After Signing A 3-Month Lease Extension, Burger Bob’s Closes Doors Early

Ariel Fernandez

Founder & Editor
[email protected]


The lease extensions for Burger Bob’s were a community effort. Members of the community rallied behind owner, Bob Maguire, and his team led by Rita Tennyson.

Over the course of last summer, community members pleaded with the City to extend the lease which had been pending to end in August of last year.

The Commission heard the community and acted by extending the lease through December 31st and granted Bob a lease extension through March 31st of this year, which Bob signed just over a week ago.

However, just a day after the announcement of the lease extension, Bob sent a letter to the City of Coral Gables informing the City that he would not serve out the contract and would be closing the restaurant’s doors for good.

Bob’s letter to the City invoked the 30-day termination clause, which would represent a closure date of February 13th.

Here is the letter Bob’s posted on its Facebook page:

“Good morning City of Coral Gables and Burger Bob’s Family, This has been a very difficult decision for my entire staff and I. It has been an extremely difficult two years; the pandemic has attacked us in ways that we could’ve never imagined. I have truly enjoyed coming to this restaurant every day and I have had the extraordinary pleasure in meeting and becoming friends with so many of Coral Gables great residents, commissioners, mayors, and the community in general. While we appreciate the city’s gesture to give us three more months it really isn’t a proper way to run a business. It has been a pleasure being apart of this beautiful community. You have all become an extended family to my staff and I. We love this community and the support that it has shown us, not just in the last two years, but throughout our time here in the city. I am honored and privileged to have had this restaurant and the experience in the space and I must tell you this truly breaks my heart to be closing these doors. This has been a second home to me for the last 30 years and it has been a pleasure to serve you and your families, but I feel the time has come for me to stand down. Thank you so much for all your love and support. My staff and I truly appreciate your support during this transition. -Burger Bobs”

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30 thoughts on “After Signing A 3-Month Lease Extension, Burger Bob’s Closes Doors Early

  1. The following are definitions of Burger Bob’s, for those in need of understanding this emblem of the real Coral Gables.

    Elegance
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elegance
    1 a :refined grace or dignified propriety
    c :dignified gracefulness or restrained beauty of style

    Respect
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/respect
    1 :a feeling of admiring someone or something that is good, valuable, important
    “He has earned/gained/won their respect.”
    “The soldier saluted as a sign of respect.”
    2 :a feeling or understanding that someone or something is important, serious, etc., and should be treated in an appropriate way

    Grace
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/grace
    3 a :a charming or attractive trait or characteristic
    b :a pleasing appearance or effect : CHARM
    c :ease and suppleness of movement or bearing

  2. Oh Lord, make room for the new Coral Gables and let’s just bury Bob’s Burgers in the dust bin of history. This is the new sophisticated Coral Gables. This is not the 80s or 90s. Miami is the new NY/LA and we are Beverly Hills. We need sophisticated dining establishments in the Gables. Sorry folks things change – thank you to a forward thinking Commission and City Manager snd a great Mayor! For those of you who cannot tolerate change or a sophisticated living environment you can sell your homes at top dollar because there is a demand to live here so our elected officials must be doing something right and you all can move to Martin County. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out’!

  3. Snerdly Fackle hit the nail on the head. On the other hand, Pepe / Pete Money sounds like a mole for the builders and zero-integrity imbeciles in CG municipal government – shallow, insecure, corporate types with no culture. But, tough guy, you have it all backwards – anyone who can’t be bothered to respect the character that has made the Gables a unique and desirable location in the first place is who needs to leave, ASAP. Go away and ruin somewhere else with your vulgar mediocrity.
    Love,
    The Real Gables

  4. WOW. I guess I shouldn’t be amazed by the vitriol spewed here… some really snide remarks
    Civil discourse seems to have gone the way of the Dodo Bird.
    When I moved here in 1987 Bob’s was already a well loved community gathering place. I actually remember getting a delicious Thanksgiving dinner courtesy of Bob in 1998 when we had moved from one Gables house to another and in no fashion could scare up a traditional dinner on our own. We will cherish our memories in our dilapidated homes, of when the city was a kinder, more friendly city.

  5. Coral Gables Classic

    Burger Bob’s is a classic institution that with subtle unpretentious character lends the Gables real charm and personality.

    The atmosphere is refreshing the menu is delicious the decor is authentic the service is familiar and the community is the highest priority.

