Over the last couple of weeks, West Palm's CityPlace and their tenant, Brewzzi had been in a tit for tat wrangling concerning the nature of their lease agreement. These troubles began in October of last year when both parties went to court and resulted in what was deemed an amicable resolution of their troubles. That was until Friday, June 20, when CityPlace, accompanied by the Sheriff's Department moved in on the locale and temporarily shut it down until that afternoon when a judge ruled in the restaurant's favor.
It was a lukewarm feeling that best described the resulting feeling between the entities but as Brewzzi's Archie Stoltz told us, the actions were initially confusing to the restaurant and deemed illegal by a judge so the restaurant reopened their doors that same afternoon, a little past the 4 p.m. mark in time for dinner service. CityPlace however, continued their efforts to evict the restaurant by effectively removing them from the mall's website.
On Tuesday, July 1, a bankruptcy judge ruled in favor of CityPlace allowing the mall to take their retail space back. Much of the animosity seems to have stemmed from the restaurant's late rent and the filing of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection by the West Palm and Boca Raton restaurants. The CityPlace locale has inhabited the retail space for 11 years with zero problems in the past as Stoltz told us before.
CityPlace, which is a pretty hard company to get a hold of to begin with and especially in situations like this, released the following statement to news sources:
We have worked diligently for several years to try and resolve the non-payment issues with Brewzzi, as CityPlace holds each of its tenants in high regard and provides support on many levels to help them succeed. Unfortunately, even after such time and multiple concessions, Brewzzi was not able to meet the clearly defined terms of the lease agreement and settlement stipulation that both sides agreed upon last Fall. It's an unfortunate situation, and one that CityPlace worked hard to avoid.
For all the purported empathy and "willing-to-go-to-counseling" talk, CityPlace has been pretty swift in their blitzkrieg of eradicating the restaurant. There's the aforementioned digital wiping and this past week, mall employees were seen removing signage on the closed restaurant. With all this on the table, Stoltz, who was unable for commentary, has expressed to others the restaurant's plan to reopen and continue at the location.
With a reported $56K a month rent at CityPlace, wouldn't it be a better idea to continue the idealism of remaining open for the benefit of Brewzzi employees and patrons at a different place where maybe the rent's not so steep and the landlord not so bloodthirsty? Just saying, we're no experts on the subject, but we do know when a relationship turns toxic.
And this one surely has.