Arts & Entertainment

Painting A Path To A More Inclusive World

July 26, 2020


The thousands of refugees that arrive in South Florida every month find themselves in a new environment where they don’t speak or understand the language and culture. They are pulled between two worlds — the beloved homeland they left behind and their new home. Refugees today are often subject to political whims that can place them in precarious situations and threaten their future. 

The Refugee Assistance Alliance (RAA) was founded in 2017 by Kristen Bloom to support underserved refugee populations in South Florida by providing services such as in-home tutoring, cultural programming and special activities. The non-profit organization has gotten creative with raising the funds needed to operate. Their movie screenings and dining experiences are popular and in 2019, they began a partnership with Artist Adriana Jaramillo, who goes by Adriana Jay, for online art auctions.

“I was completely blown away.” Said Adriana Jay about attending the dinner hosted by RAA that prompted her to get more involved. Adriana Jay is known for her paintings of women traveling the world. The online auction kicked off June 24th 2020 and will run through August 24th 2020. 

Three paintings are up for auction. All original works of art, that come with Certificates of Authenticity signed by the artist. Adriana Jay has garnished attention from local media and her works are expected to increase in value over time. All profits from the sale of the paintings will be donated directly to the RAA to support refugee families and promote peace and understanding among the people of South Florida. 

“We all can relate to each other on some level, we’ve all had to start over, face our vulnerabilities, been challenged in different ways and when we bring people together it’s really special.” Said Bloom about the work the RAA does in an Instagram video conversation with Adriana Jay.


Five Cleansers to Try Right Now

April 19, 2020


Your new stay-at-home routine gives you more time to focus on skincare. One of the steps toward clearer skin is to wash your face daily. This important step will help you avoid acne breakouts by removing impurities that could clog your pores. Seek your dermatologist as a great source to help determine the ingredients you should look for or avoid when shopping cleansers. We’ve rounded up cleansers for all skin types to try right now. 

Kreyol Essence’s Haitian Moringa Oil Facial Cleanser ($20) is gentle on all skin types. The cleanser’s ingredients include healing properties that even out dark spots, eliminate blemishes and fight eczema. The formula also includes Haitian Moringa Oil that is loaded with protective Antioxidants and nutrients to help combat free radical damage that can lead to the formation of wrinkles. 

Moroccan Magic®’s Sleep Face Wash ($19) is formulated to help all skin types with calming Lavender Essential Oil and nourishing Argan Oil. Argan oil can help protect the skin from free radical damage caused by the sun and has anti-sebum effects that can promote a smoother complexion. The face wash is also made with Bamboo Stem Extract and Provitamin B5 to create radiant looking skin. 

Lab to Beauty™ provides luxury CBD beauty products using plants + CBD for your skin. The formulas are all-natural and vegan. The Balancing Face Wash ($40) effectively purifies the pores, without stripping skin of its natural moisture. It also clears and combats breakouts while reducing inflammation leaving the skin soothed and smooth.

Botanics is a UK established brand with a focus on plant based products. The All Bright Foaming Face Wash ($5.99) has a great lathering power that is gentle on the skin. It’s a soap-free formula with natural hibiscus seed pods. The hibiscus property breaks down dead skin cells to purify the pores. It also helps control acne. The brand also offers an All Bright Face Scrub ($6.99) that buffs away dull skin with a tri-blend of exfoliating agents leaving skin feeling soft and smooth.

SkinCeuticals Micro-exfoliating Scrub ($31) is for daily use to exfoliate skin while providing hydration to soften skin’s surface. The formula includes Hydrated silica which gently sweeps the skin’s surface to lift and remove dead skin cells, excess oil, and debris. 


Kona Poké to Launch a Delivery-Only Location in Miami

April 13, 2020


Kona Poké, Central Florida’s popular, fast-casual, fresh food concept is coming to South Florida.  Opening soon at 155 SW 3rd Street, Miami, FL 32130 in the Brickell neighborhood of Downtown Miami, Kona Poké Brickell is the brand’s first delivery-only store.  Famed chef and recent James Beard Foundation Award nominee for Rising Star Chef of the Year Henry Moso created Kona Poké’s delicious signature bowls and sauces, which will be available for delivery, in addition to Build Your Own Bowls, Soup, Salads and more.  Kona Poké’s customers will enjoy their healthy and delicious Hawaiian-style poké bowls made with fresh sushi-grade fish, house sauces and over 40 fresh toppings to choose from, plus vegan, gluten-free and cooked options are also available.  Delivery is provided directly by Kona Poké and third-party delivery services.  Kona Poké has a 100% no-contact food prep guarantee.  

