The infamous Miami night club LIV remains shut down due to the coronavirus but also due to the power struggle between state and local government.
According to Newsbreak, the surge of the virus is what both would like to control. And although the club can open under the state’s Governor Ron DeSantis’ September 25 Order that allows nightclubs to reopen at 50% capacity, Miami official’s midnight curfew has halted the process.
LIV is known for its glamour and star-studded parties. The list of attendees is endless but includes high rollers like Drake, Kanye West, and Rick Ross who have shouted out the club in their songs. People pay a pretty penny to just get in–one big stepper spent $20,000 just to get a table, while another dished out $120,000 just to sit on the DJ booth while Cardi B performed back in February.
But now, its sleek black floors and snakeskin couches once surrounded by throngs of party-goers has been replaced with an eerie silence. LIV owner David Grutman, 46, says he’s “cried real tears” since his club has been shut down and tried to stay away as much as he can.
“It’s really been my lifeblood,” he added.
City officials are also restricting loud music, which is another reason LIV hasn’t reopened its doors. Officials say they don’t want people shouting which could risk the spread of the virus through their spit. On top of that, they also have required masks to be worn unless people are eating and drinking.
“We take a more cautious approach here in Miami-Dade,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said recently. He warned: “We are still not out of the woods.”
Grutman doesn’t want to risk spreading the virus and also blames the curfew for his reason to not reopen LIV or his other nightclub, Story. “We’re going to open it when we can give the right experience,” he said. “I’m not into giving half-ass experiences.”
Florida’s Republican governor Ron DeSantis seems pretty eager to reopen its economy, despite the states reported 15,000 deaths. But people like Grutman have witnessed the revolving door of openings and closings, and feel it’s not worth it.
Grutman is also the owner of several restaurants and co-owns one with producer Pharrell, including Komodo, a hangout patronized by celebrities. According to the news outlet, all were shut down back in March.
When the governor gave the go-ahead to reopen in June, Grutman decided to do so, but he now regrets that decision. “We thought the world was back,” Grutman said. “I was naive enough to think that we’d turned the corner.” Six weeks later he shut the doors after cases of the virus spiked. South Florida quickly became a coronavirus hotspot as 12,000-15,000 new cases per day were reported.
“We were allowed to reopen and bars were not, yet people were drinking like crazy at our place, so it was one of those mixed-signal things. It built up a lot of animosity,” he said.
It’s safe to say Grutman’s LIV has taken a tremendous hit–on big weekends, the club can make $1 million in one night. It was the place to be after the Kansas City Chiefs won the 2020 Super Bowl. It’s also been the home of Victoria Secret’s 2009 fashion show. And no matter who or how many calls the owner receives, he’s sticking to his guns and not budging to reopen. Instead, he’s spending his time trying to install five-minute rapid testing and adding ultraviolet disinfecting lights to the vents. He still believes, however, that a vaccine is the only safety net in terms of big club events.
“Everybody has their own ideas of what’s going to happen, second wave, no second wave,” he said.