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Brushes with fame: Alice Cooper and Redd Foxx

Brushes with fame: Alice Cooper and Redd Foxx

Celeb spotting is adventure at Marco Polo

When I was 16 years old in 1975, I worked in housekeeping in the Marco Polo Hotel in Miami Beach, Fla.

At time, the Marco Polo was a hot night spot for top-name entertainment.

One night after work, I was playing pool in the game room and in walked Alice Cooper! He was in full make-up and accompanied by two band members. Before I knew it I was playing pool with Alice Cooper.

In the 1970s, Alice Cooper was the epitome of shock rock, but he was super nice, well-spoken and just an ordinary guy hanging out and having fun.

During the same period, in the same job, I also met Herb Reed, lead singer for the Platters. I frequently ran into Herb in the hotel laundry room, doing his own laundry. We struck up a friendship, and he even asked me to join his set-up crew.

I was too young to take him up on it, but it made for a good memory.

I also met Redd Foxx at the Marco Polo. He called room service for extra towels, and, when I delivered the towels, he asked me where he could get some good home-cooked style food. I personally took him to my favorite store and recommended the BBQ sandwich and ribs.

He lived up to his reputation as there was a gorgeous young woman on his arm.

Years later, working as a produce buyer and manager in a Miami Beach gourmet specialty store, I also met Tip O'Neill, David Brinkley, Julio Inglesias, Raymond Floyd, Maida Heatter, the crew from "Miami Vice" and various other famous people.

But my fondest memories were from those years in the mid-1970s at the Marco Polo.

- Tony Actisdano



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