Another Staff Backroom Deal Has Been Cooked; Burger Bob’s New Deal Agreed To Prior To An RFP

Ariel Fernandez

Founder & Editor
[email protected]

First, there was Wawa. Then, there was Greco. Now there is Burger Bob’s. On more than one occasion, residents have been told these were one-off cases and that there are no other deals being done behind the scenes, Gables Insider has found that is not the case.

At the Commission meeting on July 13th, we heard a very somber tone by the Commission as they sought ways of providing more time to Burger Bob’s and its owner Bob Maguire, which City staff had instructed to shut its doors by July 31st. The Commission voted to extend Bob’s lease through the end of the calendar year.

At the meeting, we heard from City staff that a new tenant was being sought through a Request For Proposal (RFP) process. What they failed to mention was that they have already negotiated an agreement with a new tenant.

So what is the point of an RFP now? The fact is, the RFP is being used by staff to attempt to fix their negotiations with a potential suitor outside of the legal process laid out under the City’s charter, which requires a formal bid process.

Bob’s Contract

Burger Bob’s has been under contract with the City for over 27 years. The current contract was a three year lease signed in 2018 with a possible one-year extension to the lease. The lease, as agreed to, was scheduled to end on August 31st of this year.

Bob’s leases since 2003 have been either three year leases with annual extensions or single year leases. The contract stipulates a monthly base rent of $3,048.80, although that has been amended due to financial issues related to COVID-19.

The City also required approval of the menu. “Tenant shall not make significant changes to the menu without Landlord’s prior consent.”

The extension option required notification by the tenant at least 12 months from the end of the lease. That time-frame was in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. An extension was never filed.

Unsolicited Bid

On February 23rd of 2021, City Manager Peter Iglesias was sent an unsolicited bid for Burger Bob’s by Rodney Barreto, President and CEO of the Barreto Group along with a PowerPoint presentation on their proposal.

To be clear, Mr. Barreto and the Barreto Group did nothing wrong and have done nothing wrong. Unsolicited bids are common in the industry. Barreto Hospitality has worked on numerous great projects in the City including Red Fish at Matheson Hammock and most recently Forte on Miracle Mile.

The question is on staff’s actions and responses following the unsolicited bid.

City Manager Gets Staff Working On The Terms

Upon receiving the bid, the City Manager’s office sent it over to the Director of the Community Recreation Department, Fred Couceyro, by email with the message: “As per the Manager, please see attached proposal from Barreto Hospitality for your review and comments. Thank you.”

The email is followed up with instructions for a meeting between the City Manager, Director Couceyro, Assistant City Manager Ed Santamaria and the City’s Assets Manager, Zeida Sardinas.

Following said meeting in early March, Asset Manager Sardinas instructed Barreto Hospitality to prepare a Letter of Intent (LOI) with the proposed terms of the deal.

Barreto submitted this first Letter of Intent on March 9th. The terms: a 20-year lease with two five-year renewal options at a monthly minimum rent of $5,000 a month plus a 3% of gross sales. Barreto would invest approximately $800,000 in renovations to the space. They would also not begin paying rent to the City for 24 months after the opening of the restaurant, in other words, no rent for the renovation period plus 24 months.

Staff Begins Negotiation An Agreement

On March 26th, Asset Manager Sardinas returned a copy of the LOI to Barreto with comments on the necessary changes. “Please see attached response to the Unsolicited Bid for Restaurant Lease of City-owned Property at 2001 Granada Blvd. for your review.”

In said response, Sardinas proposes a 15-year lease with three five-year renewal options. The City accepts the 24-month rent free, but from the moment the lease commences. A loss of at least $120,000 in rent for the City.

On April 5th, the terms proposed by Sardinas are accepted by Barreto, and with minor changes and a final LOI was submitted by Barreto with the general framework for the lease deal on April 17th.

Although the City limited Maguire’s menu, the agreement with Barreto does not require the City’s approval of the new venture’s menu.

