Balans restaurant abruptly closes in MiMo. What this means for the other Miami spots

The MiMo location of Balans restaurant abruptly closed Oct. 21, 2018.
The MiMo location of Balans restaurant abruptly closed Oct. 21, 2018.

Balans restaurant on Biscayne Boulevard abruptly went dark Sunday, but the restaurant chain isn’t going anywhere.

The MiMo branch, indeed, closed Oct. 21 and will not reopen, said the chain’s CEO Jonathan Balan. But far from being an omen, Balan said his restaurant group is redoubling its efforts on its existing restaurants on Lincoln Road and Brickell, which it is renovating.

That said, the newest of its locations, the MiMo spot was a large, cavernous restaurant that wasn’t filling up enough to stay in the black.

“There is no more Balans in MiMo. It just wasn’t doing as well as we’d hoped,” Balan said.

Balan said the Lincoln Road location, the original spot which opened in 1997, recently closed for a week for renovations and reopened with “a bit of a retro look,” he said. Balan is bringing in the original chef from its London restaurant to revitalize the Miami-area menus.

“We went back to the original look from 1997,” Balan said.

Those changes will soon come to the Brickell location, which Balan said he hopes to remodel before the end of the year. Rather than give up on a third location, Balan said the restaurant is looking for a new location. They absorbed some of the displaced staff to their Lincoln Road and Brickell restaurants, he said.

“Brickell will be part of our new rebranding,” Balan said.

Balans was the brainchild of the late restaurateur Prady Balan, who died of a heart attack at age 59 in March of 2016 while at his Miami Beach apartment.