Nikki Beach Club - Nikki is back and popping -- let's party - LESLEY ABRAVANEL
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BY LESLEY ABRAVANEL
It's been a decade since Nikki Beach Club opened the floodgates for afternoon hedonism, The Thong Song, and slews of celebrities basking under shady palm trees and tepees. Imagine that. While some bodies who were (über) present at the beach club's opening back then may not be as taut as they were back then (though some might be more taut thanks to the miracles/massacres of plastic surgery), we're happy to say that after a bit of a respite from the radar, Nikki is back and, the powers behind the beach club promise us, better than ever.
Starting on Saturday, Nikki Beach will host a celebratory dinner for 200 of its best customers upstairs at Pearl and, at 10 p.m., the gates will open to more than 2,000 of the beach club's closest friends for a splashy bash with open bar, food and fanfare. The celebration continues on Sunday, where a $30 brunch open to the public begins at 11 a. m., followed by the legendary Sunday afternoon and evening party spun up by spin doctors of both the publicity and musical practices. DJs Roman, Armand Pena, Snezana, Mitch and Christian will all provide the soundtrack to the soiree, which goes until 5 a.m. Dress code is scant -- it's a beach club -- which makes it all the more fun to observe.
Also fun is Amendment XXI's Thursday night Soul Boogie party where soul, funk, R&B and house classics have been known to wilt and warp even the most stalwart wallflowers. And get ready to get up and boogie at various Super Bowl events, some of which are already underway. Thursday's fourth annual Pure Rush Event at Bricks Nightclub has attracted the likes of Mariah Carey, Kid Rock, Ashton Kutcher and more during past Super Bowls. Although we doubt there will be any celebrities at Quarterdeck on Alton Road, they're offering an all-you-can-eat-and-drink Super Bowl viewing party on game day for $75 per person. Same goes for Karu & Y, where, for $75 per person, a swanky tailgate party will take place in the restaurant's event space, Tottem, which will be set up like a football field with stadium seating. From 4 p.m. until the third quarter, hot dogs, hamburgers, cotton candy, popcorn and nachos (the actual stuff, not fancy foams or gels resembling them) will be served with draft beer. As soon as the third quarter ends, however, it's a cash bar. Call 305-403-7850 for reservations. You can also watch the game in the swanky setting that is Acqualina, where a barbecue buffet at $125 a person includes all-you-can-drink beer, champagne and specialty drinks. On the 30th, The Fifth will host the Moves Magazine Super Bowl Event, hosted by NFL legends Jim Brown and Reggie Bush. Party is invite-only, they say. But more on Super Bowl mayhem next week.
In the meantime, you can still enjoy your local haunts in relative peace, but not quiet, of course -- especially at Jazid on Saturday night, when singer Carlos Bertonatti performs. Bertonatti's voice has been described as ''undeniably sexy and sultry.'' The singer, also praised for being a nice piece of eye candy, will be accompanied by singer Jessica Chirino and some of Miami's top Latin percussion, bass and guitar players. Show starts at 11 p.m. For more eye candy, check out Luxe Marine's Boats and Bikinis party on Thursday at the Village of Merrick Park. From 7-10 p.m., the purveyors of posh watercraft will debut three of their latest models while human models from Wilhelmina will work the catwalk in a Neiman Marcus swimwear runway show. There are free cocktails and food and, best of all, San Lorenzo Avenue will be closed to traffic, turning Merrick Park into the thriving scene business owners and developers have always hoped it would be, but for some reason hasn't yet happened. The event is being produced by Funkshion Music and Fashion, the same organization responsible for Fashion Week Miami Beach, so expect a splashy affair.
While some may not be ready to sport bikinis after the eagerly anticipated South Beach Wine & Food Festival Feb. 21-24, others are afraid they will starve because most of the events are already sold out. Fret not, because an online auction at www.sobeauction.cmarket.com or the festival's website, www.sobewineandfoodfest.com, will be offering a limited number of tickets to some of the most popular soldout events until Feb. 16. Among the events you can bid on: the popular Delano beach blanket bonanza known as Bubble Q, the Saturday Grand Tasting, Emeril's Kidz Kitchen and Rachael Ray's Kidz Kitchen. Also up for auction: a case of Motley Crue-man Vince Neil's Tres Rios Tequila, among other Neil memorabilia and opportunities to booze with -- and like -- the rock star, who will be here for the big festival.
And speaking of kitchens, we ran into chef Michael Jacobs at the opening of Johnny V South Beach, who told us he is the new culinary whiz at the soon-to-reopen Grass in the Design District. When we asked him if there'd be any of that door 'tude that Grass was so famous for, he said absolutely not. Michael, we're holding you to that! Also opening next weekend in the old Amika space is Sin, a renovated high-end club with supersonic sound systems and bathrooms that reportedly cost $80,000. While the jury's out on the place itself, at least there's something to justify its name. That aside, we're flush with curiosity.
See Lesley Abravanel's weblog, Scene in the Tropics -- updated nightly.