2022 South Florida Independent Retailer Awards Honors Growing Entrepreneurs During Nov. 1 Event

More than 250 shopping center owners, leasing agents and other real estate professionals came together Tuesday, November 1st for the 4th Annual South Florida Independent Retailer Awards®.   Held at the Signature Grand in Davie, the morning event recognized local entrepreneurs who are in growth mode and offering unique concepts to the local market.

Hue Chen, Saglo Development Corporation; Nicole Maser, PhatBoy Sushi, Kitchen & Bar; John Maser, PhatBoy Sushi, Kitchen & Bar; Beth Azor, Azor Advisory Services

This year, 32 small businesses were nominated in nine categories.  Each finalist was featured in a short video, and immediately after, the audience voted via text message for their favorite business, with results displayed on a large screen in real time.  The 2022 South Florida Independent Retailer Awards® winners are:

Kalayah Sargeant, Frania Reyes, Luiz Nazario; all from Saglo Development Corporation

Best Beauty Retailer: The Studio Nail & Beauty Supply

Best Café Bakery: La Boulangerie Boul’Mich

New to South Florida: Norman Love Confections

Best Dessert Shop: Sweet Melody Crafted Ice Cream

Best Fast Casual Restaurant: Papamigo’s

Best Healthy RestaurantFresh Kitchen

Best Hospitality Group:  La Latina / Miami Slice

Best Retailer: PetNmind Naturals and Self-Wash

Best Sit-Down Restaurant: Phat Boy Sushi, Kitchen & Bar

“I would like to congratulate all our winners.  This year’s awards come at a time where the local retail industry is stronger than it has been in some time, despite what we are experiencing in the broader economy,” said Beth Azor, CEO of Weston-based Azor Advisory Services, co-founder of SFIRA®.  “All of our small businesses in South Florida should be saluted for what they do to create jobs and support the local economy.”

Kara Morabito, InvenTrust Properties; Jorge Ventura, RK Centers; Laura Briggle, ForeFront Commercial; Allan Benes, Horizon Properties; Michael Mogerman, ForeFront Commercial; Michael Navarro, MMG Equity Partners

Each nominee was required to currently have two retail locations and actively looking for additional space.

“I want to thank the awards committee for shining a positive light on small businesses,” said John Maser of Phat Boy Sushi, Kitchen & Bar, which has six locations in Broward County.  “It is very nice to be recognized for doing what we love to do and bringing value to a local community.”

Prior to the awards presentation, the audience was treated to a live landlord-tenant negotiation in a segment called Retailer ‘Shark Tank’.   Sproutz, a health food concept with four Miami-Dade locations, pitted four landlords against one another to see who would offer them the best deal for their fifth location.  After much consideration, Sproutz chose a 1, 949-square-foot space in Miami’s Wynwood district that was offered by Newmark.

Each year, the SFIRA® organizing committee donates net proceeds to a worthy local cause.

At this year’s event, they distributed $20,000 in scholarships to students at the University of Miami, Florida International University, Florida Atlantic University and Nova Southeastern University.  The money was brought in during the 2021 event.

About the South Florida Independent Retailer Awards® 

The annual awards event brings together approximately 35 regional favorites and 200-plus shopping center owners and brokers for a day of productive matchmaking.  All the businesses nominated for an award are already winners, but the excitement starts during live voting to determine the best of the best.  Local retailers will meet landlords that control more than 75% of all space in South Florida. For more information visit www.tsfira.com.