“Even in these difficult times, we are opening new locations, focused on delivery-only,” says Kona Poké Owners Matthew Ting and Ernie Falco III.  “It’s our way to continue excelling.  We opened our first two locations in Central Florida in just one year, and we are excited to keep the momentum going while also adapting to the changing circumstances bringing our first delivery-only store to Brickell.  We can’t wait to feed the Miami community our insanely delicious bowls and continue making many more fans statewide.” 


Quarantine DIY Root Touch Up

April 7, 2020


dpHUE, founded in 2011 by entrepreneur Donna Pohlad who then partnered with celebrity hair colorist Justin Anderson, has always been an ally of salon professionals. “dpHUE is a brand for people who color their hair with a professional in the salon, and our products are designed with pro colorists in mind. We empower people to manage their pro color in-between salon visits, instilling confidence in them because they learn how to keep their hair color looking fresh, right up until their next appointment,” shares Pohlad. With products like Root Touch-Up Kit and Color Touch-Up SprayGloss+ (a pigmented deep conditioner), and color-protecting haircare products, including the best-selling Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse, dpHUE created and continues to lead a new hair category as the only brand dedicated solely to professional hair color maintenance.

In 2019, dpHUE launched its dpHUE Pro App (available for free download in the Apple Store) as a means to compensate pro colorists for recommending products. It signaled a disruption of traditional salon retail practices by offering a higher-than-normal commission and eliminating the need for colorists to invest in inventory and merchandise pre-sale. Any licensed cosmetologist can set up an account and order product for clients through their mobile devices. The product is delivered directly to the client, and the pros receive a commission on all sales.

The App has proven to be especially helpful since the COVID-19 outbreak, which has put many Colorists out of work with no date in sight for salons re-opening.

“When the quarantine mandates set in, I watched my entire community of hair colorists suddenly unable to earn money, while their clients started freaking out about root growth. I quickly recognized my App could be one source of revenue for colorists, and our Root Touch-Up Kit as the perfect product for them to recommend to their clients,” states Anderson, colorist for Hollywood’s A-list including Jennifer Aniston, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Margot Robbie. “I spoke to Donna, and we immediately raised the commission from 35% to 50%, which is unprecedented.”

After announcing the commission increase through Anderson’s and dpHUE’s social media platforms on March 20th the response was immediate; the number of App users has skyrocketed and is continuing to grow. “Our daily sales increases via the App have been exponential since March 19th. We are encouraging all customers to place orders through their Colorists. Pricing is the same to them, but their Colorists earn 50% of the sale. We are paying out unprecedented Commissions to Colorists, and we hope to continue to see that increase,” noted Mark Ferdman, Chief Marketing Officer.

“It’s always been our mission at dpHUE to partner with professional hair colorists. We want to assure them that our color maintenance solutions will keep their clients happy, feeling confident, and keep their hair condition and color looking great until their next salon visit,” says Pohlad. “It’s been heartwarming to receive the testimonials that we have from the salon community and knowing that they trust us during this difficult period. We’re looking forward to the moment when they can get back behind their chairs!”


The Only Lighting Accessory You’ll Need for Your Phone

April 7, 2020


The new indoor-quarantined social media challenges call for new tech devices to perfect your next selfie, TikTok video, or Toosie Slide insta-story. An important step in your new video making hobby involves getting the lighting right. The new Moon® UltraLight is compact, portable, and lightweight device that slides onto your phone to help you create controlled lighting for your photos or video.

Image Courtesy of Moon Selfiie.
Image Courtesy of Moon Selfiie.

The device works as a manual adjustable clip to fit thinner or thicker devices including any phone, phone case, tablets and laptops. Think better lighting for your next virtual meeting. When you’re ready to snap a picture, you’ll able to customize the type of lighting you want, whether it daylight hue or a golden warm, the brightness levels can be attained with accuracy.

