Daniel F. Benavides is a partner in the Miami office of Shutts & Bowen LLP, where he is a member of the Real Estate Practice Group. Daniel’s practice is focused primarily on Florida’s hospitality industry. He advises hotels and restaurants seeking to enter or expand their presence in the Florida market, assisting with purchase contracts, leasing, due diligence, permitting, compliance and other pre-opening legal advice.
Daniel also assists many local hospitality establishments with their day to day, operational legal matters, advising on a wide array of issues such as vendor contracts, sales & marketing agreements, guest relations issues, employment, cybersecurity, ADA and PCI compliance, alcohol & beverage, intellectual property, force majeure issues and litigation.
Among his many hotel-related matters, Daniel served as lead counsel in a landmark arbitration case, following a “midnight raid” termination of a local hotel operator by the owner. The case was widely regarded as one of the most important hospitality-related cases of 2014 and has been discussed at many hospitality industry conferences. As a result of his successful representation of the hotel operator in that case, he was recognized as a finalist for the Daily Business Review’s prestigious “Most Effective Lawyers: Arbitration” award.
More recently, Shutts & Bowen attorneys achieved a successful result in a high-stakes trademark dispute involving short-term rentals at condominium hotels. The case has important, nationwide implications in that it significantly restricts the extent to which real estate brokers and private unit owners at condominium hotels can use the hotel’s trademark to market units for rent.
Daniel is an active member of many hospitality-related organizations including the Academy of Hospitality Industry Attorneys (AHIA), Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) and Greater Miami and the Beaches Hotel Association (GMBHA). Daniel is also honored to serve on the Board of the Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), South Florida Chapter, and is a frequent guest lecturer on hospitality-related legal issues at the FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management.
Prior to joining Shutts, and during the last recession, Daniel was a commercial bankruptcy attorney at a Miami-based bankruptcy law firm, where he represented debtors and creditors in hotel and restaurant-related insolvency matters, including bankruptcy cases and Florida assignment for the benefit of creditors proceedings. He was also a real estate transactional attorney at the New York firm of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver& Jacobson, LLP.
Daniel is a graduate of Harvard Law School and earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida. He is fluent in Spanish and Italian.
- Harvard Law School, J.D.
- Founder and President, Harvard Real Estate Consortium
- Vice President, Student Government
- President, Harvard Law School Real Estate Association
- University of Florida, B.A. and B.S.
PROFESSIONAL AND CIVIC ACTIVITIES:
- Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), South Florida Chapter, Vice President
- Academy of Hospitality Industry Attorneys (AHIA)
- Friends of the Israel Defense Force, Miami Chapter Young Leaders (FIDF), Board Member
- Greater Miami and the Beaches Hotel Association (GMBHA)
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