A Lease Agreement Is Drafted

Following the final LOI from Barreto, Asset Manager Sardinas sends an email to Vivian de las Cuevas and Tomas Castellanos, outside counsel for the City at Holland & Knight on April 19th, with instructions to draft a lease agreement. “Please see attached LOI for the city-owned property at 2001 Granada Blvd. As previously discussed, we would like to request that you prepare a draft of a Lease Agreement according to the terms in the LOI. Let me know if we can set up time to discuss.”

Barreto told Gables Insider no such lease agreement was ever signed or received by him. He explains that the City reached out to inform him that the contract would have to “do a public process” at which time he withdrew his proposal and will be submitting an updated proposal prior to the August 23rd deadline.

Although Barreto never received it, Gables Insider has received a copy of the drafted 34-page lease agreement.

The Greco Effect

Sources inform Gables Insider, the process of the Bob’s deal was stopped following this publication’s investigation of the 350 Greco Avenue deal, which “sent staff scrambling.”

Prior to the first official meeting of the new Commission on May 13th, Gables Insider began asking questions about the backroom deal that had been worked out to sell the City-owned parking lot at 350 Greco Avenue to former Vice Mayor Frank Quesada and his business partner, who are the employers of Vice Mayor Michael Mena.

That deal, much like this deal, had not gone through the proper channels and had many unanswered questions as staff omitted key details when presenting to City Boards and residents.

Discussion on placing that deal on hold to follow the charter and go to an RFP began at the June 8th City Commission meeting.

Timing Of An RFP

In what could be coincidence or a matter of protecting staff, on June 23rd, the City published an RFP for Burger Bob’s. The move came four months to the day when the City received the unsolicited bid and began its negotiations with Barreto Hospitality and two months after there was an agreement of terms with Barreto.

RFP Language

What has become common place in municipal RFP writing, the language of the RFP has seemingly been created to limit the proposals submitted and ensure that the Barreto Hospitality bid is the only that qualifies.

The RFP dated June 23rd states, “the City is interested in a chef-driven restaurant concept. The ideal operators should be experienced restauranteurs with direct involvement in the ownership or day-to-day operations of restaurants who must also have had a leading role in the design of restaurant build-out project(s) of similar size, complexity, and/or constraints.”

Barreto Hospitality’s unsolicited bid submitted four months earlier on February 23rd states: “Barreto Hospitality is a diversified food and entertainment company that partners with the finest Chefs and event professionals to bring incredible venues to life. The Company has interests in several restaurants and venues,” proceeding to list their restaurants. The proposal continues, “At Barreto Hospitality, we take iconic properties and help them once again realize their full potential. Part of our formula is sparing no expense on first-class renovations.” Seemingly ticking all the boxes the City has set forth in the post-agreement RFP.

What Of Other RFPs?

At the July 13th Commission meeting, Commissioner Kirk Menendez made a compelling request of members of the community for assistance to Rita Tennyson, longtime team member at Burger Bob’s who has announced her intent to submit a proposal of her own.

However, with an agreement in place, is this just a theatrical procedure?

The RFP process is open until August 23rd.

Public Relations Games Over Facts

On July 11th, the Miami Herald‘s Bea Hines wrote an article in the Neighbors section about the upcoming end of Burger Bob’s. Internally, staff began scrambling.

An email was circulated with a copy of Hines’ article from the City’s Communications Director Martha Pantin to the City Commission, City Manager, Assistant City Manager, City Clerk, Director Couceyro, Asset Manager Sardinas and City Attorney Miriam Ramos. “Wanted to share the attached story that was published in today’s Herald Neighbors regarding Burger Bob’s. This is an opinion piece for which we were never contacted. I will be reaching out to the author Ms. Hines.”

And indeed, an email was sent to Hines.

The lengthy email places the blame for the City seeking an RFP on Burger Bob’s owner, Bob Maguire. It cites numerous instances where the City has accommodated Maguire and how the City has gone out of its way to assist Maguire including its deferment of payments due to COVID-19 closures.

However, the email fails to mention one basic fact, the City already has a deal in place.

