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P u b l i s h e d i n c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h T h e M i a m i B e a c h C h a m b e r o f C o m m e r c e ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– S u p p o r t i n g L o c a l B u s i n e s s e s s i n c e 1 9 5 8

MARCH 23 - APRIL 5, 2011

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Golf Classic Tournament Four teams tie for 13 under Par at the Miami Beach Golf Club n March 11, 2011, the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce was joined by Title Sponsor, Boucher Brothers Management, Presenting Sponsor, Jackson Insurance Agency, and over sixty additional sponsors to support the Chamber’s Education Foundation at the fifteenth annual Miami Beach Golf Classic. One hundred and forty-four golfers arrived midday at the Miami Beach Golf Course for lunch on the terrace by Morton’s the Steakhouse Miami Beach and a fun filled day at the link with bites, booze, and lots of networking. In addition to a great round of golf, each hole was graciously sponsored by a different company who helped charm our golfers and four hole-in-one opportunities were available thanks to Warren Henry


3rd Annual Women’s Conference & Expo

Members of the morning panel, along with conference co-chairs Dona Zemo and Wendy Dougherty. Pictured are (l-r), Zemo, Ana Cecilia Valesco, Dougherty, Matti Bower, Leah Hutton and Michelle Gillen. (Photo by Charlotte Libov) –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––



Golfers warming up for the Tournament –––––––––––––––––––––––––– See

GOLF, page 4

o be a leader, don’t be afraid to stand up to the men who are eager to intimidate you, a panel of female leaders, led by Miami Beach Mayor Matti Bower told a packed house at the 3 rd Annual Miami Beach Women’s Conference earlier this month. In the conference’s morning session, Bower recalled the time that her oppo-

nents tried to intimidate her by threatening to publish some photographs of her campaigning, most notably one taken at Twist, the gay dance club, where she had posed for a picture playfully poking a dollar bill into the waistband of a male dancer’s bathing suit. “Put it on a billboard. You’re only going to get me more votes,” she told the audience, with a laugh. “I always –––––––––––––– See


Phone: 305-669-7355

Letter from the Chair BY JASON LOEB

Chairman, Miami Beach Chamber In these hard economic times, I have heard many questions as to the value of joining a Chamber of Commerce. It is a good thoughtful question that each business owner should ask before making any investment. Membership is an investment after all. Overall, has membership been a direct impact on the bottom line? I came upon a recent study by The Schapiro Group, Market St. entitled “The Real Value of Joining a Local Chamber of Commerce,” and there were some compelling statistics that support membership. For instance, 59% of consumers think that being active in the local chamber of commerce is an effective business strategy. It is 29% more effective for communicating to consumers that a company uses good business practices and 26% more effective for communicating that a business is reputable. If a company shows that it is highly involved in its local chamber, consumers are 12% more likely to think that its products stack up better against its competition. Is this why I became the Chairman of the Board? I have to say that I am very invested in this community and feel strongly that through the chamber I have forged long lasting, solid relationships, both business and personal. However, having participated at the chamber for many years now, I –––––––––––––––––––––––– See

LETTER, page 4

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


LEADERSHIP SPOTLIGHT Stuart Weintraub: General Manager of Shelborne South Beach As the Shelborne South Beach is beginning a new chapter in its history with a full makeover for it’s 70th birthday, Its long time General Manager Stuart Weintraub keeps the operation running steady and smooth with his fatherly and calming presence of a seasoned old school European style Manager that puts the guest first and foremost. From coordinating accommodations and photo shoots for Playboy TV to serving large in-house groups and conventions to hosting celebrities and religious and life-cycle functions: Stuart has just about seen it all. Working long hours with hospitality in his heart and a smile on his face. Stuart grew up in Miami Beach and his family owned and operated the Hotel Netherland on Ocean Drive for over fifty years. One of four sons brought up in the hotel industry Stuart attended North Beach Elementary, Nautilus Junior High, Miami Beach STUART WEINTRAUB Senior High and received his BBA and MBA at the University of Miami. Attended, Bar Mitzvah’d and married at Temple EmanuEl on South Beach. Stuart chaired the former Collins Avenue Hotel Association and The former South Beach Marketing Council and is active with the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce and The Miami Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau. In April Stuart will be celebrating his 20th anniversary with the Shelborne and after serving many years in the key role as the Director of Sales & Marketing Stuart was promoted to General Manager of the Shelborne four years ago. Stuart has bee married to his wife Lisa for 25 years and has 3 children attending college with his Son Matthew following in his foot steps by majoring in the Hospitality Field with aspirations to stay and also work in MIami Beach.

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from page 1 â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;

figure, if someone is going to talk about you, you say it first,â&#x20AC;? she added. That was her first campaign, and, even though Bower was the underdog, she won, becoming the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first female mayor. The panel, titled â&#x20AC;&#x153;Women Leading Globally,â&#x20AC;? included Spain Consul General Maria Cristina Barrios Almazor; Adriana Sabino, co-founder and president of the Brazil-USA Cultural Center, and Leah Hutton Blumenfeld, assistant professor of political science at Barry University. Emmy Award-winning television investigative reporter Michelle Gillen served as the moderator, and Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce Chief Operating Officer Ana Cecilia Velasco made the opening remarks. The day of feminism is not over, the panelists agreed; in fact, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s needed now more than ever, noted Blumenfeld. Years ago, when she was living in Connecticut when she received her acceptance into a doctoral program in Florida. â&#x20AC;&#x153;People asked me, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Is your husband coming with you?â&#x20AC;&#x2122; Nobody would ask that of a man,

she said. Sabino spoke of her excitement when she recently watched the inauguration of Dilma Rousseff, Brazilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first female president. â&#x20AC;&#x153;When I watched her inauguration, that was more exciting to me than watching the Oscars,â&#x20AC;? she said. The event also featured an Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Expo featuring local merchants, a fashion show, and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lunch in the Garden,â&#x20AC;? an outdoor event which featured gourmet dishes prepared by women chefs served in the Miami Beach Botanical Garden. The afternoon session, moderated by Kimberly Mitchem-Rasmussen, of the Political Institute for Women, featured Politicoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s National Political Reporter Kasie Hunt; Germany Counsel General Eva Alexandra Countess Kendeffy; Tasha Cole, Chief of Staff for Florida Congresswoman Frederica Wilson and Christina R. Farmer, president, University of Miami Student Government Association. For more information: (See photo page inside)

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

from page 1 â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;

