InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball
Raises $2.25 million and counting
Shannon De Lima, Marc Anthony, Gabrielle Anwar, Shareef Malnik

More than 850 VIPs attended the mythology-themed Inter-Continental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball, which raised over $2.25 million for Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida. The event was hosted by the InterContinental® Miami, Ball founder and in-kind donor for the past 21 years, along with Shareef Malnik, who has served as Ball Chairman for 11 years

The glamorous celebration featured a special performance by six-time Grammy Award-winning entertainer Marc Anthony, and a return appearance by actress and filmmaker Gabrielle Anwar as celebrity emcee for the fifth consecutive year. The $2.25 million+ raised will grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Guests were greeted by towering pharaoh statues as they made their way to the Ancient Greece-themed white carpet. Mingling with guests were the Ball’s “Three Amigos” – Shareef Malnik, philanthropist, Make-A-Wish® Board Chairman-Elect, and owner of The Forge Restaurant | Wine Bar; Robert Hill, Gala Host and InterContinental® Miami General Manager; and Norm Wedderburn, President and CEO of Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida; along with Gabrielle Anwar. Guests included Al and Nancy Malnik, lifetime benefactors of Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida; Bob and Alysia Press; Romero Britto; Taylor and Lisa Gang; Katherine Fernandez-Rundle; Donald and Lisa Pliner; “Real Housewives of Miami” cast members Adriana de Moura and Lisa Hochstein; Igor Makarov; Elaine Lancaster; James L. Ferraro; Fabian Basabe; Michael Capponi; DJ Irie; Steven and Carly Patterson; Daniel and Stephanie Gold; Gary and Dana Shear; Edgar and Nicole Lozano; and Wayne and Arlene Chaplin.

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21st Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball

Rony Seikaly and Martha Graeff

Make-A-Wish President/CEO Norm Wedderburn, Gala Host Robert Hill, Gala Chair Shareef Malnik

Lisa Gang & Make-A-Wish Chairman of the Board Taylor Gang

Wish Benefactors Harvey & Roberta Chaplin

21st Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball

Wish Star Benefactor Jim Ferraro and Celebrity Emcee Gabrielle Anwar

Make-A-Wish Kid Matt Milligan & Make-A-Wish President/CEO Norm Wedderburn

Celebrity Emcee Gabrielle Anwar & Live Auction Winner Joe Perez

Featured Entertainer Marc Anthony

21st Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball

Featured Entertainer Marc Anthony

Wish Benefactors Bob & Alysia Press

21st Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball

Fashion Show by Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour at the InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Nightclub

Shareef Malnik & Gabrielle Anwar

Lisa & Donald Pliner

Make-A-Wish Chairman of the Board Taylor Gang & Wish Benefactor Bob Press

Make-A-Wish Kid Matt Milligan and Celebrity Emcee Gabrielle Anwar

Lisa Mandala, Gabrielle Anwar, Andrew Mandala

Joyce & GJ Bakker, Faniela Navas, Fabiana Navas

Adriana de Moura

21st Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball

Robert Hill, Breda Hill, Shannon De Lima, Marc Anthony, Gabrielle Anwar, Shareef Malnik, Norm Wedderburn

Kamal Hotchandani and Jessica Gomez

Lifetime Benefactors Nancy & Al Malnik

Brendan Britto and Romero Britto

Lisa & Lenny Hochstein

Robert Hill, Brooke & Eugene Frenkel, Raissa Frenkel

During the mystical cocktail reception, guests enjoyed specialty cocktails and a bounty of food from elaborate gourmet stations, surrounded by oversized ice carvings and a video montage of a larger-than-life Poseidon, God of the Sea. Servers were outfitted in Trojan and mermaid attire as gold “living” statues and interpretive dancers acting out tales from Ancient Greece. Guests bid on hundreds of premier items and experiences at the Ball’s legendary silent auction, donated by InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts worldwide as well as leading entertainment, fashion and luxury brands.

Poseidon summoned revelers to the Grand Ballroom for dinner where guests were captivated by the white and gold décor. Ball Chairman Shareef Malnik welcomed the crowd by introducing the Chairman’s Society and Gabrielle Anwar, who has become his wife since last year’s Ball. Gabrielle and Shareef opened the night’s festivities with a creative and dramatic moment as the Miami Gay Men’s Chorus, wearing togas with golden laurel leaves, broke into clever song lyrics, written by Gabrielle herself. Guests were encouraged to bid generously during the Wish auction, and with Gabrielle on the mic, the crowd raised more than 200 wishes, including 42 wishes – two for each year, in celebration of the Ball’s 21st anniversary - from Bob and Alysia Press.

Live auction items included A Snow Escape in Beaver Creek, Colorado; The World is Yours aboard The World – Residences at Sea; Luxury in Finland; Haute Living St. Tropez Experience; Your Porsche Boxster S; Best of Britain; Fiji Fantasy; and much, much more. All proceeds from the auction went to Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida.

At this point, Marc Anthony, together with his renowned orchestra, took the stage. The Ballroom floor filled to capacity with guests singing along to the superstar’s hits including a surprise rendition of The Eagles’ “Hotel California.”

The dynamic Ball had an equally dynamic finale with the InterContinental® Miami Make-A-Wish® Nightclub, presented by E11EVEN-LIV, chaired by Shareef Malnik and Vice Chairman Michael Capponi, and co-produced by Maxwell Blandford and Clif Loftin, with creative direction by DECO Productions. The
Nightclub was located on the Mezzanine level of the InterContinental® Miami and featured DJ Nathan Asher, DJ Joe Dert, and globally renowned DJ and producer Chuckie, who pioneered the rapidly proliferating Dirty Dutch and kept the party going well into the night.

Shareef Malnik introduced the Chairman’s Society, a group of businesses and civic and philanthropic leaders whose pledges over five years covers all expenses associated with organizing and planning the InterContinental® Miami Make-A-Wish® Ball.

For more information on The Chairman's Society, please visit