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Ludacris’ Straits was a celeb hangout

Atlanta rapper Chris "Ludacris" Bridges paired with chef Chris Yeo to open Straits, which featured Thai, Indonesian, Chinese, Malay, Indian and Nonya cuisines. Ludacris is closing the restaurant to focus on a new venture at the airport. Photo special to the AJC

Atlanta rapper Chris "Ludacris" Bridges paired with chef Chris Yeo to open Straits, which featured Thai, Indonesian, Chinese, Malay, Indian and Nonya cuisines. Ludacris is closing the restaurant to focus on a new venture at the airport. Photo special to the AJC

Ludacris is ending his nearly four-year run as a Midtown restaurateur, pulling up the stakes at Straits to focus on a new venture at Atlanta-Hartsfield International Aiport.

My colleague, business reporter Leon Stafford, has all the details here.

Luda, known on real estate documents as Chris Bridges, owns the building and has plans for it in the future, but nothing concrete right now, publicist Liz Lapidus said. For now he will focus on feeding folks at the world’s busiest airport.

Straits’ last hurrah was New Year’s Eve. During its tenure on Juniper Street, it was known as well for its famous clientele as for its cuisine. Here’s a look back at some of the celebs who enjoyed plates at Straits:

- Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas held a private launch party there for her VH1 reality show “What Chilli Wants.”

tiandtiny- Clifford “T.I.” Harris, his wife Tameka “Tiny” Cottle and artist Trey Songz were spotted there enjoying a casual dinner in 2010. Luda let the world know about it at the time, tweeting, “Trey just ordered like 15 chicken lollipops!” Here’s a gallery of photos from their visit.

- NFL player Chad Ochocinco was something of a regular, usually stopping by when in town for games (and often tweeting about it).

- Sean Garrett, Andre Harrell, Bryan-Michael Cox and Brandy all stopped by one night last summer.

- Rapper-actor Common, dined there with actor-author Hill Harper and V103’s Ryan Cameron while in town in 2010 to promote “Just Wright,” which starred Common and Queen Latifah.

- Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee headlined at a 2009 benefit for Ludacris’ charitable foundation there. Joining the fun were his bandmates Nikki Sixx, Mick Mars and Vince Neil and actress Keisha Knight Pulliam.

Fast 5- And the cast of “Fast Five,” the latest installment in the “Fast and the Furious” series, became fans. The action movie was filmed largely in Atlanta (although it was set mostly in Brazil). Ludacris, seen in this movie still, played a wise-cracking computer whiz in the movie, which also starred Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson and Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson. Vin Diesel joined actor Larenz Tate and hip hop producer Jermaine Dupri for dinner there during the filming, and Straits hosted the film’s wrap party once shooting was finished.

“I’m really proud of this movie, ” said Ludacris, who made a surprise appearance at a screening last year.

- Jennifer Brett/The Buzz/jbrett@ajc.com

10 comments Add your comment

Gil

January 4th, 2012
12:39 pm

Mmmmmmm……Airport food

[...] can also read about the closing of Straits as first reported by Leon Stafford and more about the celebrities dropping by Straits on the Buzz with Jennifer [...]

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

tim

January 4th, 2012
7:55 pm

You should of wrote that he is “pulling up stakes” because his restaurant is a failure. You don’t close a successful business. you continue to make money with it or sell it.

This is a great example of Mayor Reeds “transparent” choosing of airport vendors. Ludacris gets a airport contract when he is running a losing businees BUT successful restauranteurs didn’t get airport contracts.

The process stinks and the Mayor is a liar.

Hoe do we know he’s a liar………

Cuz his lips are moving……

peachy

January 4th, 2012
8:56 pm

Luda will be competing with Hershel Walker with airport restaurants?

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

Daniel

January 8th, 2012
9:56 am

Now I could be wrong and I am not a celebrity and dined there myself. I believe Straits may not have had enough Regular people their on a consistent basis. And that is not a put down to Luda. Straits was a very nice restaurant, very good menu and modest prices.

tim

January 8th, 2012
10:00 am

Did anyone get shot there? I guess his “celeb” hangout didn’t spend money. Typical urban customers.

Miles J.

January 8th, 2012
10:26 am

Tim… I can agree with your first comment, there is no way you would close a successful business, you either continue to grow it or sell it to make MORE money. If it was so successful closing it down doesn’t sound right just to open another business, I would think he would use that as a means to expand to open another location in the airport to cater to an international clientele instead of opening a new restaurant concept named after an old album, “Chicken and Beer.”

But I think you took your second comment a little too far. Not all celebs are magnets to crime, especially not all “urban” consumers. Sounds like you are a little upset you didn’t obtain a contract to do business in the airport just as Mr. Bridges did.

Ted

January 8th, 2012
11:20 am

The problem occurs when substandard businesses such as these continue to get airtime. This has been reported in the AJC over the past several days. Given everything else that’s going on in the world, I’m not sure why this story warranted so much coverage. The restaurant failed a health inspection and then subsequently passed, but that ought to have been enough for anyone to not go there, in addition to the fact that Ludacris and some of his patrons promote a destructive hip-hop “culture”. And as far as the airport concessions are concerned, thankfully I’ll eat something before I go to the airport so eating there will never be an issue.