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The Buoniconti Fund’s Destination Fashion Raises Millions for Paralysis Research

Hall of Famer Nick Buoniconti, from left, Marc Buoniconti, and Christian Slater attend Destination Fashion 2016 to Benefit the Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis at Bal Harbour Shops on Saturday, March 5, 2016, in Bal Harbour, Fla. (Photo by Mitchell Zachs/Invision for the Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis/AP Images)
The Buoniconti Fund’s Destination Fashion Raises Millions for Paralysis Research

Pitbull Performs, Brunello Cucinelli Shows Spring 2016 Collection, Sports Stars, Entertainers Present Awards to Women of Substance and Style, and Millions Raised at Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis’ Destination Fashion 2016 Presented by Swanee and Paul DiMare

Co-Anchor of NBC News’ Today Show Savannah Guthrie Emceed; Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Brittany and Christian Slater served as Honorary Co-Chairs for this star-studded event at Bal Harbour Shops in Bal Harbour, Florida

The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, the fundraising arm of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, celebrated its 30th anniversary in high-style on Saturday, March 5th, treating more than 2000 of its friends and supporters to a star-studded extravaganza highlighted by a concert headlined by “Mr. Worldwide,” the global music icon Pitbull, and the Italian luxury brand Brunello Cucinelli showcasing the company’s Spring 2016 Collection thanks to Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour.

The Destination Fashion 2016 spectacular at Bal Harbour Shops in Bal Harbour, Florida was emceed by Co-Anchor of NBC’s Today Show Savannah Guthrie. Honorary Co-Chairs were Grammy Award Winners Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Academy Award Winner Tommy Lee Jones and wife Dawn Jones, and Golden Globe Winner Christian Slater and wife Brittany Slater. They joined a who’s who of celebrities, philanthropic icons, business leaders, fashionistas and other South Florida notables at the main event.

To celebrate Bal Harbour Shops’ 50th anniversary and The Miami Project’s 30th anniversary, the nation’s top shopping destination and the world’s most comprehensive spinal cord injury research center teamed up again to produce Destination Fashion 2016.  This event remains the only time in Bal Harbour Shops’ history when its doors are closed to host this truly one-of-a-kind, high-profile, private celebrity-styled affair.

The March 5th affair also saw the presentation of the Presenting Sponsor Award to Swanee and Paul DiMare, Humanitarian Award to Stanley Whitman, Randy Whitman and Matthew Whitman Lazenby, The Christine E. Lynn Champion for a Cure Award to Micky and Madeleine Arison, The Outstanding Philanthropists Award recipients were Gloria and Emilio Estefan, and The Miami Project Spirit of Giving Award went to Edie Laquer. Also receiving special awards were international philanthropists Christine E. Lynn and Lois B. Pope, both longtime benefactors of The Buoniconti Fund.

The Buoniconti Fund also presented the 2016 Women of Substance and Style awards to: Susan Abraham, Pennie Abramson, Gabrielle Anwar, Kelly Arison, Tracey Berkowitz, Cynthia Boich, Mercedes Carlson, Jordan Claure, Orianne Collins, Linda Corey, Kristin Ducote, Bobi Eroncig, Lian Fanjul de Azqueta, Ana de Figueroa Cisneros, Katherine Fernandez Rundle, Shelley Golden, Melinda Gonzalez, Becky Haggard McCarron, Teresa Haskett, Amy Hollub, Wendy Holman, Kinga Lampert, Kristin Lazenby, Lisa Leslie, Sandra Levy, Marile Lopez, Jayne Malfitano, Christina Martin, Ashley Moore, Suzanne Murphy, Nan O’Leary, Laura Posada, Melissa Posner, Barbara Reese, Laura Roberts, Kathy Simkins, Lydia Touzet, and Gigi Whitman.

