Where are they now? Haute Living Cover Stars


Haute Living first launched as a small local publication dedicated to the happenings of Miami’s real estate industry. The first issue was less than 80 pages pages and featured one of the area’s most impressive properties on the cover. It only took a few months before the publication progressed from a trade magazine to a trusted source about the region’s luxury lifestyle, and the content progressed as well. By our fifth issue, Summer 2005, we had landed one of the biggest names in the entire luxury world—Donald Trump—and ever since then, the publication has been on fire.

We have expanded into four markets—first New York in 2007, followed by Los Angeles in 2008, and San Francisco earlier this year. Our welcoming in each of those regions has been overwhelming, but we never forgot our roots. So we would like to take this special opportunity to reflect not only on our past, but on those who made the magazine stand out amongst the other local publications that have risen and fallen during our tenure as Miami’s premier luxury lifestyle magazine. It is our way of saying thanks to those who made Haute Living what it is today. Here is an update on a select number of our cover features who continue to make an impact on our region today.

 Trump was making a mark on South Florida with his condo projects in Sunny Isles and his real estate holdings in Palm Beach, which included the impressive Mar-a-Lago estate.

Cover: Donald Trump
Issue: Summer 2005

When Haute Living had the opportunity to feature Donald Trump, it allowed us to break our mold of featuring the most impressive properties on the cover to featuring the most impressive man behind such properties. It was before Trump launched The Apprentice, so we beat the media blitz that followed his first utterance of “You’re fired.” At the time, Trump was making a mark on South Florida with his condo projects in Sunny Isles and his real estate holdings in Palm Beach, which included the impressive Mar-a-Lago estate. Since 2005, his impact on the region has done nothing but grow exponentially. The Trump name is ubiquitous throughout South Florida, from the Trump Grande and Trump Towers in Sunny Isles to Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, with the Trump International Hotel & Tower coming soon to Ft. Lauderdale. It actually was Michael and Gil Dezer, Trump’s partners on a number of development projects, who introduced him to the idea of branding the towers with the Trump name, and Trump Towers now exist in cities around the globe.


Cover: Philippe Starck
Issue: September/October 2005

Philippe Starck can be credited with creating a particular code for Miami cool. As the designer of Ian Schrager’s Delano property, he kicked off the movement that led away from large hotel designs to boutique dreamscapes, one that has been copied the world over. He has been hailed (even by Haute Living) as the world’s leading designer of luxury restaurant, hotel, and real estate properties. Luckily for Miamians, we have an abundance of his great works dotting our shorelines. He is responsible for the designs of the Delano, Icon South Beach, and the new Icon Brickell, which opened this year. The property is being heralded as his greatest work yet, as it creates another worldly experience from the moment one enters the property by passing through the enormous sculpture garden of 100 twenty-two-foot-high columns inspired by the Maoi structures of Easter Island.

His tour in Miami will not end there. He has signed on as the exclusive design partner for SBE, entrepreneur Sam Nazarian’s entertainment and hospitality group. SBE is in the midst of transforming the former Ritz Plaza on South Beach into an SLS, using the highly successful Hollywood locale as a model.


Cover: Giuseppi Cipriani
Issue: November/December 2005 and March/April 2007

From Italy to New York, the Cipriani name has long been synonymous with the good life. Since Haute Living strives to bring our readers information about the good life, we first featured Giuseppe Cipriani in 2005, when he announced the Cipriani Residences at 55 Wall Street. Two years later, he decided to bring his unique brand of hospitality south by launching the Cipriani Ocean Resort and Club Residences, a joint venture with developer Ugo Colombo’s CMC Group. The photo shoot of these two moguls took place at the Saxony hotel on Miami Beach, the future home of the resort/condominium condo. Spending a day with the two friends was an uplifting experience, as they were so inspired by the project at hand, ready to bring a taste of old-world glamour and charm back to the city. The project received its final financing in September of 2008, and CMC Group was ready to get started on construction. The company had just finished putting the final touches on the EPIC Hotel & Residences in Brickell, which opened at the end of last year to rave reviews. As for Cipriani Ocean Resort and Club Residences, interior demolition on the Saxony is underway, and the new tower is expected to break ground shortly. The current projections have the property opening summer 2010, bringing a taste of la dolce vita to the sands of South Beach.


