After an unwelcome hiatus, South Beach’s famous Palace Bar has reopened at a new location and will once again be home to glittering queens and drag performances. “It’s about —— time!” performer Tiffany T. Fantasia said. NBC 6 received the exclusive reveal, which was broadcast on their 11pm newscast. The new Palace Bar location is on 11th Street and Ocean Drive – only two blocks away from where it once was. Palace Bar has replaced the Amarillo South Beach bar and grill.
“I love this new spot. It’s bigger. It’s more set-up for the types of shows that we do,” performer Joanna James said. “We’re still going to be out there on the sidewalk gathering in tourists, but we got more space here and, it’s a step up. It’s a little bit more glamorous.” – Drinks, music and food paired with world-renowned drag performances made the popular spot previously on 12th Street and Ocean Drive a staple for South Beach pride. “It’s gonna be a lot of the same. At a higher level. More exciting. I’m happy to have a gay spot on ocean drive again,” James added. After serving South Florida’s LGBTQ community for almost 30 years, the queens at Palace Bar closed doors July 4. The bar has historically supported and rallied for gay rights.
In 2016, Palace Bar hosted a special ceremony honoring the Orlando gay nightclub shooting victims. Such events highlighted Palace Bar’s message of equality. Drag performances featured signature names like T.P. Lords, Noel Leon, Fantasia Gaga Royale, Tlo Ivuy, Missey Meyakie LePaige and Shanaya Bright. The South Beach show-stopping staple also served as a safe haven for the LGBTQ community – Palace had rainbow-painted crosswalks, daily over-the-top drag shows and a location directly across from what has been referred to as South Beach’s “gay beach.” – “It’s a whole new Palace. It’s another new beginning. For me, another 20 years in this location,” owner Thomas Donall said. Though there will be a change in location, the essence of Palace Bar remains – “Hopefully, we just pick up where we left off. It’s a different place, so the vibe might be different but its a lot of the same people,” Fantasia added. “Hopefully we just come in and do it all over again like it was never done before.”