Horse from Miami Beach club is retiring to private barn, owner says

Nightclub shut down after the animal was brought onto dance floor


MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A white horse that was paraded around a Miami Beach nightclub this month is trading the noisy dance floor for a quiet life at a private barn, the club owner said Wednesday.

The city shut down the Mokai Lounge in South Beach after a video surfaced showing a bikini-clad woman riding the horse onto a crowded dance floor. In the video, the horse is visibly scared and briefly bucks the woman off its back.

Officials and animal-rights activists decried the stunt, likely meant to recreate a famous photo taken at New York's Studio 54 in 1977. The club was permitted to reopen this week after meeting several conditions with the city, including paying $12,000 in fines.

Roman Jones, the owner of the Mokai Lounge, said he went a step further to make amends. He bought the white horse and renamed her Hope.

"I purchased her and am boarding her at a private barn with other horses where she could be loved, bathed, dewormed, well fed and looked over by a vet," Jones said in an Instagram post. "She will live out her days happily, and hopefully helping children with therapeutic interaction as she loves children."

Jones plans to keep people updated about Hope in the coming weeks through his Instagram page.