Food Industry

David Grutman Launches Groot Hospitality

David Grutman (left), Lee Brian Schrager, and Alesso
David Grutman (left), Lee Brian Schrager, and Alesso World Red Eye
Miami nightlife king David Grutman knows how to stay busy. He's best known for owning LIV at the Fontainebleau and Story in South Beach, along with OTL in the Design District and Komodo in Brickell.

In February, he announced the opening of Happy Place Donuts on Española Way, a collaboration with Sugar Factory founder Charissa Davidovici. Last week, he debuted the swanky plant-based restaurant Planta in Miami Beach.

Now Grutman is ready to launch his newest venture, Groot Hospitality, which gathers all of his venues under one umbrella.

"Our new company will have something for everyone," he says. "I want people dining in my restaurants, drinking at my coffee shops, partying in my clubs, and, eventually, sleeping in my guest rooms."


Grutman's career dates back 15 years, when he started Miami Marketing Group (MMG) and later launched LIV. He then debuted Story in 2009 and forayed into food and drinks in 2015 with Komodo, an upscale Asian restaurant, bar, and lounge; and OTL in 2017, a made-for-Instagram breakfast and lunch spot. He's also behind unique LIV-inspired pop-up experiences tied to sporting and entertainment events, such as the South Beach Wine & Food Festival and Gulfstream Park's Pegasus World Cup.

“Years ago with MMG, I set out to change traditional marketing," he says. "With the launch of Groot Hospitality, we have transitioned from a marketing firm to a lifestyle hospitality collective, owning and operating our venues. We will continue to show our guests out-of-the-box, exciting ideas and concepts.”

Groot Hospitality is expected to launch a host of new projects in industries beyond nightlife and food, according to Grutman. But details on those projects are under lock and key.

In the meantime, Grutman is gearing up to debut Happy Place Donuts — a 4,000-square-foot confectionery palace offering doughnut and mojito pairings, as well as other items — sometime this spring.

Happy Place Donuts and Sugar Factory Gummy World. 507 Española Way, Miami Beach; happyplacedonuts.com.
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Clarissa Buch Zilberman is a writer and editor, with her work appearing in print and digital titles worldwide.
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