Grand Central Miami's Brian Basti and Megan Laich Launch New Bar, Piano Hollywood at Hard Rock Casino

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Keyboard Cat isn't lined up to play at Piano Hollywood, but you never know, right?

Remember when it was all about dueling pianos? The excitement, the entertainment, the audience participation -- the seniors shuffling and frat guys moshing their way up the front to deposit their song requests and scanty tips!

That ship has sailed, and when it did, so did 88's Dueling Piano's at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. What did they get to fill the gaping void left in its place?

The new venue, Piano Hollywood, has been taken over by by Miami nightlife veterans Brian Basti and Megan Laich. Together they form the bar consulting and cocktail catering business Crown Concepts, and Basti is a partner with Aramis Lorie at Grand Central Miami.

The bar will have its "reinvented grand opening" as an "intimate music venue and artisanal cocktail lounge based around the piano" Thursday at 8 p.m. We're dying to see what these party starters are going to bring north to the Hard Rock.

They've spent a combined 30 years building up Miami's budding underground and indie scene, working alongside Poplife -- which was founded by Basti's sister Barbie and Lorie. Basti calls that collaborative superteam "my business partners and some of my best friends." He adds that they'll be helping with some of the marketing and booking of this project. "We will be working with Poplfe along the way."

With well-known Dade County venues like high-energy Grand Central, pizza spot Ecco, and the always classic PS14 under their belt, you best believe these guys know a thing or two when it comes to nightlife.

There's no surprise, then, why the owner brought them in as Crown Concepts to handle all aspects of the new venue, from cocktail creation, staffing, and operations to booking and marketing.

"I was a bit skeptical at first," says Basti of the location, a popular nightlife destination for tourists and locals alike. "We have always had live music venues, but they were geared around a heavier sound, and we always worked with DJs. At Piano, we will not have any DJs, and all the music will be acoustic."



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