Be a Rock Star for a Night at PlugIN Karaoke’s Brand-New Venue at Gulfstream Park
Last weekend I went to PlugIN Karaoke to celebrate my 28th birthday. Armed with 15 of my closest friends, I was slightly hesitant — few of us were singers, and even less were comfortable being in the spotlight. But after stepping foot into one of PlugIN’s private upscale karaoke rooms, all of that changed. Within minutes, everyone was eager to get their hands on one of the four mics available or the tablet that allows guests to choose from over 35,000 songs. Just like that, we were automatic karaoke converts.
A popular chain in Israel, PlugIN opened its very first U.S. location at the beginning of this month at Gulfstream Park. As you enter the brand new 11,000-square-foot venue, you’ll notice elaborate music themed decor lining the walls and hallway, such as giant murals of David Bowie and Prince that are perfect for Instagram photo ops. The $2.5 million location boasts 18 eye-catching private rooms, ranging in size to accommodate groups of 5 to groups of up to 150 people. Private karaoke rooms aren’t a new concept, but PlugIN has put a luxury stamp on the business that makes their facility impossible to beat. The rooms aren’t simply spacious; they make you feel like you’re in the middle of your very own private club, with impressive visual lighting and top-notch audio technology.
But perhaps the best part about this latest addition to Miami nightlife is the service. During our three-hour stay, our waiter was constantly popping in the room to check on us, whether it was to help us navigate the karaoke system or to bring us a round of celebratory Lemon Drop shots. PlugIN provides premium in-room dining, with an extensive selection of beer, wine and cocktails to choose from, as well as a lengthy food menu ranging from sushi to sliders to flatbread pizzas. With a comfortable leather couch wrapping around each private room, they’ve created a space that is ideal for chatting with your friends while others have the mic, or singing along in between bites of nachos.
And then there’s that digital song catalog. As kids of the ’90s, we made sure to belt our favorites growing up from Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, and the Spice Girls. But that only scratches the surface of what’s available. The catalog abounds with current Top 40 hits and classics from every decade and genre, even featuring surprises such as a dance remix version of “My Heart Will Go On” and songs from the current Broadway smash hit “Hamilton.” From Luke Bryan to Madonna, if you want it, PlugIN has it.
As we made our way into the final third hour stretch of our reservation, enthusiasm was high and inhibitions were low. When my friend spontaneously jumped on the couch during her performance, she noticed the waiter walk in and instantly apologized and started stepping down. His response: “Girl, don’t worry — have fun!” And that sums up the attitude and atmosphere of PlugIN Karaoke. Even those allergic to singing and dancing in public can let loose and feel like Beyoncé or JLo…if just for one night only.
PlugIN Karaoke is located on the second level at Gulfstream Park, 801 Silks Run, Suite 2597, Hallandale Beach. Guests can book their private karaoke rooms by calling 1-8444-PLUGIN (1-844-475-8446) directly or through the company’s website at www.pluginkaraoke.com.
Lauren Cohen was born and raised in Miami Beach and graduated from the University of Miami with a bachelor’s degree in Motion Pictures. She has been writing about film since 2009, with her movie reviews and features appearing regularly in Examiner.com and Miami Beach News, among others. She’s interviewed some of the most recognizable faces in the film industry, including Daniel Craig, Emma Stone, Channing Tatum, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Javier Bardem. An avid supporter of the arts, Lauren also works with the Miami Film Festival to promote the best of world cinema to the Miami community.