The art of drinking: Paint Nite parties popular at Miami-area bars and restaurants

2016-04-06T16:47:27+00:00 April 9th, 2015|Arts & Culture, Business, Lifestyle, News|

When Angie Rubio arrived at Chevy’s Mexican restaurant in Doral on a recent Saturday to celebrate her 34th birthday, she was surprised to find her friends gathered around blank canvases accompanied with food and drinks.

“They knew I always wanted to do this,” Rubio said. “I draw stick figures, and this is totally something new.”

One of Miami’s painting and drinking companies hosted the celebration, called Paint Nite.

Paint Nite, with headquarters in Boston, has been in Miami the past two years. Attracting patrons to local bars and restaurants, the company holds parties that combine painting and drinking.

By Cata Balzano and Daniela Rios
South Florida News Service
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“There are always newcomers to Paint Nite, even if they have been to the restaurant before,” said Isis Konza, 34, an event art instructor. “It’s all about having a good time.”

Paint Nite is one of the growing painting parties in South Florida that offer customers an opportunity to paint, with or without experience, drink and hang out with friends.

Birthday parties, baby and wedding showers, engagement and bachelorette parties, as well as “girl’s night out,” are among the most popular events. Men also participate in paint parties.

Like Paint Nite, Bottle and Bottega, founded by friends Nancy Bigley and Stephanie King-Myers in 2009 in Chicago, has hosted its events at different local venues in South Florida since 2013.

Maris Sotsky, 30, managing owner in Florida, bought the franchise and brought the company to Miami.

“A lot of people are intimidated to paint, then they have a glass of wine, and they get into it,” said Sotsky.

Bottle and Bottega selects venues with a large variety of wines as well as tapas, so guests can always find a drink that suits their preference while they paint.

Like Paint Nite and Bottle and Bottega, Painting with a Twist was brought to South Florida from another state.

On a recent Saturday night, Liz Newman, 26, took Ambyr D’Amato, 32, who was visiting from New York, to a Painting with a Twist event at one of the locations in the Design District.

“We are here to have a fun night out,” Newman said. “This is an inexpensive opportunity to do something involving alcohol and art.”

Painting with a Twist was founded in 2007 as Corks N Canvas and became a franchise two years later.

It began in Louisiana by Cathy Deano and Renee Maloney after Hurricane Katrina, hoping the activity of painting and drinking would uplift the community. Now Painting with a Twist has more than 300 locations nationwide.

Eric Patrick, 42, brought the franchise to Miami in June 2011.

“It was a slow starter, but I stuck with it,” Patrick said. “Now we have as many people come to a studio on a Saturday than I had the first three months I was open.”

Artists at the Falls, Paint and Party studio and Art and Wine are homegrown art studios.

Owner of Artists at the Falls, Talia Garcia, 32, opened her own studio 10 years ago to work on her art and later began offering classes to children, teens and adults interested in painting. Now, she also uses the space for painting and drinking events.

“The idea was to share my love of art with the community,” Garcia said. “When you come in to the studio, you’re an artist whether you’ve done art before or not.”

Raquel Torrent, owner of Art and Wine, agrees and adds that painting parties should also be educational.

She holds a short art history lesson at her privately owned studio in West Little Havana as a method of teaching at Art and Wine. Before she begins a class, she explains why the painting is selected and where it comes from.

“We usually paint a theme inspired by an artist,” said Torrent, 55. “I explain to them briefly who the artist is and what is the style we are going to paint.”

Art and Wine has been open for three years. Torrent hosts her events at her own studio, at restaurants and in at-home services for those who look to throw a party at their house. She arrives with all the painting equipment: canvases, brushes and paint.

“It’s art and wine for adults and art and juice for kids,” Torrent said.

At Paint and Party Studio, children also have a special place.

Maggie Toranzo, 32, is one of the instructors. Children are her favorite students.

“They pay so much attention,” Toranzo said. “They grasp all the tips I tell them and create masterpieces.”

But the main goal for owner, Josie Lima, 58, who opened Paint and Party Studio in Kendall five months ago, was to entertain guests interested in painting while socializing.

“I had no previous experience with painting, so this was a completely different field,” said Lima, who refers to her clients as “guests.”

“It makes them feel at home in our cozy studio,” said Lima, while taking out wine glasses that our provided to their guests who bring their own wine.

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IF YOU GO
Paint and Party Studio
▪ Where: 12305 SW 112th St., Miami.

▪ Hours: 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays.

▪ Price: Special for 2 $35 until the end of April. Regular price is $35 per person. For private events and reservations, contact studio.

▪ Contact: 786-534-6329

▪ Website: www.paintandpartystudiomiami.com

Artists at the Falls
▪ Where: 12974 SW 89th Ave., Miami.

▪ Hours: 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays; 3:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays; 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.

▪ Price: $20 and up. For private events and reservations, contact studio.

▪ Contact: 305-278-2690​​​ or email thefallsart@aol.com

▪ Website: www.artistsatthefalls.com

Art and Wine
▪ Where: 3496 NW 7th Street, Miami.

▪ Hours: Depending on event.

▪ Price: Prices vary depending on package choice or event chosen. For private events and reservations, contact studio.

▪ Contact: 786-797-5997 or email artandwinemiami@gmail.com

▪ Website: www.artandwinemiami.com

Paint Nite
▪ Where: Events at different venues are posted on the website.

▪ Hours: Depending on event.

▪ Price: $45 per person. For private events and reservations, contact email.

▪ Contact: email info@paintnite.com

▪ Website: www.paintnite.com

Painting with a Twist
▪ Where: 7657 Biscayne Blvd, Miami.

▪ Hours: Depending on event.

▪ Price: $35 for 2-hour paintings and $45 for 3-hour paintings. For private events and reservations, contact studio.

▪ Contact: 786-300-6855 or e-mail miami@paintingwithatwist.com

▪ Website: www.paintingwithatwist.com/miami

Bottle and Bottega
▪ Where: Events at different venues are posted on the website.

▪ Hours: Depending on event.

▪ Price: $35 per person. For private events and reservations, contact studio.

▪ Contact: 786-505-9344 or email miami@bottle-bottega.com

▪ Website: www.bottleandbottega.com/miami