Cover: Ian Schrager
Issue: May/June 2006

Just like Philippe Starck, Schrager can be credited with helping to kick off South Beach’s heyday as a luxury destination, a trend that is still running strong. His Delano Hotel has long been the go-to destination for the haute jet set, and in New York, he is known for his luxury properties such as 40 Bond and 50 Gramercy Park. But here in Miami, he is working on a new breed of luxury: affordable. While details on his new hotel project (designed by John Pawson) are scarce, we do know that it is slated to be on Miami Beach. In addition, he has partnered with the JW Marriott to create a new type of hotel that will combine the service that JW Marriott is known for with the boutique feel that Schrager has made his trademark. With as many as 100 properties in the works, Miami is likely going to be home to one of these unique hospitality havens.


Cover: Mohamed Ali Alabbar
Issue: July/August 2006

Haute Living Miami has dedicated two issues in the past five years to the burgeoning city-state of Dubai. A paradoxical world of wonder, Dubai captured our imagination from the get-go. From the man-made islands in the shape of the world to the incredible Burj Dubai, the world’s tallest structure, we were just in awe with every piece of news that came out of the desert. And to have the chairman of Emaar Properties, Mohamed Ali Alabbar, on the cover of one of our issues was such an honor. Emaar Properties is responsible for some of the region’s greatest residential developments, including Emirates Hills, Dubai Marina, The Meadows, The Greens, The Views, The Springs, Arabian Ranches, The Lakes, Emaar Towers, and the aforementioned Burj Dubai, an engineering feat that developers around the world will be scrambling to beat for decades. Beyond the development range, Alabbar is active in the betterment of Dubai as a whole through his plans to revolutionize and deliver much-needed health and education products worldwide. He puts these ideas to use through Emaar Healthcare Group and Emaar Education, which, when combined with the hospitality, hotels and resorts, malls, and commercial leasing divisions, will help the company reach Vision 2010, as Emaar strives to become one of the most valuable companies in the world by next year.


Cover: Jade Jagger
Issue: September/October 2006

When we featured Jade Jagger, the beautiful daughter of crooner Mick, she was just cutting her teeth in the design world. Along with partner Tom Bartlett, a London-based architect, she had just launched “Jade Jagger for YOO,” the design division of the international über-development firm founded by Philippe Starck and real estate magnet John Hitchcox. At the time of the feature, Jagger’s first major YOO project, Jade, a 57-unit building in New York City, had just opened for sales. Mere weeks after the launch of Jade NYC, the project had created press coverage worth $2.3 million. The $90 million Manhattan condo tower features the famous daughter’s interior designs. Shortly after the sales office opened in New York, she headed south to Miami for the groundbreaking of the now-complete Icon Brickell, with designs courtesy of YOO by Philippe Starck. Jade Jagger for YOO is currently working on projects in Turkey, Morocco, and England. Last year, she partnered with Belvedere on the $250,000 Jagger Ice Dagger, which took a common ice pick and turned it into something truly beautiful and desirable. She also promotes Jezebel (her middle name and alter ego), a lifestyle venture that fuses music, fashion, and clothing through unique recordings and art. During Winter Music Conference 2009 in Miami, Jezebel hosted one of the most exclusive soirees in the city at the Mondrian South Beach. The gathering was modeled after Jagger’s legendary parties in Ibiza.


