More than 800 local luminaries, community leaders and cancer survivors turned out for Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s signature annual benefit, the impossibly stylish Designed for a Cure, held at downtown’s Ice Palace Studios and chaired by Jamie McKinney Rusk and Denie Freyer Harris. The well-heeled revelers started their evening by snacking on some of Miami’s best eats, courtesy of 30 fabulous local restaurants, including The Federal, Zuma, Mandolin, MC Kitchen and more, all of whom offered an endless supply of tasting dishes. Even former Top Chef contestant Fabio Viviani, scheduled to open a Miami outpost of his Chicago Siena Tavern later this year, was on hand to feed the glamorous crowd. But the evening’s centerpiece took place a few feet away from the delicious treats, on a catwalk where attendants got a glimpse at celebrity designer Oscar de la Renta’s Spring 2014 collection in a fashion show hosted by the big guy himself. A cancer survivor, patient and fan of Sylvester’s Dr. Stephen D. Nimer, de la Renta braved a New York City snowstorm to fly down, saying he was determined not to miss the special event. The true stars of the night? The real-life cancer survivors who strutted their stuff on the catwalk, dressed by de la Renta and accompanied by their doctors. Their powerfully symbolic stride brought the house down. As if he’d not yet done enough, de la Renta spontaneously announced a $100,000 gift to the cancer center, which added to the nearly $1 million raised that evening.
April 3, 2014