Ronit Neuman: Ties Sagamore Hotel into city’s fast-growing arts scene


Roughly a year ago, Ronit Neuman walked into the Sagamore Hotel, which her dad had just purchased on somewhat of a whim, to find white walls and a proverbial blank canvas.

Though she’s a fashion school graduate with some experience in the real estate and medical industries, Ms. Neuman felt ready for the job of taking the Sagamore, historically known as Miami’s art hotel, to the next level by elevating its presence and making it a major art destination for people other than its guests.

The overarching goal is to further include the hotel in not only Miami’s booming art scene, but the growth of the community overall. By collaborating with everyone from international organizations, such as the Consulate General of Israel in Miami, to non-profit organizations to local street artists to international curators, Ms. Neuman sees the hotel fulfilling its goal of evolving into the best hotel on South Beach.

That evolution will be encouraged by a major renovation next year. Though she promises the DNA of the hotel will stay the same, Ms. Neuman said the hotel is working with prominent designers and artists on renovation plans.

The Sagamore and its staff seem to never stop working. If they’re not hosting their well-known Art Week brunch, they’re treating VIP guests to live painting, all the while establishing collaborations with community organizations in anticipation of their next exhibit. Ms. Neuman praises staff, adding that everyone from the general manager to the engineering department knows exactly how to deal with the – sometimes very expensive – art in the hotel.

Between Miami’s beautiful people, culture, weather, beaches and the Sagamore itself, the community has become so alive that it’s evolved from somewhere people used to go to get old to somewhere where it’s impossible to get old, Ms. Neuman said.

If she’s not having her regular meetings at the Sagamore, Ms. Neuman could be painting, playing golf or spending time with her tight-knit family.

Miami Today reporter Camila Cepero interviewed Ms. Neuman in an art lounge at the Sagamore Hotel enveloped in diverse interpretations of Wonder Woman for the hotel’s current exhibit about the feminist superhero.

To read the full article and the rest of the Miami Today issue, subscribe to e-MIAMI TODAY, an exact replica of the printed edition.

Congratulations to our Inn Key Award Winners


Lodging Employees of the Year.jpg

Lodging Employees of the Year Yesenia Mena, The Standard Spa Miami Beach and Daniel Outerino Loews Miami Beach Hotel.

The Awards for Hotels over 200 rooms

Bell person 1 Hotel South Beach John de la Hoz
Food and Beverage Hilton Miami Airport Yennifer Meneses
Front Office Embassy Suites Miami – International Airport Brian Cardoza
Room Keeper Mandarin Oriental, Miami Rodna Ashtalkoski
Security Officer Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay Victor Jimenez
Recreation The Biltmore Hotel Renel Datulma
Engineering Trump National Doral Miami Wisler Bien-Aime
Culinary/ Kitchen JW Marriott Miami Antonio Diaz
Concierge The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami Carol Curry
Valet Shelborne South Beach Hugo Chavez
Administrative W South Beach Debbie Jackson
Banquets InterContinental Miami Jaime Pelaez

The Awards for Hotels under 200 rooms

Bell person Seagull Hotel Miami Beach Mateo Furlan
Food and Beverage COMO Metropolitan Miami Beach Alexis Sanchez
Front Office Doubletree by Hilton Grand Hotel Biscayne Bay Thalia Antoine
Room Keeper Faena Hotel Miami Beach Lumanette Bosselman
Security Officer The Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour Tino McKenzie
Recreation Sonesta Coconut Grove Miami Leon Bellevue
Engineering Delano Yendry Mackchaser
Culinary/ Kitchen The Setai Miami Beach Mike Pantaleon
Concierge Clevelander South Beach Domingo Llerandi
Valet Sea View Hotel Gabriel Crespo
Administrative Acqualina Resort & Spa on the Beach Nubia Palma
Banquets Regency Hotel Rafael Trimino

The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science Officially Opens

The Real Deal: Take a look at the new Frost Museum of Science: PHOTOS

Hammerhead sharks, baby alligators, an interactive river of grass and an all-digital planetarium.

All that is just about ready for The Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science’s long-awaited opening on Monday.

The $305 million museum, at 1101 Biscayne Boulevard, is nearly completed after funding issues that caused months of delays. The museum closed its Coconut Grove location in August 2015, and will be moving its staff over to the new building in Museum Park, next to the Pérez Art Museum Miami.