    This is all well known to regulars such as myself and the golfers of all ages the groups of lifelong Gables residents that convene there daily the schoolchildren the Granada area dog walkers the bicyclists the tennis players and the business breakfast crowd.

    The derogatory comments on the thread below are clearly from authors totally unfamiliar with this establishment and their air of artificiality hints connection to commercial interests in the space. This is unfortunate because in their bottomless pursuit of profit they have clearly missed everything worthwhile.

    Perhaps the most significant angle at the moment is that Rita Tennyson and family, Bob Maguire’s team of 26 years, stand among the three entities with proposals submitted to the City of Coral Gables for business on this quiet corner of the neighborhood.

    This is where Burger Bob’s supporters should focus energy enthusiasm and comments now as Rita Tennyson’s team intends to continue the classic style and legacy of this beloved institution they have managed for a quarter of a century!

  6. OK Pepe, Whatever. You do your thing and I will do mine . Want to buy a house? I’ll take the million.
    Best regards.

  7. Frank:

    Let’s talk about arrogance. I find it arrogant that a few loonies want to make a stink about everything and think they speak for the entire community. You all accuse our elected and appointed officials of being in the take with zero evidence. Talk about arrogance and disrespect.

    It sounds like many of you are already in a concentration camp, sir. You hate where you live and feel as though you have no other options but to stay here. If it is so bad here, get the hell out. Sell your dilapidated home for $1MM+ to some nouveau riche yuppy and move on with your life. Now is the time. Interest rates are rising and this once in a lifetime opportunity will soon be gone forever.

    Love,
    Pete Money

  8. Boy Pepe , or Pete Money. Were you mistreated as a child? Such arrogance and disrespect for your community. Many of the loonies you refer to have lived in this city for a long long time when it was
    a hell of a lot better place than what it is now.
    What do you propose sending them all to concentration camps? So the newbies won’t be bothered
    with their sentiments? Not everyone can afford to keep their homes up to your standards.
    Ah , les nouveaux riches……………….they can pay 22.00 for a hamburger . It comes with a tube of hemorrhoidal ointment.

  9. This is another example of Coral Gables getting rid of its history when money speaks. We’re still mourning the demise of the Biscayne Miracle Mile Cafeteria and now Burger Bob’s is closing to make way for a fancy establishment. Progress is not always progress-just look at Miracle Mile after it’s beautification-over 40 vacant storefronts.
    We will miss you Bob, Rita, & staff. You put up a good fight & finished the race with dignity.

  10. Some have said that Burger Bob’s business model was outdated. His food was not that great. He could not pay his rent. He did not charge enough for his food.
    Agreed.
    So…What to do?

    Newbies: CLOSE HIM DOWN!

    Old timers: Reduce Bob’s rent to $0. It’s not about the money.

    If you are not returning after Bob is kicked out then say it ….. “not interested”.

    Cheers‼️
    Agustin

  11. It was always a pleasure to come back after a weekend camping trip with Boy Scout Troop 7 and upon cleaning up and putting everything away, sitting down at Burger Bob’s for an old fashioned diner breakfast or lunch before going home on a Sunday afternoon. It was a tradition that was easily created because we had such a great “little hidden gem” so close to the historic Troop 7 Cabin on Granada Golf Course. Thank you for the many years of tradition Bob – you will surely be missed but always remembered!

  12. Well, so long Bob. It was nice knowing you. I would have preferred a little better menu, higher quality ingredients, real Vermont maple syrup with my homemade pancakes, even a few dollars more per meal would’ve been welcomed if the quality was there. Another fancy steakhouse? PLEASE NO! A slightly better diner is what we residents and guests really need and want. Thank you.

  13. CG is available to highest bidder. All of you complaining next election don’t forget to vote & show em the door.

  14. I agree with Pete Money. Bob has closed his doors for 1 simple reason: he can not afford to pay the rent. Not only could he not pay the rent, he only accepted cash at his establishment evading thousands in taxes I am sure.
    Time to move on. The only constant is change.
    BTW: Snerdly Fackle appears to be a racist by his comments above.

  15. Agree with Joe. To defer the decision on the proposals and offerring a business 3-month continuances was simply a way for the City, AGAINST THE WISHES OF THOSE THE CITY IS CHARGED WITH REPRESENTING, to get rid of Burger Bob’s. The City of Coral Gables, included many of the electeds, are rogue in that they have departed (for some time) from representing the interests of the residents. Who pays their salaries, the taxpayers or the developers? To whom are they loyal? Any rules regarding conflicts of interests?
    Makes you wonder . . .