The Moon device lasts 2-3 days on intermittent usage with 2-3 hours of continuous use for video mode. It has fast-charge capability for to 60% charge in 30 minutes, brings built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery, and charges via a Micro USB.

The lighting specs:
Tungsten color tone 2700K
Daylight color tone 5000K
Lux: 400
Frosted diffusion lens.

To use it, place your index and middle fingers on the front of the device beside the metal and hold for 1.5 seconds. The light will come on, you can then gently tap on the right to increase the lighting or on the left to decrease it. When you place the two fingers on the moon again for 1 second, you’ll able to switch modes for brightness and color mode. Using the right to tap for warmer color mode and the left to tap for cooler mode.

The device comes in an Ultra nifty packaged box and includes the Moon UltraLight, Micro USB Cable, a small zipper black circle Carrying Case, and the User Manual. The Carrying Case makes it easy to store in your purse, attach to your keys, or a back pack. The device retails for $49.99 and comes in black or white.

To purchase click here.


Where all the Celebrities will be during Super Bowl LIV in Miami

January 16, 2020


Miami will turn into a Musical Paradise for Super Bowl LIV. Here is a list of events to attend during Super Bowl LIV 2020 Weekend. 

Chainsmokers & Lizzo

SiriusXM & Pandora Opening Drive Super Concert Series, two free exclusive concerts on back-to-back nights in Miami before the Big Game.  GRAMMY® Award-winning duo The Chainsmokers will perform Wednesday, January 29, and GRAMMY® Award-nominated breakout star Lizzo will perform Thursday, January 30, both at The Fillmore Miami Beach at The Jackie Gleason Theater. These exclusive events will be open to Pandora listeners and SiriusXM subscribers who are age 21 and over.  RSVP for The Chainsmokers show HERE.  RSVP for Lizzo’s performance HERE.

DJ Khaled, Meek Mills, DaBaby, and Megan the Stallion

Bud Light’s event partner EA Sports features DJ Khaled and Friends performing at the American Airlines Arena on Thursday, January 30 starting at 8 p.m. 

Post Malone

The h.wood Group will continue their long tradition of Pop-Up Bootsy Bellows during the biggest weekend in sports, partnering with In The Know Experiences and The Network Advisory with the support of Boom Cups and It’s Me Brands to create, ‘Bootsy On the Water’ in Miami on Friday, January 31 at 10 p.m. Multi-platinum recording artist Post Malone will headline ‘Bootsy On the Water,’ an over-the-top celebration in a specially constructed venue along the coast of Biscayne Bay with the biggest names in sports, entertainment and music in attendance. 

Guns N’ Roses and Snoop Dogg

As part of Bud Light Super Bowl Music Fest, these two acts will take the stage at the American Airlines Arena on Friday, January 31 at 8 p.m. Tickets here

Lil Wayne

The “Delano Live Presented by TIDAL” concert series, a component of sbe and TIDAL’s new strategic partnership, will offer an immersive, ongoing live concert series for locals and hotel guests. Tickets are now on sale starting at $75 here  and closer to the event date, TIDAL members will have a chance to enter to win tickets. The event starts at 9 p.m. on January 31. 

Pitbull, Diddy, & Tiesto

Shaq’s Fun House Miami will feature Pitbull, Diddy, and Tiesto with superstars Diplo, DaBaby, and Carnage set to perform. There is a six hour premium open bar with unlimited bites from Pubbelly Sushi, STK Steakhouse, Coyo Taco, Papa John’s, Knaus Berry Farm, and Krispy Kreme included with every ticket. The event is Friday, January 31 at 9 p.m. 

The Chainsmokers will also be at Maxim’s Miami Nights in partnership with Columbia, where Rick Ross is also set to perform. The event will take place on Saturday, February 1 at 10 p.m. 

