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Volume 21 No. 1
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The Clevelander makes the jump from South Beach to ballpark

For a modern-day MLB team, opening a new ballpark means having a list of amenities that’s long and a range of attractions that’s both wide and, at least in name, unique.

The Miami Marlins have found a way to stand alone among other clubs with one particular offering at Marlins Park: body painting.

Come on in, the water’s fine at the Clevelander. There’s even a ballgame going on.
It comes from the Clevelander, the swanky South Beach nightclub that has opened a new location in left field at Marlins Park. Similar to the original club, the ballpark site has a swimming pool, DJs, busty bartenders in pink bikinis and, yes, performance models who get their bodies spray painted.

Oh, you can watch the game, too. The new Clevelander, built at field level, is a ticketed space. There are three rows of 36 seats facing the field behind a chain-link fence. A drink rail behind has eight seats. Ticket prices are $50 to $100 depending on the opponent.

The same tropical drinks and food items served in South Beach are on the menu at Marlins Park. Drink prices range from $5 for a can of Red Bull to $13 for a Long Island iced tea. The Magnum, a half-pound, bacon-wrapped hot dog, weighs in at $12. Ten-ounce burgers are $13 to $16.

Thirty minutes after the game’s final out, the ballpark Clevelander, which has an exterior entrance, opens to the public as a full-scale club and stays open as late as 3 a.m. In that setup, capacity is 296, said Anna Whitlow, the club’s marketing manager.

Groups can rent the space for Marlins games, with food and beverage a separate fee. Shortly before the regular season started, club officials were still working with the Marlins to determine the costs, Whitlow said.

“The Clevelander is clearly a landmark in South Beach,” said Earl Santee, a senior principal for Populous, the ballpark’s architect. “The prominence it has on that one corner of Ocean Drive is spectacular. A really interesting place.”

The ballpark’s version is just one more example of the Marlins’ vision for developing a stadium that is “purely Miami,” said team President David Samson, and the pool fits within the park’s overall aquatic theme.

The bartenders and body painting? Just go with it.

— Don Muret