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The Melting Pot to return to St. Pete

Veronica Brezina



Inside a location of The Melting Pot. All images provided by Paradise Ventures.

The Melting Pot will once again bring its sizzling cheesy and chocolatey fondue to St. Petersburg – but this time, the group’s new location will be on Central Avenue. 

The Melting Pot operated on 4th Street for over 30 years, which is now where a brewery will open, but the group is making its second debut in St. Pete with its newly leased 4,900-square-foot space at 695 Central Ave., property owner Michael Connor, President and CEO of Paradise Ventures, confirmed with the St. Pete Catalyst. 

Interior of one of The Melting Pot’s locations.  

“We are excited to have them. We’ve been working on renovating this building for two years,” Connor said, explaining the team has gutted much of the interior inside the two-story building. They also plan to add balconies to the second level. 

“This was a very old building and we’ve always planned to redevelop it. It is a great location on Central, being a corner property with a large space for outdoor dining,” Connor said. 

An earlier rendering of the renovations for 695 Central Ave. Image: Place Architecture.

The 16,000-square-foot building is on the northeast corner of Central Avenue and 7th Street, directly across from the Chihuly Collection.   

Connor explained he’s had a longtime business relationship with broker Sandia Wasserman, representing Tampa-based Front Burner Brands, the franchise management company of The Melting Pot Restaurants Inc. brand. She connected with Paradise Ventures’ director of leasing a year ago, inquiring about the ground floor space for her client. 

The Melting Pot will feature a bar at the new location.  

Connor said his team is going to start work in February for their side of the complete interior demolition, which includes exterior work, and may take nine to 12 months to complete. The timeline would likely allow the restaurant to open this year or early next year. 

Front Burner Brands was not immediately available to provide further comments regarding the St. Pete site. 

Connor is working with Clearwater-based D-Mar Construction and St. Pete’s Place Architecture on the buildout and design.

Image Studios, which provides operating space for multiple professionals, is currently leasing space in the building. Paradise Ventures may also open a satellite office at the site. 

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    January 21, 2023at4:45 pm

    I hope it won’t have the same “cafeteria” look as in the photos. Melting Pot was considered one of the most romantic restuarants in the area because the cozy, dark cubicles allowed couples to relax and spend time together…seemingly alone. An open floor plan would ruin that.

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