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Places This Week: Restaurants news; New Clearwater hotel underway

Veronica Brezina



A rendering of the Embassy Suites Hotel at 325 Gulfview Blvd. and 326 Coronado Drive. City of Clearwater documents.

A weekly roundup of local real estate deals.


New townhomes in the making

St. Petersburg-based Canopy Builders, a high-end custom home builder, is planning to deliver new townhomes on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N.

This week, the St. Petersburg Development Review Commission approved a variance request for the project dubbed Canopy Oaks Townhomes that would be built on the 1900-1920 block of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. N.

The Canopy Townhomes site plan. City of St. Petersburg documents.

Canopy Builders would construct a new single-family residence at 917 19th Ave. N. and retain the existing office at 1900 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St N. The developer would also construct new townhomes at 1920 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St N., according to the filed plans. 


Gulfport vegan restaurant Golden Dinosaurs’ building has new owner 

The building that houses the popular Golden Dinosaurs vegan restaurant in Gulfport has sold. 

Haerle Wolfgang sold the 3,440-square-foot restaurant building at 2930 Beach Drive S. to KOR Capital Fund for $1 million. 

Golden Dinosaurs in Gulfport. GoogleMaps.

The restaurant is operated by husband-and-wife duo Brian and Audrey Dingeman, who will continue operating the restaurant. 

It’s known for putting a vegan spin on traditional meat dishes with fan favorites such as its house-made pastrami seitan, chili dog, buffalo tempeh and deserts like its vegan cheesecake and baked goods. 

The sale comes after the restaurant celebrated its four-year anniversary in July. 


Punky’s Bar & Grill closes 

The Punky’s Bar & Grill restaurant, known to be a local hot spot for the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) community, has officially shut its doors. 

Punky’s Bar & Grill, which has operated for seven years at 3063 Central Ave., closed its doors Wednesday. 

Punky’s Bar and Grill. Facebook image.

“Two thousand four hundred twenty-three days. We have accomplished a lot in this time. We have made friends, loyal customers, gained an amazing team of employees who have become family,” owners John Burt and Lynn Deibert posted to Punky’s Facebook page. “We worked hard, laughed a lot and made a difference every chance we had. We have become a place of safety for the LGBTQ+ community, a melting pot for people from all walks of life…and their pets! We have celebrated victories, survived struggles, mourned losses and came together to help each other and the community.”

The owners said they would be distributing their remaining food inventory and anything left after that will be donated to charitable organizations that can distribute it to folks in need.


New Clearwater hotel development underway 

The Tennessee-based Beachrock Lodging LLLP entity is planning to develop an Embassy Suites Hotel at 325 Gulfview Blvd. and 326 Coronado Drive, which is currently home to the Beachview Inn Clearwater Beach hotel. 

The 1.6-acre property, which was purchased by the 3H Group last year, previously received development approval for a hotel project consisting of the demolition of existing hotel and the construction of new a hotel project with 180 overnight accommodation units, an approved density of 113 units per acre, meeting space for guest use, a pool, a new lobby and parking with 241 parking spaces, according to city documents. 

The current plans show a nine-story, 99-foot Embassy Suites Hotel with a rooftop pool deck and 11,667 square feet of retail, which includes a 4,436-square-foot restaurant. 

A rendering showing the Gulfview Boulevard perspective of the proposed Embassy Suites. City of Clearwater documents.

A second public hearing for project is scheduled on Aug. 18 at 6 p.m.   


Venetian Isles estate sells 

The waterfront estate at 1900 Carolina Ave. NE.  in the exclusive Venetian Isles neighborhood has sold for $3.5 million. 

The estate at 1900 Carolina Ave. NE., St. Petersburg.

The 3,520-square-foot John Cannon-custom-built home was built in 2019, representing a newer build in Venetian Isles. 

The estate at 1900 Carolina Ave. NE., St. Petersburg.

It features three bedrooms and an expansive outdoor entertainment area with a saltwater pool and boat dock with a lift. 

Prior to the construction of the home, the property was purchased for $760,000 in 2016. 

The estate at 1900 Carolina Ave. NE., St. Petersburg.

Michael Lynch with Premier Sotheby’s International Realty represented the seller and Mike Florio with Compass Florida represented the buyer. Anja Prusac with Premier Sotheby’s International Realty was the point person. 

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