James Beard Award-winning restaurateur Stephen Starr’s celebrated Mexican restaurant, El Vez, is now open in Fort Lauderdale. El Vez offers a vibrant setting, regional Mexican fare and stellar service at W Fort Lauderdale, joining Starr’s boutique steakhouse, Steak 954 at the hotel and residences.  

The 300-seat restaurant is located on the hotel’s first floor and features an indoor-outdoor bar with expansive lounge seating and patio space for games including cornhole and shuffle board. Guests can enjoy breathtaking ocean views as they indulge on craft cocktails and Mexican favorites. Starr tapped the design firm Meyer Davis, the team behind W Fort Lauderdale’s recent head-to-toe renovations, to create a breezy beachfront culinary destination that seamlessly builds upon the hotel’s new design, while staying true to El Vez’s signature aesthetic. 

The restaurant’s eclectic vibe, passed down from its predecessors in Philadelphia and New York, sets the stage for a fun and casual experience of everything from snacks and tropical drinks to a delicious multi-course meal of tasty Mexican fare. Raw industrial elements, panoramic ocean views and warm inviting furnishings artfully blend comfort with a light, beach-chic design to create the ultimate retreat. The end result is a unique, relaxing experience with custom designed elements including a beer can wall art installation and old-fashioned photo booth.

“It’s hard to imagine a better place to sip a margarita than at W Fort Lauderdale, and I’m happy to continue our successful partnership,” says Stephen Starr. “El Vez will be a great fit for the fun and laid-back pace of Fort Lauderdale Beach.”   

At the helm of the kitchen is Chef Steven Menter, who has of worked with STARR for several years and opened El Vez New York. Menu favorites such as the Classic Guacamole, Crispy Mahi Mahi Tacos and Tacos al Carbon made their way to Florida and guests can look forward to exciting new menu items catering to South Florida’s tropical. Beyond delicious fare, the restaurant offers a vast tequila selection and outstanding signature cocktails including a variety of margaritas available by the glass or pitcher.

For those on the move, El Vez also operates a grab-and-go counter located at the entrance to the restaurant. Fresh coffee, pastries, sandwiches, salads and snacks are available to take to the beach or on the road.

El Vez is now open for dinner with breakfast and lunch coming soon. It joins Starr’s exciting portfolio of South Florida restaurants including Steak 954, Le Zoo, Makoto and Upland. 

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