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55 West is for Sale in Downtown Orlando With No Buyer in Sight

According to a City of Orlando Council agenda item, 55 West, the downtown Orlando mixed-use residential, retail and office development at 55 West Church Street (MAP), is in the process of selling. A specific buyer has not been identified.  The thing is,it's been for sale for a year now. FFWO, LLC built it and subsequently sold it to TA Realty Associates Fund IX, LP. Whoever buys it next, as part of the sale, the 4 agreements below would need to be assigned to the buyer and the assignment would need to be approved by the City. In order to accommodate the timing of the transaction staff is seeking Council authorization for the Chief Administrative Officer to review and approve the assignment on behalf of the City. The documents to be assigned are as follows:
Amended and Restated Economic Development Incentive Agreement 55 West On The Esplanade, dated as of December 6, 2010, by and between the City of Orlando, Florida (the “City”) and FFWO, LLC, a Florida limited liability company (“…

The District Gastropub to Open in Sanford by End of March

The District (Facebook), a family owned gastropub at 112 W. 2nd Street (MAP) is expected to open by the end of March according to Orlando Weekly. The owners say it'll feature locally-sourced ingredients but it won't be farm-to-table and it'll have "good beer" but it won't be a craft beer bar according to The Bokey. A March 19th Yelp review (the writer of which lives in California) described The District as "Fine dining with a casual Florida feel."

P.S. Please consider supporting our small, Orlando-loving team by attending our Food Truck Bazaars. We truly appreciate your support!

10 Things to Know This Week

Church is Fine With Alcohol Sales So Close by But County Says No Anyways

Phan's Asian Cuisine 9741 S. Orange Blossom Trail (MAP) submitted a variance request to Orange County to sell beer and wine for on-site consumption within 1,000 ft of a church. The church in question, Israelite Church of God in Jesus Christ, which is located in the same building as the proposed restaurant, is a mere 53.7 ft. away.

However, the church submitted a letter of no objection. 
But Orange County Staff still doesn't support the request for the following reasons:
It does not meet any of the Variance CriteriaThe deviation is too great (it's a 95% deviance) Approval of the request would establish an undesirable precedent "along S. Orange Blossom Trail..."Staff consistently has upheld the community standards relative to alcohol beverage licenses Board of Zoning Adjustment has the final say. It goes before County Commission March 21st.

Tampa's Fresh Kitchen Restaurant Set to Open Several Orlando Locations

Tampa-based Fresh Kitchen restaurant  (Web | Facebook | Instagram) is opening several locations in Orlando, the first of which will be Waterford Lakes according to Growthspotter. Check out the Tampa location below and learn how the restaurant works. 
The finished product is a bowl
Like Chipotle, guests line up and choose their own ingredients
First you choose your base: lettuce, rices and beans

Cockfights and Strip Cubs - Our Editor Mark Baratelli Appears on Orlando Podcast Scotch and Good Conversation

Popular Orlando podcast Scotch & Good Conversation invited our Editor Mark Baratelli​ onto the show for a fun (and long!) conversation about Halloween in the mall, cock fights & stripclubs, prada handbags, oprah’s favorite things, 10,000 blog post, sounding like judy garland & being comfortable enough to be yourself LISTEN HERE

Construction Photos of Rooftop Bar and Event Space in Ivanhoe Village

Majors Investments (Website) is opening a three-story building soon in Ivanhoe Villag at 2000 N. Orange Ave (MAP) and we got a construction sneak peek today. The tentative opening of the building is May. 
Third floor: M LoungeThe third floor is an open-air rooftop bar with two drink counters, covered and uncovered spaces, fire pit, seating, views of the city, a space for live music and a "living wall" covered in plants. First floor: Majors MotorsThe first floor has a valet-parked event space with open space for banquet tables and mingling, several bars, a two-story wine cellar and 60+ classic cars on display. The space is not open to public and is rented for private events. Second floor: Majors Investments headquarters. Office space. 

Rooftop Bar