Maroon 5 and Dan + Shay

As part of Bud Light’s Super Bowl LIV Music Fest, Maroon 5 and Dan and Shay will perform at the American Airlines Arena on Saturday, February 1 at 8 p.m. Tickets here

Diplo, Kaskade, Rick Ross, Flo Rida, DJ Carnage, and 3LAU

These acts will be present at Gronk Beach presented by Monster Energy on February 1 at the North Beach Bandshell and Beach located on 73rd and Collins in Miami Beach. Tickets here

Chris Brown, Cardi B, Migos, and Nicky Jam

Marlins Park hosts Vewtopia Music Festival will appearances by Chris Brown, Cardi B, Migos, Nicky Jam, Gunna, Megan Thee Stallion, Ty Dolla $ign, Dj Khaled, and Alex Sensation over two days. Friday, January 31 and Saturday, February 1. Tickets here.


Post Malone at Bootsy On The Water Miami Takeover 2020

January 16, 2020


The h.wood Group will continue their long tradition of Pop-Up Bootsy Bellows during the biggest weekend in sports, partnering with In The Know Experiences and The Network Advisory with the support of Boom Cups and It’s Me Brands to create, ‘Bootsy On the Water’ in Miami on Friday, January 31, 2020. Multi-platinum recording artist Post Malone will headline ‘Bootsy On the Water,’ an over-the-top celebration in a specially constructed venue along the coast of Biscayne Bay with the biggest names in sports, entertainment and music in attendance.

Bootsy Bellows pop-ups are an extension of L.A. hotspot Bootsy Bellows that brings luxury entertainment, invite-only, trendy experiences to exclusive locations. John Terzian and Brian Toll, co-owners of The h.wood Group said, “combining sports, entertainment and music only happens like this once a year, ‘Bootsy On the Water’ will be a one-of-a-kind experience.”

In the Know Experiences co-founder Seth Kaplan added, “we are elated to partner with The h.wood Group and The Network Advisory to produce ‘Bootsy On the Water,’ and bring the iconic Bootsy Bellows experience and vibe to Miami.”

‘Bootsy On the Water’ will kick off The Big Game weekend in a fully built out, 40,000 square foot venue with astonishing views of the Miami skyline, accessible by land, air or sea. VIP and celebrity guests will arrive by a yacht to a private marina.  Once inside, all guests will have the opportunity to indulge in decadent food and top shelf spirits including JAJA Tequila. The event will have additional music by DJ Zack Bia, DJ IRIE, and special surprises throughout the night. 

With previous activations at Art Basel, Coachella and past Big Game Weekends, Bootsy Bellows pop-ups are known to attract the best in entertainment and music with past attendees including Chris Evans, Kendall Jenner, Diddy, and Winnie Harlow and featuring performances from Gucci Mane, French Montana, Tiesto, Travis Scott, and more.

Justin Giangrande, CEO of The Network Advisory said, “The Network Advisory is excited to partner with these two leading hospitality brands to host the biggest pre-game experience in Miami. Post Malone has had a record-breaking year and I know he has something special in store for all who experience it.”




Top Holiday Fragrances to Add to Your 2019 List

December 20, 2019


Complete your holiday gift list with these 2019 fragrance options. View the round up below for women’s and men’s fragrances worthy of your shopping list.

Men’s Fragrances

Ralph Lauren’s Holiday Bottle Collection Inspired by Iconic Polo Bear

photo credit – Macys

The iconic Ralph Lauren bear now appears for the first time on Limited Edition Polo Bear Holiday Collection. The bottle collection will feature the brand’s classic Polo fragrances adorned with custom Polo Bear designs inspired by each scent. When you purchase any fragrance of 200 mL or more, you receive an exclusive Polo Bear plush toy.

The collection feature:

Polo Red with notes of Red Grapefruit, Italian Cedrat, and Red Cranberry

Polo Blue with notes of Melon de Cavaillon, Lush Watery Melon, Freshly Sliced Cucumber, and Tangerine

Polo Green with notes of Chamomile, Thyme, Pimento Berry, and Basil

Polo Black with notes of Iced Mange, Spanish Sage and Green Effervescence Accord

Prices range from $108 – $110.


Creed – Aventus Cologne 

Photo credit – Creed Boutique

Creed’s new Aventus Cologne provides notes of Ginger, Mandarin, and Baie Rose. The fragrance comes in options of 50 ml or 100 ml. Prices range from $325 -$435.

