Where does Miami nightlife go when it grows up? In some cases, Boca, but for the rest, it’s still up in the air until April anyway. Some say the era of the fist pumping DJ scene has even gone the way of Studio 54, with millennials craving quote unquote curated experiences and so-called VIPs tiring of the mass market mega club experience. Even media mogul Robert Sillerman’s attempt to take the DJ EDM scene public with SFX Entertainment has fallen flat with this month’s report he’s filed for Chapter 11, and there have been few significant South Beach openings since the likes of LIV, SET and Mynt more than 8+ years ago, with most nightlife openings as of late happening in up and coming neighborhoods of Wynwood and The Design District.
Enter Ora, opening on South Beach in April 2016 across from The Setai at 2000 Collins Avenue. There, you can expect the service of an upscale hotel cocktail lounge –think table-side mixology, dedicated “table butlers” that stay and pour your drinks all night long (and can also book your brunch reservation for the next morning or reschedule your flight home!), a no tip bathroom policy,and an art collection that will make people take notice more than, perhaps, the usual hot messes on the dance floor. Designed by Parisian designer Francois Frossard , Ora will feature artwork by Banksy, Murakami and Robert Indiana.
The vibe has been conjured by a group of nightlife veterans; Ryan Van Milligen, Dana Dwyer, and Greg See who have, until now, been under the radar and behind the scenes running several of Miami’s VIP-heavy clubs. That team, we’re told, spent an Amazing Race-esque kind of year around the world studying some of Europe’s most fabulous clubs. Nice work if you can get it, but these guys are taking their scene very seriously.
“We saw a real opportunity to create something special and much needed in South Beach,” says partner Van Milligen. “Our friends were always asking us where to go after dinner for cocktails and good music – somewhere chic where they wouldn’t be pushed around or lost in the masses of the DJ scene. So we decided to open Ora with exactly that need in mind.”