Openings and Closings

Samba Room Closes in Wake of E-Brands Bankruptcy

Samba Room, which for ten years brought Latin fusion to Las Olas Boulevard, closed its doors on Friday. The closure follows last week's news that E-Brands, the parent company behind Samba Room as well as Timpano's Italian Chophouse & Martini Bar (also on Las Olas), filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

It's unclear at the moment if there were other factors in Samba Room's closure. Calls to the restaurant have been rerouted to Timpano's, located just a few doors down. No one at that restaurant was available to comment for this article as of press time.

E-Brands, an Orlando-based firm, filed for each of its five

associated firms

on July 30 with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court's Middle District of Florida.

The reported assets of each entity measured between $1 million and $10 million,

with liabilities in the range of $10 million to $50 million. This is on top of a

reported a 23 percent decline in revenue over the past year. The LLCs for both Timpano's and Samba Room are in debt to the tune of more than $25,000 with several Florida-based creditors

such as Buckhead Beef of Ocoee and Bar Harbor Lobster Co. of Orlando.

E-Brands' influence

is far-reaching. It operates four Timpano's restaurants, three Samba

House restaurants, two Aquaknox restaurants, a restaurant in Orlando

called Paradiso 37, three restaurants at the Venetian Resort Hotel

Casino in Las Vegas, and two restaurants in the Morocco pavilion at

Disney's Epcot theme park. Since filing, the company has closed at least one of its Vegas eateries and one in Atlanta.

Whether Timpano's on Las Olas will follow suit and close is unclear. The restaurant is still operating as of press time and taking reservations.

UPDATE: We've got a few accounts from Samba Room employees who say the restaurant was floundering for quite a while. Read all about it here.

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John Linn