers, and musicians, as well as an airy communal kitchen and a classroom. Each resident receives a travel stipend, monthly pocket change (between $500 and $1,000), a material supplies budget, and technical and administrative support.
Cannonball’s residency is a blend of out-of-towners, who stay one to three months, and locals, who live in the spaces for about a year. Says Cook, “The locals interface with visiting residents—it’s a benefit for everyone.” To him, that “everyone” includes Dade County. “When people come into town for a month, and they start to unpack Miami’s context, when they go back, they’re Miami’s ambassadors.”
Like The Fountainhead Residency, Cannonball thrives off partnerships. One of the biggest is with PAMM, which sometimes houses its visiting Researcher-in-Residence at Cannonball. Some might ask why a museum is getting involved in the residency game. Emily Mello, PAMM’s deputy director of education and public programming, explains that “museums are interested in residencies for a kind of sustained engagement with artists that isn’t just about the final product.”
James Weingrod at YoungArts. Weingrod is more than happy to spend eight weeks making work in an “enormous, massive, infinite studio” on the YoungArts campus, where he was in residence this fall, especially because his art is all about space. The universe is the topic in this emerging artist’s work, which ranges from painting and drawing to sculpture and video installations. “I’m honored and humbled to be a part of this program,” says Weingrod, who splits his busy schedule between Brooklyn and Providence, Rhode Island. “I’m not an insular artist. I need to be inspired by people, by other artists making art. In Miami’s vibrant cultural landscape, I can do that.” 2100 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-377-1140
The Researcher-in-Residence program brings artists, curators, and other creative professionals to Miami to develop or to reflect on PAMM’s programming. Examples include experimental curator Guillaume Désanges and Yemenwed, a rotating group of performers. According to Mello, the program asks how institutions can generate or cultivate ideas and not just house them.
Over in Wynwood, Alex Fernandez-Casais and his wife, Bibi Pestana, partnered with South Florida Ford to create the Fordistas Residency Program, which focuses on local and internationally celebrated street artists, allowing them to live and work in and trade influences with South Florida and its local culture. “Miami is very inspirational; it’s a cultural epicenter,” says Fernandez-Casais. “To provide the opportunity for people with unique points of view to express their ideas of the city is very important.”
For the 2014 program, street artists Axel Void, 2ALAS, Jufe, Pastel & Elian, Jaz, 2501, and Alexis Diaz were provided with a month-long residency to develop their work. At the end of the year, all of the artists come back to create a group exhibition called “Friends and Family.” The residency covers all of the artist’s expenses; additionally, the program takes care of all the promotions and marketing for the resulting exhibition. In return, the artist creates an affordable limited-edition item sold to benefit a local charity.
A world away from urban Wynwood is a residency surrounded by sawgrass, sky, and alligators. The Artists in Residence in Everglades (AIRIE) program was started in 2001 by painter Donna Marxer and expanded several years ago, refocusing on contemporary art and writing. Today, there are 12 monthlong slots available for a live/ work studio with a screened-in porch. Unlike other residencies, AIRIE doesn’t provide a stipend, but it does connect visiting artists and writers with geologists, hydrologists, and other scientists doing work in the Everglades, a set of relationships that provide a “backstage pass” to nature, in the words of Executive Director Deborah Mitchell.
AIRIE is quite competitive, fielding 87 applications in 2014 for this year’s schedule. While there are exceptions, the most successful projects consider the environment of the park in some way. For example, in April, the Brooklyn based photographer Alan Winslow is coming to shoot diptychs of local birders and the birds they follow. As part of the project, AIRIE is connecting Winslow with the Audubon Society. Typically, artists will present part of their work locally.
Packard Jennings at Cannonball. Jennings’s diverse practice examines popular culture in a number of humorous and subversive ways. He created a series of fallen rapper Pez dispensers, including death masks of Eazy-E, The Notorious B.I.G., and Tupac Shakur, and attempted to get Pez to manufacture them. (It declined.) In 2008, he distributed 80,000 copies of a replica of The New York Times with the hoax headline "Iraq War Ends." Although the Oakland-based artist was unsure if he would enjoy Miami, he has extended his residency stay at Cannonball to continue several video projects. For one, he created a parody art residency orientation video for Cannonball that began by praising the neighborhood’s nightlife scene (Cannonball is located downtown near clubs Space and E11even), until the videographer witnesses a violent altercation at The Corner and then fees towards the Everglades. Jennings says that his stay at Cannonball is his most productive time in years. “I’m aware of how helpful residencies are in terms of clearing your plate, dedicating time to your practice, and relaxing, but I’m always surprised at how much work I actually get done.” 1035 N. Miami Ave., Miami, 786-347-2360
One of the most potentially dynamic programs is just now getting off the ground. Founded by Ted Arison more than 34 years ago, YoungArts is an arts advocacy institution for students that has helped mentor and shepherd about 20,000 alumni; its campus includes the historic Bacardi building and will boast a Frank Gehry–designed master plan.
As it expands nationally, YoungArts has launched its Residency in Visual Arts program in Miami. Each year, three emerging or mid-career visual artists are selected to stay for three to 12 weeks. They are given housing and up to $10,000 to realize a project. At the end of their stay, the new art is displayed. The program is brand-new, but artists like Suzanne McClelland are already receiving the chance to work with the historic midcentury architecture. And with a new restaurant by Stephen Starr in the works, the campus, and the residency, is shaping up to be one of Miami’s most lauded.
YoungArts is yet another example of an organization embracing the residency model. “I see us playing a role in increasing the cultural dialogue in Miami,” says President and CEO Paul T. Lehr. Jorge Pérez, whose Related Group real estate development company has partnered with YoungArts, seconds this. “This program is an important step in solidifying our legacy of bringing art into the community, building better cities, and supporting the growth of emerging artists,” he says. “Collaborating with YoungArts will give us a wider reach in supporting artists around the country, and it will enrich the local cultural landscape by creating a platform conducive to dialogue.” So there you have it. Time to mingle.
It’s not just the handsome architecture of Ocean Drive that captures the famed artistic style—fine jewelry is also tapping into the trend for some impossible-to-resist heirloom pIeces.
Platinum Secret Combination cascading 115.9-carat diamond necklace, Harry Winston (price on request). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 786-206-6657. White-gold, diamond, and rock crystal Pluie de Cristal ring, Chanel Fine Jewelry ($65,500). Bal Harbour Shops, 305-868-2404. 18k white-gold, diamond, and rock crystal Chow bracelet, Deborah Pagani (price on request). Oxygene, Bal Harbour Shops, 305-864-0202
18k white-gold Red Carpet Collection 11.85-carat amethyst bracelet, Chopard (price on request). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-868-8626
18k white-gold Abanico Collection 18.90-carat diamond earrings, Jacob & Co. (price on request). East Coast Jewelry, 16810 Collins Ave., Sunny Isles Beach, 305-947-8883
White-gold, black diamond, diamond, Akoya cultured pearl, and black lacquer Lueur d’un Soir earrings, Chanel Fine Jewelry ($90,000). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-868-2404. White-gold, black onyx, and diamond Intarsio necklace, Bulgari ($18,800). Bal Harbour Shops, 305-861-8898
As Randy and Brian Alonso launch their denim concept on Flagler Street, they carry three generations of their family’s heritage from Havana to a now-burgeoning downtown Miami.
Randy (left) and Brian Alonso at Lost Boy Dry Goods in downtown Miami.
In 1927, on the bustling, cobbled streets of downtown Havana, Cuba, brothers Diego and Angel Alonso made a decision that would eventually change the face of downtown Miami when they purchased a fabric store named La Época. They had emigrated from Spain and were eager to build a new life in the steamy capital. Before long, the two brothers transitioned the shop to producing ready-to-wear, and La Época quickly grew into a veritable fashion force on the island. By the 1950s, their staff, originally a lean team of about six, had grown to more than 400, and La Época, now the second-largest department store in the country, was the trendiest shopping destination in all of Cuba. Times were good and business was booming until, in 1959, Fidel Castro came into power. A year later, La Época was forcibly confiscated by the government.
Cut to 2015. Brian and Randy Alonso, the great-grandsons of the aforementioned Diego, have launched Lost Boy Dry Goods, a denim-centric clothing boutique inside Miami’s historic Alfred I. duPont building. Walking into the shop, which opened last August, is a bit like taking a trip in a time machine through American culture. First, there’s the Colorado lodge-inspired décor—a rustic combination of Native American rugs, worn leather chairs, and nostalgic accents like rotary phones, phonographs, and even an authentic mining cage. Then, you have the store’s focus on blue jeans, the garment that might be more American than even apple pie. It’s a venture from a family whose roots in the retail business go back three generations, through political revolution, struggle, and, ultimately, success.
Brian, the elder of the Alonso brothers, explains what happened back in Cuba. “Castro’s army came in with guns pointed at my great-uncle, Angel, and said, ‘Sign these papers. This store belongs to the people now.’ After he signed, they even took his pen. They said that belonged to the people, too.” The Alonso family fled to Miami, intending to return to Cuba once the political chaos subsided. Randy, five years Brian’s junior, adds, “A few years later, they realized that day would never come. So in 1965, my family set out to re-create La Época in this very building.”
Miami’s La Época today.
