Copacabana: A Sneak Peek at the New Fort Lauderdale Club (Photos)
|All photos, Tricia Woolfenden|
|The lounge immediately inside the front door will host happy hour and live music.|
|The bar in the front lounge is outfitted with a palm motif seen throughout the facility.|
"We have to keep it in line with the original concept," Cestare said. "We're taking parts of the old Copa and making it fresh for today."
|The view from the upstairs VIP area; the stage will be against the back wall with a large bar directly across. "We knew when we saw the high ceilings," Cestare said of choosing the space.|
Sanchez said the club -- which has a license to stay open until 4 a.m. -- will keep a transitional vibe, flowing from happy hour, into the dinner and dancing hours, and finally into a night club atmosphere. A stage in the center of the main room can accommodate an eight-piece band with additional space for multiple singers, which Sanchez said is ;particularly desirable for nights when salsa and merengue bands perform. Dance lessons may be added to the list of entertainment options, which includes comedy shows and a variety of local and national musical acts; Latin music will be a strong focus.
Management is still in the process of developing the food and drink menus but Sanchez did say the club is considering the idea of having each bartender developing his or her own signature drink or cocktail, an idea that may help to foster a sense of customer loyalty to not only the club, but the staff.
"We're trying to make it very personable," Sanchez said. "It's going to be very customer service oriented."
|The under-construction VIP lounge.|
Once things are in full swing, Cestare said catering, special events, and parties (like office Christmas parties and bachelorette shindigs) will be an important part of the business plan. He said they've already booked two weddings for the fall. Dinner and show packages also will be available. Sanchez repeatedly stressed the goal of keeping the club "classy." To that end, a dress code will be enforced and most nights will include a minimal cover charge.
Have a story -- good, bad, or ugly -- from the original Copacabana (and preferably involving a celeb)? Share them in the comments section, and find more images after the jump.