Global Perspective

As Miami’s ever-evolving skyline continues to attract residents and investors from around the world, the real estate industry continues to thrive thanks to the powerhouses on the ensuing pages who are helping promote and sell our sunny paradise all year long.
Words // Sandy Lindsey | Photos // Edward Leal | December 27, 2023 | People

Giulietta Ulloa

[email protected]

“Negotiating is an art, and to understand it, you must understand people. Pushing deals across the finish line and having both parties happy is no easy task.”

In her early years, Guilietta Ulloa explored a vast array of industries. “I earned a degree in marketing, owned a furniture store and worked as Director of Marketing & Public Relations for the food industry in Peru,” she says. “I was also a flight attendant, which gave me the opportunity to travel, see the world, and explore different cultures, gaining a lot of experience from my diverse ventures.” Over the past 20+ years, she has worked almost exclusively in real estate, specifically residential. Her goal for the team at The Giulietta Ulloa Group is to excel at their craft. “I would like for our name to be synonymous with exceptional care for the client and with high-quality work and merit,” she says. 

Top-Notch Service: “When you work with our team, you can count on us to be available and responsive every day of the week.”

Best Advice: “Always continue to learn. Real estate is always evolving and will continue to change significantly, especially with AI. The key is to adapt and grow.”

Best Advice Given: “You know the saying ‘Happy wife, happy life’ — the same applies to clients: ‘Happy client, happy life.” Treat all clients as unique and make sure you are working to get their goals met every step of the way.”

Catalina Martinez

ONE Sotheby’s Int’l Realty 
St. Regis Residences, Miami
[email protected]

“I’m dedicated to curating an unparalleled experience for my clients, introducing them to the epitome of elegance and sophistication in real estate.”

Catalina Martinez’s career, defined by over $3 billion in sales, has been shaped by a longstanding collaboration with the Catena Group. “This journey has led me through diverse markets, spanning Miami, Mexico, Colombia and New York,” she says. “Notable projects I’ve sold include Icon Brickell, One Ocean, Marea, SLS Lux, Hyde Midtown, Missoni Baia, Una Residences, and my most recent and ongoing endeavor, the St. Regis Residences, Miami.” Her passions extend to community development, sustainable practices, and exploring emerging markets to stay abreast of industry trends. “I’m also a co-owner of a project close to my heart — Kapok Bacalar, a hotel in Mexico,” she says. “Kapok is more than just a hotel; it embodies a beautiful purpose, aiming to preserve biodiversity while providing guests with unforgettable and meaningful experiences.” 

Keys To Success: “Over the past two decades in real estate, I’ve grown through dedication, adaptability and valuable partnerships. Facing challenges head-on and building strong relationships have been key factors in my success in Miami’s dynamic market.”

Business Strategy: “I’m a focused and results-driven professional. Whether I’m working with colleagues, clients or partners like The Related Group, I bring a combination of market knowledge and integrity to every interaction.”

Personal Achievement: “I just became a mother this year. Embracing motherhood has been a profound and rewarding experience, adding a new dimension of fulfillment and joy to my life.”

Ana Somarriba

Great Properties Int’l Realty
[email protected]

“I’m proud of the almost 100 team members who now make up our company and the professional culture we have developed throughouth the years.”

Ana Somarriba credits her success to the fact that real estate is a career with absolutely no glass ceilings for men or women. “It rewards you for your time, reputation and dedication,” she says. Her family moved to the U.S unexpectedly when she was 10 years old. “That experience was challenging for my whole family, but served to teach me to appreciate what I have and that this truly is the land of opportunity,” she says. Having been a part of the beginning of Great Properties and its growth has been a busy and exciting ride so far, and she looks forward to continuing the company’s success. “My greatest achievement is having raised two daughters who are well on their way to becoming independent, well adjusted and successful adults,” she says.

Healthy Attitude: “I love going to Bootcamp, doing yoga and riding my bike from Key Biscayne to Brickell.”

Big Heart: “I’m a ‘Big’ at Big Brothers Big Sisters. I see my ‘Little’ 2-3 times a month and really enjoy mentoring and bonding with her. We also FaceTime 1-2 times a week.”