Diego leased space in the Alfred I. duPont location on Flagler Street, Miami’s original “main street,” ready to rebuild his empire with the help of his sons, Pepe and Tony (Brian and Randy’s father). Over the decades, La Época would see several reincarnations: In the ’60s, the store sprawled over the ground floor of the building, which featured an upscale women’s boutique and electronics shop. In the ’70s, the store boasted luxury brands like Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, and Chanel. In the early ’90s, after Hurricane Andrew ravaged South Florida, the store would shift to offer more economically priced brands, aiming to counter the decline in its tourist customer base as Miami residents—their homes destroyed—were forced to live in the area’s hotels. Most recently, in 2005, La Época moved into the nearby historic Walgreens building, the six-floor Art Deco landmark built by architecture firm Zimmerman, Saxe, and McBride, where the store stands to this day, selling men’s, women’s, and children’s apparel with a range of brands, including Lacoste, Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, Nike, Puma, and Levi’s.
That’s where Brian and Randy enter the story, navigating a new trail with Lost Boy Dry Goods, located just steps away from La Época. “We call ourselves a denim store, but we’re more than that,” Randy says. “We sell footwear, sportswear, swimwear, accessories, records, Herschel backpacks, even old phones and vinyl wallets. There’s even hot sauce in the back.”
Inspired by the winters and summers the Alonso brothers spent as kids in Colorado, Lost Boy is named after the trail in Vail where the boys learned how to ski, and many of the store’s elements—down to its hot sauce selection—continue to embody those traditions. “There was a store where we’d buy candy, and they always had hot sauce in the back that we could taste with pretzels,” Randy says. “So at our store, we feature hot sauces. But not just any hot sauce you can grab at Publix—really unique hot sauces from places like Key West and Tennessee.”
A customer, two store managers, and Tony and Diego Alonso inside La Época, at one of the store’s cash registers, circa 1980.
The brothers’ rustic inspiration is woven throughout all 2,600 square feet of the two-story space. Randy himself designed the store, putting his Duke University degree in civil engineering to use by rendering the shop with 3-D model programs. The brothers then personally sourced the interiors, commissioning paintings of old presidents (a fascination of Randy’s), and scoring thrift shop finds throughout South Florida. On the building’s original brick walls are deer antlers from Texas, custom library shelves, and a rolling ladder. Reclaimed wood from Tennessee barns serves as dressing room doors, and an old baby grand piano functions as a workbench where the brothers often whip out raw cotton and books on the cotton gin to educate customers about the denim-making process. The result is a warmly weathered décor that tells the history of denim in America.
“Trend-wise, we’re not trying to chase anything,” Randy says. “We’re aiming to create an experience as timeless as denim itself. You could go through any American revolution in the last couple of hundred years—whether it be sexual, political, or industrial—and, somehow, denim will be involved—like empowering women in World War II who were working in factories, while women in Europe were still [practically] wearing ‘Victorian’ clothing. Then came a completely different revolution 20 years later, with women starting to wear pants in the ’60s. And this is a garment that started out as a breathable, durable fabric to protect the bodies of men working in the mines.”
While Brian oversees operations and finance, Randy handles merchandising and buying. By stocking more than 20 brands, ranging from higher-end Levi’s Made & Crafted, Diesel, and Prps to the more accessible Guess, Bellfield, and Scotch & Soda, the brothers aim to have every shopper find the perfect pair.
Although Colorado inspired the look of Lost Boy, its soul is rooted firmly in the streets of Miami. Over the nearly five decades the Alonsos have been here, downtown Miami has certainly seen its ups and downs. In 2011, Brian and Randy’s father, Tony, began the Flagler Street Task Force, a group devoted to the revitalization of Flagler Street through the Miami Downtown Development Authority, and brought in as a consultant Tony Goldman, the man behind much of Wynwood, for his expertise in building neighborhoods. When, two years ago, both Tony Alonso and Tony Goldman passed away within a month of each other, Brian stepped in as cochair to continue the revitalization process his father started.
Currently, Brian is a board member of the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust and president of Dade Heritage Trust, while Randy is a board member and secretary of the Downtown Miami Partnership. To them, the involvement is about the city as a whole. “Whenever a friend comes to visit, we go above and beyond to show them that Miami isn’t just South Beach,” Randy says. “Between the explosion of the art district and all of the restorations of the old MiMo hotels, I imagine the excitement is similar to that of the Beach in the late ’80s, when the fashion industry was coming in. And it’s fantastic that, with all Miami’s developments, people are preserving the city’s history along the way.”
Randy and Brian Alonso’s Lost Boy Dry Goods takes inspiration from their family’s three generations in retail as well as their own childhood experiences, which is shown in both their store’s décor and unique items.
As for their efforts to make downtown more vibrant and relevant, things are coming together. “Over the summer, we secured the final portion of $13 million to redo the street,” Brian says. As part of the initiative, Flagler’s on-street parking will be removed to make the sidewalks twice as wide, improving the pedestrian experience and making room for cafés where the community can gather. Rows of oaks will create a shady canopy, and each intersection will have a railroad crossing that can go up and down as needed to close the street for events like farmers markets and concerts.
“It’s a whole engineering process that will go from Biscayne Boulevard to the Miami-Dade County Courthouse,” Brian says. “Even the sidewalks will pay homage to the city’s origins, with an alternating black-and-white pattern inspired by Henry Flagler’s railroad. It’s incredibly exciting for the area, and we plan to put a shovel in the ground at the beginning of the year.”
Adds Randy, “We’re a young city, but we have a lot of depth to us. There are so many gems, especially downtown, that are underappreciated. With Lost Boy Dry Goods and our involvement in the area, we’re really trying to inspire people to shop local and grow the appreciation of Miami’s history.”
For now, it seems, the arrival of Lost Boy Dry Goods is the beginning of yet another chapter in the story of the Alonsos, and one that future generations will look back on as part of a rich and overarching narrative of both a family and Miami. 157 E. Flagler St., Miami, 305-372-7303
The once-glorious Matador Room is reborn with a new Latin-inspired menu courtesy of acclaimed Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
Jean-Georges Vongerichten in the kitchen at NYC’s Nougatine at Jean-Georges. As to why he chose to open in the Miami Beach Edition, the chef says he “couldn’t pass up the opportunity to open restaurants at the best waterfront hotel in Miami.”
Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten may be French born (he grew up near Strasbourg, in Alsace), but the culinary star’s peripatetic nature means his food is anything but Continental. Stints in kitchens from Bangkok to New York to the South of France have flavored his cuisine with everything from tangy herbal vinaigrettes to the bright taste of fresh local vegetables.
At his newest restaurants, Matador Room and Market, both located in Ian Schrager’s Miami Beach Edition hotel, Vongerichten draws inspiration from all over the globe to forge a cuisine that is uniquely Miami. At the more formal Matador Room, diners can feast on sweet pea guacamole with warm crunchy tortillas; Gulf white shrimp with “agua diablo,” banana, and almonds; or whole roasted local fish, with olive oil, sea salt, and fennel pollen, all with a Latin bent, while the Matador Bar features craft cocktails amid black walnut-paneled walls with an ocean view.
Market, the more casual sister space, takes its inspiration from the multi-stalled and resplendent markets of Spain. From a variety of counters, it offers wine, charcuterie, gourmet pizza, and more. Here, Vongerichten talks about the genesis of the restaurants, his favorite Miami haunts, and why he opened in the Edition.
Matador Room’s oval shape was the original shape of the space, and the chandelier is original as well. The sunken dining area adds a dramatic effect.
Tell us about the concept for Matador Room.
We wanted to keep the glamour and charm of the original Matador Room [the restaurant inside the Seville Beach Hotel, which was demolished to make room for the Edition] and at the same time reflect and celebrate the culture of Miami today. We kept the original layout and restored the large chandelier in the dining room, which continues to be the focal point of the restaurant. The inspiration for the outdoor space comes from the Tropicana nightclub in Havana, Cuba.
The menu takes inspiration from many places.
The menu was developed with the culture and flair of Miami in mind. Matador is a modern interpretation of Latin cuisine influenced by Spanish, Caribbean, and South American flavors. The seasonal menu, composed of small and large plates, utilizes a bounty of the freshest Floridian ingredients.
Matador Room’s Gulf shrimp in agua diablo sauce pairs modern Latin influences with the freshest Florida ingredients.
And what was the inspiration behind Market?
[The inspiration] stems from La Boqueria and other outdoor markets found in Barcelona and Madrid. Market is a marketplace-inspired restaurant and patisserie, featuring open counters and kitchens that serve eclectic and international fare. We want our guests to feel like they are walking into their own kitchen to satisfy a craving.
What will that dining experience be like?
At Market, guests are able to sit in front of the various stations. The space includes a beverage bar, pastry pod, cheese and charcuterie counter, raw bar, and an open exposition kitchen. Guests can choose from a variety of options from each of these stations as well as a selection of appetizers, salads, sandwiches, and more.
The watermelon mojito at Matador Bar.
You already have the fine-dining establishment J&G Grill at the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort. Why did you want to open another restaurant here in Miami?
I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to open restaurants at the best waterfront hotel in Miami!
What appealed to you about the Edition space specifically?
The aesthetic, design, culture, and concept.
If you want to see what the car industry’s luxury green future looks lIke, keep an eye on the streets of Miami.
BMW i8: Horsepower (total). 357. Horsepower (gas): 228. Horsepower (electric): 129. Electric range: 20 miles. Mpg highway best: 76 mpge. Zero to 60: 4.2 seconds. Top speed: 155 mph (electric/gas combined), 75 mph (electric only). Price: $136,625. Braman BMW, 2060 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 866-765-3344
Conspicuous consumption is easy. Conspicuous conservation—not so much. The very definition of conspicuous consumption has long been found on the streets of Miami Beach, where you’ll witness a players’ parade of the most expensive and luxurious cars in the world. Once it was the custom bodies of the 1930s and ’40s, then the Rat Pack-ish tail fins and convertibles of the 1950s and ’60s. Later, it was the blinged-out SUVs with giant speakers and monstrous wheels that were heard before they were seen on Collins Avenue. South Beach is simply one of the great cruising strips of the world, and our local valet attendants park the fanciest cars right by the doors, just as they do outside the casinos in Monte Carlo.
