Doral Design District Merchants Association is on the move

The entrance to the Doral Design District is at the corner of NW 78th Ave. and 37th St.

The Doral Design District Merchant Association was formerly introduced to the business community at its Kick-off Celebration held on Friday, June 22nd; by all accounts this event was a tremendous success, in spite of torrential rain over 100 business owners and associates were in attendance.

Business owners were provided with a comprehensive overview about the Doral Design District and the Merchants Association regarding the overall “District”; the concept, progress to date, goals and objectives.

Presenting speakers at the event were: Doral Vice Mayor Mike DiPietro, DDD Steering Committee Chair, Melissa Tapanes Llahues, Esq., Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera, Doral Economic Development Coordinator and Former Vice Mayor Robert Van Name.

The DDD Merchants Association was established as an organization by business owners for business owners within the “Doral Design District” under a “One Voice … One District” operating model.

The newly-formed Merchants Association will be made up exclusively of licensed business and property owners who have a physical presence within the design district. The DDDMA will be led by a seven Member Board of volunteers headed by Tony DeRosa and Steve Musolino as President and VP, respectively, along with Armando Alvarez as Treasurer and Ernesto Avino as Secretary to represent the Executive Board. Former Vice Mayor Robert Van Name, will serve as a Special Advisor.

The central purpose of the Merchants Association is to promote and enhance the profitability and public image of merchants and businesses within the “Doral Design District”, providing promotional opportunity, advocacy, business leadership and support to the DDDMA membership! It will champion the DDDMA & Doral Design District Marketing and Branding initiatives in the International, Region and Local markets via website, seminars, publications and trade shows!

Summary of Member Benefits:
• Building relationships and networking with DDDMA business leaders and members;
• Legislative advocacy and representation at the city, state and federal level;
• Quarterly and periodic promotion trade events sponsored by the DDD Merchants Association;
• Monthly newsletter and Ad Publications;
• Website and Social Media Networking;
• Listing on the DDDMA Interactive Electronic Directories via; Website, Cell Phone App, Kiosk Stations and Messaging Boards;
• E-Mail Communications with Merchant and Associate Members;
• Business counseling and seminars to assist your business;
• Recognition as a Member Business of the “Doral Design District”;
• The opportunity to participate on the board, committees and special projects.

As a member of the Merchants Association, your business will be listed alphabetically with links to your own homepage!

The “Design District” concept was first introduced to the Doral City Council by Former Vice Mayor Robert Van Name in 2004 to formalize and promote the Design, Tile & Marble, and Building Trades indus- try emerging along the NW 79th Avenue and surrounding areas. To date, the City has done a magnificent job facilitating this project with the creation of a Doral Design District Master Plan, completion of a Feasibility Study on the development of a major “Trade-Conference Center” within the District, formalizing a “Way- finder Signage Program” to include: street signs, banners and a major entrance feature to designate the design district. In addition, the City has designated a portion of the “District” as Brownfield eligible to serve as a safety net for property owners on potential environmental issues and has completed new Land Use relations specific to the “District” (pending Council approval) that will expand owners land use rights to encourage development under the Doral Design District Master Plan.

The Doral Design District, originally known as the “ Artisan Village at Doral” is a unique Architectural Design, Tile & Marble and Specialty Building Trades District, which will be a world renowned, “premier destination point” for all who are planning a major building design, retrofit or quality design upgrade to office or home!

The “District” will be a “one of a kind”, pedestrian friendly, convenient theme park environment with an artisan flare! This one square mile “Architectural Design, Tile & Marble and Specialty Building Trades District” will have its’ own Master Design & Transportation Plans, “Land- Use Regulations and Design” criteria, a Brownfield area designation and much more!

The “District” will feature the world famous Doral Tile & Marble industry!

The “District” will also include and encourage the provision of additional Class “A” office venues to house prominent Architects, Engineers, Interior Designers, Construction Managers and Artisan specialists of all types. Live-Work spaces are also part of the plan.

The provisioning of quality office, retail & manufacture centers to present a complete palette of tile, marble and specialty building trade products / services and other artistic design creations, will also be prominent throughout the district.

The Doral Design District will truly be a one of a kind “One Stop Shopping Center”, for all your building trades, design and construction needs, including a conference & retail centers, restaurants and entertainment neighborhoods with character … a place like no other!

Special features within the DDD:
• The creation of “Tile & Marble Mile” along NW 79th Avenue;
• Artisan Village Conference & Trade Center (35,000 seat capacity);
• Park Square Hotel, Office , Retail & Entertainment Center;
• nPortal of Doral Office & Retail Center;
• Intercontinental Hotel & Conference Center;
• High-end , quality Building Specialty Trades and Design centers;
• Doral Light-rail & Trolley circulator system, unique to the district;
• Its’ own Land use Regulation and Master Plan Design criteria;
• Formal Transportation and Parking Plan;
• Artisan Live-Work spaces;
• Pedestrian friendly, convenient shopping areas … with an Artisan Flare!

The “Design District” master plan developed by the City of Doral has taken a significant step forward with the incorporaexchangetion of the Doral Design District Merchants Association which provides a united voice and works in concert with the City to move the project forward in a public/ private venture. Once implemented it is expected that the “District” will attract hundreds of new business, create thousands of new jobs, provide Doral much needed new services and bring in millions of dollars in new business opportunities for the City, merchants and residents of Doral

To help advance this effort the City also created a Doral Design District Steering Committee headed by Melissa Tapanes Llahues, Esq. to recommend and promote the design district development. The committee was instrumental in recommending several initiatives to include; the creation of a Matching Funds Grants Program for facade improvements , the creation of a DDD “Merchants Association” to serve as the business voice of the “District” and is now planning a major “Street Fair” in the fall of 2012 to Kick-off and promote the Doral Design District. Details on the Doral Design District can be found on the City website or at

DDDMA President, Tony DeRosa stated he was amazed at the number of business owners and potential new members who attended the kick-off event and offered a special thanks to the City of Doral, Mayor, Council and Staff for their strong support in this regard! He also expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to bring the merchant business community of the Doral Design District together in a united voice and to move the project forward and looked forward to working effectively with the City of Doral and the Merchant Members to promote and facilitate the Doral Design District.

Vice President, Steve Musolino and Mercedes Villar will spearhead the Merchants Associations grass roots door-todoor membership drive.

DDDMA Contact information: Email: Phone: 786-529-6244 Website: Questions about the organization and / or membership maybe directed to Robert Van Name, DDDMA Special Advisor at or 786-529-6244

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