Globe Trotter: “I really enjoy travelling. The farthest country I have visited is India. I look forward to travelling to even more exotic destinations soon.”

Daniel Gaviria

Great Properties Int’l Realty 
[email protected]

“I’ve been in the business for over 36 years and have seen the ups and downs of the market several times in my career.”

Daniel Gaviria is the person he is today because he realized at a young age that life is unpredictable, but that if one prioritizes education and personal connections, it’s an advantage through all facets of life. He moved to the U.S. from Colombia at age 17, finished high school in Blair Academy in New Jersey, went to the University of Denver, transferred halfway though and graduated from the University of Miami. “In 1998, I decided to pursue an Executive MBA from UM,” he says. “I had already been working in real estate at that point, but I wanted to challenge myself and expand my knowledge. I also got my Series 7 license but realized that being a trader was not what I enjoyed doing.” His niche is working with the almost 100 real estate agents that make up the Great Properties Int’l Realty team. 

Global Hobbyist: “I’m a scratch golf player, swim laps every day and love to travel — Miami is my favorite city in the world!”

Great Qualities: “My clients see me as a very social person who enjoys meeting new people and engaging with them. Also, I’m honest, straightforward and disciplined.”

Unlimited Potential: “The sky is the limit with what you can achieve in real estate. It’s all about building a brand and a reputation as your own boss.”

Ena Espino

The Catena Group
ONE Sotheby’s Int’l Realty 
Development Division
[email protected]

“It’s not just about selling properties — it’s about building relationships, creating memorable experiences, and ultimately, establishing happiness in helping others find the homes of their dreams.”

Ena Espino has an unwavering commitment to ensuring the utmost satisfaction of her clients. “With extensive experience as a seasoned broker, I’ve developed a deep understanding of the real estate market and possess exceptional negotiation skills that consistently yield the best outcomes for both buyers and sellers,” she says. Moreover, her dedication to staying up-to-date with the latest industry trends and technological advancements allows her to leverage innovative tools and strategies that provide clients with a significant competitive advantage. “I pride myself on my strong work ethic, attention to detail and open communication, which fosters trust and transparency throughout the entire real estate journey,” she says. Ultimately, she credits her great success to following her passion and embracing the challenges along the way.

Artistic Soul: “Painting allows me to tap into my emotional depth and express my true self. It requires attention to detail, dedication and the ability to think outside the box. It uniquely shapes the way I perceive the world, and I think it enables me to connect with others on a deeper level.”

Proud Mom: “My greatest achievement would be parenthood, as it has been profound, humbling, joyful and life-changing.”

Giving Back: “I hope to make a positive impact on society and am teaching my kids the importance of that through community service, volunteer work, activism and philanthropy.”

Damian Silvi

Catena Group
ONE Sotheby’s Int’l Realty
[email protected]

“I’ve always had a genuine love for helping others, and this passion naturally translated into my approach to real estate.”

Damian Silvi began his professional journey in Buenos Aires, where he studied hotel hospitality. “My passion for creating exceptional experiences for others led me to the U.S through a hotel exchange program,” he says. After immersing himself in the hospitality industry for two years, fate took an exciting turn, when he met Catalina and Ena, who are now his partners. “I discovered an opportunity in real estate and seized it,” he says. “Since that fortuitous encounter, my career trajectory has been nothing short of remarkable.” Over the years, he has successfully contributed to the sale of prominent properties such as Midtown Miami, SLS LUX, Hyde Midtown, Missoni Baia, Una Residences, and most recently and currently, the prestigious St. Regis Residences, Miami. 

Brave Moment: “I’d have to say my greatest achievement has been the courageous decision to follow my heart and leave Argentina, embracing the unknown in the U.S. Witnessing the accomplishments I’ve achieved since then fills me with immense pride.”

Vibrant Energy: “When I’m not immersed in work, you’ll likely find me running along Miami Beach. A good workout is a much-needed disconnection for me and I’m passionate about staying healthy and active.”

Core Value: “Above all, honesty is my guiding principle. Those who are closest to me know that integrity is at the core of who I am.”

