The sixth dining concept slated to open in SLS Las Vegas will have a special area set aside just for the Mediterranean tradition of breaking plates to celebrate special occasions. That’s what diners at Hollywood’s Cleo restaurant have come to expect of chef Danny Elmaleh’s stylish temple to contemporary Mediterranean cuisine. So when Cleo joins SLS Las Vegas in the fall of 2014, the tradition will come with.
Cleo’s L.A. flagship opened in 2010 at the Redbury Hotel, and was named among Los Angeles Magazine’s Best New Restaurants of 2011. Israeli-born Elmaleh’s cuisine is a product of his Moroccan-Japanese heritage. Before he attended the Culinary Institute of America, worked in Milan and was named a Rising Star Chef in 2006 at L.A.’s Celadon, Elmaleh cut his teeth working alongside his father, who opened Japan’s first Moroccan restaurant.
Cleo Las Vegas will feature Elmaleh’s house-made laffa breads, meatball tagine, moussakah and other Mediterranean favorites as well as a central wood-burning oven, the restaurant’s fresh signature cocktail program and a seasonal menu, currently in development, that will “capture both the essence of Hollywood and Vegas,” according to the chef.
The design, too, is still pretty up in the air. But SLS Las Vegas senior vice president of restaurant operations Matt Erickson says that at 4,000 square feet, the restaurant will provide “an even grander experience” than Cleo’s L.A. location, while reflecting the aesthetic composed by SBE CEO Sam Nazarian and filmmaker/photographer Matthew Rolston in Hollywood.
“Having Cleo positioned alongside such an incredible mix of food and beverage brands is an absolute honor,” Elmaleh says. Indeed, Cleo’s in good company, joining a restaurant roster that already includes The Bazaar by José Andrés, Katsuya, Umami Burger, 800 Degrees, The Griddle Café and other brands yet to be announced. Foodies who await those names can watch this space, or stalk the SLS Las Vegas blog.