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Last Night: CuCu Diamantes at The Viceroy's Grand Opening


CuCu Diamantes
Thursday, March 5, 2009
The Viceroy, Icon Brickell

Better than:
The $7 million chandelier in the lobby.

So, impresarios and Miami royalty Gloria and Emilio Estefan, actress Selma Blair, Food Network star Ingrid Hoffman and Emmy-winning Mad Men star Jon Hamm walk into a posh hotel.  No, it's not the setup to a joke--I'm setting the stage for a party last night at Kor Hotel Management's grand opening celebration for the swank Viceroy Hotel, located at Icon Brickell, where Miami's elite rubbed elbows while sipping free top shelf and enjoying decadent food from the various hors d'oeuvres being passed, the sushi bar, and an outdoor grill, and even a thoughtful candy bar and complementary bottle of VOSS at the exit.  Oh yeah, I was there too, and was by far the poorest person in the place.  But those are the best kinds of parties.  

The main event was a private show featuring CuCu Diamantes, who many will recall from ultra-badass Latin fusion band Yerba Buena, now successfully embarked upon a solo career.  The bigwigs at Kor could've selected no better performer for the luxurious grand opening of their first East Coast property.  CuCu Diamantes is the embodiment of luxury and style, refined and elegant, but still fun, playful and unique.  She's every bit a modern day pinup.  

CuCu took the stage along with producer and former Yerba Buena cofounder Andres Levin on guitar.  Even if she didn't have that amazing voice, she would've had me with her adorably-accented between-song banter.  But of course she does have a voice, and quite a voice indeed, as she demonstrated.  She tore into numbers from her upcoming solo debut CUCULAND, flawlessly easing from the surf-tango hybrid "Mas Fuerte" into sultry son with "Mentiras" to the rapid-fire tongue-twister chorus of "Alguien", all the while urging the crowd dance and suggesting that everyone go home to make love.  Catching CuCu live was all at once like catching a dinner show right in front of the bandstand at the Tropicana and grabbing an unexpected 2am performance of Yerba in the Lower East Side, with the very best of both worlds in evidence.

Critics Notebook

Personal Bias:
Sexy, spunky and Cuban...what's not to like?

Random Detail: Sharon Stone was there.  I heard a nearby couple discussing it, and the guy's response to his lady's "hey, isn't that Sharon Stone?" was "no, it's some old lady in a tight dress."

By the Way: Jorgito Perez, I know you were having a good time last night, but come on!  Give me back my money for that condo.  We both know it's never going up.

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Christopher Lopez

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