A preview tour of the five-story, 250,000-square-foot facility included its four buildings, the Frost Planetarium, aquarium and north and west wings. The 250-seat digital planetarium has six projectors with a 16-million color 8K system, and will bring back the museum’s monthly laser shows starting in June, Jorge Perez-Gallego, curator of astronomy and exhibition developer, said. The 8K system is one of only 13 in the world, according to marketing materials.

The three-story Gulf Stream aquarium features a top deck where guests can watch mahi-mahi, devil rays and hammerhead sharks, a open aviary with rehabilitated birds, and other exhibits; nearly 30 aquariums on a level below; and the final component with the 31-foot-wide oculus lens to view the bottom of the aquarium. It also includes an interactive MeLab exhibit and a gift shop.

In the west wing is the Lunar Terrace, the museum’s “living” rooftop, as well as a casual dining concept called Food@Science. And in the north wing, the museum features a “Feather to the Stars” interactive exhibit, River of Grass exhibit, the LASERsHOW: Lights, Color and Geometry show; the Solar Terrace and the Learning Center.

Grimshaw Architects designed the museum.

Check out photos of construction of the museum about a year ago here.

Last year, the museum faced a funding gap and Miami-Dade County had to step in and provide about $49 million in emergency funds to get construction of the facility finished in time to open this year. The root of the problems had been a shortfall in private donations. The Frosts replaced the museum’s board of trustees with new members, including Patricia Frost herself. And in June, Gillian Thomas, the museum’s president and CEO of 13 years, announced her resignation.

Earlier this year, the Frosts announced a $100 million gift to fund the Frost Institutes for Science and Engineering at UM, which they hope will turn Miami into a world-class science and technology destination.

The Real Deal sat down with billionaire Phillip Frost, the chairman and CEO of OPKO Health, to discuss his vision for Miami as a global science and technology hub, in its March issue.

Miami International Airport to Welcome EL AL Israel Airlines in November


(MIAMI, May 3, 2017) – EL AL Israel Airlines announced today the launch of the only Miami-Tel Aviv nonstop service, starting in November with three weekly roundtrip flights operating on Boeing 777-200 aircraft. Miami will be the first EL AL destination in Florida and the airline’s fifth route in the USA.

“We are proud to welcome EL AL Israel Airlines to our community, and to be the only destination in Florida and in the southeast U.S. with non-stop service to Tel Aviv,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “Miami-Dade County and Miami International Airport continue to attract air service by the world’s top airlines from the world’s most influential cities.”

EL AL flies to 36 destinations from Israel and serves hundreds of other destinations throughout the world via partnerships with leading carriers.

“Congratulations to Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. Gonzalez and his team for adding yet another key international destination to our global network at MIA,” said Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners Chairman Esteban L. Bovo Jr. “Our community, which includes one of the largest Jewish populations in the U.S., will benefit greatly from our local airport now providing nonstop service to Israel.”

Miami-Dade County Commissioner Rebeca Sosa, Chairwoman of the County’s Economic Development and Tourism Committee, added: “EL AL’s new flights from Israel will bring thousands of international visitors, millions of dollars in economic impact, and more jobs to Miami-Dade County, which is fantastic news for our residents and our local business community. Congratulations to MIA for connecting our community to the world like never before.”

EL AL is the sixth international passenger airline to schedule a service launch into the Miami market this year. Mexican low-cost carrier Volaris began four weekly flights to Guadalajara and daily service to Mexico City on February 1; Canadian airline First Air began charter passenger flights on February 4 from Ontario; low-cost transatlantic airline WOW air launched thrice-weekly service to Reykjavík, Iceland on April 5; Aer Lingus will launch three weekly flights to Dublin, Ireland on September 1; and SAS will begin weekly service to Stockholm, Sweden on October 29. MIA currently serves 106 airlines, which is the most of any U.S. airport.

David Maimon, President and CEO, EL AL Israel Airlines: “I am pleased to announce today that EL AL will launch the only nonstop flights from South Florida to Israel in the near future. This decision is part and parcel of the strategy in which we recognize the importance of trans-Atlantic routes and our desire to expand EL AL’s presence in North America. This new gateway city in the USA will help ensure that as the national airline, EL AL continues to be the leading airline for travel to Israel, offering the most nonstops.”

“We deeply appreciate EL AL Israel Airlines for choosing Miami as its fifth and newest U.S. destination,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. González. “In our efforts to make MIA a truly global gateway, Israel has always been one of our top strategic targets because of its unique and historically significant global location, and because of its deep cultural ties with Miami. We look forward to offering our passengers another travel option to that region of the world.”