Cover: Aby Rosen
Issue: November/December 2006

In “The Art of the Deal,” Haute Living’s cover feature on real estate tycoon and noted art collector Aby Rosen, we detailed how a close business relationship with Ian Schrager first brought Rosen to our fair city when the duo partnered on the Delano. We mentioned barely in passing his work on the development of the W South Beach, where he partnered with developer David Edelstein. At the time, the property was nothing more than a hole in the ground where a Holiday Inn had stood only a year prior. In an era of stalled projects and building delays, the W South Beach and The Residences at W South Beach recently opened as one of Miami Beach’s great success stories. Built from the ground up in a few short years, the W South Beach quietly opened its doors in June, yet quickly attracted a regular crowd of Miami A-listers and international jetsetters. The strikingly serene and modern property proudly displays pieces from Rosen’s personal art collection, including works by Andy Warhol, Kenny Scharf, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and George Condo.


Cover: Shaquille O’Neal
Issue: January/February 2007

Since appearing in Haute Living, the Heat’s biggest star turned in his Miami jersey to play for the Phoenix Suns followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers. When the basketball superstar left Miami, the city mourned; not only was he an inspiration to watch in the American Airlines Arena, he was incredibly involved in the community, even being named an honorary reserve police officer in Miami, a duty he took seriously. He memorably placed some misbehaving thugs under arrest one night on South Beach. His larger-than-life personality was a welcome addition to South Florida, and he didn’t shy away from the cameras and local establishments, as many celebrities in our midst so often do.

During his tenure in Miami, Shaq launched The O’Neal Group, which formalized the athlete’s long-standing love of real estate. The company partnered with MDM Development Group on Metropolitan Miami, a $1 billion mixed-use project on 9.3-acres of land in downtown Miami. The economic downturn has affected the development; originally scheduled to be complete in 2009, only Met One is up and running, while Met Two is currently under construction and Met Three has yet to break ground. Since Shaq left the Magic City, he has continued with his real estate acquisitions. The O’Neal Group has partnered with Boraie Development to form The Boraie O’Neal Urban Development Partnership, with a project underway in Newark.

Just this June, the last piece of Shaq’s Miami hold was sold. Even before being traded, Shaq put his Star Island mansion on the market, with an asking price of $35 million. The waterfront stunner features eight bedrooms, an indoor basketball court, gym, steam room, and sauna. The 2.5-acre grounds include a tennis court, six-car garage, dock, two-bedroom guesthouse, and pool displaying Shaq’s favorite Superman logo. Miami’s housing slump certainly had an affect on this trophy spread; four years after first going on the market, it reportedly sold for $16 million, which is $2.8 million less than Shaq paid for the property in 2004.


Cover: Andrew Farkas
Issue: May/June 2007

The title of the cover article on the founder of Island Global Yachting says it all: Global Domination. At the time of the feature, IGY had just opened the world’s first five-star megayacht marina experience at Yacht Haven Grande in St. Thomas, USVI. The property combines white-glove service with state-of-the-art docking and a plethora of shore-side amenities, so that it more resembles a hospitality destination than a typical marina. In the two short years since the feature story, IGY has taken the successful formula it established at Yacht Haven Grande and applied it to 15 marinas from Montauk and New York, to Dubai and Croatia, with 10 locations in the Caribbean alone.


Cover: Don & Jeff Soffer
Issue: May/June 2007

The Soffers are an American real estate dynasty, with the holdings to prove it. At the time of our feature, the Soffers’ Turnberry Associates had a $5 billion portfolio that was expected to increase thanks to ventures in Las Vegas. Since taking control of the company’s residential sector, Turnberry has built more than 3,100 condo units in Sin City, the majority of which sold out before the market downturn.

Then, of course, there is the crowning achievement: Fontainebleau Miami Beach. Following a $500 million renovation, Jeff and his father unveiled the property in November to a crowd that included everyone who was anyone from Miami, Hollywood, and beyond. The Victoria Secret Fashion Show, filmed on property the night following the opening, introduced the hotel’s glossy new updates to a global audience when it aired less than a month later.

