Preservationists seething over ‘gangster’ party at Miami Beach mansion owned by ‘Real Housewife’ and ‘Boob God’

05/29/2013 1:01 PM

09/08/2014 6:43 PM

The white mansion at 42 Star Island is at the center of a controversy again — this one involving fake blood and a made-for-TV party.

The celebrity couple who own the home — Real Housewives of Miami cast member Lisa Hochstein and her plastic surgeon husband, Leonard “The Boob God” — have been fighting to tear down the 88-year old home. Preservationists have stood in their way, filing a petition to declare the home historic and tying up the Hochstein’s demolition plans.

Last week, the couple threw a gangster-themed party at the house — a nod to all the tour boats that pass by, claiming that the movie Scarface was filmed there. (It wasn’t, according to the respected movie website IMDb But the home was featured in Miami Vice.)

Members of the Miami Design Preservation League, the organization which has been leading the cause to save the home, were outraged by photos of the soirée that were posted on social media sites.

The Hochsteins were unsympathetic.

“It’s really none of their business,” Lisa Hochstein said. “It’s our house, we can do whatever we want. If we want to splatter paint and paint it purple or yellow, it’s our prerogative.”

Pictures on Twitter and Instagram show fake blood splattered across the inside and outside walls, the white outline of a body on the ground, a mobster-style car and (assumingly fake) assault weapons. A cameraman can be seen in one photo, and the group that produced the event posted online that the party was for the reality TV stars.

One celebrity tweeted that it was a “Star Island tear-down house.”

Said Leonard Hochstein: “I do believe that it is a tear-down house, but this wasn’t a tear-down party. When the house is torn down, I certainly will have a party.”

The Hochsteins have claimed that the home is structurally unsound and the foundation lies below the floodplain.

“With this party having occurred inside the potentially historically designated home, there is no credibility to the owner’s claim that the building is an unsafe structure that cannot be inhabited,” MDPL attorney Kent Harrison Robbins wrote in an email.

Leonard Hochstein said the party was held mostly outside and that the second floor was off-limits. He said only the balconies of the home are in immediate danger of falling.

The Hochsteins can’t make major improvements to the house while the application for historic designation is pending. City officials who looked at photos of the gangster party weren’t concerned.

“Unless major damage is being done to the interior or exterior which could compromise the integrity of the residence this should not be a problem,” Historic Preservation Director William Cary wrote in an email.

He added: “If the Hochsteins continue to use the house in this way maybe they will fall in love with it. Stranger things have happened!”

See the photos here.

Follow @Cveiga on Twitter.

Join the Discussion

Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service