Brigantine Restaurant Proposal Is Frontrunner For Prime Anthony's North Embarcadero Location

November 12, 2015

Brigantine Proposal artistic rendering street view
The Port Authority has recommended the Brigantine's Portside Pier proposal as the frontrunner for the Anthony's Fish Grotto space at San Diego's Embarcadero North. Anthony's has occupied the prime waterfront location for more than 50 years, but their lease will expire at the end of January 2017. Three proposals were initially chosen as finalists for consideration, including that of The Brigantine, Inc (owners of Brigantine & Miguel's restaurants), as well as one from Anthony's and another from Sunroad Enterprises that included restaurants by the Cohn Restaurant Group (Blue Point) and CH Projects (Craft & Commerce).

Following a competitive selection process, the Board of Port Commissioners will consider a staff recommendation to move forward with a redevelopment proposal from San Diego-based restaurant developer and operator The Brigantine, Inc. at a regular meeting on November 17, 2015.

Brigantine Proposal artistic rendering water view
As part of efforts to promote quality development to enhance San Diego’s position as a world-class tourism destination, in May 2015, the Port of San Diego initiated a competitive selection process for redeveloping the iconic waterfront restaurant location at 1360 North Harbor Drive in San Diego. The site has been operated by Anthony’s Fish Grotto of La Mesa for over 50 years. With the restaurant built on a platform over the water, this is one of the flagship waterfront sites in Southern California. The 52-year Anthony's lease expires January 31, 2017.

Brigantine Proposal artistic rendering outdoor deck
The Port of San Diego issued a Request for Proposals and received six responses. Three proposals were moved to the next phase of the procurement process and of those, The Brigantine, Inc. is now being recommended to move forward with negotiating a lease. At the upcoming meeting, the Board will consider the recommendation; the Board has the discretion to accept, modify or reject it.

“The San Diego destination deserves a world-class restaurant anchor at this prominent site - one that showcases the unique location, attracts people to the waterfront and promotes the culture and beauty of our region,” said Port Chief Executive Officer Randa Coniglio. “The Port team used a rigorous procurement process to compare the advantages of several excellent redevelopment proposals for this restaurant site. We look forward to taking our recommendation to the Board of Port Commissioners on November 17, 2015 and receiving direction on a path forward.”

Staff believes that The Brigantine, Inc.’s proposal is strongest in two key areas - improving public access to the waterfront and maximizing the lease revenue potential of this location. The company’s proposal is the only one to offer both “dock-and-dine” improvements and the construction of a public viewing deck. The Brigantine, Inc.’s proposal also offers greater revenue value to the Port, which was projected at $1.6 million higher over the first 10 years of a lease than the second highest proposal.

The Brigantine, Inc. proposes to redevelop the existing building and dock-and-dine facilities, and name the overall site "Portside Pier," with a plan to divide the space into four concepts on two levels. A new public viewing deck would also be constructed above the proposed Miguel’s. Concepts:

  • Brigantine on the Bay – “Will feature San Diego’s finest surf and turf… signature oyster bar, and a lounge with exhibition cooking.”
  • Miguel’s Cocina – “Serves up some of the most authentic Mexican flavors north of the border.”
  • Ketch Grill & Taps – “Casual walk-up, dine-in and take-out grill… connects San Diego’s unique, fresh pub fare, with the area’s thriving craft beers and spirits community.”
  • Portside Gelato & Coffee – “Will brew fresh coffee and espresso from San Diego’s own roaster CafĂ© Moto, and offer a wide assortment of fine gelato.”

A summary of relevant selection criteria, as well as the top three respondents’ concept renderings, are in the public Board agenda report. The full proposals submitted by the respondents remain confidential pending completion of negotiations.

The Port is the steward of the waterfront of San Diego Bay, making it the landlord and regulatory agency overseeing the North Embarcadero, including this site. The Port's commercial real estate portfolio along the five-city waterfront also includes more than 70 restaurants, 16 hotels, as well as three retail centers, along with museums and other attractions. The revenues generated from Port lands help the Port carry out its mission - including environmental conservation projects and the operation of 22 public parks - without relying on traditional tax revenues.

To learn more about the finalists' proposals for the Embarcadero North space, visit sandiegoville.com/2015/08/sunroad-enterprises-and-brigantine.html.