But today, more and more, automotive prestige is tied not just to a high mph, but also to a high mpg. Being able to afford to save the planet is its own status symbol. In Los Angeles, that status might take the form of a Prius, but in Miami, you need that extra something special. Tom Musca is a screenwriter and professor who teaches in Miami, frequently works in Los Angeles, and often travels back and forth between the two towns. “On Rodeo Drive, you see the fashions,” he says of the Mercedes Geländewagen spotted one week, then Prius the next. “In Miami, you see a variety of spectacular show-off cars”—Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Bentleys, and Rolls-Royces. But over the decades, the qualities of vehicles have evolved, says Musca. These days, it is no longer horsepower but green power that counts.
The dash design of the BMW i8 continues the fluid futuristic lines of the exterior.
Automakers today are grappling to create the highest-end models that are just as clearly eco-friendly as they are powerful. “Expect the volume of hybrid and electric vehicles to slowly but steadily increase over the next five years, both in sales and the number of models available,” says Eric Tingwall, technical editor at Car and Driver. Miami Beach is where you can see the experiments—and the future. Perhaps the best publicized was LaFerrari, a car you had to be invited to purchase—for $1.4 million. With 950 horses, a V12 engine, and electric to boot, it was billed as the ultimate Ferrari. Only a handful were built, and all were sold to very-well-connected individuals before the car was announced. Ferrari chief Luca di Montezemolo described it as “the maximum expression of what defines our company: excellence,” and it radiated the engineering brilliance of Formula 1.
If the LaFerrari has a rival, it is the lithe McLaren P1, which offers a mix of electric power and a 3.8-liter V8. It takes but an eye-blinking 2.8 seconds to reach 60 miles per hour. In shape and visual attitude, it is a combination of beast and spaceship. But as is often the case with pioneer efforts, the P1 has its limitations; a two-hour charge gives it a range of about 6.2 miles. That doesn’t seem to dissuade early adopters with deep pockets, though—the whole run of less than 400 cars has sold out, also at $1.5 million each.
Porsche 918 Spyder Hybrid. Horsepower (total): 887. Horsepower (gas): 608. Horsepower (electric): 285. Electric range: 12 miles. Mpg highway best: 67 mpge. Zero to 60: 2.5 seconds. Top speed: 214 mph. Price: $845,000. The Collection, 200 Bird Road, Coral Gables, 305-444-5555
On the other hand, you might not notice that the new Cadillac ELR is an electric—whether from the sidewalk or sitting inside, with an elegant stitched leather interior. But it gets a lot more electric miles than its rivals. Like the Chevrolet Volt, the ELR can operate on electricity for about 30 miles before the gas engine takes over. This happens without the driver needing to even be aware of it. “Cars like the BMW i8 and Cadillac ELR are the auto industry’s best hope for making hybrids desirable, sought-after cars,” says Car and Driver’s Tingwall. “They succeed by shifting the conversation around hybrids from CO2 emissions, miles per gallon, and pennies saved, to one that’s about technology, performance, and design.”
The driver can configure the center console touchscreen to display navigation, climate controls, or the Burmester audio system.
Porsche is proud of its hybrid electrics: The company claims that the Lohner Porsche of 1899 built by Dr. Ferdinand Porsche was the first car using a joint battery-powered/electric and combustion engine system. Today, the company offers several models, with the top being the 918 Spyder hybrid. Its 4.6-liter V8 engine produces a top speed of 214 mph, and it lists for $845,000, but the limited run has sold out. Apparently you have to be on someone’s VIP list to even have the chance to own one. “Cars this interesting and this special only come around every 10 years or so,” adds Tingwall. An S E-Hybrid version of the four-door Porsche Panamera runs on a similar system, with zero to 60 mph in 5.2 seconds and a top speed of 167 mph. Porsche has also recently added a hybrid version of its Cayenne SUV to the mix. The Cayenne SE-Hy brid sells for $76,400 and offers an electric top speed of 78 mph.
Porsche’s clever engineers play some tricks with their systems. The Hot Lap button allows the driver to add the output of electric battery and motor to that of the gas engine. There’s also an option to recharge the battery from the engine while driving. With another mode, you can rather perversely pour all the energy saved from the battery into the system to get extra horses, for a burst of excess (environmentally irresponsible) power. McLaren’s P1 offers a similar system.
Tesla Model SP85. Horsepower total (fully electric): 416. Electric range: 265 miles. Mpg highway best: 94 mpge. Zero to 60: 4.2 seconds. Top speed: 130 mph. Price: Starting at $71,070. Tesla Dania Beach, 1949 Tigertail Blvd., Dania Beach, 754-816-3069
Still on the horizon is Mercedes’s S500 hybrid, not yet sold in the US. The Mercedes-Benz S Class is the legendary top of the company’s line, and it has now been electrified as the S500 Plug-in Hybrid. The drive pairs a 329-horsepower, 3-liter V6 with an electric motor that generates 114 horsepower; the combined output is 436 horsepower. Engine and electric can be combined in a variety of modes: electric only, engine only, a mix of the two, or charge battery only. The car lives up to S Class standards with a top speed of 130 mph, but its electric-only range is limited to about 20 miles. It will start around $105,000.
There’s even a good old American “muscle car” in the works: the exotic Renovo, a limited-production hot electric hiding inside a classic Shelby Daytona coupe, with original Shelby chassis and body updated by original designer Peter Brock. Not to be outdone, Lamborghini showed off a future plug-in hybrid concept car, the Asterion LPI 910-4, in Paris last September.
The Tesla’s interior includes a 17-inch touch screen with controls for media, communications, and cabin comfort.
There is still a ways to go to get all car manufacturers up to speed, so to speak. And even the greenest of luxury cars cannot compare to a 50-mpg Toyota Prius. But in 2013, “the average new vehicle had a fuel-economy rating of 24.1 mpg, meaning a BMW i8 is more efficient than the typical newly purchased vehicle,” says Tingwall.
Distinguishing themselves clearly from the crowd of supercars are the Tesla and the BMW i8. The Tesla looks like a very elegant car of the present—the body is graceful but not avant-garde. It was designed by Franz von Holzhausen, a veteran of Volkswagen and GM, who shaped the cunning Solstice sports car. Still, it’s the car to make a statement with. It may be to luxury electrics what Prius was to hybrids. Watch one silently push g-forces around a corner and you’ll be sold. With a claimed range of 265 miles, the Tesla Model S sedan seats four and can be recharged with the company’s proprietary system about twice as fast as other electrics. It has no gas “helper” engine to weigh it down; it is pure electric. Tom Musca bought a Tesla. “It performs as promised,” he says.
Cadillac ELR. Horsepower (total): 217. Horsepower (gas): 83. Horsepower (electric): 181. Electric range: 37 miles. Mpg highway best: 82. Zero to 60: 7.8 seconds. Top speed: 106 mph. Price: $75,995. Braman Cadillac, 2020 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-929-8367
Musca believes the change to electric drive is inevitable. “Once you’ve driven one, you will never go back,” he says. “Those who have not driven an electric don’t understand. It puts all the power at your fingers.” Acceleration is seamless and smooth in a pure electric like the Model S, compared to even the best mechanical transmission. It’s true sports car luxury, however you color it.
As sound as the Tesla is, BMW’s i8 is a first: a green sports car. A British auto magazine called the i8 the first car to aesthetically express the idea of “future green.” It is the flagship of the company’s new “i” line with innovative carbon fiber bodies and plug-in electric and hybrid powerplants. The idea is to show that eco responsibility does not mean giving up the sort of muscular performance associated with the ultimate driving machine.
The driver can select from four instrument display modes, from “classic” to “modern enhanced.”
The i8 looks futuristic and swoopy, with flowing lines and a characteristic blue glow seeping from inside, suggesting the electrical propulsion system. Sexy scissor doors, deep slices in the body, and floating panels make up what Senior Vice President of BMW Group Design Adrian van Hooydonk calls “layering design.” Underneath is the so-called efficient dynamics system, essentially a plug-in electric system with internal combustion assist—a scheme in principle not unlike that of the Chevy Volt. But the i8 is full of aerodynamic, material, and manufacturing innovations. The catch is that the car only gets 20 miles of range when running on electric. On the other hand, it goes from zero to 60 in 4.2 seconds and is one of the most gorgeous things on the road. Most of all, it looks like the future. Buy one, and that future will be now.
Coming off successful legal action protecting our clean-water economy, Rachel Silverstein and the upstart environmental group Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper look to the future.
Rachel Silverstein at Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park.
Who among us hasn’t whispered “wow” when cresting the Julia Tuttle Causeway and seeing the infinite blues and greens of Biscayne Bay? Keeping Miami’s beaches and bay beautiful and swimmable doesn’t just happen—it requires vigilance. That’s where Rachel Silverstein comes in. She’s the executive director (and only paid staff member) of Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper, the local branch of the Waterkeeper Alliance, a nonprofit group founded in 1999 by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. that patrols and protects bodies of water around the globe through education and activist programs. Here, Silverstein talks about the nonprofit’s goals and why clean water is a necessity to Miamians.
What is the mission of Biscayne Bay Waterkeeper?
The Bay is a glittering jewel that is the basis for some amazing property values and recreation, and it’s the basis of our economy. It’s really why we live here, and we need to keep it clean and protect it. We’re also very concerned about the reefs that are just outside the bay and our whole watershed.
What are the major threats to Miami water?
