CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: With talented and gorgeous Dasha Zhukova at her Art. Sy party at the Soho Beach House. The Art.Sy website is the “Pandora of art;” with Miami Heat star Juwan Howard at Peter Brandt and Tobias Meyer’s party with Ferrari at 1111 Lincoln Road; designer Naeem Khan (and wife Ranjana) has a second home in downtown Miami, where the couple throws delicious parties, including one over this past Art Basel Miami Beach; Norwood owner Alan Linn’s (LEFT) Hit and Run event at the Shore Club was a performance art party featuring bodybuilders and graffiti artists
I’ll never forget my first January in Miami. After spending 17 years in Chicago, where the month meant below-freezing temperatures and 4:30 pm sunsets, it was a revelation! Sometimes I still can’t get over the fact that 74 degrees and sunny is our “winter.” And when we do want a taste of the snow, most of us are lucky enough to live only 15 minutes (max!) from the airport. That’s no small thing.
By the way, have you seen what’s happening at Miami International Airport these days? Besides the brand-new Shoppes at Ocean Drive near Gate D-17, where you’ll find all our favorite travel accessories, sunglasses, a gourmet market, and more, there’s a Thomas Pink, a Montblanc, and even an Icebox Café. But one of the most thrilling new developments is the launch of the Customs and Border Protection’s Trusted Traveler initiative, called “TSA PreCheck.” Miami is one of just four cities in the US to launch this pilot program, in which certain frequent fliers on American Airlines and Delta Air Lines, as well as Global Entry passengers (sign up now on globalentry.gov—it’s so worth it), have the chance to use a special lane for expedited screening: If you’re randomly selected, you can leave your shoes on, keep your laptop in your suitcase, and inevitably maintain a greater level of sanity while traveling.
There’s definitely plenty to celebrate in 2012: Ocean Drive turns 19 this month (be on the lookout for your invitation to our anniversary party in the spring), and I’m also excited for the January 19 opening of The St. Regis Bal Harbour, featuring a J&G Grill by Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Thankfully, the NBA season has been salvaged (although it means our editor-at-large, the Heat’s Chris Bosh, will have more on his plate), and everybody in town is thrilled about the impending baseball season (the Marlins already signed superstar Jose Reyes, and of course have the famously candid manager Ozzie Guillen on board). There is so much to look forward to in Miami this year. Regardless of how fabulous MIA is getting, I’m not leaving home for a while.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY RANJANA KHAN (KHAN); MANNY HERNANDEZ (ZHUKOVA); BRETT HUFZIGER (LINN); WORLDREDEYE.COM (HOWARD)
Watch our behind-the-scenes footage from Brazilian bombshell Alessandra Ambrosio's Ocean Drive photo shoot.