Kush Hospitality Group to Manage Food Programs at Clevelander South Beach Hotel & Bar

The hospitality team's portfolio includes LoKal and the current incarnation of Tobacco Road (by Kush)

Kush Hospitality Group (KHG)—owned and operated by restaurateur Matthew “Kush” Kuscher—is partnering with Jesta Hotels & Resorts to take over the food program of the world-famous Clevelander South Beach Hotel & Bar. KHG officially took over all food responsibilities for the hotel last month by transforming what used to be the Games on Sports restaurant space into Kush at Clevelander— a sports bar-style eatery behind the hotel’s famous pool. The sports bar is slated to open by Sept. 1.

“For the last couple of years, we’ve been focused on bringing the locals back to Clevelander and we wanted to offer a local food program to our outside visitors,” Jessica Francos says, Vice President of Operations for Jesta Hotels & Resorts. “In April of 2021, I reached out to Matt and asked him if he would be interested in partnering with Clevelander to bring his one-of-a-kind Kush concepts to our iconic hotel in Miami Beach. And one year later, here we are. Clevelander is world-renowned for being a place that everyone must visit when they’re in South Beach; they come to experience our famous frozen cocktails and dance the day and night away. Now they can also enjoy a one-of-a-kind South Florida food concept. We wanted to bring something unique to the space that locals would come back to, and what better partner than Kush.”

Built in 1938 and renovated in 2009, the Clevelander South Beach is an iconic hotel on Ocean Drive in the heart of the Art Deco District. The hotel offers an ongoing schedule of weekly themed parties, including Rockstar Karaoke on Monday, Noche Caliente on Thursday and its famous weekend Play Pool Party.

“This is a big step for the company and for me as an operator,” Kush says, who helped spark Coconut Grove’s dining renaissance ten years ago with the launch of LoKal. “We are no strangers to the hotel world, per se (referring to his concepts at the Selina Gold Dust in MiMo), but this is our first time partnering with a major hotel. This opportunity signals major growth for our brand and an exciting opportunity to expand to Miami Beach.”

Located inside the hotel on the ground floor, Kush at Clevelander South Beach will feature its own entrance off Ocean Drive. The sports bar restaurant will feature a bevy of televisions for game day watching and a special private viewing room. The menu will offer fan favorites from the other Kush locations and innovative showstoppers exclusive to the new restaurant. The bar program, created by recently promoted KHG Corporate Beverage Director Cristina Suarez, will offer a variety of craft beers, classic cocktails and creative signature items.

SFBW Staff
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