Jacqueline Molina

Fortune Christie’s Int’l Real Estate 
[email protected]

“We are very proud to currently service clients from 10+ different countries, and look forward to further growing the team and reaching out to more international markets.”

Jacqueline Molina will never forget her first listing 20+ years ago. “It was at the start of my career,” she says. “I worked with a developer who trusted me with a $4 million new construction single-family home. This gave me a boost of confidence at the time and launched my career in ways I could have never imagined. I will always be grateful for the trust and the confidence he had in me and my skills.” Today, a large part of the business comes from building residential & commercial real estate portfolios comprised of properties across Florida and the nation for national and international investors. She and her team — which is comprised of mostly family members, which has allowed the business to grow exponentially and seamlessly — currently execute an average of 80+ transactions per year 

Eloquent Communicator: “I’m fluent in three languages: English, Spanish & Portuguese.”

Lifelong Learner: “I majored in PR & Communications and started my professional career as a manager for an insurance company in Colombia, where I was very successful at a very young age.”

Major Success: “Once I relocated to the U.S. 23 years ago, I decided to pursue a career in real estate and have successfully founded a team of talented residential and commercial real estate agents alongside my husband, becoming top producers from the very beginning and breaking records year after year.”

Maile Aguila

Swire Properties
[email protected]

“I’m excited to launch sales next year for The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, Miami; a city-defining project that will leave a mark on Miami’s luxury offerings.”

Maile Aguila started out in her professional life as an accountant in a Big 8 firm. “I focused on real estate development companies,” she says. “I transitioned to real estate sales in 1994, when I began working with Swire Properties.” Since then she has led sales for One Tequesta Point, Two Tequesta Point, Courts Brickell Key, Carbonell, Asia, Three Tequesta Point on Brickell Key as well as Reach & Rise at Brickell City Centre. One notable milestone was her first collaboration with Swire Properties when she gave birth to her daughter a mere four days after delivering the successful sellout of One Tequesta Point.” When not negotiating deals, she’s a passionate equestrian. “I share a passion for Arabian horses with my daughter, Lian,” she says. “We have both won several national championships and care for retired show horses on our farm at The Redland.”

Diverse Interests: “I live on a farm with my horses, dogs, parrots and koi fish, and sell luxury waterfront condos on Brickell Key.”

Notable Showing: “My most unforgettable showing is the time that I met a client who led us to the Dalai Lama, on his first visit to Miami where he stayed at the Mandarin Oriental in Brickell Key.”

Other Loves: “I’m a nature lover, and love music. Growing up, I sang, played guitar and danced.”

Leo D. Mills 

Int’l Realty Group/Buy Miami
[email protected]

“I’m passionate about self-development, becoming the best version of myself, and helping others do the same. Real estate is one of the best ways to upgrade your lifestyle.”

Leo D. Mills is person of strong faith. “I was raised to believe that I can accomplish anything I set my mind to,” he says. “Some people focus on products, others on the consumer, and I’ve always felt these meet at the customer experience. When you focus on the customer experience, your organization will grow, and your clients will be utterly satisfied.” He is “hyperactively proactive” — it’s impossible for him to see a gap or inefficiency and not be driven to fill or fix it. “With a background in business consulting, sales, technology and more than 20 years calling Miami home, the person I am today is perfectly suited to help investors find the best buy in Miami,” he says. “This includes helping clients find the best investments for enjoyment, monthly cash flow, appreciation over time and tax benefits.”

Sales Success: “In my previous corporate life, I directly, or indirectly through consulting, my teams or the organization, have generated billions in sales from CPG to food to business services.”

More Triumphs: “I have led sales at the largest companies in their industry in the U.S. to scale their revenue 10x in 5 years and taken products from concept to launch with footprints in 30+ countries.”

Varied Interests: “Among my main interests are my health, my family, anything involving nature, reading, fashion, boats and food!”

Susana Da Silva 

Int’l Realty Group
[email protected]

“Being a real estate advisor goes far beyond selling a property, it means becoming the best capturer of your clients’ emotions and needs to truly exceed their expectations and purchasing experience.”

