PARAISO Miami Swim Week Celebrates 20 Years

A Two-Decade Journey of Fashion, Innovation, and Beach Culture

PQ Swim

This year marked the 20th anniversary of PARAISO Miami Swim Week, a showcase for the hottest swim and resort collections for 2025. A beautiful, state-of-the-art tent was constructed at Collins Park in Miami Beach to host a full four days of air conditioned programming. This year PARAISO had over 30,000 attendees and over 7,500 global buyers. 

While all-white fashion is a popular Miami staple, this year’s resort wear focused on explosive colors and highly creative designs. What was once a small event just for buyers, the social media craze quickly made the series of runway shows and events an “Instagrammable” spectacle to be experienced for all, from industry professionals and celebrities to influencers and everyday consumers alike.

“At the start of PARAISO Miami Swim Week, the swimwear industry was very small and designers typically presented their collections through showrooms,” says Natalija Dedic Stojanovic, Creative Director and co-Founder. (pictured below) 

“As the years progressed and the platform continued growing, designers began composing individual showcases and now we see them getting creative and curating out of the box runway shows that bring excitement to everyone involved.”

I was fortunate enough to be front row at the shows, happily taking in the energy, entertainment, and sexy styles from some of the most talented designers in the industry. It may have been over 90 degrees outside, but the tent was kept extremely comfortable, a welcomed experience for anyone visiting Miami in June.

According to Stojanovic, the event has a large economic impact on the City of Miami Beach, bringing in over 30,000 visitors and $75 million. The economics are calculated based on the number of attendees and an average of $2,500 spent per person across five nights of accommodation and F&B, so it’s very attractive to the city. For the designers, it’s an exciting opportunity to put their collections on an elevated platform to garner such visibility.

Select Model Management Earns Exclusivity with Montreal-based designer, SHAN

Setting the tone for my first Miami Swim Week was the Select Models kick off party, hosted by SHAN at Eastern Mediterranean restaurant, Byblos in Miami Beach. I had the opportunity to get to know a few of the models, as well as their orchestrator, Bridget Halanski, Chief Commercial Officer of Select Model Management (pictured below).

With a 15-year background in runway and 17 years total in the modeling world, Halanski couldn’t be a better for such an event like Miami Swim Week. Select Models was chosen to be the exclusive modeling agency for SHAN for the second time, supplying talent from Italy, Brazil, Los Angeles, and Miami, to name a few.

“Select Models is a full-service agency. We have all genders, all types, and all sizes. We represent models all over the world,” says Halanski. “We have eight global locations and we cater to e-commerce, social media, print, runway, you name it. We are a family. We really care about the talent we represent. We may have eight global offices, but we have a boutique feel.”

One thing that was highly noticeable at Miami Swim Week was the representation of models with a strong influence in the social media world. Traditionally, models were scouted by agents at specific locations like malls or events. With social media, aspiring models can now be discovered from anywhere in the world. Platforms like Instagram and TikTok have become virtual scouting grounds where individuals can showcase their portfolios to a global audience and attract the attention of top agencies.

Models can now directly engage with their audience and build personal brands. This self-promotion allows them to gain followers, increase their visibility, and create opportunities independent of traditional agencies. Models with large followings can leverage their social media presence to secure contracts and collaborations, sometimes bypassing agencies altogether.

I think it [social media] changed the modeling industry a lot. I think a lot of brands go to the influencers directly, but people want authenticity. A part of me feels there’s going to be a shift where people want those models, but want to see they’re working models and not these bots, or these filters,” shares Halanski. “AI is incredible, but I also think people are going to see through that and want to see a real person.