Our three big issue areas are ecosystem protection, preparing for sea-level rise, and ensuring a clean water future. That could mean anything from the Deep Dredge Project [in Government Cut] to flooding to construction projects that might be violating state and federal laws.
The Port of Miami’s Deep Dredge in Government Cut will allow supersize vessels from the Panama Canal to dock here. Has the organization had to react to that?
We have no problem at all with that construction project itself, and the goals of the project, but the dredging has been extremely damaging. We observed early on in the project that the barges were leaking, dribbling sediment all across the reefs. In June, we got reports from scientists and local researchers who were diving near the area that the corals had been covered in sediment. The Department of Environmental Protection found massive and profound sediment damage, which smothers coral and sea grass.
Silverstein collecting DNA samples from corals on the reef off of Key Biscayne/South Beach in 2011.
Why should we care about coral?
We’re one of the only cities in the world to have a reef this beautiful. It’s really valuable economically for the dive boat operators, snorkelers, and tourists. Also, Miami Beach is looking at having to spend millions, maybe billions, of dollars in retrofits for sea-level rise and storm surge. Reefs are a natural barrier to storm surge, and right now they’re protecting the coastline from erosion.
What have you done about it?
We sued the [US] Army Corps of Engineers. Our goal was never to stop the dredging entirely; our goal was just to address what we felt were law violations. Two weeks ago, the Army Corps of Engineers said that they had struck a deal to pay NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) to move hundreds of these threatened corals out of the area. We got the corals moved, and we got the Army Corps to commit to do a better [job preventing sediment]. We dropped our request for an injunction, but our lawsuit continues, and we will be right back in court if we see more damage.
How do you find out about violations?
The community is our eyes and ears out on the water.
It’s obvious why Miamians would care about the beach, but why the bay?
In Miami, we have what I like to call a clean-water economy: Billions of dollars of prime real estate lines the bay, [and] tourists come here because we have beautiful clean water. Then there’s our fishing industry, our snorkeling industry, our paddleboard rentals.
On a 2014 trip to the Bahamas with a group of international environmental activists. Bahamas Waterkeeper Joseph Darville (left) and Silverstein are checking out a private house that has expanded its property by filling in part of the bay, effectively taking public land and damaging the local ecosystem.
But economically the city also needs development.
I don’t want to present the argument that all development is bad or all construction is bad. Some of it is needed to keep our city going. We just have to be very careful that we maintain a good balance. Regulations can sometimes increase the cost of a project, but, ultimately, they are protecting our way of life.
What are some of your most successful programs?
We have an app called the Swim Guide, updated daily. It’ll tell you how to get to your favorite beach, where to park, what kind of water sports are available, and then give you the latest Department of Water health-quality test, so you can see how clean the water is before you go swimming.
What might raise a red flag?
There are frequent sewage spills into the bay that don’t necessarily get press releases. We actually sued Miami-Dade County a few years ago over the chronic sewage spills.
Hypothetically, what might our water look like if we didn’t have environmental regulations?
We have one of the most beautiful industrial ports in the world, and that doesn’t come for free. That comes because we have really great water-quality protection that was set in the ’70s for Biscayne Bay, and it’s something that is continually being attacked and eroded. We’re here to make sure that it’s not.
Ian Schrager returns to Miami Beach for the first time In 17 years with the grand Miami Beach Edition. Ocean Drive steps in for an exclusive first look.
Lush, tropical landscaping creates a sense of privacy at the new Miami Beach Edition.
“I don’t believe in soft openings,” says Ian Schrager. The famous hotelier is standing in the lobby of his gleaming new hotel, the Miami Beach Edition, just days before its grand introduction to Miami and the world. Always a perfectionist, Schrager wanted the hotel to be ready before anybody saw it. He was leading a tour of the Edition, which, much like his beloved Delano farther south, was built in the preserved shell of a historic older hotel, in this case, the midcentury Seville by Miami Modern master Melvin Grossman.
The Miami Beach Edition is the latest hotel in a partnership between Schrager and Marriott, the giant hotel company. With just days to go, Schrager was furiously adding the final touches to his masterpiece. “We left a red ladder right in the lobby so everyone would know it’s not finished yet,” says Schrager. The ladder was a necessary reminder because, to anyone’s eyes besides perhaps Schrager himself, the hotel looked exceptional, with practically every detail obviously obsessed over to the nth degree.
The lobby looks like a winter garden in a wedding cake: a gorgeous white space with marble floors, tall ceilings, and gold-tiled columns—all original. Design team Yabu Pushelberg, which did the building interiors, accented the space with leafy green palm trees that give an otherwise grand lobby human scale, creating conversation areas and dividing up the warehouse-size space. “It’s one of the few hotels in Miami Beach where the lobby has an ocean view,” says Schrager. In the lobby—as in almost anywhere else in the hotel—up-tempo Latin music is always playing, arranged by Miami native Jauretsi Saizarbitoria and her mother, Totty. (Saizarbitoria’s grandfather, Juan Saizarbitoria, founded the popular Havana/ Miami hot spot Centro Vasco.) If anything, the lobby is reminiscent of the good old days of Miami Beach. The palatial, dreamy feeling is very present, except here you’re not on a Hollywood soundstage.
Guest rooms are paneled in soft, light woods with ivory ceramic tile floors.
Many of the Seville’s original details remain. The Matador Room, the original oval dining room and now the hotel’s flagship restaurant, is still oval and still has its original chandelier as well as a theatrical sunken middle section; it manages to be grand yet intimate at the same time. Schrager swathed the walls in wood paneling and let loose celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten to oversee the space as well as the hotel’s other dining options, including the adjacent Matador Bar, paneled in yet darker woods, and the Matador Terrace, set underneath an ipe wood trellis with climbing bougainvillea. The hotel’s original pool has been restored (and a second pool added). A decorative trylon, reminiscent of the one at the 1939 New York World’s Fair, which Schrager says originally was a sundial, has been restored and still stands proudly atop the pool bar. “We’re not done yet. We have layers to add,” he says of the impending final details, like greenery around the old diving board, which has been preserved as a sculptural form. Outdoor lounging areas exist among a junglelike setting. An outdoor movie theater is being added.
The talk of the town during Basel, the Basement is a lower-level entertainment zone with a bowling alley, nightclub, and small ice-skating rink, complete with a very small Zamboni ice-resurfacing machine. Although the hotel had none of these things originally on its lower level, they are all quite historically appropriate. Both the Fontainebleau Miami Beach and the Deauville Hotel had ice-skating rinks in the ’50s and ’60s (the Deauville still has one today). The nightclub is a “microclub,” says Schrager, who before his boutique hotel days was famous for being the proprietor of Studio 54. “It’s not really about selling bottles of liquor and things. It’s about serious dancing,” he says. As for the ice-skating rink and bowling alley, “They’re not really for ice skating and bowling. They’re for having fun.” All the bowling balls are stark white, and the bar takes center stage. “It’s meant for socializing.”
Leafy green palm trees give the high-ceilinged white lobby the feeling of a winter garden.
The 294 guest rooms, which start at $429 a night (and can be double that price in high season), are paneled in soft, light woods similar to those in the Matador restaurant, with ivory ceramic tile floors and white marble bathrooms. There are also suites and poolside bungalows that go for thousands of dollars a night, some with private rooftop plunge pools of their own, while the penthouse clocks in at a very nice 2,300 square feet.
The Miami Beach Edition isn’t just a hotel, but a residential project as well, offering grand hotel living, and the building is notorious for being the onetime site of the most expensive condominium sale in Miami-Dade County (although it has since been eclipsed)—a $34 million combination of two penthouse units. With interiors designed by John Pawson in the same warm, enveloping woods as the hotel rooms and the Matador restaurant, the 26 residential units occupy the top floors of the Seville tower as well as a new tower built behind it. Although the Residences at the Miami Beach Edition are very much a part of the hotel (one doesn’t pay monthly common charges of a considerable $1.47 per square foot to not be pampered half to death), they are still utterly private, with a devoted residential entrance for the building as well as a separate—and even more discreet—celebrity entrance for libertine comings and goings.
Of course, the most important guest of them all is Schrager himself. “I haven’t felt comfortable in Miami hotels in a long time,” he says. “Finally I have a place to stay.” 2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 786-257- 4500
2014 has been a grand year in pop culture. From unexpected album drops (via Beyonce, The Queen) to an official visit from the British royals, we were able to experience it all through the Internet. Here, we round up the most talked-about entertainment stories of the year... and wish you an even grander 2015.
Jay-Z and Beyonce's On the Run concert special was one of the most highly anticipated TV specials of the year
Alec Baldwin “Retires” From Public Life
The actor announced his decision by penning a personal essay published by New York Magazine in February. Baldwin explained: “I started out as an actor, where you seek to understand yourself using the words of great writers and collaborating with other creative people. Then I slid into show business, where you seek only an audience’s approval, whether you deserve it or not. I think I want to go back to being an actor now.”
Beyonce Joins Jay-Z on Tour, Tapes an HBO Concert Special... and is the Star of an Elevator Fight
Remember the Internet craze that followed Beyonce’s surprise 14-track “visual album” drop in December of 2013? Well, that was just the beginning of her modern take on art. This year, the singer joined hubby Jay-Z on their first collaborative tour and made headlines in May when sister Solange and Jay-Z broke into a post-Met Gala fight on an elevator. Beyonce then recovered by releasing a short film, Yours and Mine, all about feminism and motherhood. What's next?
Amanda Bynes Shocks Everyone Via Social Media
Arguably one of the most bizarre entertainment stories of the year comes courtesy of Amanda Bynes. The actress voiced strong accusations against her own family (and espoused her feelings towards fame) via Twitter. She eventually retracted them... before accusing her father of sexual abuse. Her latest tweet? “I’m Britney Spears.”
