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Hoffbräuhaus operators ordered to pay $7.16 million

Margie Manning

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A Pinellas County circuit judge has ordered the operator of Hoffbräuhaus St. Petersburg to pay $7.16 million to the company that owns the downtown St. Petersburg property.

In a ruling issued April 17, Circuit Judge Patricia Muscarella said the property owner, WG St. Pete LLC, can recover possession of the property at 123 4th St. S.

WG St. Pete sued to evict restaurant operator Bavarian Partners in October, saying the company had not paid rent since Aug. 1, 2019. Hoffbräuhaus continued to operate for a few months after the lawsuit was filed, but closed in late February or early March.

WG St. Pete also sued Big Boy Franchise Management, a Michigan company that guaranteed payments due under the lease. Muscarella also ruled that Big Boy Franchise was in default.


Related story: Landlord to Hoffbräuhaus St. Petersburg: Get out


The owners of Hoffbräuhaus Chicago opened the St. Petersburg restaurant in 2015. The 16,000-square-foot location featured a beer hall, beer garden and event room. The original owners from Chicago later sold the business to Bavarian Partners, which signed a 15-year lease with WG St. Pete in January 2019.

The restaurant was in the building that once housed the Tramor Cafeteria.

When WG St. Pete sued last fall, it sought to recover $7.12 million, which it said was the rent due under the full 15-year lease term.

WG St. Pete is headquartered in Seeley Lake, Montana, and the authorized member of the company is American Industrial Center Ltd., according to Florida corporation records.

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