According to The Wall Street Journal, restaurant/hotel/nightclub entrepreneur Sam Nazarian is moving forward with his plans to open a hotel in South Beach, Florida. Upgrades will begin on the former Ritz Plaza thanks to a $65 million infusion from from Nazarian's family as well as his company, SBE Entertainment. Plans include an outpost of José Andrés' Bazaar concept (the original is located in Nazarian's SLS hotel in Los Angeles) as well as a sushi restaurant from chef Katsuya Uechi.
Eater Miami predicts "a painfully trendy hot spot under his SLS hotel brand," and if Nazarian's projects in other cities are any indication, that's probably a good bet. Although he's currently trying out a "low-key" concept at the Redbury in Los Angeles, Nazarian is usually known for celebrity-attracting, over-the-top establishments.
Andrés owns several restaurants in Washington, DC, and will soon open two restaurants in Las Vegas. Katsuya Uechi, meanwhile, runs a gaggle of sushi restaurants in the Los Angeles area, including the SBE-owned Katsuya.
The Ritz Plaza project was put on hold due to the recession, but construction will begin January 1 and Miami can look forward to its opening in early 2012. In the meantime, Nazarian will begin work on Las Vegas's Sahara Hotel and Casino and told the Wall Street Journal he has his eye on Manhattan.
· Nazarian: Bringing L.A. To South Beach [WSJ]
· Construction to Begin Jan. 1 on Jose Andres, Katsuya Uechi Restos on South Beach [-EMIA-]
· First Photos & Menus From sbe's Cleo Inside The Redbury! [-ELA-]
· All Sam Nazarian coverage on Eater [-E-]
· All Jose Andres Coverage on Eater [-E-]