Longshore Restaurant Reopens In February

Slow winters helped drive Splash — the long-running Longshore restaurant — out of business.

Pearl at Longshore — the new spot taking its place — hopes to do better. They’re even starting with a wintertime crowd.

Owners Marc Backon, Antonio Ninivaggi and their local investors announced this afternoon they’ll open in February.

The new Pearl of Longshore restaurant opens in February. Disregard this August view of Splash.

The new Pearl of Longshore restaurant opens in February. Disregard this August view of Splash.

They’ve spent months restoring the interior — and kitchen. Executive chef Michael Hazen will serve “sophisticated, seasonally inspired American cuisine” that focuses on “the simplicity and flavors of the ingredients.”

Pearl will offer traditional seafood dishes, grass-fed beef and seasonal produce, with organic, healthy and gluten-free selections. The bar includes craft and micro-brew beers. “Pearl in a Box” is the name of their takeout menu.

Designer Bilal Barakat has “captured the spirit and history of Longshore, and infused it with a rustic chic and cosmopolitan feel.”

Sounds like big changes are ahead for Longshore diners.

But the new owners were smart to leave one thing alone: the view.

Even in February, it’s spectacular.

5 responses to “Longshore Restaurant Reopens In February

  1. Just in time for Staples’ 71 45th! Wishing the new owners lots of success.

  2. Dan-there appears to be something questionable about Longshore regarding the lease and the return Westport is getting for Longshore. I started to look into Longshore and something appears to be wrong.

    We have a potential classy golf center, beautiful Inn and restaurant. Yet the Inn is run down, the restaurants continue to fail and we have no idea the value and money Westport is receiving. Longshore Inn could be wonderful, the golf center world class and the restaurants that are suppose to be open thriving. It is not and brings many questions–WHY?

    Somehow it appears the lease just gets renewed, without from what I understand, competitive bids. Why?? In addition there are parts of the lease that appear not provided. The lease requires a Pub Menu with a dedicated area (casual restaurant) for the golfers to go for burgers and beer. I don’t believe that exists. There is to be a Revenue Share for the town with quarterly reports to be provided to the town to review. Has that been happening?

    Something appears wrong and the residents should start asking why Longshore is not the fantastic place it should be. Westport residents should be asking–why is the lease just renewed, with no competitive bids? Would a new lessee upgrade the facilities and create a world-class Inn and golf center?

    I wish the new owners of the restaurant much success—but is Longshore the Inn it could be?

  3. Kathryn Sirico

    I look forward to the new restaurant, however, the Inn is so terribly run down I don’t know how events can be held and guests stay there. Is that ever going to be renovated?

    • Kathryn-I have reviewed the lease and it is difficult to understand why one person has been the Tenant for so long. The lease Commencement date is January 1, 2007. The Term is 11 years—ending December 31, 2018. The Lease is signed by Gordon Joseloff, who was Westport’s First Selectman at that time.

      However, the Tenant, who appears to be the same person that signed the Lease in 2007, has had this lease since February 22, 1984. Through the Initial Term of that lease and what appears to be many 5 year extensions, a new Lease with the same Tenant was signed 23 years after this Tennant signed the original Lease.

      The new Lease also has Extension Options, whereby the Lease can be extended twice, for consecutive 5 year terms. Basically this Tenant can have the Lease through 2028.

      Why the Town of Westport continued to lease the premises to the same person for what will be 34 years raises questions, given the condition of the Inn and the issues with the restaurants and the fact the Lease is not being followed. Did the Town of Westport, when decided to assemble a new Lease, get competitive bids? We deserve an answer.

      Since a new Lease was signed in 2007, It also brings to question why the Town did not try to improve/change the Building and make Longshore a truly world class facility. It would have the effect of raising the value of living in Westport.

      As part of the Lease there is to be a Pub, which as we know, does not exist. Also, as part of the Lease, the Tenant is to maintain the Building in a condition of a first class restaurant, inn and catering facility. Your note clearly questions whether the building is in first class condition.

      Longshore should be a world class facility which combines our wonderful golf course with rooms at the Inn and restaurants and catering facilities that not only benefit the residents, but easily becomes a nice revenue generator for the Town. I can only wonder how many developers would like a chance to create such a facility.

      I guess we will have to wait till 2018 to see what Westport officials do. And maybe we can also find out if competitive bids were requested when this last lease was generated.