Miami Beach News Roundup – October 11, 2013

Miami Beach mayoral candidates under attack from mystery groups

[Miami Herald]

Fl Div of Elections

It’s an election season whodunit: Who is paying for the campaign mailers cluttering Miami Beach mailboxes?

Mayoral candidate Michael Góngora says it’s not him, despite the fact that one of the groups paying for attack ads is connected to his mother and his former campaign manager.

Góngora has also been the target of nasty mailers, but tracing who’s behind those has proven difficult. A Kentucky company is listed in state records as the main funder of those ads, but a lawyer for the company says that’s absolutely not true.

The result of all this shadiness: When voters go to the polls to select a new mayor and three new commissioners on Nov. 5, they can’t be sure which candidates are supported by which businesses, industries, lawyers, lobbyists, developers or factions.

Steve Berke’s Rapping May Be Terrible, But His Skylink Idea Is Great

[Miami New Times]

Hailing it as the “world’s longest urban cable car system offering spectacular views of the Miami skyline,” Berke says this added connection between downtown Miami with SoBe will alleviate the poor urban planning that plagues both municipalities.

Even if endearing, the plan has the same ethos of the popular kid in school running for class president on a platform that calls for a new vending machine in the cafeteria: it gives people what they want without backing it up with logistics. Which is a matter Steve Berke failed to assuage earlier this week when he dropped a rap song to promote Skylink.

Convention Center: Next Round

[Miami Sun Post]

Whatever “alternatives” the Miami Beach City Commission and Administration may be considering in the wake of a District Court of Appeals ruling tossing off the November ballot an item intended to pave the way for master developer South Beach ACE (Tishman), it appears reopening the process to other potential developers is off the table – despite the second-place finisher being strongly preferred by the Administration, two evaluation committees and also offering a better financial deal for taxpayers.

Local family thankful after police rescue them


Alton Road and 10th Street today. (source: WSVN)

Alton Road and 10th Street today.
(source: WSVN)

Patricia Gallo and her son were driving along 10th Street and Alton Road, Thursday, when they were in a car accident. “The impact was so strong that the car flipped 180 degrees, turned onto the side,” Gallo said.

“The windows is broke in the car!” Gallo’s son screamed.

Two undercover Miami Beach detectives were patrolling the area when they heard the crash and jumped into action.

Because the detective spoke to 7News undercover, his identity must remain anonymous. “I approached the back and as soon as I stuck my head inside the SUV, I heard a baby crying,” the detective said.

Cash Tolls On Venetian Causeway Set To Increase

[CBS Miami]

Venetian Causeway Toll Plaza

Venetian Causeway Toll Plaza

Starting next Tuesday, if you plan to drive over the Venetian Causeway, and want to pay cash for the toll, make sure you take note of a slight price increase.

The toll on the Venetian Causeway, which crosses Biscayne Bay linking the mainland and Miami Beach, is set to increase the price of the toll for motorists paying cash starting October 15, 2013.

For 2 axle vehicles, the toll price is $1.75. A 3 axle vehicle will have to pay $2.65, 4 axles will pay $3.50 and a 5 axle vehicle will have to pay $4.40. Each additional axle after that is an additional $.75.

Miami Beach ice rink employee seeks help with funeral expenses

[Miami Herald]

A long-time Miami Beach employee is asking for help with paying the expenses for his 3-year old son’s funeral and medical bills.

Albert Santoya has worked as an ice rink technician for the city for the past 15 years. On Wednesday, his only son died after falling into a swimming pool at a family get-together.

Frank “Frankie” Santoya loved the Ninja Turtles — Leonardo in particular, his dad said.

Committee wants officer charged with manslaughter in Israel Hernandez death

[Local 10]

The Justice for Israel “Reefa” Hernandez Committee wants manslaughter charges filed against the Miami Beach police officer who tasered the 18-year-old shortly before he died.

Members of the committee gave a letter to Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle on Friday asking she file charges against Jorge Mercado.

“In light of the known facts in this case, it is hard to read Florida law and Miami Beach policy without wondering why an arrest has yet to be made,” the letter stated.

Top South Florida Convention and Meeting Sites 2013

[South Florida Business Journal]

Rank Company Meeting Space Square Feet, Largest Room Largest Capacity Room Parking, Number of Spaces No. of Employees
1 Miami Beach Convention Center
1901 Convention Center Drive
Miami Beach, FL 33139
627,000 502,000 13,300 860 200
2 Greater Ft. Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center
1950 Eisenhower Blvd.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316
600,000 200,000 10,000 2,500 56
3 The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa
3555 South Ocean Drive
Hollywood, FL 33019
209,000 50,000 5,000 3,000 1,300
4 Miami-Dade County Fair Expo Center
10901 Coral Way
Miami, FL 33165
172,071 77,940 NA 5,000 40
UK couple hooks great white shark off Miami Beach

[Local 10]

For his 50th birthday, Paul Raines and his wife traveled to Miami from the United Kingdom for some shark fishing.

“I always wanted to go shark fishing,” said Raines.

The couple and Mark the Shark believes they hooked a great white shark less than a mile and a half off the coast of Miami Beach on Thursday.

Opium Group jumping back into the restaurant business with spot on Lincoln Road


Provence Grill, 1223 LIncoln Road, now closed.

Provence Grill, 1223 LIncoln Road, now closed.

Perhaps learning a few things from their failed foray into the food biz known as Kane steakhouse, nightlife purveyors The Opium Group are taking a second stab at it in the Lincoln Road space formerly known as Provence Grill.

Says our source, the place will likely be a French bistro/pizzeria, and it looks like they are close to opening. All of their tables are fully set up, there are umbrellas and some spies have noticed big food deliveries already.

Semilla Eatery & Bar: New Gastropub in Miami Beach Opens Tonight

[Miami New Times]

Semilla Eatery & Bar, a new gastropub by chef Frederic Joulin, opens tonight at 6 p.m.

Located at 1330 Alton Road in South Beach, this industrial-chic space is decorated with pots of live herbs, which will change with the seasons. Joulin, partner and executive chef at Semilla, plans on tailoring this living art according to holidays. “I want to maybe put pumpkins on the walls for Halloween, and poinsettias for Christmas.”

Adoré Nightclub brings Las Vegas-style nightlife to Miami Beach


Adore Nightclub, 2000 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach.

Adore Nightclub, 2000 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach.

Las Vegas nightlife impresarios Cy Waits and Cory McCormack are bringing their talents to Miami Beach and hoping you’ll fall in love with their new space: Adoré Nightclub. Waits (of Encore and XS) and McCormack (of English, Rehab and Wasted Space) are bringing a touch of Las Vegas excess to the Boulan hotel where they will turn a 12,000-square-foot space into a lavish club “inspired by a forgotten cathedral’s fall from grace.”

The space will have large cathedral ceilings, antique furnishings and luxurious booths that evoke vintage opulence while the state-of-the-art sound system and LED lighting supply the latest and greatest in nightlife technology.