Matthew McConaughey Wins the Oscar for His Role on Dallas Buyers Club
Although McConaughey’s performance should automatically grant him a spot on the list, his Best Actor acceptance speech might be even more memorable:
Lena Dunham Releases Her Very Expensive Memoir
The actress earned a $3.7 million advance for penning her first memoir. The buzz surrounding the book’s official publication should therefore come as no surprise. Not That Kind of Girl was released to generally good reviews in September of this year.
Celebrity Deaths Shock Us
This year, we lost a lot of good ones. Robin Williams, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Peaches Geldof, Shirley Temple, James Garner, Elaine Stritch, and Joan Rivers... Thanks for making us smile, laugh, and believe.
Lupita Nyong’o's 2014 fashion statements included this Prada number at the Academy Awards
Lupita Nyong’o Steals Every Scene There Ever Was
Starring in Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave (which won the Best Movie Oscar), Nyong’o earns the Best Supporting Actress title at the Academy Awards and her level of fame catapults over night. She becomes fashion’s it-girl, with red carpet looks that will be mentioned for years to come. She gets cast in top-notch films, is named to People’s most beautiful list, and is the new face of Lancome. What did you accomplish this year?
We Learn Who the “Mother” Is
The series finale of hit show How I Met Your Mother aired back in March and we finally found out the mother's name (Tracy McConnell) and what happened to her (she died).
The "Oscar Selfie" becomes one of the most retweeted pictures of the year
We Go Crazy Over the Ultimate Selfie
Courtesy of Academy Awards host Ellen DeGeneres.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West Get Married... and Kim Breaks the Internet
Paper magazine coined the #breakingtheinternet hashtag on its latest cover, featuring the Kardashian sister in all of her glory. As if her marriage to Kanye West in Florence back in May didn’t cause enough of a ruckus.
Jimmy Fallon Takes Over The Tonight Show
Following Jay Leno’s departure, Fallon is named the show’s newest host. He revolutionizes late-night television by proving that, yes, stars are just like us. Here is Emma Stone lip syncing:
And you need to watch Daniel Radcliffe rap (fast forward to 1:12):
Netflix (and TV in General) Excites Us More Than Usual
This year, Netflix completely changed the way we watch TV (can we even call it TV anymore?). Hit shows House of Cards and Orange is the New Black dominated conversations around the country... even inspiring their own hashtags.
Although not a Netflix product, an honorable TV-related mention goes to HBO’s True Detective, a show that surely benefited from McConaughey’s Oscar win and reminded us why we love Woody Harrelson so much.
Shia LaBeouf's outfit at the Berlin Film Festival included a paper bag that read "I Am Not Famous Anymore," while Pharrell donned an interesting hat at the Grammy Awards
Stars Use Their Heads to Make Statements
Pharrell’s hat, which the producer debuted at the Grammys, now has its own Twitter handle. Shia LaBeouf showed up at the Berlin Film Festival with a paper bag on his head, apparently making a statement about the concept of fame.
George Clooney Finally Settles Down
With a wedding in Italy’s Lake Como, Clooney surprises us all and gets hitched to lawyer Amal Alamuddin (whom Barbara Walters recently named most fascinating person of the year).
Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds are expecting... and her pregnancy fashion choices have been praised all over the Internet
Celebrity Babies Get Cuter (and Take On Stranger Names)
Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes named their daughter Esmeralda while Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, also proud parents to a baby girl, named the baby Wyatt Isabelle. Also, let’s not forget about the most stylish pregnant star around, Blake Lively.
Taylor Swift recently relocated to New York City, where she bought a penthouse
Taylor Swift Gives New Meaning to the Word “Record”
No list would be complete without a Taylor Swift mention (or mentions, in this case). The singer/songwriter released her latest album, 1989, which sold 2 million copies, and became the first woman to have three albums sell more than a million copies each in a single week. Swift then pulled her music from streaming service Spotify, causing backlash and praise in equal measure, and reignited the conversation about music in the digital age. She was also named New York City's Global Welcome Ambassador by the city's official tourism site.
During a Nets game in Brooklyn, Duchess Kate and Prince William shook hands with Beyonce and Jay-Z
Royals Meet Royals... and We Go Insane
The biggest entertainment story of the year? Prince William and Duchess Kate visit the United States... and catch a Nets game in Brooklyn alongside our own American version of royalty, Jay-Z and Beyonce. Pictures of the two couples chatting made their rounds and overwhelmed the Internet.
Winter in Miami is so... hot. But that doesn’t mean we can’t keep up with this season's cool-weather trends. If the temp ever dips below 70, be ready with one of these outerwear pieces.
Trend: Extreme Studs
Cropped Black Leather Motorcycle Jacket, Moschino ($2,100). C. Madeleine's, 13702 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, 305-945-7770
How to Wear It: The leather jacket is a chilly-weather staple... and studs seem to be heading in that same direction. This cropped Moschino number is the best of both worlds—a glossy black-leather bodice with heavily studded suede sleeves. This "winter," throw it over a tee with jeans and booties and you're good to go.
Lorient Cape, Style Mafia ($105). 2324 N.W. Fifth Ave., Miami, 786-801-0319
How to Wear It: Summer’s must-have mesh is sticking around for another season in the form of this translucent cape. The fashionably risqué can rock it with a bralette, but for the less salacious, a little black dress will do.
Trend: Printed Textiles
Scribbled Stripe Lambskin Bomber Jacket, 3.1 Phillip Lim ($1,695). Scoop NYC, 1901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-532-5929
How to Wear It: Now is not the time to hesitate with prints. A graphic piece like this leather bomber jacket brings together a statement-making pattern and an athletic-inspired silhouette, making it the perfect layer to pull on during Miami's cooler days and nights.
Trend: Modern Florals
Spring Floral Stretch Cotton & Leather Biker Jacket, NICHOLAS ($800).Saks Fifth Avenue, Bal Harbour Shops, 305-864-3263
How to Wear It: Keep it super-feminine in this floral moto jacket. Simply pop it over a monochromatic look for an instant upgrade, or take a risk by pairing it with another print; either way, expect compliments.
Trend: Black Denim
Denim Jacket, Givenchy ($1,220). The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899
How to Wear It: There are two things that will never go out of style: black and denim; combine the two and you’ve got a jacket that will last a lifetime. And because the fashion world has embraced the Canadian tuxedo, go ahead and wear this bad boy with a chambray button-up and fitted jeans.
Pocketed Flight Bomber, Vince ($445). OFY, 900 S. Miami Ave., Miami, 786-536-9194
How to Wear It: This coastal-blue flight jacket may look casual, but it will complement virtually anything in a Miami man's closet—from jeans and sweatpants to khakis and cargos.
Barely a minute into the New Year, Miami is already growing to new heights and becoming a city with even more depth. Here’s everything you need to know about what’s going down in the 305 in 2015.
If a city had a New Year’s resolution, Miami’s would be: Do things bigger and better—again. Just as in 2014, another banner growth year, it’s a resolution we’ll have no trouble keeping. Miami is maturing culturally, structurally, and physically as neighborhoods are revamped, the art scene spreads, and new construction redefines the skyline. A city on the rise, Miami is headed for a big 2015, with change inevitable and growth seemingly guaranteed.
Art of the Future
It starts with art. It wasn’t that long ago that art was an afterthought here, obscured by the frozen daiquiris and all-night partying that made this town tick. But now, everyone from club owners to real estate moguls has a collection, and developers are heavily recruiting galleries and studios (by dangling cheaper rents in front of them) in order to give up-and-coming neighborhoods a cool factor. In 2015, it’s art that gets the party started, and the scene is not just in Wynwood anymore. “In looking at the roster of permits that have been pulled for construction in the past year, it’s easy to see why so many galleries and artists in Wynwood can’t afford the rent or won’t be able to for much longer,” says Karla Ferguson, owner/director of Little Haiti’s Yeelen Gallery, a 10,000-square-foot gallery and residency space presenting contemporary artwork.
The entrenched will stay in Wynwood, but the rest are heading to surrounding neighborhoods neglected by real estate and cultural booms of the past. Like neighboring Little Haiti, Little River is a raw yet ripe area, and it’s seeing galleries such as Guccivuitton and Michael Jon Gallery move in, while Allapattah has become home to the Gesamtkunstwerk project, which houses Butter Gallery (formerly of Wynwood), as well as Spinello Projects, Wynwood Radio, Product 81, and Panther Coffee’s scientist lab, among others. Places that were once shadowy outliers vaguely evident in your peripheral vision on the way to the airport are now destinations. This year will be the one in which you have dinner in Little Haiti or buy art in Little River.
Downtown Has the Vibe
A leader in the arts frontier is downtown, where Primary Projects has thrived since moving from the Design District. A multidisciplinary project space, Primary Projects has been a home for both established and emerging artists, and according to founder Books IIII Bischof, they fit right in. “Downtown is one of the only places in Miami where there’s a real metropolitan vibe; nowhere else do you get to experience Miami as a city,” says Bischof. “There’s also an edginess to the area that allows you to feel a wave of change, whether in the arts, music, entertainment, or culture.” Cannonball, which also calls the area home, adds fuel to the fire with its residency program and adult education initiatives.
