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Bernstein at the Omphoy?

Teaching an old town new tricks?
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It looks like the island of Palm Beach is going to try to shake its image as the most boring resort city on the planet. I don't know what happened -- when I was a teenager the island was fun: We actually had a couple of good jazz clubs and nobody ever bothered to check IDs; 15-year-olds could stay up until dawn drinking apricot sours at O'Hara's or the Brick Balloon and nobody gave a damn. Since then, it's been one long, downhill slalom -- you're lucky to find anybody in Palm Beach between the ages of 7 and 70, and if you do they'll be wearing salmon-colored trousers with a matching sweater tied over the shoulders. Shudder.

All this is gonna change according to the PR for the Omphoy*, a new luxury resort hotel being built on the ocean and scheduled to open April 1, aimed at attracting the "ultra affluent dot com, fashion and younger money crowd" and hoping to encourage a very south beachy kind of scene. At least they're not going to try to attract rich young Wall Street traders, eh? Or rich young investment bankers? Or rich young real estate brokers or construction tycoons? Because they might just have trouble filling up those 134 rooms.

Hit the jump to find out why we care.

Why we care:

Because the press release says that our favorite Michelle Bernstein is going to be in charge of the "surfside cuisine." I'm assuming she's going to be developing and consulting on the menu, not actually cooking it. But I promise to give Ms. Bernstein a call and find out (been a hell of a week, with the election and all). And I'll report back on what Bernstein plans to feed the hip and happenin' young dot commers who, after a few days in Palm Beach, will no doubt be starved for a little stimulation.

*In case you're wondering where they came up with that particularly dumb and clunky name (sounds sort of like something you might hack up first thing in the morning): "The word Om represents the union of mind, body and spirit and is symbolic of creation and enlightenment - all of which are part of The Omphoy Hotel experience." As for the "phoy", that shall remain another mystery of the universe. Maybe they just misspelled "phooey."

-- Gail Shepherd

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