A pair of famous New York restaurants are trading places in Miami Beach.
Rao’s, the 10-table, East Harlem Italian restaurant with more than 100 years of tradition and year-long waits for reservations, is taking over for Lure Fishbar inside the Loews Miami Beach Hotel, according to hotel a spokesperson. A Rao’s representative confirmed the news.
This will be the third Rao’s location, after Harlem and Los Angeles. A Las Vegas locations closed last fall after nearly 15 years. Rao’s Miami Beach is set to open in early 2023.
“We are still early on in terms of design and specifics. We do know that the restaurant will have a combination of the history of Rao’s coupled with a Miami Beach setting as well,” Loews spokeswoman Sarah Murov told the Miami Herald.
Rao’s (pronounced RAY-ohs) opened in New York in 1896 with a tradition of honoring its regular diners by letting them have “squatter’s rights” over a table as a reward for supporting them, Frank Pellegrino Jr. told Late Night host Jimmy Fallon in 2019. Rao’s has remained in the Pellegrino family — and has remained one of the hardest reservations in America to land.
Rao’s is known for hosting presidents including Bill Clinton and celebrities such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese — and just as much for having to turn down celebrities like them for a table. But the Loews said to expect reservations at the Miami Beach spot to be much easier to get, with plenty more seating.
“We don’t know all the details, however yes it will be bigger,” Murov said.
Lure Fishbar, open in the Loews at 16th and Collins since 2013, remains open for the moment and a closing date hasn’t been announced.