Renovation was under way last week on four new restaurants coming to Broadway at the Beach this spring, with some closer to opening than others.
Good Time Charley's will be the first to open in a former retail location near Broadway's Celebrity Square and is slated to start serving customers this coming week, owner Pete Lloyd said.
"We've got to hang up some décor, move in some furniture and do final cleaning and we'll be ready to roll," Lloyd said Thursday. Lloyd is also part owner of the Beach House Restaurant, 1205 Ocean Boulevard, and Fire Island Grille at Barefoot Landing.
Nearby, Carlos'n Charlie's, which will take the place of Uno Chicago Grill, is set to open in the first week of April, General Manager Bernardo Chavez said. The restaurant is owned by Senor Frog's and will offer upscale Mexican fare, Chavez said. The restaurant will serve as a bar at night for those 21 years old and older, he said while standing in front of a partially constructed DJ booth.
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On the other side of the complex, construction workers walked in and out of the gutted building that formerly housed Tripp's as they worked on transforming it into Capriz, an Italian restaurant owned by Charleston-based TBonz Restaurant Group.
Construction on Tilted Kilt, a Celtic-themed bar with waitresses dressed as scantily clad school girls, is expected to begin later this month in the former Tony Roma's space. The bar and restaurant is expected to open in July, said Ed Messina, franchise development director.
Burroughs & Chapin Co. Inc., which owns Broadway at the Beach, chose not to renew the leases with several restaurant tenants and a B&C rep has said it is part of an effort to shake up the restaurant lineup, which hadn't changed since 2005.
Growth focus of NC tourism meet
N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue touted the tourism industry's 2010 growth at a statewide tourism conference last week, and the state's gains reflect those being made in Brunswick County, the head of the local tourism agency said.
The state's visitor spending grew 9 percent to $17 billion in 2010, Perdue said, citing the preliminary results of a U.S. Travel Association report in her remarks to the N.C. Governor's Conference on Hospitality & Tourism in Asheville, N.C.
"[Tourism is] a consistently growing part of our economy," Perdue said. "Visitors and vacationers spend money that helps local economies thrive and creates jobs here in North Carolina, which is my No. 1 priority."
Brunswick County is on track for roughly 10 percent growth in tourism-related tax revenue this fiscal year, which ends in June, said Mitzi York, executive director of the Brunswick County Tourism Development Authority.
Hotel occupancy was up 6 percent in N.C.'s southeastern region, which includes Brunswick and 10 other counties, during January.