The real estate bug bit Susana Da Silva at a very young age when she saw some architectural plans her dad had on top of the table and learned to interpret them in a very natural way. “I was passionate about seeing a work in gray concrete (what they call clean work), and then see it completed with eye-catching finishes,” she says. “This is why it’s very easy for me to identify the quality of a project or house just by seeing it, which helps me identify the real value and potential of a property that’s on the market.” When not at work closing luxury real estate details, she likes to cook, dance Zumba, and spend time with her daughters. 

Her Motto: “I don’t sell houses, I find you a home, a space that when you arrive after a long day you can feel happy to have arrived home.” 

Future Goals: “My plans are to continue expanding my business by visiting other countries that are on my radar, including Brazil.”

Unique Accomplishments: “My greatest professional achievement to date was as a sales trainer, increasing the company’s sales by 45% in just 5 months of managing the position and then having my own stores, one for wall coverings and another for kitchen furniture.”

Andres Villalobos

VP of Sales 
Aria Reserve Miami
[email protected]

“I would have to say that my favorite word to apply in the real estate business is trustworthiness.”

The greatest professional achievements of Andres Villalobos have occurred in two distinctly different points in his life. The first was at the beginning of his career in real estate when he was only 21 years old. In the first 5 years of having his license, he became the top producer in sales at 3 pre-construction developments with Florida East Coast Realty. His second professional high point is happening now. “Since I joined The Melo Group, I have put all my combined knowledge, experience, maturity and effort together in a way I never have before to successfully sell a great amount of the inventory at Aria Reserve,” he says. He has traveled to Turkey, Ireland, Argentina, Spain, Dubai and moved with his family for over a year to Mexico as Director of Sales of two luxury developments in Miami. “I had to adapt and explore new ways to sell there while experiencing a different culture, which I enjoy,” he says.

Notable Sale: “I made my first virtual sale via Zoom during the pandemic. I designed a very sophisticated PowerPoint presentation with animation. The client bought a large unit without traveling to Miami.”

Future Plans: “To continue to sell more pre-construction developments in the coming years and contribute to the real estate growth and evolution of our incredible city.”

Forming Bonds: “I’m highly committed to everything I do; and it’s very important for me to give the best attention and create an environment of trust with the people with whom I work on a sale.”

Vivianna Franchy 

Vivianna Deluxe
[email protected]

“My goal is to project myself as the ‘forever’, ‘trustworthy’, and ‘knowledgeable’ real estate professional every seller, buyer and peer wishes to work with.”

Vivianna Franchy believes we are all shaped by our surroundings, by our families and by the people we interact with. “I have been very fortunate to have an amazing family, excellent peers and the honor of calling Key Biscayne home for 35+ years,” she says. “My work nowadays reflects my happiness and my thankfulness for all the good I receive.” She also likes challenges. “My prior occupation was in technical sales, and it was primarily difficult because of the traveling it entailed,” she says. “Real estate is local, however, it has many parts that you do not control and that must merge all together, in one single point at the same time. It still amazes me to see how many skills you must develop to be successful in our business.”

Before RE: “I have an Industrial Engineering degree, an MBA, 16 years of experience in technical sales and working for technology companies and 20+ years working in the real estate business. All in all, it’s a great track record of good expertise.”

Fine Goals: “I love Italy and continue to strive to speak Italian fluently — and I’ll eventually become a good tennis player…you’ll see!”

Best Advice: “Big differences are achieved by focusing on the small details.”

Nicolas Pollini

[email protected]

“I can confidently address any client request. My job is to showcase Miami’s exceptional lifestyle, knowing that I can help turn exclusive dreams into reality.”

Nicolas Pollini is not only a very successful real estate agent, but a luxury yacht broker as well. “I’m your luxury agent by land and by sea,” he says. In fact, one of his greatest successes was to sell both a property and a yacht to a specific set of VIP clients on more than one occasion — which is how he has sold over $50+ million in yachts and properties at just 32 years old. “By the time I graduated from business school in Venezuela, I knew I couldn’t spend all day in an office,” he says. “I have to be moving around. Real estate was a natural choice because it’s such an active profession. I love meeting new people, especially investors and VIPs, and introducing them to all of Miami’s hidden secrets.”

