Crobar and the Opium Group are Broward Bound

A few week ago we issued a new trend alert for downtown Miami's hipsterati being asked to host and promote parties at the usually uptight South Beach nightclubs. But this week we are uncovering an even newer trend, former Miami nightclubs moving north to Broward County.

Remember crobar? The infamous Chicago outpost once called the Cameo locale on Washington Avenue, Miami Beach, home. The venue quietly closed back in 2006, only to reopen in 2007 as Cameo and under the helm of Louis Puig, But crobar's owners are giving South Florida another try, this time under the name Exit 66. The "blue-collar vogue" venue will occupy the space at 219 S Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd., Fort Lauderdale.

According to the press release, its kitsch inspired decor will honor everything Americana. But we've got to admit it reminds us a bit of another former kitschy downtown Miami venue that went by the name of Pawn Shop Lounge.

But in even more shocking news, the Opium Group has closed up its flagship nightclub on South Beach, Opium Gardens, and is loading the moving truck and moving the venue to the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, where it will be revamped as Opium. It will take over the 40,000-square-foot space formerly occupied by Spirits.

According the Miami Herald, the Opium Group grew tired of dealing with South Beach's strict noise ordinance and had accumulated 300 violations since 2000. What will happen to the old Opium Gardens space? According to Talk Nightlife, Prive will reopened after a much needed facelift, while the Gardens will reopen as a restaurant.

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Jose D. Duran has been the associate web editor of Miami New Times since 2008. He's the voice and strategist behind the publication's eyebrow-raising Facebook and Twitter feeds. He has also been reporting on Miami's music, entertainment, and cultural scenes since 2006, previously through sites such as and He earned his BS in journalism with a minor in art history from the University of Florida. He's a South Florida native and will be a Miami resident as long as climate change permits and the temperature doesn't drop below 60 degrees.
Contact: Jose D. Duran