Automobile. To kick-off the festivities, the Chamber entertained the crowd with a helicopter ball drop to win a FREE pillar membership to the Miami Beach Chamber. The winner and closest to the pin was Omar Antigua from Stryker Orthopedics. We are very proud to sponsor this important event that also benefits the Miami Beach Education Foundation. The Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce is close to our hearts and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been honored to be able to work with them for the past 16 years, on the 2011 Miami Beach Golf Classic. We are especially grateful to our presenting sponsor, JR Fenton of Jackson Insurance, for their tremendous efforts in making this tournament a successâ&#x20AC;?, said Jim Boucher, President of Boucher Brothers Management. Tournament Champions were decided for the first time ever by a four way tie with the winning score of 13 under par. After a playoff on the handicap hole, our winners were the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians, second place was Mortonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s The Steakhouse, and third place was The Cardiology Center. Other contests included closest to the pin, straightest drive, and longest drive. As noted, a portion of the tournament proceeds benefits the chamberâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Miami Beach Education Foundation, a non-profit organization which helps bring together the strengths and resources of the community to support the needs of public education. Throughout the years, over $75,000 has been raised for organizations such as the Kiwanis Club of Miami Beach, Miami Beach Senior High School International Baccalaureate Program and to fund scholarships for graduating seniors from Miami Beach Senior High School. This year, the amount exceeded expectations. The success of this golf tournament would not have been made possible without the support of many companies around the community. Boucher Brothers Management and the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce would


like to thank this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sponsors for their dedication to the economic wellbeing of Miami Beach and to helping improve the quality of life in the community at large. Platinum and Gold Sponsors included Martin Outdoor Media, Crown Inspections, Bass Underwriters, Centerplate, Clevelander, Continental Group, Crystal Capital Partners, LLC, Morgans Hotel Group, Eden Roc Renaissance/ Marriot South Beach, Evensky & Katz, Fontainebleau Miami Beach, Greson, Preston, Robinson & Co, Miami Beach Convention Center, GMCVB, Gunster, Yoakley and Stewart, Quality Communications Power & Security, Mallah Furman, Miccosukee, Mortonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s The Steakhouse, National Service Group, Pathman Lewis LLP, Prestige AV, SCI Companies, Security Alliance, Sudsies, The Cardiology Center, The Westin Beach Resort/Sheraton, W South Beach, and Warren Henry Auto. Silver Sponsors included Acqualina Resort & Spa, CBC , APS Construction, KM Plaza, Equinox, Gibraltar Private Bank & Trust, Layton Umbrellas, Publix, The Ritz Carlton South Beach, and Miami Beach Parasail. Hole and In-Kind sponsors included Business Etiquette, Communitel, Emerging Leadership Council, Equinox, Halo, Mangoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Tropical CafĂŠ, Tropic Survival, Welcome & Bienvenidos Magazine, Pavilion Furniture, Sky Tools, Jordana L. Jarjura, Shutts & Bowen, Vita Coco, Light Creativity, Costco, Cuban Crafters and Florida Golf Team. For more information on the Miami Beach Golf Classic, please contact Valerie Rasken at 305-674-1300 or via email at ABOUT THE MIAMI BEACH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE The Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1921 to promote the economic well-being of Miami Beachâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s citizens, to improve the quality of life for the entire community, and to communicate the view of the business community on major issues of public policy.

from page 1 â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;â&#x20AC;&#x201C;

know that you get out of it what you put into it. The more active, the more visible, therefore - the more visible, the more opportunities for your business to be the â&#x20AC;&#x153;buzzâ&#x20AC;? with the local community. The study shows that consumers are 44% more likely to think favorably of a small business who is a chamber member, and 63% more likely to purchase goods or services from the company in the

future. As you plan your business strategy, keep this study in mind and contact the Chamber to â&#x20AC;&#x153;Experience the Power of Membershipâ&#x20AC;?. Jason Loeb is the Chairman of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce and owner of Sudsies Dry Cleaners. For more information regarding the Chamber or for a copy of the full study, please contact 305.674.1300.

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011



In honor of Women’s History Month, I am proud to once again add my voice to the call for the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment in Florida and its addition to the United States Constitution. Shamefully, less than half of the states have adopted the ERA. The Equal Rights Amendment states that the Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. Suffragette leader Alice Stokes Paul originally authored and proposed the ERA in 1923 — three years after the successful passage of the 19th Amendment that finally gave women the right to vote. Considering that women are over 51% of the population and are a disproportionate part of the electorate, it is clearly a national shame that this is an idea whose time has come almost 100 years ago and has not yet been adopted. It is actually astonishing to consider that fact. You would think that in this day and age that nationally proclaiming full-equality for women would and should have a profound effect on the youth in this country. However, we are facing a decreasing number of women in public office. Clearly, the only way to improve this situation is for more women to become engaged in the process. One way of doing that is to honor the many women with profound courage who came before us, including Miami-Dade’s own Ruth Bryan Owen, the first woman from Florida to serve in the US House of Representatives from 1929 until 1933. Remarkably, no other Florida woman would go to congress until

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen was elected in 1989. Creating a dialogue between generations that addresses these disparities can help us create a foundation for equal representation. Reality is that most of the political process has been molded to suit men’s lives. Young women in this country need mentors, teachers and role models so that they can envision themselves in political office. Young women — ages 6-14 — in Miami Beach have a unique opportunity this summer to attend Camp Congress — three weeklong summer camps that introduce young girls to politics. The first session is in Atlanta, the second is here on Miami Beach and the third is in Palm Beach. The Miami Beach session takes place July 11th through 15th. Each of the camps begins with a kid-friendly lesson on the structure of our political system. Each girl will choose to run for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate or for President. She will create her own campaign with a campaign slogan, campaign buttons, a campaign banner and a yard sign. Older campers will also create and film a television spot for their campaigns. All campers will register to vote then vote in the presidential and congressional elections. Once elected to the Congress, the newly installed Congress will learn how to introduce a bill, debate the merits of the bill lobby other members of Congress and finally vote on the bill. Camp will culminate with a ceremonial signing of the bill by our Miss President. The campers will be interacting with local politicians and make a presentation to the City of Miami Beach Commission at the July Commission meeting. If your child is interested in attending Camp Congress or you would like to sponsor a child’s registration fee, please contact my office at 305-673-7105 for more information or visit

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Valid 3-24-11 to 3-30-11


Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

The Miami Beach Senior High Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) have pulled off yet another project centered on improving the Miami Beach community. The focus this time was on dental health. Though only a junior, FBLA Vice President Rachel Coller had a vision to improve dental hygiene and health in our community. “As a member of Future Business Leaders of America, I believe that it is my duty to make sure that our future is safe from health problems that, with time and effort, could be avoided,” said Coller. Though this ambition itself would be impressive enough, Coller has acted upon her vision, making real and tangible contributions to Miami Beach dental health. On March 11, Coller and a committee of FBLA members brought toothbrushes, toothpaste, informational pamphlets, and a strong sense of philanthropy to Treasure Island Elementary School, where the team presented in front of three 2nd grade classes. During the presentations, kids learned about plaque, the causes of cavities, and the proper ways to brush and floss. Upon conclusion of the presentations, the committee asked the students to draw a picture and write a sentences summarizing what they had learned. According to one student, “If you do not wash your teeth can get cavity’s.” “The kids absolutely loved everything,” said Wendy Goya, FBLA member and dental health committee member. The committee left the 2nd graders with dental health kits containing all of the key

ingredients to promote sustainable dental hygiene. The students were also given information to take home to their parents. Coller spent the weeks before the event procuring sponsorships from local dental health specialists, receiving supplies from the Dental Offices of Ressler, Hirschl, and Lelchuk, as well as Dr. Jared Plitt. The supplies were distributed to 2nd grade participants. “It really was effective,” said Goya. “The kids were immediately saying things like ‘I’m never going to eat candy again,’ and ‘I’m going to ask my mom to help me floss.’” Next on the agenda? Coller plans to “contact Biscayne Elementary School, Feinberg Fisher Elementary School, and South Pointe Elementary School about future presentation dates for their second grade classes.” She hopes to reach every 2nd grade student on Miami Beach.

