In 1998, Jack and Lucia Penrod opened a small café set among a lovely flower and butterfly garden in Miami Beach, and named it Café Nikki in honor of their late daughter, who had died in a car accident when she was just 18. Operating with a “tell only your best friends” mantra, the café became a word of mouth success (including with a number of celebrities), and soon expanded to the beach—and thus the Nikki Beach experience was born. This year, the now-global brand celebrated its 20th anniversary with a slew of signature White Parties at its clubs around the world, which will culminate with a final soiree on December 14 at its original Miami Beach location. Tickets for the bash are $50, and are available here.
“Our brand created a new way of daytime partying, (replacing) the nightclub scene with a healthier option to party during the day that was not specifically geared towards the younger crowd,” says CEO Lucia Penrod about how the family-owned brand set itself apart. “We love to see when three generations of families party together with us, (enjoying) four-hour lunches, drinking Champagne barefoot in bathing suites, and listening to the best DJs while sunbathing on the beach or by the pool.” Asked about the brand’s “Celebrating Life” tagline, Penrod explain that to them, following that philosophy “is a birthright—we just created the perfect platform at which to do it.”
The Nikki Beach umbrella has now grown to include beach club, resort, and fashion divisions—so if you can’t make the Miami White Party grand finale this weekend, there are still plenty of ways to celebrate life. Along with the 13 beach clubs and restaurants (in places from Monte Carlo and Mallorca to St. Tropez and St. Barth) and the annual pop-ups in Cannes and Italy, there are currently five hotels and resorts, including a recent opening in Santorini; in the pipeline are openings in Montenegro and Sri Lanka. In honor of the 20th anniversary, Assouline this year published a Nikki Beach coffee table book featuring anecdotes from the past two decades and quotes from celebrity fans. The brand as has also partnered with 12.29 to develop a home fragrance collection named St. Tropez, after its first location in Europe, while a new retail site stocks a curated collection of items that fit the boho-beach Nikki Beach aesthetic.