Laser Focus: “I do my best all the time, trying to find what people really want. I break down the demands and desires of my clients and research the best Miami has to offer within their budget.”

Local History: “I have been coming to Miami Beach a few times a year since I was a year old, and finally moved here from Venezuela at age 27.”

City’s Best: “I enjoy Miami and its yachting lifestyle. Where else do you have top yacht shows, big events like Formula 1 and Art Basel, as well as many varied VIP events and world-class restaurants?”

Juanita M. Lopez 

305.361.5600 / 305.803.4891 
[email protected]

“My parents have taught me the value of hard work, treating everyone with respect and always trying to help people achieve their full potential and goals.”

The best realtors have an interesting backstory; like Juanita Lopez, who after studying Business & Economics at Boston University, went to work as a stock broker. She soon realized that the associated stress levels weren’t for her, so she went to work with her family developing projects in Little Havana. “We then established a steel manufacturing workshop, where we had a great experience and were able to supply all the steel for important projects such as the Port of Miami Tunnel, the Metro extension and many buildings and hospitals in the area,” she says. “I pursued an Executive MBA at Kellogg University, which has come in handy.” However, when the construction crisis hit, she was forced to think about what she liked best about construction, which led her to real estate. “Being a developer, construction materials supplier and contractor has given me knowledge that I apply everyday in my business,” she says.

Best Advice: “The best advice I’ve gotten from peers, family, friends and colleagues is to do things right or don’t do them at all.” 

Future Plans: “I look forward to continuing education so I can offer my clients knowledgeable services. I am also interested in exploring other international markets, such as Spain, Italy and Dubai, to offer diversification to my clients.”

Leisure Time: “I love going to galleries, art fairs and museums. I enjoy playing tennis. Music is another passion. I like going to concerts, and still have a CD collection!”

Max Cronwall

ONE Sotheby’s Int’l Realty 
The Coto Group
[email protected]

“Having grown up, studied and worked in 9 different countries and 3 different continents has given me the unique ability to connect with local and international clients from all walks of life.”

In 2007, at the outset of his career, Max Cronwall was featured in Key Biscayne Magazine’s real estate edition. Fast-forward 16 years, he’s now showcased in Brickell Magazine. Over these years, he not only launched and co-founded his own business venture, but also joined The Coto Group, a leader in South Florida and one of the top sales teams at ONE Sotheby’s Int’l Realty. He lives in the private gated community of Gables By The Sea with his wife Sai and twin boys. “We love this community and neighborhood,” he says. “We could not have found a more beautiful place to raise our kids. We are surrounded by some of the best schools, parks, sports, recreational activities, shops and restaurants.” What continues to drive him is helping others on their real estate journey to find their dream home, while providing the most exceptional level of service and care at every stage of the transaction to make the process seamless, efficient and memorable. 

Wise Words: “Real Estate is as much about understanding people as it is about understanding property; each has its own story.”

Proud Heritage: “Growing up in a family of architects and realtors, my passion for real estate is woven into my very DNA.”

Fun Facts: “I am Swedish-Argentinean with a Venezuelan accent. My wife is from Mexico, and we are blessed with 4-year-old twin boys, Markus and Melker.”

Sandy S. Dimitris

Rua Realty
[email protected]

“I hand-pick each listing I show clients and do my diligence on a property — from knowing who the neighbors are to when the last permit was pulled.”

Sandy S. Dimitris’ interest in real estate began a long time ago when she would scan the headlines and read real estate articles in the Sunday edition of The New York Times. “I would think: Wow, if I only had the money to invest,” she says. During her undergraduate years at Duke University, she took courses in architecture and studied architecture in Italy. “When I went back to get my MBA, I concentrated in urban planning in addition to general business classes,” she says. “I also dabbled in building spec houses with a group during my MBA years so I guess I was bitten early by the real estate bug, but never had it as a career until now. At Rua Realty, we pride ourselves on teamwork and offering white-glove service to each of our clients.” 

