For those of you who are new readers, and can't believe these kinds of antics go on in Regaladoland, allow me to direct you to the series of stories I did in 2014 about the fancy restaurant on the Miami River that was originally called, Sea Salt and Pepper. They too opened without a license and inspections.
In a city run by a gangster, fancy restaurants opening on the city's waterfront without a license,inspections or BTR is just business as usual and where the last really big hustle involving waterfront property will take place in the next few months when the Rickenbacker Marina property, currently out on an RFP, will be awarded to Robert Sr. and Robert Jr. Christoph, because as I always say,
It's Miami, Bitches!
HERE'S THE LETTER THAT WAS SENT TO THE CITY COMMISSIONERS
IS THE RESTAURANT AT ISLAND GARDENS MARINA THE LATEST EXAMPLE OF SCREWING THE POOCH IN REGALDOLAND
THERE'S NOTHING THAT GOES TOGETHER WITH BIG YACHTS BETTER THAN A BIG WATERFRONT RESTAURANT, EXCEPT PERHAPS THE BIG WATERFRONT RESTAURANT THAT OPENED IN REGALADOLAND WITHOUT BUILDING PERMITS, INSPECTIONS OR AN OCCUPATIONAL LICENSE
MARCH 8, 2017
For some inexplicable reason I'm not on the Christmas card list of the Mayor and the Miami City Commission, nor it seems am I on the lists of folks who get invited to restaurant openings, which is why I didn't find out until yesterday, when I got a copy of a letter claiming that a big, fancy waterfront restaurant had opened illegally as far back as April of last year on Watson Island as a hangout for the folks who now keep their big yachts at the marina there.
This letter was the latest detailed laundry list of allegations of bad behavior to have taken place between the developer of the marina and resort and city officials who are alleged to doing what they seem to do best in Miami: Screwing The Pooch.
The history of the Watson Island's Island Gardens/Flagstone project has been one of broken promises, lies, damn lies, lawsuits and chicanery that goes all the way to Tallahassee and halfway around the world.
If I had the money that's been spent on the lawsuits, public record searches and payouts to lobbyists over the fight about this project I could probably buy a boat big enough to fit into one of those yacht slips.
You can read all about the legal fight to try and stop the construction of a massive resort on the island HERE.
Because I have such a bugaboo about the way that public officials abuse the public records law, I especially found the claim in the letter that the Flagstone folks and city officials had supposedly agreed not to communicate via email so as not to leave a pesky paper trail as just another example of the lengths of what goes on in the City of Miami to evade the law, which to my mind has become little more than an organized criminal enterprise enabled by a City Attorney who, as I've written repeatedly, lies about public records, and advises folks like City Commissioners how to get around both the Public Records and Sunshine Laws.
While this information might shock the sensibilities of some folks, this isn't some new way that city of Miami public officials have come upon to try and cover their tracks. If I had a dollar for every meeting that the current City Manager has had with folks away from City Hall so as to try and keep those meetings secret, I could probably afford to spend a weekend at Donald Trump's Washington, D.C hotel.
I haven't written that much about this fight, largely because it started way before I came along, and I figured that since there were other folks fighting the fight, I could better spend my time trying to cover stories that no one was paying attention to.
I did however, do one story, and as part of that story I included a link to an amazing document that Sam Dubbin, the attorney for the folks fighting against the resort included as part of one of his lawsuits that involved a 256 page motion to the court detailing the alleged violations of the public records law that he had experienced.
The letter below claims that the folks behind the restaurant got around the problems of building permits, inspections and all the rest by claiming that they are operating under a catering license, and that it really isn't a restaurant, but rather a "catering/promotion deck."
I guess someone forgot to mention all of that to the folks who did the restaurant review for Savor Tonight, which not only did a fancy story, but prominently, and repeatedly called the place a "restaurant."