If You Build It, They Will Come
If 2014 was the year LeBron James left downtown, then 2015 will be the year the art scene made it vibrant again. One area of downtown to keep your eye on is being dubbed the Arts & Entertainment District by some, while others call it WestEdge or SoWy. This near-empty section of town is spread over prime real estate just south of buzzy Wynwood and west of the Pérez Art Museum Miami and booming Edgewater. The amount of open space means it’s packed with potential, and the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts and the future Genting hotel/condo/ retail project (which may or may not include a David Beckham-run soccer stadium), just a stone’s throw away, have this neighborhood poised to bridge the gap between Miami’s hottest areas in 2015. It’s a place where one might scurry into a restaurant for a preshow prix-fixe, then walk across the street to catch a Broadway show or a concert. It’s why walkscore.com, which measures the walkability of major US cities, named Miami number five, just behind usuals like New York and San Francisco.
Leading the way in the Arts & Entertainment District is NR Investments, the real estate investment company that owns Filling Station Lofts, the 81-unit development already anchoring the area, and Canvas, the coming 37-story, 513-unit high-rise that should bring elevated foot traffic to the hood. The area is already home to the popular Fredric Snitzer Gallery (formerly of Wynwood), and, as in any budding Miami neighborhood, there’s coffee.
The very successful bike-sharing program, DecoBike, scored its own “corporate sponsorship” from Citibank. Now rebranded as CitiBike, the thousand or so two-wheelers have been outfitted with the company’s blue logo at hundreds of dock stations across the city, with more downtown on the way.
Over the past year or so, 3:05 pm has become cafecito time in Miami, when locals break over a cup of coffee, a time that honors Pitbull’s favorite area code. (#305cafecito even has its own following on Instagram, thanks to official cafecito publicist JennyLee Molina.)
It happens all over the city, but at the end of 2014, as a promotional tool at Filling Station, the 3:05 cafecito was regularly “on the house” in the lobby. It’s a new tradition that brings the community together, and for Ron Gottesmann and Nir Shoshani, principals of NR Investments, that’s how communities thrive. “The main idea is not to create a buzz,” says Shoshani, who estimates that in two to three years the A&E District will be the hot spot in Miami. “The main idea is to bring the people. Once they see what we see, they’ll buy into the idea.”
Standing on the balcony of a loft at Filling Station, even the least imaginative can look out at the expanse and see the potential. Even the Metromover, the last stop of which is just a block away from both of NRI’s buildings, is shedding its bad rap with new stops at PAMM and old favorites like AmericanAirlines Arena and Mary Brickell Village—super convenient for both Heat games and happy hour. It’s part of a transportation revolution in Miami, where car services like Uber, Lyft, and RedCap are taking over and our very own DecoBike recently got called up to the majors and became CitiBike, with new rent-a-bike locations from the Upper East Side to Coconut Grove. Driving yourself (not to mention taking a cab) is so 2014. People are moving around in all sorts of ways in 2015, and city life is giving public transportation a serious boost.
New Highs & Lows
SkyRise Miami is a 1,000-foot, $430 million observation tower that will feature a ballroom, amusement-parkstyle rides, and a nightclub.
And like it or not, it’s possible we’re about to become one of “those” cities—you know, the ones with observation towers. Seattle has the Space Needle, New York has the Empire State Building, Vegas has the Stratosphere Tower, and now lawmakers in Miami are back-and-forthing on SkyRise. The city itself is also reaching new heights, and it’s helping Miami become a world-class locale in 2015. You can’t beat the views of the Atlantic Ocean or Biscayne Bay in Miami, but in a big city where life is vertical, there are usually architectural landmarks like the Empire State Building or the Space Needle that people rave about. At the end of last year, voters approved SkyRise, a $430 million 1,000-foot voter-approved (did you vote?) observation tower that could be our Eiffel Tower (should it actually break ground). It takes Miami into a new stratosphere—literally, as SkyRise will be behind only Stratosphere Tower in Las Vegas as the tallest observation tower in the country, and figuratively because it features a ballroom, amusement-park-style rides, and a nightclub. Regardless of all that, you know you will be one of the first people up there taking a selfie from 1,000 feet.
Even though some artists are stepping away from Wynwood, the neighborhood is hardly losing out. A tech scene and an upstart business culture are moving in, with rumors that Facebook is exploring office space. With young entrepreneurship comes the young professional’s drink of choice: beer. Wynwood Brewing Company has led the charge, while companies such as J. Wakefield Brewing and Concrete Beach Brewery have just opened their doors. Boxelder Craft Beer Market has honed in on the retail side, selling craft beer to thirsty consumers. “The people who brew beer are creative, fascinating people,” says Nicole Darnell, who owns Boxelder with her husband, Adam. “It’s the same as artists. Wynwood is the perfect place for that level of creativity.”
“It’s a liquid art form,” agrees Alex Gutierrez, manager of the Tap Room, inside Wynwood Brewing Company. “The culture here is amazing, and it’s a great environment for this business.”
It’s all clicking for Miami in 2015, which is why Miami Beach is ensuring it stays relevant amid a sea of competition. New hotels in Mid Beach, like The Edition and the Thompson Miami Beach, are providing fresh hangouts for the social elite, and old favorite Shore Club is going condo, converting its 309 hotel rooms into 85 condominiums and 100 hotel rooms, with construction starting early this year. On Collins Avenue, Bagatelle Miami will bring its popular high energy, Champagne-filled brunch scene from Los Angeles and New York to the Sunshine State; also coming to town are Manhattan elites like STK and Quality Meats. And finally, China Grill returns—crackling calamari salad, anyone?
The Great Outdoors
The new $4.8 million, 450-foot South Pointe Park Pier gives visitors a sweeping view of the shoreline and Fisher Island.
It’s not just the food and the architecture that are attracting greater numbers to Miami—nature is also part of our beauty. Case in point: The new South Pointe Park Pier, a $4.8 million, 450-foot walkway that opened at the end of last year, allows you to step off the edge of South Beach and venture out over the ocean to soak in what is arguably Miami’s most beautiful view. It’s an escape from the hustle and bustle (although just across the water lies the $60 million revamp of Fisher Island, cranes and all) and a reminder that even without Champagne goggles, Miami will remain the most beautiful city in the country for years to come.
“Miami is at its prime, and our romance with the city only grows stronger,” says Primary Projects’ Bischof. “It’s exciting to contribute to her history and participate in this moment of exponential growth.”
That’s Soooo 2014
Ten Miami trends that are, like, so last year.
After two rings and four championship appearances, Lebron took his ball and went home. We wish him luck trying to ride his bike to the arena in December in Cleveland
A Las Vegas club came to Miami, and like many trips to Sin City, it was over with little memory of what happened, because what happens in Vegas should, in fact, stay in Vegas.
Miami Herald Building
The newspaper company itself is living large in Doral, but the waterfront property north of downtown is gone in 2015, making way for bigger, though better is debatable.
With Uber and Lyft working at amazingly low prices ($24 est. from Aventura to South Beach), those yellow stink wagons are slowly working their way to the junkyard.
Pretending to Work Out
With all the various exercise facilities in Sunset Harbour and David Barton Gym blowing up downtown, it’s officially not cool to say you are going to the gym without actually going.
Alton Road has been a construction disaster for what feels like an eternity, but it’s all worth it to not need a kayak to travel around South Beach during high tide.
There’s a price to pay for being so popular, and locals paying rent are shelling out more pesos than ever for living in paradise. Say goodbye to finding deals in 2015, with small two-bedrooms South of Fifth renting at around $8,000 a month.
Rapid change also means losing out on old faithfuls like the iconic Van Dyke Café on Lincoln Road and Brickell’s Tobacco Road, which closed its doors at the end of 2014 after 101 years in business.
EDM is still big business in Miami, but for those who still want to rock without a metallic taste in their mouth in the morning, spots like The Fillmore, Railroad Blues Bar, Love Jazz at Lilt Lounge, Ball & Chain, and Filling Station offer a bit more tame, live music.
With a rise in local breweries and distilleries, plus a newfound respect for cocktail culture, there’s no reason you need to sear off your taste buds and slam Fireball shots on Saturday nights anymore. Though we get that need too sometimes.
Actress Evangeline Lilly is back in the spotlight with the latest installment of The Hobbit series, but this time around, she’s controlling the wattage.
There’s a level of honesty to Evangeline Lilly, star of the current film The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, that would induce an eye roll from the public if it came from some other actors. She thinks the paparazzi are “a plague,” Los Angeles has “an emptiness” to it, and she “did not enjoy [her] job” when she was starring as Kate Austen on Lost, the hit show that made her famous.
But Lilly pads every bold statement with a remarkable amount of charm and punctuates her words with such an intoxicating laugh that it becomes impossible to hear her opinions and not take her side on nearly every issue. She can describe how she chooses her roles—wanting to contribute to the creation of her characters in order to feel as though she is doing more than just acting—and you understand that she’s not trying to be controlling; she just wants to have a little fun at work. “My forte in life is overcomplicating things and overthinking things and being much too deliberate and serious about everything while laughing my way through it all,” she says. She’s a bit of a Hollywood rebel, to say the least, choosing Hawaii as her home base, although she’s a self-described “nomad” who hasn’t lived in one place for more than six months in a very long time. “I’m kind of all over the place. [But] I don’t live in LA, and I never will.”
Her life is filled with paradoxes that, just by being matter-of-fact about them, she persuades you to accept. It’s why she can say things like “I’m a bit of a loner, always have been,” and before you can ask how such a thing is possible for a successful actress in a schmoozy industry like entertainment, she continues, “Oh my God, I just took a big bite of peanut butter, and now my tongue is stuck to the roof of my mouth. I’m having peanut butter and red wine right now. How bizarre is that combination? So, yeah, I don’t know why I’m a loner.”
It’s the charm of the gregarious introvert—a common Hollywood oxymoron—that allows Lilly to be a successful loner, with complete control of her career and the ability to make bold statements both on-and off-screen.
