Group to open new restaurant at Shelter Cove

bheffernan@islandpacket.comAugust 12, 2013 

A local restaurant group plans to open its ninth establishment on Hilton Head Island, at Shelter Cove Towne Centre.

The SERG Group has signed a letter of intent with the shopping center's redevelopers to open a "flagship restaurant" in spring 2014, the 30th anniversary of the group's presence on Hilton Head, according to SERG founder and president Steve Carb.

The restaurant's name has not yet been released.

SERG owns the Black Marlin Bayside Grill, One Hot Mama's, Skull Creek Boathouse and several other Hilton Head and Bluffton restaurants.

The group's new restaurant -- the first announced at the mall -- will offer second-story, rooftop dining with sunset views of the creek and the relocated Shelter Cove Community Park, Carb said.

The menu's focus will be specialties from coastal regions of North America, the Mediterranean and the Caribbean that "cater to the palates of sea and land." He said it also will feature seasonal dishes incorporating local ingredients.

The concept for the restaurant has been in the works for three years, Carb said.

When visitors to the island look for dining options "they Google two things: 'waterfront' and 'seafood,' " he said.

He said the restaurant will be built near the waterfront center of the new shopping area, which he expects to become a mid-island "gathering spot for the town."

PLANS COMING TOGETHER

The Shelter Cove Towne Centre will be a 42-acre outdoor mall at the site of the former Mall at Shelter Cove. It will include several single-story shops, cafes and restaurants situated between a new Kroger grocery store and the existing Belk department store that anchored the mall.

The Jos. A. Bank and GNC already at the mall will remain part of the shopping area, but will move into a new building. No other tenants have been announced.

However, Mark Senn, president of the development firm Blanchard & Calhoun Commercial, said several other businesses have signed letters of intent and will be announced in coming months.

The developers also are crowd-sourcing suggestions for stores and restaurants on Popularise.com.

A walking area with views of Broad Creek and leading to a relocated, five-acre park will bisect the shopping center. The Town of Hilton Head Island has agreed to split the park's cost -- expected to be about $4.5 million -- with the developers.

Mall construction is expected to cost about $74 million and be complete by February, Senn said.

A final phase of the project would add 210 apartments with views of Broad Creek east of the mall. Those plans likely would be submitted for town approval in the next 30 days, Senn said.

"We're getting pretty close to having the total concept down," he said.

Project officials have said the center will create more than 450 jobs and generate $5.1 million in annual sales tax revenue.

Follow reporter Brian Heffernan at twitter.com/IPBG_Brian.

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