The Real Deal Miami

Pitbull to open restaurant at Nakash family’s Ocean Drive hotel

Rap star's restaurant will be called iLov 305

Pitbull and 1060 Ocean Drive (Credit: Google Maps, Getty)

¡Dale!

The Nakash family has landed Pitbull as a celebrity tenant for one of its Ocean Drive hotels.

The international rap star and Miami native plans to open a restaurant called iLov 305 in the former Bon Air Hotel at 1060 Ocean Drive, according to Nakash attorney Alfredo Gonzalez.

During this week’s Miami Beach Historic Preservation Board meeting, Gonzalez revealed that an affiliate of Mr. Worldwide had signed a lease with his clients’ company Nakash Strand LLC.

“It will be a full service restaurant and bar,” Gonzalez said. “This project will be activating the corner of 10th Street and Ocean, which has been very quiet.”

The board voted unanimously to approve Nakash Strand’s application to restore the lobby and the facade to its original 1934 design.

Significant architectural elements that are being preserved include the tile flooring, decorative column, a historic stairway, a fireplace and arched openings. In the event some of the tiles get damaged during the renovation, Nakash Strand found a manufacturer that can replicate the tiles, said project architect Mario Echevarria.

“We are not changing anything,” Echevarria said. “We will be able to achieve and maintain every historical element.”

According to a staff report, the lobby would feature a cocktail lounge, a seating area and a daiquiri bar. The new restaurant, along with the kitchen, would also extend down to the basement level. The ground floor space has remained unoccupied since the Mediterranean Revival style building was renovated in 2004 into a condo-hotel.

In 2012, the Nakashes — who parlayed their Jordache Jeans empire into a global real estate conglomerate — purchased the hotel’s ground floor retail space for $18.3 million. They also own the Hotel Victor at 1144 Ocean Drive and The Villa Casa Casuarina at 1116 Ocean Drive.

Pitbull, whose real name is Armando Christian Perez, would join fellow Cuban American music artists Emilio and Gloria Estefan as the only celebrity restaurant owners on Ocean Drive. He also owns the Miami Grill fast-food franchise.