Miami says ‘Hi, Barbie!’ Welcoming new pop-up restaurant opening in Wynwood

Have you ever wanted to immerse yourself in Barbie world? A Malibu Barbie Cafe is coming to Wynwood to offer the experience to all the Barbies out there. Kens and Allans also are welcome.

The pop-up restaurant is set to open Feb. 9. A company called Bucket Listers organized it in partnership with Mattel after viral success with similar pop-ups in New York, Chicago, and the Mall of America in Minnesota. 

In Yelp reviews in other cities, the pop-up rated four stars overall. Reviewers described the experience as nostalgic for adult Barbie fans and fun for the little ones – and worth the price.

The mastermind behind it is Miami native Derek Berry, president of experiences at Bucket Listers, which also brought the Golden Girls Kitchen to Miami. This time, in collaboration with Mattel, they bring Malibu’s vibes of the 70s, continuing with the Barbiecore fever and the beachside groovy vibes for all ages.

“We are always trying to create different experiences, and most of them have been based on bars and experiences that catered to adults,” Berry said. “When we were finally given the opportunity to work on one that was for children and adults, we knew there was nothing more iconic than Barbie!”

The dining experience ranges from Barbie-inspired food to roller skating. The restaurant is designed to make people feel like they are stepping into the movie, with a host at the front door welcoming them a “Hi Barbie!” or “Hi Ken!” It features Barbiecore colors, beachy vibes, retro glam, and many selfie spots, including the full life-size Barbie box and the iconic slogan “you can be anything.” 

Guests must reserve a table in advance and pay for it online – no walk-ins allowed. Reservations – from single-bar seat to a table for six – provide a 90-minute experience that includes a pre-selected entree with one side and a cake pop with flavors such as lemon, Nutella or rainbow.

“People will be transported across the country from Miami to California,” Berry said. “For 90 minutes, people will be immersed in the world of Barbie. The food, the roller skating, the music, and exclusive merchandise are a true 360 moment in Mattel world!”  

The food is also pink. Master Chef finalist Becky Brown created the menu, with offerings for meat lovers, vegetarians and little kids, with Barbiecore names such as “Beach Burger,” “Golden Coast Cali-flower Bowl” and “Pacific Paradise Pancakes.” Adults can dine with glittery cocktails. The menu for the little Barbies and Kens includes dishes such as “Stay Groovy Grilled Cheese” and “Shine on Quesadilla.” 

Golden Coast Cali-flower bowl (vegetarian and Gluten free). Photo courtesy of Bucket Listers/Mattel

Julie Freeland, senior director of location-based entertainment at Mattel, said the company wanted to bring a “truly unique experience” to all the Barbie fans.

“At Mattel, we are always looking for exciting, new ways to bring the Barbie experience to life,’’ she said. “From the décor to the menu, every detail has been thoughtfully designed to celebrate the iconic Barbie style.”

After enjoying the food while talking with family and friends, guests can roller skate for an additional $1, which will be donated to Girls Inc. This organization allows girls to reach their full potential and develop leadership skills. 

There’s also a Barbie merchandise store, which is different for each location, Berry said.

The pop-up location is at 301 NW 23rd St. Miami, FL 33127, and will be there until April 21. A few special events are planned, pink roller disco 21+ nights on Feb.18 and March 9, which is the 65th anniversary of Barbie. Tickets for both experiences start at $29 per person.

Amelia Orjuela Da Silva is a senior majoring in digital journalism with a minor in social media and E-marketing analytics. After graduation, she wishes to pursue a career in the entertainment field as a writer/reporter to shine a light on stories that need to be discovered.