  16. How sad, this Note of Closure we have all been fearing, has happened.
    What a beautiful, well written letter Bob Maguire shared with us, quite eloquent also.
    A True Gentleman.
    We all know the Coral Gables of today, is vastly different from years ago.
    It is all about making a buck, re-development from a new breed of people who could care less about the towns’ uniqueness, and the charms of yesterday. The ‘powers-that-be’ today have been licking their chops for some time now, about the possibilities of a new development on this site.
    Who is kidding who ? I Thank Bob, and the wonderful Rita Tennyson, for their efforts, all these years.
    How sad to lose such an unusual crown jewel of a bygone age, my Condolences to the
    Citizens of Coral Gables. Jim Herrera

  17. Mr. Maguire was offered an opportunity to sell his business to ensure it lived on along. More importantly, he was given an opportunity to ensure his current employees would have remained employed. He refused.

    Yes, the business would have probably looked different and for good reason. His business, as it was, was not viable. Who would have thought that selling food at 1980 prices would not work as a business model in 2022! It seems to me that all the people that like BB’s really liked his pricing more. Well, congrats, you all had a major part in him falling. But in true Coral Gables fashion, let’s blame the politicians (who bent over backwards to help him) and the developers (who gave him an opportunity to keep his employees and build off of what Mr. Maguire built).

    I look forward to an upscale place with 22$ burgers so that the town loonies are priced out. The less we get to see of you the better. Please stay in your dilapidated homes (which you refuse to fix up) and spare the rest of us of your continued misery!

    Love,
    Pete Money

  18. So sad.
    So sad.
    I think whomever takes over the Burger Bob space may discover that Coral Gables old timers are not interested in returning.
    If you are not interested in returning, then say so.
    Add your voice by saying “ not interested “.
    Cheers‼️

  19. Bob´s place is the typical small community restaurant that so many Gables residents cherished for so many years. Peaceful and friendly service, but totally inconsistent with the wishes of developers and others that would like to make of Coral Gables another Brickel.
    Probably too late in Bob´s case, but I hope elected officials reconsider what they are doing to the City of Coral Gables. Mr. Merrick would be distressed by the direction the City is being taken.

  20. Thanks for all the memories, Bob and Rita….not to mention the super hamburgers! We will miss you and wish you well in the next chapter of your lives.

  21. Let’s see, Bob signs a lease extension, then invokes the “out” clause. To quote Shakespeare, “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark”.

  22. Well, I agree with him that it is very hard to run a business not knowing what is coming next. I guess those that wanted him out succeeded. Does that mean that those that wanted to keep a family like business with reasonable prices will have to go somewhere else, out of the Gables to do so? Probably! Even though that is not what the residents want or even what they were promised. Another very sad day in the City Beautiful!

  23. It is so unfortunate to hear of Burger Bob’s closure. This diner was a “Diamond in the Rough” in the heart of our Coral Gables community and the powers at be are not smart enough to leave well enough alone. They had to go and put their dirty hands on one of our wonderful home town treasures. As Bob pointed out, ” it really isn’t a proper way to run a business”. The city did all it could to ruin this small business. Shame on them! Pro-business? More like pro-overdevelopment. Let’s see what over the top idea they bring with fly-by-night developers who look to cash in and get out. The community cannot be happy with this. I am not.

  24. As much of an anachronism as he was, Bob was just too good for the Gables – – in part because he was just such an anachronism. More: he was anti-Gables; counter-Gables, un-Gables. Moral Gables has long since come to take itself (collectively and individually) far too seriously, fuller every day of status-seekers, social climbers, and poseurs. What had once been a pleasant residential community is now a glut of ugly high-rises (more, every day) being built by land-baron wannabes, who clog the streets with their leased Lexi and Rovers, and the occasional Maserati (hah!). They increase their debt loads by building wildly-inappropriate, ostentatious houses (mortgaged to the hilt, or built with scammed money ). Most of them resented Bob: he stood for everything they weren’t (whether he meant to or not) – – simplicity, unpretentiousness, totally accessible to everyone; while not being the very thing most of those people wanted, starting with the language. Don’t like it? We’re just saying it like it is.

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