Cocktail dress, Dior ($9,300). Saks Fifth Avenue, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-864-3263. Rectangle Estate drop earrings ($125) and small rectangle Estate bracelet ($275), Eddie Borgo. The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899. 14k gold Lipstack ring, Alison Lou ($900). The Webster, SEE ABOVE
On the Hobbit films, she gained the control she was looking for. “From the get-go, I was offered this opportunity to play a hand in creating her,” Lilly says of Tauriel, a character that didn’t exist by name in the books by J.R.R. Tolkien. “That process of creating Tauriel with [screenwriters] Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens and [director] Peter Jackson really changed my perspective on acting. Up to that point in my career, I felt as though acting was a bit of a backseat job and difficult to use as a creative outlet because I just felt like I don’t get to create; I have to perform someone else’s creation. As a person who is a writer at heart, that was always hard for me.”
The change in perspective even has Lilly seeing her Lost days in a different light. She looks back now, remembers watching whales breach the waters off the Hawaiian coast, and says, “There were those moments where you pinch yourself and you go, ‘Oh my God, this is my office.’”
What the Canadian-born actress really had trouble with during those years was fame. “We’ve got lumberjacks and flannel shirts and pine trees and snow,” Lilly says of her hometown. “It could not be further from Miami culture, which is sleek and sexy and colorful and Latino and sunny and oceany and beautiful and blue and white. When I think of Miami, it’s almost like I would imagine it would be going to an exotic petting zoo.”
Wave Edge Fit and Flare jacket ($575) and Waved jacquard pants ($395), Issa. Miros, 7216 Red Road, Coral Gables, 305-667-0084. Dana bra, Morgan Lane ($125). Pumps, Gianvito Rossi ($725). Neiman Marcus, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-865-6161
As a child, she thought she’d be an internationally acclaimed kid author or “the first 16-year-old CEO of a multiconglomerate company.” Lilly never connected with the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, but then the success of Lost and an off-camera relationship with cast mate Dominic Monaghan threw her into it. “Fame didn’t fit well with me,” she says. “It just didn’t work for me.” But she has since figured out the whole fame game. “What’s happened over the years is I’ve had to find ways to come to terms with it and understand it in a new way, and not turn my nose up to it and think that it’s all sort of perverse and distorted. I had to learn not to throw the baby out with the bathwater.”
She came to terms with fame (and now calls her time with Monaghan “a beautiful relationship that lasted for five years”) and in the process gained a confidence in navigating life, with the help of her partner, Norman Kali, who was a production assistant on Lost when she met him. “He’s a down-to-earth, humble guy,” she says. “He helps remind me that none of this matters.”
Most importantly, motherhood grounded her. “I spent a lot of time in the clouds,” says Lilly, who had son Kahekili Kali (which means “thunder” in Hawaiian) in May 2011. “Becoming a mother has really helped me put my feet on the ground and given me a very powerful sense of self and a powerful sense of priority in life. All I have to do is see my son to do that mental check that says, Is this really important? Do you really need to be doing this? Do you really care? It helps put everything in perspective when things get stressful or when there’s a demand or pressures on me. At the end of the day, it’s our family, it’s being a mother and a partner and seeing love all around.”
Dress, Bottega Veneta ($5,500). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-864-6247. Fringe earrings ($150) and gemstone pyramid bracelet ($350), Eddie Borgo. The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899
This new outlook has led Lilly to a life in which she now calls the shots. She’ll act when she wants to. She took two years off between shooting the Hobbit films and Ant-Man, the Marvel flick she recently wrapped, to work on her writing career. During that time, she says, writing was “a 9-to-5 job,” and it spawned the first in a series of children’s storybooks called The Squickerwonkers, a deal for a graphic novel, and plans for another novel based on an earlier script she had written. “Believe it or not, I’m not kicking back and drinking piña coladas in the shade when I’m not working on an acting project,” Lilly says. “It’s a huge endeavor.”
And she plans to have more kids—when she wants to. “What I wanted originally was six kids,” she says. “I frickin’ love being pregnant. I’m one of the lucky women who just had a blissful pregnancy, but I wanted to adopt four. My partner and I have really been through the ringer in the adoption world and it’s hard, so we’ll see what happens. Life is magically beautiful, and it brings you what is perfect.”
Lilly will also get married when she feels it’ll benefit her family in some way, although she’s not rushing—and quite possibly never will. “Every other 16-year-old girl wanted to look at bridal magazines; I could not have been more bored with the notion,” she says. “I have an American son and an American partner, so marriage might logistically make sense at one point. My partner is a stay-at-home father, so if he wants to be on my health plan, or taxwise, or maybe on paper we want to have our I’s dotted and our T’s crossed, but emotionally neither of us really feels the need for it. We love each other today, and we hope we’ll love each other tomorrow. In my world, I don’t believe in forever promises. I don’t think it’s realistic.”
Jacket, Drome ($1,659). Bikini top, Dolce & Gabbana ($285). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-866-0503. Brass Silver Ball choker, Jennifer Fisher ($350). Barneys New York, 832 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-421-2010
Lilly makes no promises about the future of her acting career, either. “I’m a bit delusional, but every time I do a job, I think I’m retired,” she says, adding that Hollywood brings mixed emotions. “I love it for a time. I love the entertaining and to see the lights and the shows and enjoy the restaurants and see my friends who I never see, but there’s an emptiness that settles in very quickly. There’s no nature. There’s no trees. I fly into LA and my heart sinks, because I look at this vast landscape of concrete and I get sick to my stomach.” She stays away as long as possible, but “then some project comes along that just lures me out of my false sense of retirement, and I end up going off and shooting it.”
Most recently, it was the anticipated summer blockbuster Ant-Man that lured her back on-screen, mainly because she was again allowed to shape her character and, well, Paul Rudd. “When they told me Paul Rudd was playing the lead, I was like, Hang on a minute, this is going to be so much fun.”
And, of course, she was right. While on location in San Francisco, Rudd, Bobby Cannavale, and company spurned her plan for a cast dinner, opting instead for karaoke and a night that she’ll remember forever. “I had to go get pizza and liquid courage, because I’m not much of a karaoke singer,” says Lilly, who belted out “Dreams” by the Cranberries and “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence and the Machine so loudly that her voice was hoarse the next day. “It was one of my best off-set experiences.”
Black sheer top ($990) and pumps ($790), Tom Ford. Neiman Marcus, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-865-6161. Drake bra, Morgan Lane ($138). Cotton briefs, Burberry Prorsum ($395). Miami Design District, 112 NE 39th St., Ste. #101, 305-423-0078. Black Betty sunglasses, Smoke & Mirrors ($295). Babalú Miami, 1121 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, 305-538-0777. Rectangle Estate drop earrings, Eddie Borgo ($125). The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899. 14k yellow-gold and diamond Screw U bangle ($2,200) and 14k gold with enamel Matchstick ring ($550), Alison Lou. The Webster, SEE ABOVE
Then, when the dog days of filming were over, it was back to writing books, which is an experience she enjoys for a completely different reason. For Lilly, writing is more of a grind than film but also comes with more of a reward. She’s highly regarded in both mediums, and that success allows her to live this life, have this family, and do it all on her terms.
Eventually, though, she’ll have to pull away from what she calls her “cozy little insular writing world” and promote Ant-Man, but she does it now with a newfound gratitude for the entertainment industry. “If that means putting on sparkly shoes and dancing for the crowd, then that is what I do,” she says, “and I do it with a sense of peace now.”
Dress with cutouts, Emilio Pucci ($4,330). Miami Design District, 155 NE 40th St., Space #100, 305-576-1830. Rectangle Estate drop earrings ($125) and ID Toggle bracelet ($125), Eddie Borgo. The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899. Mea Culpa heels, Christian Louboutin ($895). Miami Design District, 155 NE 40th St., 305-576-6820
She’ll also talk to reporters and answer the same five questions about the movie and her haircut a hundred times. She’ll even answer the same questions about Lost. (“I love the ending,” she says. “I’ll never put myself in a ‘Jate’ or a ‘Skate’ camp,” referring to her character Kate’s two on-screen love interests, Matthew Fox’s Jack and Josh Holloway’s Sawyer. And to save you the trouble of reading it elsewhere, she adds, “There will never be a Lost movie with me in it.”)
She’ll turn the press junket into a game, she says, and see how often she can make the journalists laugh. And she’ll do it all with a wink and a smile, because while Lilly may not be “Hollywood,” she certainly now appreciates what it does for her. “There are a lot of things that used to be frustrating to me that aren’t so much now,” she explains. “It’s just a mind-set of ‘It’s my job. That’s why they pay me the big bucks, because I can do that, because I can continue to be charming even when I want to punch you in the face.’”
Of course, she follows that statement with a laugh, and of course, you just have to love her.
See Jaeger-LeCoultre's newly designed Master Calendar watch before its launch at SIHH.
The meteorite used in the dial of the Master Calendar was found and registered in Sweden.
There has been a lot of talk lately about the use of meteorites as dials in watches—something certain brands were doing decades ago. Today, there are just a handful of luxury watch brands that procure meteorites and transform them into ultra-thin slabs to use as a watch dial; and Jaeger-LeCoultre is one of them. In its newest set of Master Calendar watches being released at the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie this month, the brand turns to these celestial fragments from space to continue its astronomical, starry celestial watches.
First we want to make a distinction here: The Master Calendar watch is not new for 2015; only the use of meteorites for the dial is new. To make the dial, Jaeger-LeCoultre took a single block of meteorite that was discovered and registered in Sweden, believed to come from the asteroid belt that lies between Mars and Jupiter. The block has been shaped by stone-cutting specialists into thin slices and completed with polishing and other finishes.
The Master Calendar watch is available in a stainless steel option.