However, Jeff was unsuccessful in translating the Fontainebleau brand to the Vegas market. In June, he was forced to seek bankruptcy protection on the stalled $3 billion development on the Strip. Official reports say that the blunder will not have a negative affect on the family’s other holdings, and that the Miami Beach property is safe. Nakheel, a subsidiary of Dubai World, recently bought a 50 percent interest in the Fontainebleau Miami Beach resort for $375 million.


Cover: Brett Ratner

Issue: July/August 2007

For our three-year anniversary, we were honored to feature “Billion Dollar Director” Brett Ratner on the cover. The article detailed the Miami Beach native’s rise from a quasi-promoter at the Forge making $500 per week to one of the biggest box office draws in Hollywood. Ratner is behind films such as Rush Hour, X-Men: The Last Stand, and Red Dragon. When we profiled the director, his eight feature films had grossed more than a billion dollars worldwide. Since that time, he has released Rush Hour 3, which increased his billion-dollar ranking exponentially, and he is currently working on Playboy: The Life of Hugh Hefner. He also launched Rat Press, which is billed as “everything that film is not.” The works published by Rat Press go behind the scenes of the movie business, with interviews with actors and producers, as well as novels, photos, and artworks from the most prolific individuals in the industry. The latest publication is Scott Caan Photographs Vol. 1, featuring the photojournalism of the actor/writer/director. Between films, Ratner also keeps himself busy by directing commercials, such as the Risky Business play for Guitar Hero.

While now a Hollywood resident, Ratner’s impact on Miami Beach is still felt today. He played an active roll in the city’s transformation from geriatric haven to international haute spot, and the hometown boy is often back in the city hanging with his childhood friends Jeff Soffer and Shareef Malnik, who have also graced the cover of the magazine.Sep-Oct07_SheldonCover

Cover: Sheldon Aldelson
Issue: September/October 2007

At the time of his cover feature in our Las Vegas-themed edition, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson was listed as No. 3 on Forbes’ list of the wealthiest Americans. What a difference two years and a global recession can make. Adelson’s fortune took some big hits in 2008, dwindling by $13 billion as shares in his Las Vegas Sands dropped 65 percent due to a lack of gamblers in Sin City and Macau. The son of a taxi driver was No. 15 on Forbes’ 2008 list, but in 2009 he took an even bigger hit. He lost a whopping $22 billion in 12 months, and shares dropped by 95 percent. His personal net worth is now estimated at $2 billion, not a bad figure for the 75-year-old college dropout. He remains positive that the market will turn around soon, and his empire will once again reign over the Strip. He has reason to be optimistic: his stalled casino project in Macau may soon be resuming construction.Nov-Dec07_KellerCoverFL

Cover: Samuel Keller
Issue: November/December 2007

Often regarded as one of the most influential people in the art world, Sam Keller is responsible for bringing Art Basel to the shores of Miami Beach. The Basel, Switzerland, native launched America’s most important art event in 2002, which brought a new level of sophistication to a city that previously was regarded as a tourist haven. Each December since, international art cognoscenti descend upon the city for a weekend full of glamour, panache, and sophistication. While 2007 was Keller’s last year as the director of Art Basel Miami Beach, the 2008 show did not lose any of its allure without him at the helm. While the economic climate may have impacted sales, the show was still an overwhelming success, and 2009 is expected to be as well. Art Basel Miami Beach allowed the city to grow up in the eyes of the cultured world, and other institutions have taken notice. Frank Gehry and Herzog & de Meuron are both involved in projects on the Beach that will further cement the city’s rightful place as a cultural haven rather than a Spring Break destination.Jan-Feb08_Malnik