Instead, the email explains the following: “As per Division 12 of the Procurement Code of the City of Coral Gables, on June 23, 2021, the City advertised that this space is available for lease and any interested prospective tenant, including Mr. Maguire, may submit proposals for leasing and renovation of the property by Aug. 23, 2021. Our goal is to solicit requests from interested parties to obtain the best possible terms for the City. We look forward to fast tracking the renovation of the restaurant, so it complements and is completed along with the rest of the Pro Shop renovations. Once we receive proposals, our focus will be to negotiate the most favorable terms for the City that will ensure financial benefits and a fully-renovated restaurant that will comply with current building code and ADA requirements.”

This is not the first time Division 12 is mentioned. At the June 8th City Commission meeting, Asset Manager Sardinas spoke on item F-1, the Greco sale, and stated that, “the only sale where there wasn’t waiver language included was the one that was done at the Coral Way property before I arrived at the City, in 2018 or so, where it was advertised on CoStar and LoopNet, which is what I used to post, for example, when we have properties up for sale or for lease, I use that.”

City Attorney Ramos further explained Division 12’s requirements at that meeting, “Division 12 of the Code requires certain things.  One of those things is an advertisement in a newspaper for 60 days with very specific requirements as to the font and how big it has to be…the presentation and vote and input of the Budget and Audit Advisory Board, the Property Advisory Board, the Economic Development Board, and any other board that the City deems is appropriate and that’s it.”

However, these steps were not followed in the negotiations for Bob’s, as at this time staff had been negotiating a lease deal for Bob’s without following Division 12.

Barreto’s Proposal

Under its current configuration, Burger Bob’s has seating for a maximum of 48 people at a maximum of 12 tables with an additional 8 stools at the bar.

Barreto’s proposal will dramatically change the location’s footprint, moving the bulk of patrons outdoors.

Diagrams show 11 tables of 2 inside with 9 bar stools, and 104 seats at 36 outdoor tables. The change to seating for 135 symbolizes an addition of 141% to its seating capacity from the current 56. However, the monthly rent requested by the City is only a 39% increase from what is contracted with Maguire.

Additionally, modern outdoor fixtures would be installed to cover the outdoor seating areas. To make way for these features and outdoor seating, the design calls for the tearing down of the palm trees in front of the building, along with the relocation of the golf carts by removing other gardens in the area. A sidewalk will also be added into the greens to allow for pedestrians to walk around the restaurant.

An issue the City will need to address, is that during peak golfing hours and when events are being held at the Country Club, parking comes at a premium with patrons parking on the green or in front of homes on S. Greenway. The addition of 141% more seats will represent a larger need for parking for patrons of the new Bob’s.

Here is a look at Barreto’s renderings for its proposal.

Barreto Reaches Out To Bob

Gables Insider reached out to Rodney Barreto. He explained that he had met with Bob Maguire in order to incorporate him into their new proposal. Barreto states that he offered to pay off Bob’s current debt to the City, make Bob a greeter at the new restaurant for as long as Bob wants, keep Rita working in the kitchen and, as is seen in the proposal below, to keep the Burger Bob’s name as a way of honoring Bob and his work. Bob did not accept Barreto’s offer.

Barreto’s Other Proposal

Gables Insider has received a copy of Barreto Hospitality’s bid on June 7th, to an additional RFP from the City for a new tenant at the Coral Gables Country Club. The City has reached an agreement with the current tenant to end their engagement in April of 2022, vacating the Country Club as well. They also inquired about the “Biltmore Hotel and Golf Course Lease (or leases)” and the “Granada Golf Course Lease.”