Second grade student from Treasure Island Elementary school offers his perspective on dental health.

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


Page 7

DECOBIKE: Green means of transportation in Miami Miami Beach residents and visitors now have a new option for traveling around this beautiful city in a cost efficient and environmentally friendly manner. DecoBike recently unveiled its top of the line beach cruiser bikes earlier this month to South Florida. This spring, DecoBike, the first public, bikesharing and rental service program in Florida, designed for residents and tourists to use commuter bikes for short, local trips anywhere within the city. Similar programs have been extremely successful in international cities such as Paris and Barcelona. In the first 48 hours of operation of the DECOBIKE program, more than 1,000 trips were made on DecoBikes! “DecoBike is the newest addition to our list of successful parking and transportation programs such as I-Park, the hybrid-car incentives and other similar programs that have made getting around the beach easier,” said Miami Beach Parking Director Saul Frances. As interested bikers approach the many stations located around the city, all one has to do is swipe a major credit card, chose a bicycle and ride it to their location of interest. DecoBike stations are strategically located in front of all major tourist attractions- Lincoln Road, Washington Avenue, along Ocean Drive, and much more.

DECOBIKE Bicycles –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

The program will bring an initial fleet of 1,000 shiny new silver DecoBike designed with the City’s official colors, clearly marked with the DecoBike logo, a frontbasket and even a bell so that you can announce that you are gently coming through. An adjustable seat and lowrise frame can easily accommodate most adult riders. DecoBike is not only expected to help reduce traffic congestion and is environmentally-friendly, but it can

also contribute to your health through exercise. “Our bikes are ideal for local commuters. Rather than sitting in your car, your body is getting a workout and burning calories no matter how short the distance, plus you significantly reduce your carbon footprint. It’s a win-win concept,” said DecoBike’s Vice President, Colbert Reese. This system accommodates to both visitors and residents by offering rentals by the hour or with a monthly membership called the Beach Pass. It’s easy for Florida residents to sign up on the DecoBike website and no security deposit is required. As a part of its transportation program, Miami Beach has also designed shared-lanes for bicycles and vehicles, the first of which have been installed on Washington Avenue stretching from South Pointe Drive to Dade Boulevard. The shared lanes indicate the proper direction for bikes to with traffic plus they aim to improve awareness for automobile drivers and cyclists that both may share the road. To learn more about the DecoBike program, visit or check out their South Beach store located at 723 Washington Avenue (call for store hours 305.532.9494), where you can ask questions about the program, get a helmet or signup for a membership.

Page 8


Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Home Show returns to the Miami Beach Convention Center Special show pricing on featured products and services will be offered by many participating exhibitors.


The Miami Home Design & Remodeling Show will transform the Miami Beach Convention Center into a one-stop-shop marketplace where South Floridians can comparative shop for fine furniture, accessories and a wide variety of home improvements, interior design, remodeling and landscaping. For four days, beginning this Friday through Monday, March 28, the Convention Center will become the place to get inspired, gather ideas, and discover how to turn your home or condo into a personal oasis. Professional members of the interior design community, who will be at the show to demonstrate how to get maximum impact in minimum space with their originally designed room vignettes, will be available to offer advice and speak with attendees about the role of interior design in space and environment planning. Experts in all fields of home improvement, remodeling and landscaping will also be onsite to speak individually with attendees about home improvement plans “Smart shopping” is important to South Florida consumers, and show producers state there will be many ways to save at this year’s event. Valuable coupon books, filled with savings offered by a variety of participating businesses, will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis at the show. Consumers can see a sample of the special show pricing at

Unique, hand-crafted accessories are amongst the thousands of products and services from around the world that will be showcased this weekend at the Miami Home Design & Remodeling Show. Pictured here are handblown glass accessories by The Art of Glass.

NEW TO THIS YEAR’S SHOW ARE: Complimentary painting tips / techniques by HGTV Divine Design’s Andrew Downward, who will demonstrate how to change a room for under $100 A 100% recycled steel-frame home of the future, by Steel Stud Supply Mini piano concerts by nationally renowned pianist Michael J. Battle and family-friendly concerts by student musicians, courtesy of Piano Showcase. Hurricane preparation and energy efficiency seminars sponsored by Florida Home Improvement Associates. Wine & Cheese Nights Friday and Monday nights A chance to win a new Tempstar Ultra Energy Efficient Air Conditioning Split System, courtesy of ARCON, AC. Inc. THIS YEAR’S FEATURED INTERIOR DESIGNERS ARE: Tatiana Alessandrini of Tatiana Alessandrini Designs Jorge Castillo of Jorge Castillo Design, Inc. Veronica Gordon-Brown of Klassik Designs, Inc. Anna Rozenberg of A & R Designs, LLC Michael Verdugo of Verdugo Designs SHOW HOURS: Friday & Saturday (3/25-3/26) noon10:30 p.m.; Sunday (3/27) noon-7:30 p.m.; Monday (3/28) 6:0 pm-10:30 pm. SHOW INFORMATION: The Miami Home Design & Remodeling Show is produced by Home Show Management Corp. and Perl Advertising Group. For information go online at or call 305-667-9299.

Home remodeling and home sales are on the rise in South Florida, with the priority on upgrades that homeowners will enjoy. The Home Show offers ideas on how to create an oasis to come home to.

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


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1815 Purdy Avenue_ Miami Beach

SYMBIO’S NEW FITNESS CENTER IS IN UR HOOD_ And we’re inviting you to stop in and see us. Come meet our experienced staff and check out our new digs–complete with shock-absorbant bamboo flooring and the latest in Cybex equipment.

