Orange County biz wiz Manny Khoshbin owns half a million square feet of real estate. But it’s 1,800 square feet on the third floor of a Coast Highway commercial building in Newport Beach that’s got him excited these days—and it isn’t likely to make him a dime.
In early fall, the 45-year old opened the Cubano Room, a private cigar lounge. “I opened the Cubano Room mostly as a hobby, a place to hang out with friends,” says Khoshbin, who plans to limit membership to 75. It cost him $200,000 to renovate the place—complete with stellar ventilation; humidified cedar-wood storage lockers (the Cubano Room sells neither tobacco nor alcohol); a lounge with huge windows; and a patio with posh seating, so smokers can enjoy the Pacific view. The name of this playground came easy: Khoshbin’s fond of Panama hats, and he loves Cuban cigars.
Many would say he’s earned the good life. With their native Iran in political turmoil, his father brought the family to the United States. A promised job fell through, however, and the family of six had some difficult times. But Khoshbin was an entrepreneur throughout his teens, and in his early 20s, he started a mortgage company that became a real estate empire in five states. Among his most recent buys: a $29 million purchase of a Newport Beach marina and the commercial properties surrounding his cigar lounge. “Now,” finishes Khoshbin, “I can enjoy life.”
Travel, exotic cars, quality cigars, wife Leyla Milani, family, making money
People who are late, laziness, cold weather, the price of tires for his Bugattis