Haute & hospitality

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By Rebecca Kleinman

Sometimes opportunity lurks in the most surprising places. That’s what Brooke Soffer, Vice President of Corporate Retail for the Fontainebleau Resort, noticed recently when she analyzed the two points in the average day when hotel guests had some time to kill: around check-in, as their rooms are readied; and after dinner, before LIV nightclub gets going. Such downtime became the inspiration for the hotel’s newest boutique, Timeless, a fine jewelry shop that entices buyers like moths to its shiny golden flame. Soffer, who launched the shop in partnership with local watch dealer Marvin Neuman, said, “With my contacts from years as a jewelry collector and store buyer, and Marvin’s expertise developed over three decades, we saw the perfect match.”

To emphasize the venture’s grandeur, they commissioned a designer with a Bergdorf Goodman pedigree, who envisioned rows of vertical cubbyholes as cases. Then came Netherlands-based Studio Drift’s massive chandelier resembling a bronze circuit board and embedded with dried dandelions.

Soffer, who oversees the procurement of contemporary designs, as well as estate pieces by the likes of Bulgari and Cartier, promises even picky New York tourists will find something different here, such as the Barneys-approved Renee Lewis brand’s Shake style pendants and pins, containing confetti-like diamonds encased in crystal. From John Brevard, the sole regional designer in the mix, Soffer focuses on starburst-shaped cocktail rings and earrings in 18K yellow gold and white diamonds. “Our main materials are 18K gold and platinum,” Soffer says, though she also snagged the South Florida exclusive for designer Jemma Wynne’s watermelon tourmalines, whose pink centers graduate to green edges. “We strive to find looks that don’t compete,” Soffer said, “and that range from affordable to statement.”

Displaying the best in class from $400 to $400,000, Neuman’s exquisitely curated watches had Basel, the world’s most famous annual watch extravaganza that just took place in April, aflutter. Rattling off all the big names—Patek Philippe, Breguet, Audemar Piguet, Hublot and Rolex, among others—he’s just as likely to have a surprise up his sleeve, along the lines of Harry Winston and Franck Muller. “Every man loves watches,” he says. “You know, boys and their toys.” Timeless, Fontainbleau Hotel, 4441 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 305-674- 4606.

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