For more than a year, during the most virulent part of the COVID-19 pandemic, SFBW’s “CEO Connect” series—our illuminating and edifying and community-building events—were performed virtually. So, there was a sense of giddiness when we began gathering in person again, and one of our first live CEO Connects was held at Miami’s Red Rooster, the brainchild of celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson, who launched the original Red Rooster in Harlem, New York. The multiple James Beard Award winner and cookbook author was the youngest person to receive a three-star review from The New York Times and Samuelsson also served as the guest chef for the Barack Obama administration’s first state dinner. But we weren’t here just for the deviled eggs and the sublime cornbread: Our March cover subjects, Michael Simkins (president and CEO of Lion Development Group; owner of E11even Partners) and Nikki Simkins (CEO of E11even Vodka), who own a stake in Red Rooster, showed up with their three adorable kids in tow to answer even more questions about their Elleven ecosystem of nightlife, vodka, merchandise, real estate and more. Their journey is an only-in-Miami success story, which was on vivid display before a roomful of revelers and friends of the magazine. Here are some highlights. On Elleven Hotel & Residences: Michael: It’s 375 units, with a hotel and residences, four restaurants, a wellness center by Deepak Chopra, and it sold out in five months—one of the fastest sellouts in the history of Miami. And we’re currently selling the Elleven Beyond, which is 85% sold. Nikki: Before we talk about vodka, I want to tell you this hotel and residences. It was during the pandemic and everything was shut down. Most of the world didn’t want to do new projects, because it was a really scary time, and that’s how Michael—the visionary—came into it. He said, “While everyone is not working, I’m going to focus on designing this project.”

Miami-based developer Mast Capital has announced an exclusive partnership with Ciprianito to bring the brand’s first-ever ground-up residences to the United States. Located in Miami’s thriving Financial District, CiprianiResidences Miami will harness the essence of the brand—recognized for its distinguished style, world-class service and four generations of...