Sunroad Enterprises And Brigantine Group Are Frontrunners For Redevelopment Of Iconic Anthony Fish Grotto Waterfront Site

What will it be? Top to bottom - Brigantine, Anthony's,
Sunroad proposal renderings
August 7, 2015

On August 11, as part of efforts to promote development to enhance San Diego’s position as a world-class destination, the Board of Port Commissioners will consider redevelopment proposals for a new tenant for the Anthony's Fish Grotto restaurant space on San Diego’s North Embarcadero. As of now, the two main contenders for the space are Sunroad Enterprises and The Brigantine Group, both who have submitted proposals that include numerous businesses. Anthony's Fish Grotto is not even in the running, although they also submitted a proposal.

In May 2015, the Port of San Diego initiated a competitive selection process for redeveloping the iconic waterfront restaurant location, 1360 North Harbor Drive in San Diego - the site currently operated by Anthony’s Fish Grotto for over a half decade. 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 on January 31, 2017, presenting an opportunity for the Port to explore options, test the market and ultimately select the best possible team.

Sunroad's proposal - street view
The Port of San Diego issued a Request for Proposals and received six responses, of which two proposals are being recommended to move forward with price and terms negotiations.

“As the steward of this public land, the Port of San Diego is using a competitive selection process to maximize the potential of this tremendously desirable location,” said Port Chief Executive Officer Randa Coniglio. “This is a very unique, over-water site at the most prominent location on our waterfront. Our region deserves a world-class restaurant anchor as part of an unforgettable San Diego Bay experience.”

Brigantine's proposal - street view
Port staff are recommending that the Board select two of the respondents - Sunroad Enterprises and The Brigantine, Inc. - to move forward in the process with rent and term negotiations with the goal of ultimately selecting one. The Board at its August 11 meeting will consider the recommendation, at which point the Board has the discretion to accept, modify or reject it.

A summary of relevant selection criteria, as well as the respondents’ concept renderings, are in the public Board agenda report. If the Board accepts staff’s recommendation, then staff will proceed with rent and term negotiations with the top two respondents. The full proposals submitted by the respondents remain confidential pending completion of negotiations.

Sunroad's rendering
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.

Sunroad Enterprises, who recently partnered with the Cohn Restaurant Group on the development of Coasterra on Harbor Island, proposes to be the developer and master tenant of the $12-15 million redevelopment of the overall site named “The Embarcadero,” with a plan to sublease the space to five concepts on two levels. This proposal has a projected annual revenue of $22-31 million and would include the following businesses - Blue Point Coastal Cuisine (Cohn Restaurant Group), who would relocate its downtown location if accepted, Fish Camp (King’s Seafood Company), PierBurger (King’s Seafood Company), Craft & Commerce (Consortium Holdings), who would be opening a second location in addition to their Little Italy space, and a Stone Brewery Company Store and Tasting Room.

Brigantine's proposed outdoor event space
The Brigantine, Inc. proposes a $13-15 million redevelopment of the existing building and dock-and-dine facilities, and proposed “Portside Pier” as the overall site name, with a plan to divide the space into four concepts on two levels that would have a projected annual revenue of $20-25 million. The businesses included in this proposal are Brigantine on the Bay, Miguel’s Cocina, Ketch Grill & Taps and Portside Gelato & Coffee.

Anthony's Fish Grotto submitted its own proposal, which has not yet been selected for consideration. Anthony's owner Craig Ghio intends to appeal to the Port board by requesting that his company's proposal be added into the finalists, hoping his 50 years as a successful tenant sways votes.

The Port of San Diego plans to award the Embarcadero project to one of the proposals by the end of 2015. If I were a betting man, I would put the farm on Sunroad ultimately landing this deal. Any takers? Check out the artistic renderings below and comment on who you think should/will get this coveted space.