39 thoughts on “Another Staff Backroom Deal Has Been Cooked; Burger Bob’s New Deal Agreed To Prior To An RFP

  1. 36 outside tables located 30 feet from the first tee box? If you have no respect for the whole scene there then just shut down the course and sell for multi-family. This is not a restaurant site, it’s the quick bite spot associated with our iconic 9-hole golf course. Clean it up and step it up; no problem. But, it is not a big restaurant site. If we are that hard up for one nearby the city should just carve out a piece of the Prado and do it right

  2. Excellent and very informative. The Loi from the Barreto group was filled with many conflicts and what.i deem as a very bad financial deal for the City. Who is behind this and who is benefitting from this deal? Open.the kimono as they say.on Wallstreet. I am appalled at.what.has transpired and that the City has couched the rfp to limit the potential pool of qualifiers. i am going to follow this very closely to ensure that the citizens of.the city are the beneficiaries rather.than lobbyists and special interest groups who simply seek to line their pockets with our taxpayer dollars and harm our city beautiful.

  3. The last thing we need in Coral Gables is another fancy restaurant, particularly one that replaces the community gathering spot — Burger Bob’s. You want an upscale golf course restaurant on a pubic golf course, take your pick at The Biltmore. You want an upscale meal with the associated price, they are a dime a dozen in the Gables and surrounding areas. You want to decent meal at a fair price that brings in the movers and shakers, families, kids hanging with their friends, and countless retirees, there’s only one place — Burger Bob’s. Burger Bob’s is accessible to all of the public, not just those that can affort a $15-$20 hamburger. And that’s as it should be.

  4. Well done article, thanks for your hard work Ariel. Have there been any credible alternative proposals? Burger Bob had his shot and got too complacent over the years. Personally, I would love to see a new neighborhood “classic diner”/ soda fountain in that spot. Something affordable, with an approachable, healthy, family-friendly menu that offers a quality alternative to the overpriced, all-too-fancy, all-too-ubiquitous, hootie-tootie Gables fare. Way too much of that already. Call it nostalgia, but I was born and raised within blocks of the Granada Country Club and really miss the variety of affordable casual dining spots, diners and delis that were our regular haunts. I am certain a good one would enjoy great success in that location. Good for the city, good for the neighborhood and good for the business.

  5. In the words of Otis Redding “Change Gonna Come”. Complain all you want about the process, this new spot looks amazing. Sorry but this mentality of “leave it how it is” just doesn’t cut it. We need better food, better service and for the love of god a credit card reader would be amazing. What else do people want from this proposer? $800,000 and 40% rent increase sounds like a common-sense yes to me. This guy literally offered to pay of Bob’s debt, keep Rita and keep the name. And Bob said no…

    It’s time to put your cash away, take out your credit cards and finally be able to get a table outside. This place is going to be great.

  6. Who wouldn’t love to be able to play a round of golf and then have a nice meal overlooking the course?  Why all the negativity.  Burger Bob’s has run its course.  That’s just the way life goes.  And why make these folks at Barreto Hospitality out to be the bad guy.  The City has advertised it now.  If you want to put a team together to renovate and operate the place do it.  We all have that right.  But not all of us have the money, time, or know-how.  I applaud their efforts to open restaurants in this climate where people need work and the hospitality business has been decimated by the pandemic.  And people want to eat outside now more than even.  There is a lot of wasted space in between the current patio and the first tee.  Adding more tables out there only makes sense.  I hope this place gets the TLC it needs.

  7. Why is it such an issue for people to look at the reality of this situation. Burger Bobs was great but it’s time has come and gone. I play Granada all the time and Bobs will be randomly closed or closed early to the point that it’s no longer dependable. Also, in a post pandemic world, how can credit cards not be accepted? Why should we only allow the members of the private country clubs have a beautiful set up in front of a golf course? I think this proposal is a much needed upgrade which will be paid for by the proposer and MORE MONEY FOR THE CITY in rent. Have the people commenting even looked at the renderings? This looks like a great spot where I won’t have to scramble for an ATM in hopes that there will be an opening at the current 4 tables outside being occupied by the usual suspects. It’s time to get with the times people.

  8. Not of great import, but can someone please explain why “The City also required approval of the menu. “Tenant shall not make significant changes to the menu without Landlord’s prior consent.””

    I would have loved the opportunity to see our elected officials discuss a change of menu proposal. Comedy Central network material for sure.