Photo courtesy: William Perez. L-R: Nathan Gilbert, SHAN designer, Natalija Dedic Stojanovic, Creative Director and co-Founder PARAISO Miami Swim Week, Bridget Halanski, CCO Select Model Management


Standing outside Byblos restaurant in Miami Beach, I got to interview Nathan Gilbert, as well, designer for SHAN. (pictured above)

“I was very young when we started doing Miami Swim Week. I’ve been coming to Miami Swim Week since I was 12 years old. It’s a family business so I’ve been tagging along all my life,” said Gilbert. “It’s Canadian based. We control the manufacturing process, the expedition, and the shipping. Everything is made, controlling the whole process from A-Z, from our head office in Montreal.”

SHAN debuted its Cruise 2025 and SS25 collections at PARAISO Miami Swim Week introduced an exquisite fusion of fabrics, showcasing the artistry of blending textures to create masterpieces. The collection features natural fibers and linens mixed with SHAN’s signature mesh, delivering a modern, romantic look. Handmade jacquard with metallic textural effects blends seamlessly with metallic jersey lycra fabric, creating a vibrant contrast that illuminates the collection. Asking about what makes SHAN unique, Gilbert spoke of his fabrics.

“In terms of ready to wear resort wear, we use washable silk, some of the best quality silk in our world. We work with suppliers from Italy that are among the best suppliers in the world. We work with lycra, of course, with our swimwear but we play around with lycra, doing things other brands just don’t do. We also work with a material that we, in house, call scuba. It’s in the same family as wetsuits, but it’s different. There’s a bit less rubber in it and it’s a great material to do ready-to-wear. It stays really nice and you can wash it infinite amount of times. We sometimes fuse the materials so we double layer it so you can create a lot more sculpted pieces with it. It’s a very interesting canvas.”

Photo courtesy: PARAISO Miami Swim Week. Luciana Cid wearing SHAN

While at the Select Models party, I also got the chance to chat with Miami Swim Week newcomer, Luciana Cid from Orange County, CA, an incredibly nice and humble beauty who walked in four different shows, including SHAN, pictured above.

Oh Polly

Unlike many fashion brands that begin with a focus on bringing a creative vision to life, Oh Polly was born from a deeper purpose. The founders, Michael Branney and Claire Henderson, launched the brand in 2015 with the primary goal of funding their charity, The Brannerson Foundation, which supports impoverished children and families in Cambodia. The foundation runs a free English language school and supports several young people with advanced learning through a university scholarship program. By intertwining fashion with philanthropy, the brand not only brings stylish, high-quality garments to the market but also fosters positive change, proving that fashion can be a powerful force for good.

From humble beginnings of selling on eBay, to the fashion empire its become, Oh Polly creates beautiful and affordable fashion, including swimwear for diverse body types, showcasing models “to present a rich representation of our Miami audience across our runway,” says Taymir Terrell, Oh Polly’s Event Manager.

I had a chance to ask a couple of more questions regarding their new collection.

SJ: Can you tell us about the materials and fabrics used in your collection? How do they enhance the wearability and aesthetic of the swimwear?

TT:Taking our signature silhouettes and updating their fabrications with high shine lycra and satin. Featuring pearl trims and gold hardware to further elevate. The assortment covers all swim needs from micro tan friendly thong and triangle bikinis to full coverage high waisted and cupped styles. Allocated with the intention to be mixed and matched for consumers to build their ideal set. Our satin pearl collection sits alongside easy throw on coverups so a bikini can easily turn into a full day look.

SJ: Are there any specific trends in swimwear that influenced your designs this season?

TT:The first collection was inspired by vivid tropical sunset hues while the pearl range color palette is inspired by the more quiet and serene sunrise with pastel tones and aqua waters.

Not only was I able to chat with Oh Polly’s event manager, I got a few minutes to meet one of today’s most in-demand women, Select Model and Miami native, Staci Lyon. A 13-year veteran of Miami Swim Week, the bubbly and gorgeous Staci walked in four shows this year, including Oh Polly, pictured below.