K by Dolce & Gabbana

Photo credit | Dolce & Gabbana

K by Dolce & Gabbana features notes of Citrus, Sparkling Blood Orange, and Juniper Berry. The fragrances embodies  charisma and a generous spirit. The middle notes bring notes of Citrus, Clary Sage, Geranium, and Lavandin. The bottle comes in 1.60 oz or 3.30 oz sizes. Prices range from $72 – $94.


Women’s Fragrances

Maison Francis Kurkdjian – Baccarat Rouge 540 

photo | Neiman Marcus
photo | Neiman Marcus

The fragrance comes in elegant packaging with the size option of 6.8 oz/200 ml. The notes includes Jasmine, Saffron, Cedar wood, and Ambergris. Price: $575.00.

Ralph Lauren – The Romance Collection 

photo courtesy of Ralph Lauren
Photo courtesy of Ralph Lauren

The latest exclusive set offers a seductive blend of fresh rose centifolia and black vanilla in Beyond Romance, a sparkling effervescence of Romance Rosé, and the sensual mix of velvety woods, extravagant florals, and seductive musk in the original Romance fragrance. Price: $78.

Maison Margiela – Replica Whispers in the Library 

Photo - Nordstrom Online
Photo – Nordstrom Online

The fragrance inspired by Oxford in 1997. This warm and spicy fragrance compasses notes of pepper essence, orange flower petals, and patchouli. Made in France. Price: $126


Miami Lookout: 5 Cool Gadgets to Gift Yourself This Christmas

December 16, 2019


The holiday season is fast approaching, and you may or may not have had started listing down the people you want to buy gifts for. But you might be forgetting someone very important — you! Don’t forget to treat yourself to something awesome this year. And to help you get started, here’s 5 cool gadgets to gift yourself this Christmas.

Portable Speaker

Credit: JBL

Credit: Bose

A good wireless speaker is always worth spending money on, especially if you like spending your time outdoors with friends and family. If you love listening to your tunes on the go, Forbes endorses the JBL Flip, as it is a high-quality, affordable Bluetooth speaker. You can take the Flip 4 pretty much anywhere because of its durable and waterproof shell. Plus, you can connect two smartphones or tablets to it. But if you’re looking for something smaller, you can check out the Bose SoundLink Micro Bluetooth Speaker. It’s small enough to fit into a purse or pocket, but will still produce clear and loud sound — perfect for a trip outdoors.



Credit: Parrot

Credit: DJI

Have you ever looked up and noticed a drone buzzing up in the sky? Drones are a great way to see the world through a different lens, and see the gorgeous city and beaches that Miami has to offer. HP’s resident techie Zach Cabading recommends the Parrot Bebop, which is a trusty introductory drone that can reach high altitudes and boasts 25 minutes of flight time — long enough for you to practice landings and take-offs until your heart’s content. If you’re more experienced, check out the DJI Mavic 2 Pro, which is perfect for both advanced recreational fliers and professional aerial photographers. This way, you can capture special moments in a new and unique way this coming holiday.

Wireless Charger

Credit: Amazon

Credit: Seneo

Ditch the hassle of using cables this holiday by getting yourself an awesome wireless charger. In our previous holiday gift guide, we listed the Apexan Wireless Charger as one of the hottest gifts on the market. It’s a simple, convenient, and durable device that can charge 1.5 times faster than normal wireless charging. It also boasts a broad compatibility, as it can be used for different types of phones. If you prefer to charge your devices while they’re standing up, you might fancy the Seneo Wasteland Qi Wireless Charger Stand. It doesn’t just charge your phone wirelessly, it also serves as a stand, making hands-free phone calls and live chatting a breeze.

Robot Vacuum

Credit: iRobot

Credit: Neato

If you’re someone who usually hates cleaning things, a good robot vacuum may be just the gift for you this Christmas. Writer Branu Ibrahim shares that the iRobot Roomba 690 is a very practical purchase, because it’s an affordable smart robot vacuum that easily cleans up hair, fur, and crumbs lying around your house. In addition, it can also be controlled with your voice or through its companion app. For people with bigger living spaces, the midrange robot vacuum Neato Botvac D7 Connected is a great alternative. It has laser technology for precise navigation, which allows it to clean your entire place quickly and efficiently. It’s also compatible with Alexa and Google Home. While robot vacuums are not a replacement for upright vacuums, they are a great addition to your arsenal and will help you clean less often.

