The Hangman's Beautiful Daughters

In which a doe-eyed dog finally gets invited to a nice house

After perusing the décor, The Bitch arranged herself on a white leather sofa, where she nibbled on dog biscuits and lapped up a bowl of imported Norwegian spring water. A few feet away Evelyn Perez-Larin, a perfectly groomed saleswoman, was showing off a model of the nineteen-story glass tower that will house the new condo-cum-hotel. "This one is magnificent," she said, pointing to a corner unit. "It has floor-to ceiling windows." Her prospect, a paunchy silver-haired man in a polo shirt and docksiders, sipped red wine and nodded agreeably. He continued to do so as Perez-Larin reeled off the list of amenities: two gourmet restaurants, a "bliss spa" (What exactly does that offer? The Bitch wondered) rooftop tennis courts, a pair of infinity pools, and "beach ambassadors" who ferry lounge chairs and picnic baskets to beachgoers.

All told, the building is slated to house 511 condominium units, which owners can choose to rent out as hotel suites during the 51 weeks of the year when they are trotting other parts of the globe. Prices range from $700,000 for a studio to $15 million for a sprawling 10,000-square-foot penthouse.

W Hotels are known to pamper pooches with plush robes, doggie toys, and canine massages. But, needless to say, the distinctly bourgeois scene unfolding in the new W South Beach office troubled the non-Beach-inhabiting canine. After all, it's bohemian blood, not money and glitter, that is lacking in the Magic City's most popular hood.

Elaine Lancaster is gonna steamroll over you, baby!
Tom Grizzle
Elaine Lancaster is gonna steamroll over you, baby!

All Dressed Up in Dreams

Tatiana Byron looked as if she'd just stepped out of the frame from MTV's Laguna Beach and appeared, digitally remastered and all, in the ballroom of the Biltmore in Coral Gables. Yet the petite butter-and-honey blonde was actually in full Miami effect; she was here this past Monday evening for her creatively masterminded "Wedding Salon," basically a tour de force of high-end goods for brides, parents-in-law, and grooms (and, in a few unfortunate instances, premarriage-spawned children).

"I've been an events planner since I was in high school, and I put myself through college giving parties," Byron said as she scanned the room, noting a coterie of eggshell-to-ecru-gown-and-train-sporting models, booths offering honeymoons in Punta Cana, and tumblers of everyone's favorite nuptial beverage, Dewar's Scotch whiskey. Admission to the show was $75.

"Are you a bride-to-be?" Byron asked The Bitch. "Is your fiancé here?"

Yep, mmm-hhmmm. Well, it's kind of a special situation.

"Oh, an intercultural ceremony?" Byron inquired.

More like interspecies ...

The Bitch was not too flummoxed to note the presence of some agitated women outside the Biltmore pawing through their "gift bags," which Byron had promised would include "everything from full-size bottles of Vera Wang perfume to Giorgio Armani cosmetics."

"There is a lack of any kind of perfume," complained one, waving an eight-ounce bottle of Martinelli sparkling cider and a Christmas tree ornament from the sack.

"There were in fact two gift bags," admits Robin Diamond of Tara Ink, one of the event's organizers. "The VIP gift bags were for paying customers of The Wedding Salon.... The other gift bag was for brides who were comped into the show and brides who participated in a promotion to gain entry into the show."

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