The concept of utilizing meteorite for the Master Calendar—offered in stainless steel and in 18-karat rose gold finishes—makes sense, as the calendar, complete with a moonphase indicator, is one of its more useful options. The 39mm watch with sapphire crystal and caseback is powered by the Jaeger-LeCoultre Caliber 866 mechanical automatic winding movement composed of 305 parts. In addition to hours, minutes, and seconds, the watch displays the day, date, month, and moonphases and it's equipped with 43 hours of power reserve. It is expected that the steel version will sell for roughly $13,000 while the rose gold option will be priced at around $25,500.
Founder and editor-in-chief of ATimelyPerspective.com, Roberta Naas is a veteran award-winning journalist in the watch industry with more than 25 years of experience. She was the first woman watch editor in the US market—breaking in to an “all boys network” with a pioneering spirit that would be her signature to this day. Naas brings responsible, factual—yet always timely and insightful—reporting of the watch industry to the forefront.
At her newly opened Wanderlista boutique, Andria Mitsakos is showing Miami how to dress with a confident edge.
Andria Mitsakos in her Mid Beach boutique, Wanderlista.
Outfitted in black leather shorts and a printed 1981 Lacroix blazer that could easily hang in Balmain’s current collection, Andria Mitsakos exudes that effortless chic only the truest of fashion icons can pull off. Lucky for Miami, Mitsakos—whose career encompasses international-travel public relations, fashion, and furniture design—recently opened Wanderlista, her shop at the Croydon Hotel in Mid Beach.
After nearly 20 years traveling the world for her PR clients, curating a bit here and designing a bit there, Mitsakos was tapped to co-create Dea Rosa, her line of luxury leather handbags and accessories, in 2012, and launch Wanderlista boutiques. The Miami outpost marks the third location, after seasonal shops in Mykonos and Santorini, along with the online commerce component, shoplatitude.com.
Born into a stylish family—Mitsakos’s mother was an interior designer and her grandmother a shoe designer—Andria’s propensity for globe-trotting developed at a young age. “My mother always taught me that I should buy one thing from wherever we were,” she says. “I would always try to seek out a new designer. You don’t need so many things, just really special things.”
These globally sourced “special things” now line the shelves at Wanderlista, where you’ll find the Magic City Capsule Collection, her latest Dea Rosa clutches. Other unique pieces range from fine jewelry from Greek designer Elena Syraka (Wanderlista is the only store to carry the line in the US) to gold-threaded frocks from New York couturier Jes Wade; turbans and hats from Greece’s luxury milliner Katerina Karoussos; futuristic shades from Will.I.Am’s Ill.i Optics (a Miami first); and a rotating selection of designer vintage from New York. “Shopping shouldn’t be an intimidating experience,” she says. “You should buy something because you love it.”
For Mitsakos, her effortless elegance and to-die-for fashion sensibility come with a certain mind-set. “I haven’t worn a real bra since 1995,” she quips as she thumbs a black leather bralette from Fleur du Mal. “I never take myself too seriously. My big things are grace and confidence.” Hotel Croydon Miami Beach, 3720 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-938-1145
Lush gardens and a fresh take on Golden-Age glamour bring buzz to the new Thompson Miami Beach hotel.
Raymond Jungles designed the tropical landscape at Thompson Miami Beach, one of his first public projects in South Florida.
Take a stroll through the grounds of the new Thompson Miami Beach hotel and you’re likely to feel as if you’ve entered a rare subtropical paradise. But the Eden-esque quality of the landscape didn’t happen by chance. The grounds—with their sparkling water features, abundant native flowering plants, and wild date palms that seem to bow in gracious welcome—were placed in a naturalistic composition by Miami’s favorite landscape architect, Raymond Jungles. The lush environment is also one of very few designed by the masterful artist that can be seen by the public. “I’ve designed a lot of gardens that no one can see because a lot of my clients are private,” says Jungles, “but this one is a public garden that anyone can enjoy.”
Opened just last month, the 380-room Thompson Miami Beach recently underwent a multimillion-dollar rebuild by the London- and New York-based firm of Martin Brudnizki, the same interior designer who crafted the private Soho Beach House right next door, with its edgy yet cozy beach shack-cum-English library vibe.
The exterior of the 380-room Thompson Miami Beach. left: The hotel’s entrance leads to an open reception space that flaunts tropical glamour.
Creating an ambience suited for fun was part of the plan from the jump for the new hotel, the latest in Commune Hotels & Resorts’ expanding Thompson Hotels portfolio of luxury lifestyle properties. “We wanted to reestablish a sense of the Beach glamour of the 1940s, ’50s, and ’60s,” says Brudnizki, who worked on the project with his New York studio head, Craig Harvey. “At the same time, we wanted the atmosphere to be relaxed enough for people to feel at ease taking their shoes off and walking through the reception barefoot. So the interiors are elegant, but also informal, playful, colorful, and fun.”
In setting the vibrant yet glamorous tone, the designers found inspiration in the hotel’s original Midcentury Modern elements. “We took cues from the Dorothy Draper-esque plaster details and designed vintage-inspired rooms and public areas with midcentury accents and furniture that we acquired at auctions and markets in England and the States and mixed with new custom pieces,” says Brudnizki. “We also used a fresh palette of off-whites, pale yellows, and greens with bold floral patterns to keep it playful. The result is like a beautiful mature lady whose age can’t be guessed.”
The guest rooms and suites at the Thompson feature midcentury international resort-style décor with 1950s-inspired beds and sitting areas.
The designers also worked with local architecture firm Kobi Karp to reconfigure the three existing buildings that constitute the hotel into one cohesive complex. By opening up connections between the structures, they created a gracious flow among the public areas, which include a double-height reception lobby; a library; indoor/outdoor restaurants; Crown Room, a bar serving rare spirits and fine wines; a late-night lounge; a spa and fitness center; and Seagrape, chef Michelle Bernstein’s 267-seat timber-ceilinged brasserie.
Outside, two pools, lush tropical gardens, and lounges with ocean views complement a grove garden near a historic 1930s house on the property. The house (which was once moved from across Collins Avenue) has been converted into a hideaway with a crudo bar, where avant-garde cocktails and food are served. The designers’ eclectic mix of materials and furnishings seamlessly weaves the interiors and exteriors and different eras together with a kitschy-cool energy that recalls the Beach’s dazzling Rat Pack era. “We always like to tell a story with our interiors,” says Brudnizki. “There’s a lot of available history in Miami, and we used that to create our imaginary story. It was a fantasy trip for us.” 4041 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 786-605-4041
It’s always sunny in Miami with full spectrum accessories inspired by the colorful culture of South Beach.
CLOCKWISE FROM FAR LEFT: Teal and kaleidoscope flap clutch, Nancy Gonzalez ($1,900). Saks Fifth Avenue, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-865-1100. Opuntia Pandora clutch, Charlotte Olympia ($1,095). Bal Harbour Shops, 305-868-1858. Plexy chevron bangle ($845) and plexy check bangle ($375), Valentino Garavani. Bal Harbour Shops, 305-867-1215
Chevron Lucite bootie, Valentino Garavani ($1,545). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-867-1215. 18k yellow-gold Rainbow necklaces with assorted gemstones, H.Stern ($9,200– $14,100). Village of Merrick Park, 358 San Lorenzo Ave., Coral Gables, 305-443-8887
PRETTY AS A PINWHEEL
New Order multicolored crystal minaudière, Judith Leiber Couture ($3,995). Neiman Marcus, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-865-6161. Inlaid small cube bracelet, Eddie Borgo ($325). The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899
EARN YOUR STRIPES
Acrylic clutch, Edie Parker ($1,195). Capretto Shoes, 5822 Sunset Dr., South Miami, 305-661-7767
NEED FOR NEON
Multi-polka-dot Allison sandal, Fendi ($950). Bal Harbour Shops. 9700 Collins Ave., 305-861-7114. Mechanix chrome and rainbow splatter paint breastplate, Gemma Redux ($605). Intermix, 634 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-531-5950
See our behind-the-scenes footage from the 'Hobbit' and former 'Lost' actress' shoot.
As Miami Beach prepares to celebrate its 100th anniversary, watch collectors are donning timepieces that, too, have withstood the test of time.
With centennial celebrations kicking off in Miami Beach in 2015, many are looking to the past to inspire the future. Such is the case with a number of watch brands that are also celebrating a century or more of excellence. From Hamilton to Tourneau, each of them continues to build on its long-standing tradition of crafting fine timepieces for the modern day that are inspired by the brand’s heritage.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP:
1. Hamilton, a brand started more than 100 years ago in the rich farmland of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, was instrumental in offering functional precision watches to American workers. This 42mm Hamilton Railroad Small Second watch ($1,295) is inspired by the railroad that made Miami Beach and American expansion possible. It is crafted in steel and powered by an H-22 movement. Watch Time, 139 E. Flagler St., Miami, 305-539-0515
2. From Ball Watch Company, a brand famous for railroad watches during the heyday of train travel in America, this 44mm Engineer Master II GCT watch ($3,999) is inspired by the company’s extensive history with trains. It is a two-time-zone watch powered by the Ball Caliber 651 movement and is crafted in stainless steel. Maurice’s Jewelers, 11865 S. Dixie Hwy., Miami, 305-253-5740
3. Tourneau, which started as a small family watch purveyor in Europe in 1900 before relocating and launching a store in New York City in 1925, is today a leading retailer in Miami and beyond. The company also creates its own Tourneau brand timepieces, such as this TNY Series 40 Chrono Automatic ($6,400), which offers sleek, urban, architectural appeal. Aventura Mall, 19575 Biscayne Blvd., 305-932-2280