Monday, July 18, 2011

Top 10 Party Venues in South Florida

Whether you're looking for a venue to host a quiet dinner party, wedding reception, or even bachelorette party, South Florida is full of locations to suit all kinds of events. This region, typically referring to the Miami, Palm Beach, and Fort Lauderdale areas, has plenty to offer party hosts and hostesses who are looking for the perfect place. And with warm weather almost year round, the South Florida has some of the top golf courses in the Sunshine State. When you put your clubs away and are ready to get the party started, there are a multitude of party venues from which to choose.

Nikki Beach Miami

This South Beach venue is a nightlife hot spot for dancing, dining, and often celebrity-spotting. Located on One Ocean Drive, Nikki Beach offers a posh view of the ocean as well as a posh cabana atmosphere.

One Ocean Drive
Miami, Florida 33139

Mango's Tropical Café

Also located on Miami's infamous Ocean Drive, Mango's Tropical Café offers a vibrant atmosphere for a romping good time. Their private rooms can be reserved for entertaining dinner parties or the quintessential bachelorette party.

900 Ocean Drive
Miami beach, Florida 33139

Wherehouse 2016

A little further north on Miami Beach, Wherehouse 2016 provides a quirky, whimsical venue for parties of all kinds. No matter what the celebration is, this spot will impress guests with its floor-to-ceiling, art and mural-covered walls.

2016 NE 155 Street
North Miami Beach, Florida 33162


The completely renovated but always legendary Fontainebleau in Miami Beach serves parties of all sizes with its vast array of event rooms and outdoor beach space. This sophisticated hotel never fails to meet high expectations for dining and overall atmosphere.

4441 Collins Ave.
Miami Beach, Florida 33140

The Breakers

Another elegant resort, The Breakers in Palm Beach, also continues to impress with its stunning views of the ocean and multiple luxurious venues. This little taste of paradise doesn't come without a hefty price tag, but it's perfect for a posh party.

One South County Road
Palm Beach, Florida 33480

Vizcaya Museum & Gardens

A trip to South Florida is not complete without visiting the historic landmark of Vizcaya, but the real treat is getting to attend a party there. Once the daytime public museum hours are over, its lush gardens, courtyards, and terraces provide a one-of-a-kind location for unforgettable events.

3251 South Miami Avenue
Miami, Florida 33129

White Space

This venue located in the Fort Lauderdale area is exactly as the name suggests: an all-white, blank space ready to be transformed. The location offers a chic loft-style space and larger open area for parties of all shapes and sizes.

111 SW Second Ave.
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

Gemma Lounge

The Gemma Lounge is a cozy, inviting haven from the boisterous nightlife of Miami Beach. Its intimate atmosphere and comfortable setting are ideal for a quiet and sophisticated dinner or cocktail party.

529 Lincoln Rd. Miami Beach, FL 33140

Revolution Live and America's Backyard

In the heart of downtown Fort Lauderdale, this historic space offers two separate areas for private parties. The multi-level Revolution Live venue is great for large-scale indoor events, while America's Backyard provides a laid-back outdoor area complete with a pool bar.

100 SW 3rd Ave.

Ft. Lauderdale, FL.

Exit 66

Also in the midst of Fort Lauderdale's nightlife, the Exit 66 venue finds its home just off the ocean. With a handful of variously-themed rooms, this spot allows you to host whatever size or style party you have in mind from pool parties to proms.

219 S. Ft. Lauderdale Beach Blvd.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316


Sunday, July 17, 2011

SoFlo DJ's and Entertainment Services, Inc. 888-779-1221: How to Hire a Bartender

SoFlo DJ's and Entertainment Services, Inc. 888-779-1221: How to Hire a Bartender: "In the restaurant business, finding a good bartender is akin to striking gold. There are lots of people who can mix drinks, but few have th..."

How to Hire a Bartender

In the restaurant business, finding a good bartender is akin to striking gold. There are lots of people who can mix drinks, but few have the delicate mix of friendliness and aloofness that is the trademark of good bartender.