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Finding the right spot Miami Beach Valet Company offers more that hospitality service It began as an ordinary day, a lovely fall day in South Florida. But it soon became clear that something was wrong at Ocean One Condos in Sunny Isles Beach, and it had to get fixed, pronto. The trouble? The current valet contractor was missing in action. The employees were arriving for work, but frustrated that their last pay checks had bounced and uncertainty over their jobs weighed heavily on a staff that provides a top tier luxury condominium with a top tier amenity. The solution? Replace the valet contractor ASAP. Bid requests went out posthaste to three prospective vendors and the condo association chose First Class Parking. The challenge? Provide excellent service in a tense situation and find a way to make it right; for the building, the residents and the employees. That was late 2009. A year and a half later, First Class is still delivering top tier valet parking service and the has earned its place with Ocean One as a preferred contractor. “The name says it best,” said Ron Ben-David, property manager at Ocean One. “They are First Class all the way.” Embracing the challenge of a dissatisfied work force and lost wages, First Class Parking CEO Jorge Zuluaga kept the entire valet staff that was left holding the bag and worked with the building and condo association to make up for the bounced checks. In no time the staff was retrained, had new uniforms and renewed confidence in their job status. Ocean One was back on top, meeting the high standards of service for the residents and guests of the 241 luxury units that sit prominently on the ocean in Sunny Isles. “The standard here is for our residents and their guests to feel completely welcome and comfortable at their home,” explained Ben-David. “And with First Class handling our valet service, friendly hospitality is a constant with warm greetings, opened doors, expert parking and maneuvering. My stress level has gone way down since Jorge and his team have stepped in. Jorge is really hands-on. He talks with our residents, deals with anything that comes up immediately. With Jorge there aren’t excuses, just answers.” Ocean One is a luxury high rise with 700 feet of beach front and a three level parking garage, including the valet space on the top level. About 500 vehicles need a place to park and their owners have the highest expectations for handling and service. It

seems that First Class has handled things so well it has attracted attention from Ocean One’s parent company. Regular corporate management meetings are now hosted at Ocean One after the group raved about the service provided by First Class. But this is all in a day’s work for Zuluaga. “We love to pamper our clients, very much,” he explained. “And we do it by having the right people with the right attitude. Bad attitude does not belong in my atmosphere.” Zuluaga says it’s not just about finding the right people, it’s also about keeping them and treating them right. “We take good care of our employees. Our turnover is very low and our pay is definitely above industry average. This way he build loyalty, increase job satisfaction and then we can deliver our First Class service everyday without fail. Because this is our way of doing business, I believe we’ve stepped up the level of hospitality not only at the big city events, but at each of the properties where we have valet contracts.”

So how did he solve the pressing problem at Ocean One and win that business? “For us it was about keeping people employed and acting not only as a service provider to the building, but a partner in solving their problem. Our success is measured in low employee turnover and high customer satisfaction.” First Class Valet Service is a locally owned and operated business offering premier valet services to clientele across South Florida. Customers include the Miami Beach Convention Center, the Fillmore at Jackie Gleason Theater, the Miami Beach Botanical Gardens, the Bass Museum of Art, Art Basel Miami Beach, The New World Symphony and several prestigious condominium complexes in the region. Find out more:

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CarePlus Health Plans and Miami Beach Medical Group are working together to keep the health in health care. Prevention is our first priority at CarePlus Health Plans, Inc. We believe that keeping our members healthy is better for everyone – So we’re proud to have Miami Beach Medical Group in our network. Together, we’re working to keep the health in health care. Rodolfo Dumenigo, M.D. Miami Beach Medical Group 1200 Alton Road Miami Beach, FL 33139 305-534-0076

To find out more about CarePlus Medicare Advantage Plans, please call:

1-800-220-8704 (TTY: 711)

Keeping the health in health care.

South Florida, Tampa Area, Orlando Area, Treasure & Space Coast & Gulf Coast. A Health plan with a Medicare contract. H1019_MKN40G File & Use 10132010

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

The heritage of Cuban crafters BY MARTIN MENDIOLA Mendiola@USGourmet.US

Whenever we want to hear an interesting and inspiring story, we try to find an artisan. They are much simpler than artists are and their stories are much better. Give me a good wine, cheese or cigar maker any time over a painter, even a musician for that matter. It is not that they are more passionate about their craft and creations; it is just that they are certainly more realistic and closer to earth. Besides, their stories are usually more intricate since they expand for generations. An artist’s story is about himself or herself. Most artisans’ stories involve their relatives from way back when. Even when most seem to be born with a passion for their craft, artisans learn at an early age about pride, tradition and respect, qualities that make a good artisan but not necessarily a good artist. It is partly a matter of heritage. This is exactly what we found when we talked to Jorge Salazar from Cuban Crafters. Since 1810, his family has been growing tobacco and making cigars in Pinar del Rio, Cuba. As time passed, the Salazar family progressed; they gathered land and established their own farms, while the four Salazar brothers acquired the responsibility of working the fields. Hard at work throughout the day with little time to see each other, they created the ritual

of getting together every day at noon to discuss important family issues and enjoy a good cigar. Interesting enough, they enjoyed different sizes but definitely agreed upon the blend, which became famous throughout the island. The cigars were made in small batches and never exported. The demand continously exceeded their obviously limited production. Today, the tradition continues. The Salazar cigars are being handmade in small batches using the same secret blend of tobacco leaves in Nicaragua with the most attractive J.L. Salazar y Hermanos ring. Cuban Crafters make other brands or rings of cigars with different flavors and aroma. They are too many to mention here and easier to find by just going to their website at On their website, I found several cigars I would like to try, but two things really struck me. One is the way they show cigars going from mild to medium to full bodied. This concept makes it very easy for smokers to find the flavor they want. The second was their full satisfaction guarantee, which is unlike that of any other store I have ever seen. It states, “You must be fully satisfied with every cigar, cigar accessory, price and our service or you get a full refund of the purchase price”. They continue to say, “our company unconditionally guarantees all the

Hand-rolled cigars ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

cigars and cigar accessories that we sell”. Those are strong statements that cover a lot. The Cuban Crafters factory/store is unusual and really worth visiting if only to see the rollers in action. In their large humidor, you will find all kinds of selected cigar brands at competitive prices as well as accessories, a large selection of wines, Cuban memorabilia, guayaberas, and a restaurant/sandwich shop along with a very comfortable cigar smoking area. The most

interesting side of the factory/store besides the cigars is their version of a street in la Habana in front of the Bodeguita del Medio overlooking the Malecon and the Morro Castle where you can play dominoes and enjoy your cigars at any time. The whole place is quite a trip. You have to see it, just two blocks from the Magic City Casino. Cuban Crafters is located at 3604 NW 7 St., Miami 33125 1-877-244-2701

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Melissa Rubin awarded South Florida Women Extraordinaire On March 8th, Melissa Rubin, Vice President for Business Development and Broker with Platinum Properties International, was awarded with the South Florida Women Extraordinaire. From a 15year background in the fashion industry as a merchant doing startups and new areas of business for large retail and wholesale companies, she is now one of 200 master brokers in Dade County and a CDPE (Certified Distressed Property Expert), serving for both the traditional luxury and distressed asset buyers and sellers. Dedicated to the Miami community, she co-chairs the Mount Sinai Medical Center Founders board, a founding board member of Adopt-A-Classroom, and serves on the Arbitration and Grievance Committee for the Miami Real Estate Board and the Florida Bar Association. She was named among the Power Women in Real Estate by the Sunpost (2004-2005) and one of Miami’s Top 100 by New York City’s Avenue Magazine.