Fitness Tracker

Credit: Fitbit

Credit: Garmin

From beach runs and biking to various water-sports, there are plenty of healthy activities to do in Miami — and fitness trackers are a great way to stick to your fitness goals. Men’s Health describes the Fitbit Charge 3 as a great cross between an activity tracker and a smartwatch, with its stylish and refined look, large touchscreen display, and outstanding battery life. The Fitbit Charger 3 is also waterproof, which makes it a great fitness tracker for people who usually go swimming at the beach or the pool. A good alternative, if you don’t need a GPS tracker, is the Garmin Vivosmart 4. It’s a slim and smart activity tracker that will probably suit most people for everyday wear. It also does a great job in telling you the best workout time depending on your body’s energy levels.

Arts & Entertainment

A “teachable moment” book for those curious about both Miami and South Africa

November 17, 2019

As fewer Americans travel to South Africa because of level two travel advisories, and we become less familiar with the culture, a new fictional book by a chief scientist explores South Africa’s challenges with poaching and illustrates how meaningful the country is today along the path to safety for its wildlife.

“Deadly Game: The Horns of the Rhino,” takes us around the globe to show us how poaching affects all who are involved, in the US, China, and South Africa, but from a unique perspective. It is written by one of the chiefs of surgery at the University of Miami, Dr. Robert Marx, and will be available on November 21. He chronicles, through fiction, his experience with African wildlife and has developed complex, relevant characters who join the illegal game of poaching, as well as the heroes who seek to put a stop to the deadly practice.  The experiences of a couple challenged by the dangers of South Africa, the racism, and the stories of the poachers, who often see no way out of these crimes, are explored.  The book tells the story through the eyes of a surgeon deeply touched by his experiences in South Africa.

“Many people understand the effort to stop rhino and elephant poaching, but I don’t think we understand completely how poachers come to the practice or what we need to do to stop it,” says author Dr. Robert Marx.  “I wrote Deadly Game for all of us, to celebrate the heroes who prevent the very violence we see in poaching and other violent crime in general.

Surgeons and physicians often see societal woes from a unique perspective, and this is exemplified in Deadly Game’s story.  How the problem is broken down, culture to culture is addressed in the book, from the demand for rhino horn as an aphrodisiac in Asia to the desperate populations of South Africa who are drawn to poaching, to the lack of awareness of the culture of poaching around the globe. The book also highlights beautiful areas and amenities in South Africa and how they fit into the culture.  Americans, from Miami, are featured as visitors, as lovers, and as researchers, including a chief surgeon, who finds himself entangled in a web of deceit by pharmaceutical executives.

“We should all know South Africa,” says Bill Youmans, former professional baseball catcher.  The country provides so much beauty, so much adventure and cultural lessons for all of us, as taught by Dr. Marx’s new book.

The publisher offers Deadly Game:  The Horns of the Rhino as the newest book in a trilogy that portrays the life of a chief surgeon and his co-workers and family, claiming that it continuously touches on  “teachable moments” between our two cultures. Marx means to show us that only close guidance and the attention of those who have been left out will heal the problem.

“If you want to hear a deep, genuine story, read Dr. Marx, says Dr. David Frost, past president, The American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.  “This is his best novel yet, because it defines a land he loves.”

This October marks one year since the U.S. Department of State has issued a Level 2 travel advisory for South Africa, which recommends that visitors exercise increased caution. Specifically, the advisory warns about the prevalence of violent crime, especially in major cities after dark. Travel advice from the British government has also issued similar warnings.

South Africa is often portrayed by international media as a dangerous place to visit, with a high rate of violent crime, but thousands of visitors travel to South Africa every year without incident, describing the most beautiful scenery on Earth, with abounding oceans, clean beaches, rugged mountains, and game-filled reserves.

The New York Times and other publications have reported that researchers in South Africa are turning to genetic fingerprinting and sophisticated sensors to track down poachers for prosecution.

The book, now available to the public through Amazon and independent bookstores is available nationwide.