Food News

Vagabond Hotel Opens Today; Restaurant Coming in October

The completion of Biscayne Boulevard's Vagabond Hotel culminates with a party this evening to celebrate the MiMo beauty's full restoration.

The Vagabond Restaurant will follow shortly, with an opening slated for sometime in October.

See also: Inside the Vagabond Hotel, Biscayne Boulevard's Restored MiMo Gem (Photos)

Restaurateur/chef Alvaro Perez shared some intel with Short Order about the restaurant, which will be helmed by chef Alex Chang. Chris Wang, a "Wall Street renegade," has been named general manager, and Paul Schroeder is bar manager.

Chang, who will serve as executive chef of the Vagabond Restaurant,

gained notoriety when, as a kinesthesiology major at USC, he opened an underground restaurant with Robert Kronfli, a music major, in their on-campus apartment in 2009. The restaurant, named Paladar, was the subject of a documentary of the same name by filmmaker Gil Freston.

Perez said the restaurant's name is derived from the hotel's diner sign -- a landmark from its original heyday. Inspiration comes from the word "vagabond" itself, as the chef/restaurateur explains. "The true meaning of the word 'vagabond' is a person who wanders. We're all wandering around. We're from New York, Tokyo, Miami. The food will reflect that with an American-based menu with Latin, Asian, and European influences."

The restaurant's interior will feature a vertical garden and works by local artists, including a wall of portraits of "local vagabonds." The ceiling will boast a mural of constellations.

The restaurant will serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven days. Sunday brunch will also be offered. Dinners will run about $40 to $60 per person; lunch $20 to $30. In addition to a full bar at the restaurant, the Vagabond Hotel will also boast a pool bar.

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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times. She has been featured on Cooking Channel's Eat Street and Food Network's Great Food Truck Race. She won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature about what it's like to wait tables.
Contact: Laine Doss

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