Melissa Rubin Vice President Business Development/Broker, Platinum Properties International (“PPI”)

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3rd Annual Miami Beach Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Conference and EXPO

Miami Community Activist, Roxcy Bolton, recognized during panel session

Adriana Sabino, President of BrazilUSA Cultural Center; Panel Host Mayor Matti Herrera Bower; Maria Cristina Barrios Almazor The Consul General of Spain.

Commissioner Deede Weinthorn, Chantal Gloor and Julie Burnstein at the Garden Fashion Walk

Below: Lunch in the Garden with caterers

Ana Cecilia Velasco, COO of the Miami Beach Chamber and State Representative Luis Garcia DeAnne Graham, Ana Cecilia Velasco, COO of the Miami Beach Chamber, Kathleen Harris Hicks and Marilyn Walker

Lunch in the Garden Women Leading Globally Panel: Leah Hutton Blumenfeld, PhD, Assistant Professor of Political Science for Barry University; Adriana Sabino, President of Brazil-USA Cultural Center; Panel Host Mayor Matti Herrera Bower; Maria Cristina Barrios Almazor, Consul General of Spain to Florida; Michele Gillen, CBS 4 Investigative Reporter.

(Photo by Charlotte Libov)

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Mount Sinai Medical Center welcomes Jay Reinberg, M.D. Mount Sinai Medical Center proudly welcomes Dr. Jay Reinberg as its newest internal medicine physician. Dr. Reinberg will see patients at both the Mount Sinai Medical Center main campus in Miami Beach (4300 Alton Road) as well as the Mount Sinai Aventura physician offices (2845 Aventura Boulevard). Dr. Reinberg is no stranger to Mount Sinai having formerly been a part of the South Florida Multispecialty Associates whose offices are also located on both Mount Sinai campuses. Now, as a Mount Sinai employed physician, patients of Dr. Reinberg need only know that his suite number has moved. Dr. Reinberg’s office is now located in Suite 247 of the Mount Sinai Aventura physician offices and Suite 2070 in the De Hirsch Meyer Tower of Mount Sinai Miami Beach. Dr. Reinberg is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and is a member of the American College of

Physicians. For more information or to contact Dr. Jay Reinberg, please call his new office number, 305-932-9880, or visit ABOUT MOUNT SINAI MEDICAL CENTER Founded in 1949, Mount Sinai Medical Center is the largest independent, private, not-for-profit teaching hospital in South Florida. Mount Sinai’s Centers of Excellence combine technology, research and academics to provide innovative and comprehensive care in Cardiology, Urology, Neurology, Oncology and Orthopaedics. One of only six statutory teaching hospitals in the state, Mount Sinai is the hospital of choice for those who seek the level of expertise and care that only a teaching hospital can offer. The medical center’s commitment to quality has garnered prestigious recognition, including designation in 2010 as one of America’s Top Hospitals for by U.S.News & World Report.

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


2011 Miami Beach Golf Classic Tournament

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Closest to the Pin Contest Helicopter Golf Ball Drop

Jerry Libbin, President & CEO, with JR Fenton Presenting sponsor Jackson Insurance Agency

Lunch Sponsor Morton’s The Steakhouse

Michael S. Goldberg, Pillar Board of Trustees Chairman

Michael Kaplan and DeAnne Graham Hole Sponsor Mango’s Tropical Café

Joseph Furst, A.J. Furst, Marlo Courtney, and Gerald Schwartz

Paul Ramstetter, Tony Ramstetter, Todd Paton, and Terry Ramstetter

Eden Roc Renaissance Miami and Marriot South Beach

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

2011 Miami Beach Golf Classic Tournament

Teddy Love with his son, Erik Guanche, Mike Palma and Mick Burke

Presenting Sponsor Jackson Insurance Agency

Gold Sponsor Continental Group

Alonzo Mourning, Kathleen Harris Hicks, Omar Antigua and fellow players

Hole Sponsor Vita Coco

Hole-in-One sponsor Warren Henry Car

James Boucher Senior and Steve Boucher

Winner of the Putting Contest Right: First Place Winners, Miccosukee Tribe of Indians

Third Place Winners, The Cardiology Center

Aaron Perry, James Boucher, Sr. and James Boucher Valerie Rasken, Lori Laquatra and Diane Morelli Portley

Second Place Winners, Mortonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s The Steakhouse

David Evensky, Mark Mares, Austin Cohen, Lane Jones

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

The Miami Beach Chamber recognizes bravery of local police officers

Jason Loeb, Chairman of the Board, Jorge Gonzalez, City Manager, Officer Robert Chenoweth, Chief Carlos Noriega, Officer Grant Reid, and Sergeant Steve Feldman –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Chief Carlos Noriega of the Miami Beach Police Department (MBPD), along with Miami Beach Police Officers were present at the March Board of Governors meeting held at the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce. The Board invited the MBPD to recognized Officer Grant Reid, Officer Robert Chenoweth and Sergeant Steve Feldman for their distinguished service in a daring rescue. The three police officers ran into a burning house on the morning of February 25th to save an elderly man. Officer

Chenoweth was first on the scene and ran into the burning home on the 2300 block of Prairie Avenue on Miami Beach. He helped 85-year-old Walter Gayman out of the house of flames. Officer Grant Reid and Sergeant Steve Feldman rushed into the home as they heard Officer Chenoweth. The Board of Governors recognized these local heros with a Certificate of Excellence The Officers were given a standing ovation and thanked for their incredible service.

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


Latin American VIPs at CEFIM Forum kick-off cocktail BY DAISY OLIVERA CEFIM, the Center of Education for the Integral Formation of Women kicked off their 6th annual International Women’s Forum in Miami Beach with a lively cocktail party at the Hibiscus Island home of CEFIM’s Irazema Zapata. Over 70 VIPs gathered poolside to welcome top business leaders and representatives of various consulates and chambers of commerce while enjoying a beautiful Miami Beach evening, delicious hors d’oeuvres and Mexican music. The CEFIM forum’s theme, “Is Society Changing Women?” is aimed at women leaders who wield influence in all areas of

our modern society. This role, they believe, is crucial in a rapidly changing world and necessary to empower women in order to humanize and harmonize society to achieve tolerance, solidarity and justice. Among the guests, were Columba Bush; Elena Maribona, CEFIM director; Gabriel Abaroa, Jr., president of the Latin Grammys; Arturo Montemayor, Director of Deutsch Bank; Elba Hentschel, Director, U.S./Mexican Chamber of Commerce; Lucia Legorreta daughter of renowned Mexican architect Ricardo Legorreta; Monica Valdez Merphree, from the Mexican Consulate. According to Elena Maribona, “this is the first forum that takes place outside of Mexico; Miami was chosen because of its reputation as the capital of Latin America and its cosmopolitan image.” For more society coverage go to

Gabriel Abaroa, Lorenza Abaroa, Elba Hentschel, Lucia Cervantes, and Sarah Deben


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Miami Beach International Fashion Week concludes its 13th year

Miami Beach International Fashion Week celebrates its largest event to date at the Miami Beach Convention Center

