Because of their untold amounts of wealth, celebrities find it necessary to diversify their financial portfolios. Some choose areas of no interest as recommended by their financial advisors, while others prefer to be more involved with where their money is going, using their names to help sell their products. Faith Hill and Tim McGraw started their own lines of perfume and cologne, Kenny Rogers hawked chickens, Jimmy Dean built a sausage empire, and Jimmy Buffet can be found wandering around Margaritaville.
As valuable as using their names can be, some celebrities prefer keeping a lower profile. They have enough limelight in their lives without adding to it, yet they still want to have involvement. For this very reason, bars, and restaurants are popular investment options. They can easily work behind the scenes and unless a patron is aware, they may not even realize they are dining or drinking in a celebrity owned establishment.
Here are a few of the many celebrity-owned restaurants across the US:
1 The 40/40 Club – NYC – Jay-Z
Located in NYC’s Barclay Center, rap mogul Jay-Z’s 40/40 club is hot, hot, hot. It’s also gigantic at 12,000 square feet. Billed as a sports bar, 40/40 is the furthest thing from what the term generally signifies. It’s opulent and swank. The goal was to combine the warmth of a New York City penthouse with the excitement of having a courtside seat at a major game, and Jay-Z, along with partner and longtime friend Juan Perez, smacked a hole-in-one.
The club features 36 TV’s, eight of which have 80-inch screens, and four 165-inch state-of-the-art video walls. There are five VIP lounges with leather furniture, polished wood floors, and mahogany paneling. “We tried to create a place that would be favorable to both men and women, and we think we have found it with the combination of sports and an upscale hip lounge”, said Juan Perez.
2 JBJ Soul Kitchen – Red Bank, New Jersey – Jon Bon Jovi
Unless someone already knew what the JBJ stood for, they would have no idea who the owner is. JBJ Soul Kitchen is not a common everyday run-of-the-mill restaurant by any means. Jon Bon Jovi is a pretty charitable fellow with a heart the size of New Jersey. As the restaurant advertises: All are welcome at our table where locally-sourced ingredients, dignity, and respect are always on the menu.
Patrons of the restaurant pay a flat $10 per meal. If they want to pay a little more the extra money is used to feed someone who can’t afford the 10 bucks. As a community restaurant, thus far, 51% of all meals served were paid for via donations and 49% of meals were consumed at no charge by volunteers for a grand total of 86,900 total meals being served.
3 Southern Hospitality BBQ – NYC – Justin Timberlake
Memphis native Justin Timberlake spent a weekend back home with a couple of buddies, where the trio couldn’t seem to get enough of the world-renowned Memphis style BBQ. After deciding they could bring the colossal delight to NYC, Southern Hospitality BBQ was born.
All of the meat is smoked in-house and the vegetables are locally sourced for freshness. New Yorkers immediately flocked to the restaurant for a taste of southern hospitality in the friendliest place in town. Other celebrities who know of the place frequent it whenever they are in town. Elton John, Kim Kardashian, Demi Lovato, and many other stars have been spotted with BBQ sauce on their hands and faces.
The restaurant warmly states; “When you’re here, you’re home”.
4 FGL House – Nashville, Tennessee – Florida Georgia Line
Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard, better known as Flordia Georgia Line open their four-story entertainment venue in Nashville in 2017. According to Hubbard, “It was something BK and I always thought would be neat, whether it was a bar or a restaurant — we’ve talked about opening a coffee shop before.” He further went on to say, “We have a knack for food and beverage; taking care of our friends and our people.”
Southern style food with a California flair is served and there is a separate bar on each floor. FGL House also features the only rooftop bar in downtown Nashville where the party never stops and the views of the city are amazing. The basement lounge’ Little Red Corvette, gives visitors a chance to step away from the hub-bub in a piano bar. Other floors feature live local music so if you don’t like one band just go to another floor.
5 Chicken n Beer – Atlanta Airport – Ludacris
Named after one of his albums, Chicken n Beer, Ludacris teamed up with chef Andrew Tabb to create a southern comfort style restaurant in the Atlanta Airport. The menu includes boiled peanuts, pecan waffles with whiskey-maple sauce, fried chicken and all else southern.
6 Estefan Kitchen – Miami – Gloria and Emilio Estefan
From Miami Sound Machines lead vocalist to a successful restaurateur, Gloria Estefan and husband Emilio are serving up the best Cuban food in all of Miami, and that’s saying a lot. “This is what people come to Miami for — great food, great drinks, great music,” said Emilio.
Located in Miami’s design district, the couple serves everything from croquetas to bocaditos, which are bite-size sandwiches made from pimento cheese. The roast pork is said to be a mouth-watering treat and the plantain flatbread is sweet and 100% authentic.
7 ;Serafina – West Hollywood, California – Mel B.
Former Spice Girl and America’s Got Talent judge, Mel B., is much more than a pretty face with a great singing voice. Mel B. opened the restaurant with her husband Stephen Belafonte. Mel B. calls the restaurant a sexy hotspot and it serves up pizza, pasta, and seafood.
It’s surprising just how many bars and restaurants are owned by celebrities. The general public is fully aware of some while others are more of a secret. Either way, dining or drinking in an establishment owned by a favorite star is a cool thing to do. And, you never know when you might have a celebrity sighting.