Tag Archives: Nikki Beach

Best ways to spend your AIG bonus in South Beach

If spared by the financial crisis or if discreetly spending your AIG bonus money (like incognito), you should enjoy a nice stay at the Delano Hotel in North South Beach (if among the lucky five who received more than $4 million, you may want to try The Setai.) Xuxa and I being lovers of luxury, we could not resist spending a little bit of time in the famous venues.

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The Delano staff seemed particularly hostile towards photographers.

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After taking one photograph of the long Philippe Starck designed lobby, I was asked rather firmly to put the camera away. We proceeded to the outside bar, followed closely by Buzz-kill. I ordered a $13 Mojito which came in a small plastic cup. At this point, I will recommend you save your Mojito money and spend it wisely on the awesome long glass Mojito at Nikki Beach. I don’t mind the price if the cocktail is particularly good but in this case, it was completely average… So I took more photographs.To avenge my wallet.

note to self: at next scheduled introspection, examine boundary issues.

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The photograph is a bit crooked because of taking it fortuitously, lying on a bed across the pool, pretending to be looking at something else. Xuxa and I loved our time at the Delano very very much, but soon the wind blew us towards The Setai…

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But not before snapping one last time: a decadent drunk sleeping in the hotel lobby. Then we really had to make an exit after Xuxa spotted Buzz-Kill, hurrying towards us, not looking very happy. One last thought: the Delano and the Shore Club are both owned by the same company. On their website, the description of the very pleasant SkyBar at Shore Club includes tips on how to get in: “go early, dress to impress, and bring a model.” Is it just me or is this totally nausea inducing?

Moving right along… The Setai. Xuxa sat at the bar, ordered a lychee Martini, and decreed with nonchalant certainty: “I have come home.”

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So, okay, the Martinis are $16 a piece but they compare to none. The bartender becomes your best friend in a matter of minutes. I could easily live there too.

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Xuxa and I got our portrait taken and you may wonder why I was wearing jeans in this temple of sophistication. The answer is very simple: I packed at the last minute and had a glass of wine in the process. That combination… combines not well and resulted in a large suitcase which content included five pairs of jeans, winter boots, numerous sweaters, and no shoes. It must have been a cold night prior to the departure (I’m also a very light weight: one tiny glass of wine suffices to propel me in a totally happy stratosphere where packing the right clothes appears completely secondary to stuffing the suitcase with a maximum of stuff.)

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After sipping on her Martini for a whole ten minutes, Xuxa Cienfuegos expressed her desire for a more muscular drink: a Sazerac. The bartender improvised a little bit and laid on the counter a glass which resembled no cocktail glasses I had seen in South Beach so far (that would be big.)

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It all went downhill from there.

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Just time for Xuxa to smoke one on the very windy patio.

Aside: she came to Miami with her “last five cigarettes EVER” and they lasted her not even one evening. They were not her last five ever either.

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Her demeanor seemed to indicate that it would be a good thing if we took a cab and went back to our hotel – not the Setai – quickly before we got in trouble. So we did just that.

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In the hotel room, Xuxa sat on the floor. She announced there would be no better time to do some work. Sigh.

I tried to reason with her.

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She gave me the Olympic raised fist. Her version anyway. In the end, I threw the towel and let her “work.”

The next morning, neither she nor I functioned at the top of our potential. As Xuxa would say: “It’s the downside of knowing how to live.”

The South Beach Seminar

If I were a seminar organizer, I would pick the most uninteresting and gloomiest town I could find on the map and that’s where my convention would take place. Bentonsport , Iowa , pop: 40 (no offense to the 40 fine folks.) Holding a series of lectures in a place like Miami with so many possibilities of outside diversions completely defeats the purpose. Many attendees. Not so much attendance. Seriously.

My friend D. who for the following series of Miamian posts will bear the more fitting name of Xuxa Cienfuegos invited me to come along to her public affairs conference (not the conference part, the Miami part.) She waited until the last minute to make hotel reservations downtown, and oops since there were no vacancies, she just had to book a room in South Beach. How totally inconvenient!

I met her at the airport. She was sipping a Bloody Mary. It was 7 am.

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By 3 pm, we had traded our Bloody Marys for Mojitos on Nikki beach.

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By 4 pm, we had met Gianni, Raffaele, Marco, and Andrea.

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I estimated Xuxa’s probabilities of attending any professional meetings in the coming days to an absolute zero…