Sobol-Perry Fashion Productions, Inc. concludes the 13th annual Miami Beach International Fashion Week held at the Miami Beach Convention Center March 3-6. This year’s presenting sponsor was Moroccanoil, the luxury professional brand of hair styling, conditioning and finishing products, and participating sponsors included Goya Foods, Equinox, Stella Artois, Copa Airlines, Barefoot Bubbly, Icelandic Glacier and Yahoo! Hispanic Americas. Fashion week was the largest to date, showcasing 60 designers from 22 countries, hosting seminars for the fashion industry, providing live music performances each evening, announcing the designers and student competition winners, and introducing the top chef’s in the VIP Culinary Style Café. These chef’s included; Casa D’Angelo’s Angelo Elia, Ceterplate’s Jonathan Barnett, Baru Urbano’s Alberto Bogado, Goya Foods Fernando Desa. Antonio Corral-Calero, Moroccanoil Artistic Director, designed a virtuoso collection of beautiful runway hair looks for the collections including evening, Pret-A-Porter, swimwear and lingerie as well as looks for the Miami Designer and Latin Fashion Council showcases. Highlights included elegant updos, innovative chignons and glamorous longer styles. All reflected the growing runway and editorial trend towards smoother, shinier and well-conditioned hair textures. Moroccanoil products were used to create the styles. Opening night of this prominent fashion event started with the Lingerie and Swimwear Showcase. Designers included Zella Machado, Eugene Jones, Kanomi, Sambarela, De Lancret, and MaddSexy Lingerie revealing some of their most ravish-

ing pieces down the runway. Opening Prelude also took stage with emerging designers; Somy Ali, GooRoo Baby, Erin Healy, Arefeh Mansouri, Zula Khramov, Art of Shade and Cesar Rosario as they showcased their elegant collections. The evening closed with the Miami Style Showcase featuring Miami’s top designers Julian Chang, Petit Pois by Viviana G., Samy Gitcherman and Nicolas Felizola. The second evening continued with success on the runway as Jamaica took center stage featuring designers POSHE by Camesha Powell, Julan by Juliette Dyke, and the Jamaican Collective, also making their appearance on the runway was Jamaica’s Mission Catwalk designer competition finalists, Shenna Carby and Ayanna Dixon. The Caribbean designers featured an array of colorful designs. The Men’s Showcase for the evening featured Mauricio Alberino, Robert Flores, Bata Spasojevic and the internationally known brand Girbaud. The night closed with a luxurious International Eveningwear Showcase featuring elegant collections by Rocky Gathercole - Dubai, Franco Montoro Venezuela, Patuna Bushyhead – Republic of Georgia, Damaris Rubio – Dominican Republic, and Baron Levon Siamanto - USA. Saturday evening, Boston Proper along with LUXXE Collections, Mariela Allaix, Marina Makaron, showcased their eccentric and ready to wear apparel in the Prêt-APorter Style Showcase. Following was sponsor, Copa Airlines Showcase. This runway extravaganza showcased designers from Latin America including Eduardo Gonzalez Colombia, Caludia Bertolero - Peru, Federico Visuetti - Panama, Giovanni Scutaro - Venezuela and Marcelo Quadros Brazil. The Latin inspired evening concluded with the Latin Fashion Council Showcase featuring emerging designers Blue Island by Madelaine Morel, Paulina Anda, Ana

Baron Siamont Levon and model

Dansha Luxury Models

Alisa Basyuk, Luciana Mozzer, Adrienne Dupre Ferreira, Jessica Rafalowski Black Swan

Carolina Valencia, and Paulina Bedoya. The final evening of this year’s Miami Beach International Fashion Week was hosted by television and radio hosts Brian Andrews and Ileana Garcia. It included the designer’s awards presented by Tiffany & Co., an excerpt of Swan Lake performed by the senior students of the Miami City Ballet Academy and a special runway event, “Black Swan by Miami Designers”. The following designers were honored with a Tiffany & Co crystal award during the Miami Moda and Music Awards Sunday evening; International Rising Star Bata Spasojevic from Serbia, Mariela Allaix from Argentina for the Prêt-A-Porter Style Award, Giovanni Scutaro from Venezuela for the Excellence in Eveningwear Award, Mauricio Alberino from Italy for the Men’s Style Award, Marcelo Quadros from Brazil for the Victoria Puig de Lang International Style Award, Sviatlana for the Top Model of the Year Award, Dafne from France for the Tiffany Jewelry Design Award and taking home the Designers Choice Award was Florida native, Art of Shade. Other awarded recipients at the 2011 Miami Beach International Fashion Week included Miami Fashion Week Foundation’s competition winners. The students and emerging designer who were awarded include; Martha Landry from the USA, Javier Topete from Mexico, Nicola Ferguson from Wales, Rachael Lee Yen Yii from Malaysia, Maria Hamilton from the USA and Onder Ozdak from Turkey. “Being back in Miami Beach was the perfect way to celebrate this year’s fashion week,” says Beth Sobol, president and founder of Miami Beach International Fashion Week. “Alongside my managing partner, Aaron Perry, we would like to thank all of this year’s participants including our special guests, sponsors, designers, models, international press and volunteers for making this event truly memorable.” Sobol-Perry Fashion Productions Inc. looks to expand in 2011 with additional fashion events and a trade show component that will soon be introduced into Miami Beach

Beth Sobol, Aaron Perry and Mercedes Gonzalez ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– International Fashion Week.

ABOUT MIAMI BEACH INTERNATIONAL FASHION WEEK: Beth Sobol, president and founder of Sobol-Perry Fashion Productions, Inc., founded Miami Beach Fashion Week® in 1999 following a successful career as an international fashion model. She has worked with some of the fashion world’s most influential designers and producers to launch Miami Beach International Fashion Week and provide a platform for designers from all over the world to gain global exposure. In 2010, Aaron Perry joined forces with Beth Sobol as managing partner. Aaron’s focus is the development of strategic business partnerships and a global expansion of the Miami Beach International Fashion Week brand. He is currently spearheading efforts to add a trade show component to the 2012 Miami Beach International Fashion Week scheduled as well as other new shows and product lines associated with the brand. During the past 13 years, Miami Beach International Fashion Week has evolved into one of the world’s premier fashion events spotlighting designers from Europe, USA Canada, the Caribbean, Middle East and Asia, as well as the largest showcase of Latin American design talent in the United States. For information, visit

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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