The Mentor: “Charlie Rua is off the charts in terms of knowledge and experience within the greater real estate industry including development, construction management, commercial & residential, and real estate finance.”

Experienced Professional: “After consulting with major pharmaceutical companies in process reengineering and process management, I became Chief Strategy Officer/Chief of Staff for the Florida Department of Education.”

Proud Mom: “My greatest achievement is raising my terrific girls.”

Christopher Robert Suarez

CMC Group
[email protected]

“I’m looking forward to closing out our wonderful Coconut Grove project Vita at Grove Isle as well as new projects that are in the pipeline at CMC Group, while continuing to develop smaller-scale boutique offerings.”

Christopher Robert Suarez attributes most of his success to his parents and their passion for real estate that they passed on to him. “Always being around the process of designing, developing and building, parts of my childhood manifested into my current career path,” he says. “The influences of working with some of the best minds in real estate development fine-tuned my skills and aptitude, which now has reached the pinnacle of working with Ugo Colombo, whom I’ve always admired.” He thrives on the adrenaline of the deal. “Some of my friends call me a deal monger…I’m always ready and real estate provides the perfect platform to exercise that,” he says. “I also love design and architecture, bringing everything full circle.”

Business Assets: “Being creative and innovative while incorporating that into a lifestyle is a passion that I believe my clients and network appreciate.”

Right Career: “Real estate is a business that is driven by relationships and interacting with people, it’s a social business that fits my personality.”

Top Of Mind: “You would be surprised how many colleagues reach out to me for advice and insights, building my reputation as not only another salesperson but a reliable resource.”

Joao Barros

Beyond Private Real Estate
[email protected]

“I take pride in not just selling properties but in sharing the unique essence of Miami with my clients.”

Joao Barros’ professional journey took him on an unconventional path through the realms of startups and technology in Brazil and a Bachelor’s in Advertising from Miami International University of Art & Design. “This diverse background has equipped me with a unique skillset, blending creativity from my advertising roots with the agility and innovation fostered in startup and technology environments,” he says. “It’s a foundation that has proven invaluable in approaching real estate with a dynamic and adaptable perspective.” His favorite aspect of being in the industry is the singularity of each deal, client and process. “Every transaction brings a unique set of challenges and opportunities,” he says. “This allows me to tailor my approach and deliver personalized solutions for each client — that is the essence of what drives me.”

Proud Moment: “My latest milestone is recently establishing Beyond — a private real estate agency that reflects my commitment to innovation in the industry and the creation of lasting value for my clients.”

Extra Mile: “I believe what sets me apart is an unconventional thinking approach combined with my relentless obsession for providing solutions to problems.”

Musical Note: “Raised in a family of musicians, I’ve played drums since age 2, learned guitar at 8, and studied music production along the way — that’s the creative balance to my life!”

Frank Rodriguez

Miami Metro Realty
[email protected]

“One of the most rewarding aspects of my job as a realtor is the joy and satisfaction that comes from helping someone own a piece of the American Dream.”

Frank Rodriguez doesn’t just show houses, he experiences them as if he were buying them himself. “Walking through the front door isn’t just about square footage — it’s about imagining your life within those walls,” he says. “I bring that personal touch to every property, helping my clients see beyond the listings to find a home that truly resonates.” His journey into the world of real estate isn’t just a career choice — it’s a love story that started with the purchase of his first home. “Inspired by the exceptional work of a realtor who went above and beyond, turning a transaction into a friendship, I discovered the profound financial and human benefits of owning real estate,” he says. “Curiosity led me down a new path, and what began as a quest to understand the intricacies of property ownership has now become my passion and way of life.”

Tech Savvy: “Armed with the latest in technology, I provide real-time, up-to-date results — from advanced analytics to virtual walkthroughs, I leverage every tool to ensure my clients are well-informed and ahead of the game.”

Family First: “Outside of work, you’ll find me embracing the role of a dedicated family member and travel enthusiast. Travel isn’t just a hobby — it’s a family affair!”

Giving Back: “I’ve worked in Habitat For Humanity and contribute to a few sports teams to help keep our kids away from the streets. I’m a donor for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and have helped low-income individuals write up contracts and agreements free of charge.”