This past Saturday night started off with high expectations as we drove towards the recently debuted Gansevoort South Hotel on Miami Beach. We were going to the Gans Hotel to try Phillipe Chow restaurant, owned by the same restauranteur as famed hotspot Phillipe New York. Our high expectations quickly fell, as we sat in our black Bentley Continental Flying Spur for what seemed like forever. Trying to get into the hotel driveway to valet was an impossible nightmare. In fact, as the valet man yelled at us to wait our turn in the ungodly line, we watched the clock tick on way past our 9:30 PM reservation time. And let me just say, being yelled at by the valet man is neither a pleasant way to start the evening off nor a good first impression for a new hotel or restaurant. We felt like we were in Manhattan rather than Miami Beach and not in a good way. We finally valeted and made our way into the restaurant to the right of the Gansevoort South's main lobby.
We walked in and were pleasantly shocked by the restaurant dÃ©cor. Phillipe Chow was avant-garde with white washed walls that added to the red Asian flare, ultra high ceilings and a massive lantern chandelier. A killer water wall cleverly separated the main dining room from the crowded bar scene. The hostessâ€™ at the front desk where model-esque, gorgeous and we were seated in a New York minute, a part of New York that we could gladly handle in Miami Beach. We scoped out the scene and saw young, chicly dressed people. A couple at the next table, fiercely made out and a group of businessmen eyed us from across the room. We even spotted LeBron James which wasnâ€™t, by any means, a challenge in his circa 1980's Kanye West inspired sunglasses. Face it, LeBron, you are a gigantic (literally and figuratively) athlete, not a pop-star trendsetter like Kanye so don't be rude and take your shades off at dinner!
We ordered basically everything off the menu to get a feel for the food. The wait staff could barely manage, it was pathetic how they messed up the entire order minus the drinks. Three waiters and a manager had to go back and forth between our table and the kitchen a dozen times to fix their mistakes; it was such a struggle and dissapointment for a restaurant of this caliber. The service didn't come close to Phillipe New York or for that matter any of the other high-end restaurants on the beach. After the entire production, the food was good but not worth that hassle. On a side note, for you futuristic Vegans and Vegetarian out there, the menu is quite forgiving.
There are serious issues to be worked out at Gans South still, we are firm believers that the opening was rushed at the patrons expense. Hopefully the hotel will get it right soon because the name â€œGansevoortâ€ wonâ€™t be enough to keep people in this town coming back. Don't cut corners or you're going to sink in Miami Beach. Miamians are always looking to pay a high price for a stress-free night out, its what keeps us looking young .