When I asked about a cause she wanted to show support for outside the world of modeling, she wanted to share a bunch, but picked the following to speak on behalf of:

Women loving themselves and loving the body they’re in. Don’t compare yourself to other anybody. Look at yourself in the mirror and say, ‘I love me.’ With social media these days, there are so many comparisons…Everyone is beautiful in their own way. And I truly feel like the day that women truly embrace that, women will take over.

Photo courtesy: PARAISO Miami Swim Week. Model Staci Lyon walks in Oh Polly.

Sinesia Karol

Originating from the island beach town of Vitória, Brazil, located just north of Rio de Janeiro, Sinesia Karol developed an early passion for apparel and design, inspired by her mother, who handcrafted much of the family’s clothing. Growing up in a beach community gave Sinesia a unique perspective on fashion and style in a coastal setting, while also providing her with a rich foundation in Brazilian art, music, and architecture. With the Latin-inspired flavor of Miami, there’s no better place to showcase this Brazilian flair with Miami Swim Week!

MIAMI BEACH, FLORIDA - MAY 31: A model walks the runway for Sinesia Karol Fashion Show during Paraiso Miami Swim Week at The Paraiso Tent on May 31, 2024 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Paraiso Miami Beach)

A model walks for Sinesia Karol Fashion Show. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)


Cupshe made an exciting return to Miami Swim Week with its third annual ‘Naturally You’ runway show. The brand presented three distinctive collections celebrating nature: the Miami Swim Week Capsule Collection, the Recycled Swimwear Collection, and the Cupshe x JoJo Fletcher Soul Space Collection. Each collection showcased Cupshe’s commitment to style, sustainability, and innovation. The diverse lineup of models represented various sizes and backgrounds, underscoring Cupshe’s dedication to inclusivity and empowering its community to embrace their beauty and confidence.

JoJo Fletcher, Cupshe’s spokesperson of the year, made a surprise appearance to announce her co-designed collection, Cupshe x JoJo Fletcher: Soul Space. This line embodies elegance and tranquility, featuring flattering silhouettes, vibrant colors, and striking prints. Demonstrating their commitment to sustainability, the runway included pieces from the Recycled Swimwear Collection, made from Global Recycled Standard (GRS) certified recycled nylon and polyester, using materials from yarn waste and repurposed water bottles. Additionally, the Miami Swim Week Capsule Collection combined vintage charm with Latin American flair for a unique and captivating aesthetic.

Photo Courtesy: PARAISO Miami Swim Week. Model walks for Cupshe.


SIGAL is a resortwear brand that captures the vibrant essence of Miami life, offering effortless, tropical vacation vibes. Created by Venezuelan textile and fashion designer Sigal Cohen Wolkowiez, SIGAL empowers women to embrace their bold, unapologetic, and beautiful selves. More than just resort attire, SIGAL represents the intersection of beauty, sustainability, and handmade quality. The collection, born from a journey in textile design and fabrication, reflects Miami’s diverse landscape and dynamic lifestyle. As the quintessential Miami uniform, SIGAL brings the city’s signature culture to you, wherever you are in the world.

Walking the outdoor runway in SIGAL is Select Model Alexis Gaube, whom I had the pleasure of meeting. A familiar face from The Price is Right, Alexis immediately captivated me with her warm, welcoming smile. Our shared passion for house and electronic dance music made our conversation even more enjoyable!

Photo courtesy: PARAISO Miami Swim Week. Model Alexis Gaube walks for SIGAL.

Leslie Amon

Leslie Amon is a high-end swimwear brand celebrated for its creative designs and dedication to empowering women through fashion. Founded in June 2017 by Swiss and Paris-based designer Leslie Amon, the brand offers collections crafted with meticulous skill using custom French-made fabrics, including its signature four-way stretch jacquard. The exquisite 36-piece Leslie Amon Resort 2025 collection was inspired by iconic holiday spots such as Jamaica, St. Barth, Hawaii, and the Maldives.

Photo Courtesy: PARAISO Miami Swim Week. A model walks for Leslie Amon.

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