Cover: Al & Shareef Malnik
Issue: January/February 2008

When Brett Ratner offered to take the cover photos of “Living Legend” Al Malnik and his son Shareef, we couldn’t have been more honored. A long-time family friend, Al often refers to Ratner as his 11th son, and he even helped get the billion-dollar director his start in his film career. Ratner, an accomplished photographer, headed to the Malnik estate in Palm Beach for a photo shoot that captured the compelling father-son dynamic of Al and Shareef. A legendary lawyer, entrepreneur, and restaurateur, Al is the mastermind behind culinary institution The Forge, which dominated the haute dining scene for decades as the place on Miami Beach. Shareef took over the restaurant in 1991, and the establishment continued its reign. Now, Shareef is taking this proven formula and expanding on a global scale. While the Miami location is closed in July for multimillion-dollar renovations, hungry patrons looking for The Forge’s inimitable steaks can satisfy their cravings at The Forge Dubai, located in the Ottoman Palace Hotel, and there are also talks about a Forge Las Vegas. The Malniks are also actively involved in the betterment of the community, working with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Al recently made headlines when false rumors about the paternity of Michael Jackson’s youngest son Blanket started flying. Al is the boy’s godfather, and some were questioning if he was the actual father. Al went to two media sources to refute these claims: The Today Show and Haute Living. He opened up to our publication for the cover story of the Los Angeles edition (the article also appears in this issue), sharing personal family photos and details about intimate moments with the star, and we were happy to be able to provide a worthy outlet for his memories.


Cover: Issy Sharp
Issue: March/April 2008

Isadore “Issy” Sharp began building a name for himself and a brand for luxury lovers in the early 1960s. Today he is the CEO and founder of more than 80 international locations of Four Seasons hotels, an accomplishment that earned him a spot on one of our early covers in 2008. For several consecutive years, the Four Seasons was voted the best company to work for, and customers can’t seem to get enough of the bespoke service and luxury offerings that the five-star hotel brand brings. Since the recent change in global economic conditions, Sharp has stated that his bottom line is suffering just like everyone else’s in 2009. And though his locations in the Middle East are faring better than the North American and European branches, he is still making current business decisions based on a conservative approach. But a modest strategic plan doesn’t mean that the brand is cutting back on the white-glove, world-class standards upon which it has built its unblemished reputation. As Sharp recently explained, right now is a time when the management skills of his staff will be tested. It is a time to determine how to survive without compromising the guest experience. And that, in a nutshell, is the winning philosophy that has earned him an unprecedented number of accolades and a RevPAR (revenue per available room) rate that traditionally has been approximately 25 percent higher than his competitors. He credits such an impressive statistic to the value that the Four Seasons brand offers, and his formula for achievement has proven so successful that he recently authored a book about it, Four Seasons, The Story of a Business Philosophy.


Cover: Sultan bin Sulayem
Issue: August/September 2008

Named a “Global Leader of Tomorrow” by the World Economic Forum and one of the top five most influential Arabs in the world, Sultan bin Sulayem proved the ideal cover personality for our Fall issue in 2008. He is the chairman of Dubai World, the parent company of some of the fastest growing global businesses, including Nakheel, the real estate powerhouse behind the Palm Islands. The development project was born in 1997 because of the vision of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai and Prime Minister of the greater United Arab Emirates, who wanted to increase Dubai’s tourism industry. Under bin Sulayem’s leadership, Dubai World oversees interests in more than 80 companies, and has recently staked quite a few claims on the African continent. It is reported that he applied for permits to dock the floating luxury hotel, Queen Elizabeth 2, in Cape Town, while he has also supposedly inked deals for two luxury hotels in Ethiopia. But his American interests are prevalent as well. Stating the need to see opportunity in times of financial turmoil, Nakheel bought 50 percent of the Fontainebleau in Miami Beach for $375 million.


Cover: Helio castroneves
Issue: June/July 2009

When Roy and Lea Black approached Haute Living about Helio Castroneves appearing on the cover of our June/July 2009 edition, we jumped at the opportunity. A Miami local, Helio is a fixture throughout the city when he is not off taking flags in the biggest racing events around the globe. The Formula 1 racer had just had two amazing victories: first, in his tax evasion trial, during which he was represented by Roy Black and team, followed by win at the Indy 500 just a few weeks later. The Blacks and Helio bonded over the course of his trial, and the personal relationship allowed Helio to open up to Lea about his roller coaster ride of emotion following the trial.