Each walked down the runway with their celebrity presenters, who included Golf Legend Jack Nicklaus, Las Vegas Entertainer Wayne Newton, Grammy Award Winners Emilio Estefan, Barry Gibb, and Phil Collins, Bon Jovi Drummer Tico Torres, musician Jon Secada, NBA Hall of Famers Alonzo Mourning and Dave Cowens, MLB Hall of Famers Tony Perez and Mike Piazza, retired baseball stars Andre Dawson and World Series Champions Jorge Posada and Scott Erickson, former professional football stars Jason Taylor, Zach Thomas, Dick Anderson, Harry Carson, Brian Kelley, Mark Rypien, Jed Weaver, Brett Romberg, Randal Hill and Nat Moore, Olympic Gold Medalist Bob Beamon, polo star Brandon Phillips, current or former basketball stars Beno Udrih, Justise Winslow, Shane Battier, Greg Anthony and Steve Smith, tennis star Martina Navratilova, race car driver and Indy 500 winner Gil de Ferran, actors Colin Egglesfield, Aiden Turner, Charlie Weber and Parker Young, and artist Romero Britto.

In addition to the Pitbull concert and Brunello Cucinelli’s Spring 2016 Collection presented by Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour, guests traveled their way through the progressive party that showcased the fashion trends, movies, television and entertainment through the Decades-60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000s.  Partygoers also had the opportunity to bid on the magnificent “Too Good to Keep Silent” auction items donated by many of the Bal Harbour Shops’ stores and other supporters including exquisite jewelry, exclusive trips, and other magnificent items from Chopard, Tiffany & Co., Ferragamo, Buccellati, Harry Winston, and Goyard, among others.

Proceeds from Destination Fashion 2016 will directly benefit The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, the fundraising arm of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis.  The Miami Project, a designated Center of Excellence at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine, is the world’s most comprehensive spinal cord injury research center.

“Each year we are amazed by the support we receive from our many friends from around the globe, and this year was like no other evening,” said NFL Hall of Famer and Miami Project Founder Nick Buoniconti. “We are thrilled Pitbull brought his unique musical genius to the event, and that the brilliant designer Brunello Cucinelli shared his Spring 2016 Collection with us thanks to Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour, With the support of Today Show Co-Host Savannah Guthrie, who emceed this phenomenal affair, and staunch support from Gloria and Emilio Estefan, Tommy Lee and Dawn Jones, and Christian and Brittany Slater, it was certainly a night to remember that will go a long way in helping us raise much-needed funds for our efforts to cure paralysis.”

Destination Fashion 2016 was presented by Swanee and Paul DiMare. Benefactors included: Edie Laquer and The Laquer Foundation, Bal Harbour Shops, Barton G., and The Collection, Bal Harbour Village, Micky and Madeleine Arison Family Foundation, Carnival Corporation & plc and Carnival Corporation, Ana and Tony Figueroa Cisneros, Mark Dalton, Samuel J. and Connie M. Frankino Foundation, Richard Gray, Kandy Kramer, Iris and Michael Smith, Harcourt M. and Virginia W. Sylvester Foundation, Residences by Armani/Casa, Anthony Abraham Foundation, Gary and Pennie Abramson, Lisa and Jeff Akin, Pearl Baker Katz, Bunny Bastian, Cynthia and Wayne Boich & Melissa and Sean Posner, Irma and Norman Braman, Andi and Chuck Edelstein & Chanin and Adam Carlin, City National Bank, Phil and Orianne Collins and The Little Dreams Foundation,  The Fairholme Foundation, The Ferraro Law Firm, Teresita and Michael Haskett, The Holman Family Foundation, Gretchen and Jay Jordan, The Kathleen Kennedy Fund of the Ethel and W. George Kennedy Foundation, Lauren’s Kids, Marile & Jorge Luis Lopez, Esq., Christine E. Lynn, The Miami HEAT Charitable Fund, Stuart Miller, Lennar Corporation, Victoria Ranger Nuñez and Michael Nuñez, Oceana Bal Harbour, Perry Ellis International, Laura and Jeff Roberts, Barbara Sherman, Laura and Irwin Tauber, Valerio Toyos, MDPA, Aventura Worldwide Transportation, Acqualina Resort & Spa, Franklin Dodd Communications, Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour, 1 Hotel South Beach, Ocean Drive Magazine, Ritz Carlton Bal Harbour, Ritz Carlton South Beach, SelectaMagazine, Sole Farms, Southern Wine & Spirits, The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort, Tiffany & Co, and Y100.

Event chairs were Nick Buoniconti, Marc Buoniconti, Dr. Barth Green, Gretchen Jordan, Suzie Sayfie, and Stephanie Sayfie Aagaard.