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NiteTalk: Chatting With Party Kingpin Tommy Pooch

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NiteTalk: Chatting With Party Kingpin Tommy Pooch

Serg Alexander

Tommy Pooch

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For all its inherent glamour, party-throwing on South Beach is a tough business. It takes guts, moxie and a certain instinct. That's why the number of truly successful nightlife ops is limited to a select few. Among that very few is Tommy Pooch, one half of TAI Entertainment, and one helluva party-thrower. Pooch was present at South Beach's recreation. In fact, he was a large part of it. And he's been at the top of the game ever since.

At some time or another everyone's been to a TAI Entertainment event. But what exactly does the company do? TAI Entertainment is a marketing company created by me and Alan Roth. For the last seven years, we've held weekly events, annual events as well as special events at some of South Florida's premiere hotels, restaurants and nightclubs. We also represent various liquor brands and non-alcoholic beverages, helping them create new business.

You host two events on Thursday nights alone. How did you end up at both South Beach's Philippe and Ft. Lauderdale's SoLita? Promoting two parties on the same night is not easy. I start out at Solita and end up at Philippe Chow. The crowd's slightly different, but they are both very upscale dinner parties with pumping music and tons of ladies dressed to the nines. We have DJ Anthony Pisano up at Solita and DJ Irie handling all the talent at Phillipe Chow.

TAI also hosts Tuesdays at The Delano. When did that bash kick-off and why do you think it's such a continuing success? This October will make four years of amazing Tuesday nights at The Delano. And with no sign of slowing, it seems as if the party will be here for decades to come. Reason being the crowd is very eclectic and the setting is timeless! It's a sexy party for a very sexy hotel.

TAI also just launched Sundays at Finnegan's on the River. Can you please fill us in on that action? Sundays at Finnegan's River is something way outside the box for us. After being approached by TRU-TV to film a Sunday pool party the search was on for a perfect location where a pool party can rage in front of a slew of camera men. Finnegan's has an enormous amount of dockage available and that helped make it the perfect backdrop for a reality show.

You built quite a rep as the Sunday pool party people at The Raleigh and The Shore Club. Why did TAI decide to hit the Mainland anyway? The Shore Club and The Raleigh pools were great homes for our Sunday parties, but this was something different. Nevertheless we hope to be back on South Beach with an upscale Saturday pool party real soon.

In addition to TAI's weekly line up, you, your wife Michelle and Alan Roth just hosted another Fashion Art Ball. What's the story behind that event? Yes, we just wrapped up the 12th annual Fashion Art Ball, and it was a huge success. The event benefits the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and we are very proud of the fact that we have helped raise the life expectancy of a CF sufferer from 18 years of age to 38 years over just the last 10 years. We have found that instead of hiring celebrities to help our charity we use local celebrities and socialites to walk our runways with high-end designer clothing and jewelry, adds a more local flavor to the occasion.

You were present at South Beach recreation. What are a few of the main differences between then and now? The difference now is that the bohemian feel of South Beach is gone. We have great hotels, restaurants and culture now, but we will never have only  models, artists and rich playboys filling the sidewalks and nightclubs like the old days.

When you're not throwing a party, where in town do you most like to hang out? I love my backyard more than any place in the world, but if I'm looking for the best meatballs it Macaluso's and for pizza it's Casale and for drinks it'll be a place that hasn't opened yet called High Tide.

What's coming up for Tommy Pooch? High Tide, that's what might be coming in July above Casale. Keep an eye out!

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