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Casadonna Miami

Casadonna Opens in Miami as Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality’s First Venture

David Grutman, Noah Tepperberg, and Jason Strauss collaborate on the indoor-outdoor eatery in Miami's Edgewater neighborhood.

Restaurant Casadonna Debuts in Miami in Edgewater

Opening a joint hospitality destination was a dream recently realized by Groot Hospitality and Tao Group. For the collaborators’ first partnership, nearly a decade in the making, it opened Casadonna—a Ken Fulk–designed indoor-outdoor eatery spanning 20,000 square feet along Biscayne Bay, featuring 366 seats and sumptuous Southern Italian dishes. Whitewaller spoke with Groot Hospitality founder David Grutman, and Tao Group co-founders Noah Tepperberg and Jason Strauss, about creating an icon out of the 97-year-old former Miami Women’s Club in Edgewater.

Casadonna Miami

Noah Tepperberg, David Grutman, and Jason Strauss, photo by photo by Ngoc Minh Ngo, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

Casadonna Brings together David Grutman, Noah Tepperberg, and Jason Strauss

WHITEWALLER: This is your first collaboration with Tao Group—a company you’ve worked alongside for decades. How does that feel?

DAVID GRUTMAN: It feels amazing. Noah is one of my best friends. We always said if we did something together, it needed to act as a legacy. It had to be an icon.

WW: Casadonna embodies the Riviera lifestyle. Why was this destination one you wanted to reimagine in Miami?

DG: Casadonna is one of the only true waterfront restaurants in Edgewater and Downtown Miami. We wanted something that spoke to the setting—and there’s nowhere more inspiring than coastal Italy, so we blended that influence with something that feels genuine to Miami. 

Casadonna Miami

Casadonna, photo by Cristian Gonzalez, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

Casadonna During Miami Art Week

WW: What do you imagine the space will be like during Art Week in December?

DG: Great! Busy, but even when we’re full, there’s enough space for it to feel like a hideaway. It’ll be a place where people go out to, but also a place where people can recharge from the craziness.

WW: Why was collaborating with Groot Hospitality an important first move for your first foray into Miami?

NOAH TEPPERBERG: In any market we enter, it’s always important to work with the best-in-class talent, and Dave is by far that. He’s simply the best at what he does, and there was no one else we would have ever taken on such a significant project with. 

Casadonna Miami

Casadonna, photo by Ngoc Minh Ngo, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

WW: How does Casadonna take what your company does best, yet present something unique?

NT: In our 20-plus years, Tao Group has really excelled at doing super-premium hospitality at scale, and Casadonna is exactly that. With nearly 400 seats and its postcard-view location, it’s the perfect combination.

A Restaurant Years in the Making

WW: You mentioned starting this project nearly seven years ago. What was the process like?

NT: The long stretch of time it took for us to bring Casadonna to market stemmed from the ambitious and meticulous restoration of the waterfront landmark Miami Women’s Club building. This was a first for both groups; neither of us have ever developed a building with such history, and it was a much heavier lift then we ever imagined, but the final product is well worth everything that went into it.

Casadonna Miami

Casadonna, photo by Cristian Gonzalez, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

WW: Tao Group oversees more than 90 venues in 20 markets. Why did you want to open a space in Miami?

JASON STRAUSS: Noah and I have been doing events in Miami since we were in college. It was a huge part of our early career and an important part of our story. In the last five years, there has also been such an explosion of culture and energy in Miami.

Casadonna Miami

Casadonna, photo by Ngoc Minh Ngo, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

Casadonna Has Views of Biscayne Bay

WW: What does Casadonna add to Tao’s colossal portfolio?

JS: Casadonna is such a unique and beautiful venue. It’s our only owned property located on the water with stunning views of Biscayne Bay—and the sheer size of the venue really sets it apart.

WW: What does collaborating with Groot Hospitality mean for the potential of future partnerships? 

JS: Noah and I have a 20-year friendship with Dave that has extended into helping each other’s businesses in many ways. To come to Miami with someone so established in the city was the perfect marriage of our groups. It’s been amazing working with Dave’s group, and we’re looking forward to future endeavors. 

Casadonna Miami

Casadonna, photo by Ngoc Minh Ngo, courtesy of Groot Hospitality and Tao Group Hospitality.

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Go inside the worlds
of Art, Fashion, Design,
and Lifestyle.