Spring into Health for March BY CHARLOTTE LIBOV

In this column, we bid goodbye to February, which was Heart Month, and looking ahead to all our great Miami Beach activities coming up in March, but first, I want to all of the businesses and organizations that held activities to help promote heart health last month. There was the American Heart Association’s fabulous 2011 Heart and Stroke Ball, or course. Also, Equinox Fitness held Heart Health Parties at all three of their clubs, featuring which they held at all three of their facilities last month. This special party featured lots of information on fitness, nutrition and heart protection, and was an example of how the companies and organizations in our community provide healthy living. So here’s a shout out to all of our businesses that went the extra mile last month. Now, as we head into March, we also head into one of our most gorgeous seasons here on Miami Beach, which is spring. This is a great time to get in shape, so I wanted to offer a tip from one of my books, entitled, “50 Essential Things to Do When the Doctor Says It’s Heart Disease,” and offers information for men and women too! When you live in Miami Beach, it seems silly to talk about “bathing suit weather,” because we swim and enjoy the outdoors year around, but the fact is that we tend to dress even skimpier when the weather starts heating up, which it soon will. If you are like me, and added a few pounds over the winter, you may want some motivation, so here’s some added encouragement to get into shape – not only to be South Beach worthy, but also for your health. So, even if you do have a lot of weight to lose, keep this in mind – you don’t need to lose it all. Losing just 10-15% of your body weight will have a significant impact on your health. You’ll improve your cholesterol levels, your blood pressure, and the risk of diabetes as well. Also, even though Heart Month is over, this doesn’t mean its time to stop thinking about the health of your heart. After all, heart attacks don’t only happen in February; they are a threat to your life year around. And, so, with that in mind, I’ve bended together with two of the countries top motivational speakers for a special women’s seminar entitled “Keys to Success: Health, Courage and Living A Golden Life.” For this event, I’m joined by TV host and life coach Lorna Owens and success coach Lisa Jimenez, and we’ll talk about how to protect your

heart, how to combat fear in your life, and also about finding joy and contentment. We had to reschedule this event from February, for which I do apologize, but I think it’s even more timely now, because I love to do events throughout the year that stress how you can protect your entire body by protecting your heart. This all-day event takes place on March 31 at Millennia Atlantic University in Doral. Here’s the link: You can also email me at So get out there, enjoy our great Miami spring weather, and happy March! More info: Andreas Heuser, Equinox South

Fitness buffs mingling at the Heart Health Party held last month at Equinox South Beach ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Beach, 305-673-1172, Charlotte Libov’s writing on Miami Beach appears in many places, including AOL City’s Best Miami and Florida Travel + Life and AOL City’s Best Miami. She is also the author of five books, including “The Woman’s Heart Book,” which was made into the groundbreaking PBS documentary “Women’s Hearts at Risk.” She speaks both nationally and locally on the topic of preventing heart disease in women. You can reach her at 305-333-8844 or

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


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Earth Hour Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia when 2.2 million individuals and more than 2,000 businesses turned their lights off for one hour to take a stand against climate change. Only a year later and Earth Hour had become a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries/territories participating. Global landmarks such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge, CN Tower in Toronto, Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome’s Colosseum, all stood in darkness, as symbols of hope for a cause that grows more urgent by the hour. In March 2009, hundreds of millions of people took part in the third Earth Hour. Over 4000 cities in 88 countries/territories officially switched off to pledge their support for the planet, making Earth Hour 2009 the world’s largest global climate change initiative. On Saturday 27 March, Earth Hour 2010 became the biggest Earth Hour ever. A record 128 countries and territories joined the global display of climate

action. Iconic buildings and landmarks from Asia Pacific to Europe and Africa to the Americas switched off. People across the world from all walks of life turned off their lights and came together in celebration and contemplation of the one thing we all have in common – our planet. Earth Hour 2011 will take place on Saturday, March 26at 8.30PM (local time). This Earth Hour we want you to go beyond the hour, so after the lights go back on think about what else you can do to make a difference. Together our actions add up. EARTH HOUR BY WWF Earth Hour is organized by WWF. With almost 5 million supporters and a global network in over 100 countries/territories, it’s one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organizations. WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the Earth’s natural environment and build a future where people live in harmony with nature.

Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011


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Mar. 24 - Apr. 6, 2011

The Environmental Coalition of Miami & The Beaches (ECOMB), Sustainatopia 2011 and the Miami Beach Cinematheque present

ECOMB’s Environmental Film Series of Sustainatopia 2011 A One-Day Film Festival Featuring Eight Critically Acclaimed Documentaries WHAT: The ECOMB Environmental Film Series at SUSTAINATOPIA is a one-day film festival held in conjunction with the Sustainatopia 2011 conference. The event aims to educate the Miami community on current environmental issues and will bring the most critically acclaimed contemporary environmental films to the big screen here. The film programming for the event includes the following films: • A Sea Change - Recipient of NOAA 2010 Environmental Hero Award • Bag It - Best of Festival Award – Monterey Blue Ocean Film Festival • Fresh - Official Selection – DC Environmental Film Festival • Lost and Found - Best Children’s Film – Wild & Scenic Film Festival 2011 • I AM - Produced and Directed by Tom Shadyac of Nutty Professor and Bruce Almighty** • Back to the Garden - Official Selection – Wild & Scenic Film Festival • Carbon Nation - Official Selection – DC Environmental Film Festival • Into Eternity – Audience Award – Copenhagen Documentary Film Festival WHERE: THE MIAMI BEACH CINEMAT HEQUE – NEW LOCATION 1100 Washington Avenue, Miami Beach COSFORD CINEMA **For Screening of I Am only** University of Miami WHEN: Saturday, April 2nd; 10am - 10pm REGISTRATION: Tickets can be purchased online at h t t p : / / w w w. s u s t a i n a t o p i a . c o m / s u s tainatopia_film_2011_saturday

$10 General Admission / $8 ECOMB Members / $25 VIP MEDIA: Journalists please contact us for press interviews and past photos. Cinema Green Project Coordinator Jane Pryjmaik is available at 256.503.6351 or Board Member Michael Laas at 786.423.7849. Media coverage is welcome. ABOUT SUSTAINATOPIA: SUSTAINATOPIA 2011 is one of the largest sustainability/impact investing events in the world. The event features 2 of the world’s largest impact investment conferences (Social Venture Capital / Social Enterprise Conference and Sustainable Haiti Conference) and both will be held in Miami. ABOUT ECOMB: ECOMB, an environmental not-forprofit organization founded in 1994, is dedicated to the promotion of environmental sustainability and the preservation of our community’s ecology. To learn more about ECOMB, go to our web site at To learn more about Sustainatopia, visit

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Miami Beach events have been key in growing overall tourism in the area BY KEITH MENIN

Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority Board Member Now a decade old, the South Beach Wine and Food Festival recently took place that draws the “Foodie Crowd” to Miami Beach each year as do the other great recurring events sponsored by the Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority. All of these events have been critical in growing tourism in Miami Beach and establishing the key migratory patterns of various demographics. I really enjoy seeing my hotels fill up with the diverse crowds that these events attract. From the high brow art community during Art Basel to the pink haired music fans of Winter Music Conference, these events have been key in keeping the hotels full even during the economic slowdown. The Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority funds a number of fantastic “special events/projects recurring”, events that have had a transformative impact on Miami Beach. My personal favorite just passed with the annual 5-day Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail, in its 70th year that attracts over 100,000 people to Miami Beach. Next up is the always cool Winter

