For the second time in two years, Mangos restaurant on Las Olas Boulevard has closed. Once again, ownership upheaval has brought a halt to operations, supposedly temporarily. The potential new owner says he hopes to have the Fort Lauderdale restaurant reopened by Oct. 1, and it will no longer be known as Mangos.
Frank Talerico, a businessman who owns and operates Casa Calabria restaurant and the Ocean Manor Beach Resort on Galt Ocean Mile, says he is in negotiations to take over Mangos from Bruno Vaccari, an Italian businessman who bought Mangos last year.
“I hope to have things finalized [soon],” Talerico texted Wednesday from Italy. “I will not keep the same name and there will be many changes coming.”
The revamped Mangos debuted in February after renovations that took longer than a year. After 25 years as a laid-back, touristy restaurant and lounge with a tropical vibe and live bands, it was reborn as a glitzy, South Beach-style nightclub and Italian restaurant, featuring black couches, white marble tables and VIP bottle service in the lounge area.
The restaurant has been dormant the past few days, and its reservation portal is not currently accepting bookings. Phone calls are diverted to another number’s voice mailbox.
“We are taking advantage of the low season to give a clear identity to the restaurant,” Vaccari wrote in an email Wednesday.
The original Mangos closed in January 2017, when a new group headed by Vaccari bought the restaurant, at 904 E. Las Olas Boulevard, from longtime owner John Day. The revamped Mangos opened to much fanfare in February, but its new look and new menu were jarring to many longtime patrons. A SouthFlorida.com review in May spotlighted the restaurant’s “identity crisis,” calling the decor and concept “discordant and just plain weird.”