Business Monday

Art Basel has been great for Miami, CEOs agree

Ramon ‘Ray’ Abadin, president of the Florida Bar and a civil trial attorney and shareholder at Sedgwick LLP.
Ramon ‘Ray’ Abadin, president of the Florida Bar and a civil trial attorney and shareholder at Sedgwick LLP.

This week’s question: Art Basel Miami Beach is around the corner. Do you plan to attend? If so, what sorts of events pique your interest? Do you think the art show has been a good thing for Miami overall? Or is the traffic and hubbub not worth the fuss?

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Yes, I plan to attend Art Basel. The event has become a symbol of Miami’s stature as a global city, and those who value arts and culture realize that traffic and congestion is a small price to pay.

Ramon Abadin, president, The Florida Bar, and partner, Sedgewick Law Firm

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I can’t WAIT for Art Basel every year. I love the people, love the exhibitions, I feel that it gets better and better every year. I will go to ArtMiami, and do things in Midtown and N’Namdi Contemporary Art Gallery in Wynwood and the Yeelen Gallery in Little Haiti this year. I won’t go over to the beach. I would rather see the smaller local galleries and events.

Brian Brackeen, CEO, Kairos

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Art Basel Miami Beach has played a key role in positioning Miami as a world-class city. It has captured the attention of art-lovers from every corner of the globe and brought them to South Florida, where they can sample our quality of life and multicultural atmosphere, and explore our dynamic real estate market. It’s not surprising that many residential and commercial investments in our community begin with a visit to Art Basel Miami Beach.

Carol Brooks, president and co-founder, CREC (Continental Real Estate Companies)

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The success of Art Basel Miami Beach — and the many ancillary fairs it has sprouted — validates the benefit that art brings to a community in many ways. For a few short days we are the center of the art universe, and we are fortunate to be able to enjoy this opportunity near home. As a minor collector myself (and blessed with a sister who has directed various art galleries and provides me with valuable insight), I enjoy spending time at the Convention Center during Art Basel Miami Beach. We encourage that love and appreciation for art at our Sardiñas Art Gallery on the St. Thomas campus.

Monsignor Franklyn M. Casale, president, St. Thomas University

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Art Basel is one of Miami’s premier events and it draws artists and art lovers from around the world. It’s an economic engine for the city and an opportunity to showcase local talent. Art is essential and nourishing to the soul and it elevates the level of societal discourse.

Nabil El Sanadi, CEO/president, Broward Health

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Art Basel week is peak tourism season, so we’re all-hands-on-deck at the hotel and I typically don’t make it to the main show. Fortunately, we will be presenting another exhibition at the InterContinental Miami this year, a digital display called Form and Substance, so I will get a taste of Art Week right here. While traffic is heavy, I believe the global branding and economic benefits that continue long after Art Basel far outweigh the short-term inconvenience.

Robert Hill, general manager, InterContinental Miami

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I love Art Basel and attend every year. I think it has a great economic impact on Miami and has really helped establish the city as an art destination. I believe that, in large part, because of Art Basel, the art scene in the Design District and Wynwood have grown so rapidly in the last few years. Is the traffic that comes with it fun? No, but neither is Miami traffic on any other given day.

Miriam Lopez, president/chief lending officer, Marquis Bank

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Art Basel is a phenomenal occurrence. I can’t think of any one event or happening that has had a more significant impact on this community in the 25 years that I’ve been here. It is responsible for moving this community forward in many ways, not just in the art world. It has further enhanced Miami’s position on the world stage, it has brought hundreds of thousands people to spend more time here, spend money here. It has spawned hundreds of successful ancillary businesses and fueled the growth of Wynwood, the Design District and Midtown — not just Miami Beach. And, equally important, it has helped elevate our community’s self-esteem and aspiration for an even better tomorrow.

Harve A. Mogul, president and CEO, United Way of Miami-Dade

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Having such a prestigious international event on which Miami has put its unique stamp is a real coup for our community. I would love to attend, as my wife and I very much enjoy modern art. I just have to get my schedule to cooperate.

Mike Parra, CEO, DHL Express U.S.

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Art Basel signifies global city to our community as it has helped define Miami as an attraction for culture and arts worldwide. It has distinguished the city as an international arts destination where people from all over the world travel just to be part of the event. But more importantly for us, it signifies the marriage of visual and performing arts. In fact, the Arsht Center has commissioned a visual artwork for its 10th anniversary that will be unveiled during Art Basel. The piece, inspired by the impact the Center has on our community, will then become part of our permanent Knight Masterworks Print Collection.

M. John Richard, president, CEO, Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts

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I plan on taking my 6-year-old daughter to Art Basel this year. She’s especially into all things fashion, so much that she’s currently taking sewing classes at Design Lab. Living and working in Doral has prepared me this year to handle the traffic fuss; it can’t be as bad as the traffic in Doral lately.

Ania Rodriguez, CEO of Key Lime Interactive

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I definitely plan on attending Art Basel as I do every year. I love the energy it brings to our community. It is one of the most amazing events that Miami hosts and puts Miami on the map as a cultural global hub. Aside from all the social benefits, it is also great for our local economy.

Rachel Sapoznik, CEO & president, Sapoznik Insurance

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I love Art Basel, and I think it’s done wonders for Miami’s global reputation. My favorite is Vernissage — the opening night, the excitement, the people, the art, the glamour — Miami and Miami Beach showing off their beauty. Because I believe in Basel, ginnybakes actually sponsors YogArt — one of my favorite events — a wonderful way to relax in the middle of the madness. I’ve lived on Miami Beach since 1989, so watching our city grow into a magnificent magnet for arts and culture makes my heart swell.

Ginny Simon, founder, CEO, ginnybakes

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