Bartender Responsibilities

The bartender is the top position of the front of house staff. Depending on the style and set up of a restaurant, a bartender may be responsible for getting the rest of the staff drinks for their tables (service bar) as well as taking care of customers who sit at the bar. Other bartender responsibilities include:

    • Ordering liquor and beer • Changing the beer gas • Ordering non-alcoholic drinks, such as soda and juice • Stocking the beer cooler and liquor shelves • Creating nightly and/or weekly drink specials and other promotions
Traits of a Good Bartender

A good bartender will listen to customers while at the same time help out the rest of the staff. He or she needs to be responsible, since they typically lock up the restaurant each night and making sure that nightly deposit is taken care of. No other person on staff, save a manager or owner, has as much access to the money as the bartender. They may be responsible for cashing out the servers at the end of the night, and making sure the paperwork all matches up. For this reason alone, you want to make sure the person you hire to tend bar is has an honest and trustworthy reputation. References are an absolute must.

Bartenders must be good listeners, or at least be able to fake good listening. Customers sit at a bar for a variety of reasons. They are lonely and want someone to talk to. They are tired and want to be alone. They want to watch the nightly football game. They want to try to pick up a date. Whatever the reason, the bartender needs to be able to interact with customers on their level. That lonely guy who want to pour his heart about his recent divorce will need a ear to listen to his problems. If a bartender shows irritation toward that customer, or just ignores him completely, the customer isn’t likely to come back. On the other hand, if the bartender insists on chatting up a storm with the guy who just wants some peace and quiet after a long day at work, that guy won’t come back. A bartender needs to know how to read people and interact with them accordingly. These are the types of bartenders who develop a strong customer following. A good bartender will bring customers in, just because he or she is working.

A Bartender Should be a Good Salesperson

A bartender should be a good sales person, without being pushy. A customer asks for a martini. A good bartender would ask if they want Beefeater or Bombay, and not just assume they want well gin (yuck). Many restaurant bars offer full dinner service. A good bartender will always offer a dinner menu and tell the customer about the daily specials. They will have as much knowledge of the menu as the servers and will always be able to recommend a favorite dish or two.

Experienced Bartenders Only, Please!

One of the most important traits in a good bartender is experience. Tending bar is a hands-on job. You cannot learn it from a book. You have to do it! For this reason, it is a very, very, very bad idea to hire someone fresh out of bartending school as your main bartender. Bartending schools, a good idea in theory, do not give the kind of hands on experience that is needed to be a bartender at a busy restaurant. A graduate of a bartending school is ideal for a bar-back position, or even a bartender on a slow night, but they are definitely not the ideal choice for the busy weekend shift. Like all careers, the bartending school graduate must work his or her way up the restaurant staff totem pole.

Always Check References When Hiring A Bartender

Always check references. Hiring employees is time consuming and frankly, a pain in the you-know-what at times. It is often tempting to hire a person on the spot, because he or she is a friend of one the staff, or a friend of friend, ect… Because of the important role a bartender plays in your establishment, you should be vigilant about checking references. Also, ask your employees about the person you are considering hiring. They may give you a more candid opinion of the candidate than a former employer or reference.

Questions to Ask Bartending Candidates

When you are interviewing a bartender, ask candidates to describe their previous job settings. Is the previous restaurants where they worked similar to yours? If the candidate only worked a service bar, then they might not be the ideal choice to run a busy pub or sports bar. Other questions to ask a potential hire include:
    • How do you tell if someone has had too much to drink? • How do you handle drunk customers? • How do you handle a busy bar? • How do you deal with an unhappy customer? • You have a problem with one of the other staff, what do you do? • Are you TIPS certified?
Final Words About Hiring a Bartender

As a restaurant owner, it’s hard to be in all places at all times and know everything that is going on. However, you should definitely keep an eye on the new bartender. Despite the above mentioned advice, you can be snowballed by a friendly face and pleasant manner.

Ask your other staff (privately) how they like working with the new bartender. While many employees don’t want to be viewed as a rat, you can gauge their responses. Are they enthusiastic about the bartender? Are they evasive in their response? A good boss knows his or her staff, and will know how they like the new bartender.

Also, keep an eye on your liquor inventory. Many a bartender (and other staff) has helped himself to a bottle of two of house liquor. If you notice that a certain brand of liquor is flying off the shelves, check your POS to make sure that it is accounted for. If it isn’t, speak with your bartender about where it has been going.

Until you feel one hundred percent comfortable with the person you have entrusted with a good portion of your business, keep track of sales, receipts and deposits and inventory.

, Guide

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