TampaBay.com reports that almost seven years after its restoration, the historic Manhattan Casino has finally landed a restaurant.
The original Sylvia’s Restaurant is famous for its southern home cooking, established in 1962 on Lenox Avenue in Harlem, N.Y., by Sylvia Woods.
Urban Development Solutions, led by Larry Newsome, is behind the project.
“The exciting part is Sylvia Woods’ son, Van, will play a role in bringing the restaurant here,” said a jubilant Foster. “It’s a major deal for the city.”
The city spent about $2.8 million on the Manhattan Casino’s renovation in 2005. Since then, it has struggled to find a suitable restaurant for the venue.
“I wanted it to be more than just another franchise,” said Foster.
“The idea of putting a Sylvia’s at the Manhattan Casino, a place with a deep, rich music history in St. Pete … I can’t think of a better marriage.”
Newsome said landing Sylvia’s has been a long, drawn-out process.
“We started talking to them about the same time we went into talks with the city. We just think that restaurant would work in that location,” said Newsome, adding that construction should start later this year.
“We hope to have the restaurant open by late spring, early summer.”