The holidays may be well behind us, but for some, the celebration never stops. At least, that’s how it goes for part-time Palm Beachers Simon and Norma Fireman. Socializing with friends is always part of the routine, but supporting the many causes near and dear to their hearts throughout the year is what makes it all worthwhile.
As founder and chairman of the board for Aqua-Leisure Industries, Inc., an enterprise engaged in the manufacture of recreational products for children, the Firemans’ foundation has served as the U.S. Marines Toys for Tots sponsor of the Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade for the past two years.
As the owner of a multimillion-dollar worldwide toy company and former Marine, this charity endeavor was a natural fit for Fireman. “Giving to the kids, especially the ones that genuinely need it, is what’s really important,” said Fireman. “That’s why I love sponsoring this local event. I was proud to be a U.S. Marine, and the Simon C. Fireman Charitable Foundation is all about giving back to the community in which we live, work, and play. This starts with the children. I can’t think of a more appropriate way to lead by example.”
Another organization the Firemans actively support is the internationally renowned Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Mr. Fireman first became familiar with the esteemed establishment when he required eye surgery last year. The Institute’s meticulous 25 surgeons treated him with the utmost care as they flawlessly nursed him back to full visual health. These doctors are the best in the business, pioneering new surgical techniques and research for a variety of optical diseases and vision impairments.
Fireman was so impressed at how committed the Institute’s physicians and scientists were to the protection and preservation of the treasured gift of sight, he has maintained a relationship with them and continues to aid their fundraising efforts. In fact, he recently hosted their “Season Kickoff Cocktail Reception” at his five-star Palm-Asian restaurant, COCO Palm Beach.
Hosting and attending charity events is one thing, but this global businessman prefers to keep his favorite ventures close to home. Not ready to retire, and living only minutes up the street, Fireman opened COCO Palm Beach five years ago under the culinary guidance of master chef Jeff Peng. After a multimillion-dollar renovation, combined with tedious attention to details regarding service and cuisine, COCO has become the only Asian restaurant in Florida to receive the prestigious Five-Star Diamond Award by the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences.
The Firemans frequent the restaurant several times a week during season and never tire of Chef Peng’s delicious creations. The children, charities, and food aficionados are always happy to have the Firemans back in town for the season.