"I always had an affinity for emerging areas," Perricone says. "I was in New York's Chelsea neighborhood in the early '80s and South Beach in 1989. I kinda felt it had a future."
Perricone says the early years were tough, but the Italian restaurant and marketplace's reputation grew — and so did the neighborhood. "I had hoped it would develop, but not in my wildest dreams did I think Brickell would become what it is today."
The Brickell skyline is growing by leaps and bounds, and Perricone's eponymous eatery, surrounded by lush greenery, will close Friday to make way for a hotel, CitizenM. The Amsterdam-based chain is known for its modern properties that offer one-minute automated check-ins and rooms that can be customized via a provided iPad. This location is the company's first foray into the Miami market.
Perricone, who recently stayed at the CitizenM in New York City, says the hotel's concept and plans for the neighborhood were deciding factors in making the deal. "Their hope is that the park will stay a park and will be an amenity for both hotel guests and the neighborhood. We still need some green space in town." Perricone, who calls CitizenM a "great company with great people," says the deal was "the right fit for my particular situation here."
The restaurant will close its current location Friday, February 15, after its regular dinner service. Fans of the beloved restaurant and market need not despair, however.
In April, Perricone's restaurant and
The design, Perricone says, will be similar to that of the original. He says the original wood, bought from a barn in Vermont to build out the current location, will be used to give the new space its signature rustic look. "We're reclaiming the reclaimed barn wood."
Perricone says of the move: “It’s going to be a little sad to leave this location after so many years. I’m sure it’s going to be a crazy week, with a lot of old friends and customers coming in."
After the original location closes and before the new one opens, the restaurant will continue food delivery and catering, so fans needn't miss their classic cioppino fix. In the interim, delivery and catering operations will move to a temporary location, and food can be ordered via Uber Eats, Postmates, and Grubhub.
The Brickell restaurateur says it was important to continue delivery and catering throughout this transition. "After Friday, we can shift our focus to keeping the catering and delivery services running smoothly and to the build-out of our beautiful new location."
For now, there are still a few days left for regulars to enjoy a last meal and chat with Perricone himself. "I'll be here on Friday from 8 in the morning until we close," he says. "We hope to give everyone one more great experience."
Perricone’s Marketplace & Café. 15 SE Tenth St., Miami; 305-374-9449; perricones.com.