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Channelside Bay Plaza restaurant to close

Published: May 27, 2016
A restaurant in Channelside Bay Plaza will close next month, leaving the waterfront property with a large vacancy.

Flambé International Bar & Grill will close on June 6, a spokeswoman for Franklin Street wrote in an email Friday. Franklin Street handles the leasing and property management of the plaza.

The restaurant, which serves American, Mediterranean and Mexican dishes, is 8,900 square feet, according to Kelsy Van Camp, director of marketing and public relations at Franklin Street.

"Strategic Property Partners has committed to present a long-term vision for Channelside Bay Plaza to Port Tampa Bay at the end of the summer," Van Camp wrote. "The port board will have an opportunity to weigh in on those next steps, and at that point, we’ll be better positioned to speak to leasing."

Strategic Property Partners is the real estate company controlled by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and Cascade Investment LLC. Vinik won the ground lease to the plaza in 2014, and the property is slated for a major overhaul as part of SPP's planned $2 billion district in downtown Tampa.

The restaurant opened as Taverna Opa in December 2009, Van Camp said.

General Manager Chad Bolsinger could not be reached for comment Friday. An assistant general manager who answered the phone on Thursday declined comment on a closure.

Several tenants have said business has improved since SPP took over the plaza, between improvements to the property events meant to drive foot traffic to the businesses there.

In early May, SPP moved its offices to the plaza from Amalie Arena. At the April 19 port authority meeting, SPP CEO James Nozar is still vetting ideas for the renovation to the property.

"We think by being there, clearly, we'll be a lot more visible and approachable to the tenants as well," Nozar told the port authority.

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Credit: Ashley Gurbal Kritzer
Source: Tampa Bay Business Journal