Challenging, tricky, and complex; father-son business duos are all three. If a high level of success and accomplishments are mitigating factors in increased challenges for family run businesses, than Alvin Malnik and Shareef Malnik should certainly have their fair share and more.
Alvin Malnik’s personal, business and philanthropic accomplishments are well known, and the list of his business ventures – restaurants, real estate, art collections, and steadily growing companies – grows daily. But by all accounts, the father and son team seem to be the exception to the rule. If Shareef Malnik were just following behind his father Al Malnik, the footsteps would be enormous – almost too big to fill.
But both Al Malnik and Shareef Malnik agree that there is no following – they walk side-by-side, sharing a mutual respect for the knowledge, integrity and dedication each brings to the table.
Take The Forge. Purchased and transformed in the late 1960s by Alvin Malnik, the establishment was as much a reflection of his personality as it was a place to dine, see and be seen, and mingle with celebrities, politicians, and prominent community members. The Forge was a wonderful example of world-class dining in an elegant and lavish setting.
When Al Malnik handed over control of The Forge to his son Shareef Malnik he had 100 percent confidence in his son’s ability to continue the venue’s success. With full reign to run with his ideas, Shareef’s transformation of The Forge was as much a reflection of his own personality as his father’s vision had been decades before.
For any other father-son team it wouldn’t have been easy – a father watching his son change the dream he had built from the ground up. But when Shareef took the helm, Miami Beach was experiencing a rebirth, and Al was confident his son would find opportunity within the change.
As wealthy jet-setters picked Miami Beach as their destination of choice, Shareef Malnik drew from his rowdy, wild-side days of off-shore power boat and Porsche racing and tempered that with his suave demeanor, good looks and the undeniably charming side of his personality to turn the Forge into a hip, international hot-spot.
Today stretch limos line the curb in front of The Forge, and entrance lines snake around the building. Shareef Malnik’s personality is evident throughout the venue, and his ideas transformed The Forge into the trendy, popular and high-energy club it is today. Like father like son.