Happy Father's Day

Things my Father taught me 

featuring my Dad: Andy Benejam

He taught me how to be the best dressed in the room. I remember attending a party with him when I was about 8 years old. I asked him "Dad, why are you so dressed up?" He said, "You can never be overdressed". Ever since then I was always "overdressed". 

He taught me how to face my fears. I remember my Dad telling me how shy he was growing up but forced himself out of it. I never believed my Dad as being shy because he was always the life of the party. Growing up I was very shy as well, but since he grew out of it, I knew I could too.

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He taught me being Latino in America is an advantage and not a disadvantage. He taught me how to think global and be open to other cultures. My Dad always pushed me to explore non traditional ways, whether having me try sushi at a young age rather than a Puerto Rican traditional meal or listening to Jazz rather than Salsa. 

He taught me to work hard. My Dad came to New York at 18 with barely any money and didn't know English. He now has two master degrees, is at the top in his field and lives in Westchester. When I go through tough times, I just remember how my Dad got through his.

He taught me how to man up. There were many times when I didn't want to do something and my dad forced me to do it, I hated it back then but I thank him for it now.

He taught me how to enjoy the finer things in life. Growing up he would take me to restaurants that provided fine dining. He taught me the proper way to do things and how to act like a gentleman. He taught me the value of quality vs quantity.

He taught me how to be humble and to never forget my roots. My Dad has surpassed his peers and he treats everyone with respect and dignity. You will be treated the same if you are a CEO or a janitor. 

He taught me how to have swag and confidence. Many times it was not by telling me, many times it was just by seeing him interact with people in a crowd at a party. As a child I remember people laughing at a gathering and it was because of my Dad.  He taught me how to be a boss and when I am successful at something, to own it.

He taught me how to do it even if I was scared. whether its pushing me in the deep end of the pool when I was terrified or cheering me on to go talk to the girl I thought was cute.

He taught me how to prepare and if I want to be successful, to take it seriously. He told me how much he sacrificed to get where he is now, so growing up I know I needed to do the same. 

He taught me how to be suave with the ladies. It definitely worked because I won " The Biggest Flirt" award in the 8th grade and still working lol :)

He taught me how to be never give into negativity and always avoid confrontation; nothing good comes out of it. He taught me how to be objective, and if I have an urgent problem don't react without thinking. Think before you act and speak. Until this day I have used that method and avoided many arguments and what could have been ruined relationships.

I want to thank my Dad for always being there for me no matter what. He always pushed me for the better. He is the best Dad anyone could ever have. He inspires me to be an amazing father when I have children one day. Thank you Dad, you mean the world to me, I love You.

Thank you Sixty Hotels for this amazing space.

Photoshoot Details

Styled and Directed by: Kevin Benejam (me)

Photographed by: Mauricio Jorquera

Location: Gordon Bar at the Sixty Soho Hotel

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