Category

Beauty

ONE on ONE

by Mayi de la Vega

Moving to Miami

By | Art, Beauty, Culture, Dining, Events, Fashion, Florida Finds, Interior Design

Here are some of my local tips for new residents.

Being in real estate, I’m often the first person someone meets when moving to Miami. It’s only natural that they want to know everything about their exciting new town and ask for local tips. Since so many people are in the process of relocating here, I thought I’d put together a quick guide to some of my favorite places, services and events. I hope you enjoy discovering them, as well as cultivating your own gems over time.

Shopping

Miami is a shopper’s paradise. I can’t get over how many incredible stores keep opening here. For a local lifestyle boutique, I recommend the Showroom. The owner has been in retail for decades and knows the market. The South Miami location is geared more toward homewares including Tina Frey’s handmade resin pieces, while Coconut Grove carries more denim. For home, I also shop the extensive collections at Luminaire and Artefacto. Both have huge showrooms in Coral Gables, among many locations, if you’re pressed for time.

For fashion, you can’t go wrong with Neiman Marcus’s two stores here. They cater to the stylish side of Miami with more runway looks and interesting designers. I can always count on their personal shoppers, too. The Miami Design District has really taken off in the last few years. It’s become a major worldwide destination for designer brands like Dior and Hermès, as well as contemporary labels. Recent openings include Alexander McQueen and Stone Island, and there are rumors that Chanel’s coming.

Beauty

I can’t say enough good things about Gee Beauty. I wrote about this family-owned spa and boutique’s 15th anniversary in my blog last year. The Gee women constantly amaze me with their knowledge and service. Their facials are the ultimate luxury, and I love loading up on skin care, cosmetics and supplements on my way out.

If you’re from New York or Los Angeles, chances are you’re already familiar with IGK Hair. The partners behind the salon’s initials actually opened their first location here. They’re also known for their inhouse line of healthy hair products like Good Behavior Blowout Balm, the perfect protection for Miami elements.

Fitness

Miami has a serious wellness scene. There are many state-of-the-art gyms like Anatomy, but I trained one-on-one with Faheem Mujahid. Beyond being a master personal trainer, whose practices extend to yoga, meditation and breathwork, he’s a licensed life coach, mental conditioning expert and mindfulness speaker who’s helped moguls to corporate teams from major brands get on the right track. Check out his podcast and website for upcoming workshops. https://www.faheemmujahid.com/about

Dining

I like to eat light without missing out on flavorful ingredients and beautiful settings. Located on the bay in Brickell, Cipriani has one of the most gorgeous dining rooms in the city. It works on so many levels from power lunches to special occasions. Old World details and authentic cuisine instantly transport me to Italy. Milos in Miami Beach offers a similar vacation vibe. I feel like I’m in the Greek Isles with its airy décor and fresh Mediterranean seafood like whole, salt-encrusted fish and charred octopus. Its homey, private dining room is often booked, and the three-course, prix-fixe lunch is super popular.

Annual Events

Miami is as famous for its nonstop events as its moonrises. Many tourists time their holidays here around them, and locals never get any rest during season. Attending the Miami International Boat Show is a must. But of all of the events, December’s Art Basel fair is tops. Not only did it permanently transform Miami in remarkable ways, but the exchange of ideas and the people you meet during art week can’t be compared to anything else here. It feeds my soul, and I learn so much. I always come away with new inspirations and friends.

 

Fearless at Fifteen

By | Beauty, Wellness

The glamorous Gee Beauty spa and boutique celebrates its 15th anniversary.

I’ve always supported women-owned businesses, which is just one of the many reasons I’m a huge fan of Gee Beauty. Named after a chic Canadian family—the impossibly gorgeous, savvy and kind Miriam Gee and her equally accomplished and stunning daughters, Natalie, Celene and Stephanie—the breakthrough beauty concept was founded 15 years ago in their hometown of Toronto. Years later, they expanded to Miami Beach’s Sunset Harbour neighborhood.

The spa/boutique hybrid is tailored for the time-crunched modern woman (and man, since they offer a full range of men’s products and custom treatments). The basic idea is that we all love a spa day, but it’s just not practical most of the time with our hectic schedules, whether you’re a busy parent, professional or both. They saw a white space for a 21st-century urban spa, where people can pop in for quick yet effective services such as their signature Brow Shaping and Medi Multi Express anti-aging facial in the same manner that they visit their favorite coffee shop for a latte. By thinking of your spa routine in daily snippets, you can still stick to your beauty routine without spending precious hours all at once.

I can attest to the quality of their services and products including their namesake cosmetics line. When I really want to treat myself, I indulge in one of their Luxury Facials whose themes are often based on their premier brands like Dr. Sebagh, Tata Harper and Dr. Barbara Sturm. Each of the four women has her sub-specialties regarding services and product niches, and they personally test every single item that comes into the store. Because the beauty market is flooded with options, it’s one less thing I have to think about—if it passes their approval, I know it’s great. When I’m in Sunset Harbour, I add it to my round of errands and treats like dinner at Naiyara and Lucali.

Since reopening in the pandemic, I’ve been impressed with how they’re handling protocol. They’re really good about spacing clients through limiting appointments and installing plexi-glass dividers. During services, the staff wears masks, face shields, gloves and gowns, among many thoughtful safety measures. You can also order online or arrange for curbside pickup to tide you over until you feel safe enough for in-person treatments and shopping.

I also like how they’ve always been ahead of the curve. Before clean beauty was trendy, they believed in a holistic approach and were among the first stores to bring in natural and organic skin-care lines. They’re constantly searching for better alternatives and address all skin types and tones. They recently introduced Epara, a luxury, skin-care brand whose ingredients from essential oils to botanicals are specifically designed for women of color.

For the 15th anniversary, they assembled the Glow Into Fall Skin Kit, a crème de la crème package with their top beauty picks in a complimentary tote commemorating the achievement. Some goodies inside are the Joanna Vargas Bright Eye Firming Mask, Mimi Luzon 24K Gold Hyaluronic Serum, Gee Beauty Soothing Lip Balm and Slip Skinnies silk hair ties. What a great gift for a friend or yourself.

Congrats ladies, and here’s to another 15 years!