Party Festival – From Wednesday, March 2 – Monday, March 7, 2011…. enjoy this much-loved event, a celebration of social and cultural events targeted at the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) community from around the world. For fashionistas: from Thursday, March 3 – Sunday, March 6, 2011, the Miami Beach International Fashion Week brings together 60 of the world’s top and emerging fashion designers participating in nightly runway fashion shows and a jewelry and accessories exhibition. From Friday, March 4 – Sunday, March 13, 2011, the Miami International Film Festival, in its 28th year, will bring the best of world cinema to Miami Beach, including over 120 public film screenings of over 90 films from 40 countries Watch for celebrities, film stars, and great premieres, as the Film Festival gears up for its fantastic future. And talk about buzz: from Tuesday, March 8 – Saturday, March 12, 2011, the City will fill with thousands of music industry leaders— visitors who come for the Annual Winter Music Conference, this year, its 26th. This is one of the most acclaimed music industry gatherings in the US, attracting the world’s most lauded and innovative artists, to over 160 events. I hope that we will be able to start up some new events in the near future that will further our cause of making Miami Beach the best place to visit in the world.

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2011 destined to be Florida fishing extravaganza BY RODNEY BARRETO Chairman, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Thus far in 2011, the stars are aligned for bass anglers and fishing in general. Tournaments showcase record and near-record catches, and we’re hearing from around the state about big bass and impressive catch numbers. On Lake Kissimmee, Tom Rewis and Doug Chance produced a five-bass stringer totaling more than 40 pounds to win the Tony Strickland Memorial Tournament. On Lake Tohopekaliga, Gerald Swindle’s 80-pound, 13-ounce accumulation of 15 bass over three days came close to setting a B.A.S.S. record. Okeechobee produced a four-day total of 106-pounds, 10-ounces for FLW Tournament winner Brandon McMillan – a new tour record. Zack Mack, from Tennessee, caught a 14-pound-2-ounce Florida largemouth bass on Lake Kissimmee in early February. Meanwhile, Sean Rush of Trophy Bass Expeditions said, “Rodman Lake may be the hottest trophy bass lake anywhere right now.” He recently documented bass over 12 pounds, with two clients catching and releas-

ing 50 fish in a single day. Even though evidence points to a stellar year, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) encourages bass-fishing aficionados to consider catch-and-release for the long-term good of the stock. The FWC’s “Big Catch” angler recognition program enables anglers of all ages to submit an application for a full-color certificate and a window decal to memorialize their fishing trips. The program allows people to submit information about memorable catches of any of 33 species of freshwater fish for recognition, based on qualifying lengths or weights (see <>). As part of the public input the FWC received in developing a new Long-Term Black Bass Management Plan, one agreedupon goal was making Florida the undisputed bass fishing capital of the world. That title is heavily influenced by communicating news about outstanding fishing opportunities. One component of the plan is a “Trophy Catch” program that recognizes anglers who catch really large bass and provides incentives for them to report and release their catch. The plan isn’t just about trophy fish. All aspects of fisheries management are being reconsidered and fine tuned to create the best possible outcome for anglers visiting or living in Florida. Key considerations include habitat

FWC REPORT improvement, real estate values, improved access to increase local business opportunities, and streamlining rules. Not lost in the plan is the essence of creating safe and sustainable opportunities and the desire to ensure that future generations value our natural resources and perpetuating the fishing tradition. The FWC is teaming with Visit Florida to promote our state as the “Fishing Capital of the World.” We are also looking at new and exciting ways to integrate social marketing and modern technology to help families find productive places to fish and overcoming barriers that prevent them from reconnecting with nature. Another great opportunity for Florida fishing communities is to tout themselves in the World Fishing Network’s “Ultimate Fishing Town USA” competition (<>. Folks can nominate their town and people across America will vote for the winner. The winning town receives a $25,000 grant for a fisheries improvement project and a halfhour television show dedicated entirely to fishing in its community.

The World Fishing Network made Florida its own region because we have such numerous and diverse resources. Since each of the seven regions will have their top two vote-getters in the runoff, Florida will have two finalists. Nominate your town now and publicize the value of your unique fishery resources. As Chairman of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and an avid outdoors person who grew up around the Everglades, I understand that the quality of fishing reflects the quality of living. Florida’s saltwater and freshwater fisheries are worldclass, thanks to great resources and responsible management. We should be proud of all the jobs the fishing industry creates and we should marvel at how fishing can move you from sighs of relaxation as you unwind, to shouts of elation as you catch another Florida trophy, to smiles of satisfaction as you release it to perpetuate the experience. To find out more about Florida’s Wildlife Legacy Initiative and Florida’s State Wildlife Grant program, go to <>.

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Subaru Forester is a rugged, stable compact SUV Ron Beasley

LET’S TALK CARS I like the 2011 Subaru Forester. It’s a compact SUV competing in the same class with the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and others. It’s stable and rugged in off-road traveling and it has an excellent all-wheeldrive system that eases the going in tougher driving situations. The Forester’s all-wheel-drive system is standard and it really does give the vehicle excellent traction and handling in bad weather, and it’s well equipped with safety features. Forester was named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety after getting a five-star rating in all government crash tests and a four-star rating for rollover resistance. Forester was introduced as an all-new model in 2009 after being redesigned to give it a wider track, a longer wheelbase, a double wishbone rear suspension, more cargo space and more rear-seat legroom.

It’s classified as a “crossover” vehicle, one with a car-based chassis that has been designed to deliver good handling and good fuel economy. The Forester is slightly longer than Honda’s CR-V and a little shorter than Toyota’s RAV4. The Forester XT has a distinctive functional hood scoop, five-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels, a chrome-tipped dual exhaust and a spoiler that juts over the rear window. On the inside, the cabin is nicely designed and the seats are comfortable, while driver visibility is excellent from all angles. The center stack has faux aluminum trim and holds the climate and audio controls. The center console is deep and slides forward four inches to provide an armrest. The rear seats are split 60/40 and fold flat to yield a huge 68.3-cubic-foot cargo area (33.5 cubic feet with the rear seat up). The rear seat also reclines and there’s a retractable center tray with fixed cup holders. For 2011, there’s a long list of improvements, including an all-new engine for the base 2.5X models (the 2.5XT keeps the same turbocharged 224 hp twin cam engine). The new engine has a slightly longer stroke and a slightly larger displacement, and a chain-driven double overhead

Subaru Forester XT has functional hood scoop, five-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler and a chrome-tipped dual exhaust. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

cam (it was a belt-driven single overhead cam before). The horsepower is the same at 170, but torque is higher at 174 pounds-feet at 4,100 rpm and fuel economy is improved to 21/27 mpg for either manual or automatic transmission. Forester 2.5XT models now include 2.5XT Premium and 2.5XT Touring, with the the Touring model replacing the 2.5XT

Limited as the top Forester model. Pricing ranges from $21,220 for the base model to $29,020 for the 2.5X Touring. Ron Beasley is the automotive editor for Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277, ext. 261, or by addressing email correspondence to <>.



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