An anomaly among nightclubs and lounges in South Beach,Rokbar
was a favorite among locals and downtowners who wanted something a bit more authentic than what the area usually afforded. Unfortunately, effective immediately, Rokbar has closed its doors for good.
"I came onboard a year ago and we had plans for a big renovation and relaunch," explains Keith Paciello, the lounge's creative director via email. "But ultimately, the owner decided his heart wasn't in it anymore, so [yesterday] he decided to close up shop."
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The lounge opened in 2004 next door to Mynt and its celebrity owner, Tommy Lee, was heavily touted in early promotions. But as the years passed, Lee's involvement diminished. When it first opened, the look was very 1980s Sunset Strip, with famous rock titles adorning the wall. (Cheesy, yes.) After a few years, though, the club closed down for a remodel and when it opened back up, it sported a more mature, Daft Punk-esque look featuring lots of black leather, gold trims, and futuristic screens.
Throughout the years, Rokbar booked DJs and acts like MSTRKRFT, Theophilus London, Neon Indian, LA Riots, the Misshapes, and others well before they became household names.
Even when Rokbar expanded to Los Angeles and Las Vegas, the Miami lounge outlived them all because of what it wasn't -- another boring South Beach lounge. We're sorry to see it go.