  9. I live in the neighborhood.  I am pretty sure the country club, the golf course, and burger bob’s were all one operation originally.  That’s what makes the most sense.  Right now there are 3 different operators out there.  No wonder they can’t get the parking and traffic situation settled.  One operator for the whole enchilada makes a lot more sense.  And so does improving the facilities, services, and amenities.  Progress needs no one’s permission.

  10. Hi All!  Local resident here.  There’s nothing wrong with a little change.  I for one would love to see a newer, cleaner, neighborhood diner.  Who says their plan is to install a fancy restaurant?  I literally see the words “Burger Bob’s on the Green” on the renderings in the article.  Has anyone bothered to ask what they put in the unsolicited bid?  Gables Insider obviously has a copy, perhaps they can let us know?  I am willing to bet the idea is for a cleaner, nicer, diner that caters to everything we love about Burger Bob’s but better.

  11. The issue in not whether the Barreto proposal is in the city’s best interest or not. The same goes for the Greco parking lot deal. The issue is the city’s failure to follow the established procedure for such projects. The city staff and the city attorney do not have the authority to make such decisions on their own. The purpose of a Request for Proposal is to give Coral Gables to opportunity to consider all options and to protect the citizens from backroom deals. The City Manager should be held accountable for the actions of staff and of the city attorney. Ultimately, the Mayor and Commission should be holding the City Manager accountable.

  12. Hi everyone. I am a local and I play the Granada golf course on occasion. I am happy to hear that someone is looking to turn Burger Bob’s into the kind of first-class facility Coral Gables and its residents deserve. I love nostalgia as much as the next guy, but have those of you complaining about the spinning wheel of progress actually been inside Burger Bob’s recently? Let’s be serious. The place is in need of a serious facelift, and that’s putting it mildly. I ate there recently, and frankly, I was a little concerned. Does that place even meet code? The food was marginal at best, and the cleanliness is less than spectacular. Quaint is one thing. Rundown is something else.

    Reading some of the comments here I get the impression that this is less about the City’s conduct and more about a few people trying to keep things “their way” with no regard for what’s best for the community. I also read the recent article on this by Bea Hines in the Miami Herald. Does no one care that there is a seemingly unlicensed catering company operating out of Burger Bob’s? I am willing to bet that the catering company is not a tenant of the city and makes no remittances to the city. There are *other* businesses who rent property from the City and I am pretty sure they would be upset to know that the City is allowing an unlicensed catering company with no lease, that pays no rent, operate out of a gem of City property.

    I see a lot of complaints about the “bad conduct” of the City on this, but it is misplaced. Taxpayer money goes to keep that place and its “rogue operations” in business and for what? Being fair is a full-time gig. I for one am all for a new and improved diner on the beautiful Granada Golf Course. And if you don’t like traffic, maybe you should not have bought a place on a golf course with an adjacent country club?

  13. The entire North Greenway Blvd and the parking space at the intersection with Granada Blvd has become so congested with cars, bikers, and people using the road to exercise while distracted on their phones that a really bad accident is just waiting to happen. Adding another “attraction” to this already busy corner can only accelerate the process. Let’s think about the area residents before we add more traffic to our neighborhood. Also, can we keep a little bit of the charm that originally brought many of us to live in this city? Thank you to the insider for allowing the opportunity to share our concerns.

  14. Burger Bob’s now closed on Sunday? What a coincidence, so is the aforementioned Duffy’s whose owner told me it’s due to his employees getting paid by the government not to work so they are working less. It was not Bob McGuire who decided to shut down for so long because of COVID it was the Mayor. All debts incurred over the past 18 months should be forgiven or paid by the former Mayor. Burger Bob’s is one of the places that made me feel at home in the Gables when I moved here 10 years ago with it’s throwback “old school” nostalgia to the coffee shops of my childhood (like the S&S Diner) that no longer exist anymore, largely due to hoity-toity concepts such as this Barreto proposal of which are many; while local flavor mom & pop institutions are few. Does every restaurant in the Gables have to take credit cards and be more fancy than not? I don’t think so!

  15. Has Ariel Fernandez ever thought of doing a “Miami Insider” or
    maybe a “Washington Insider”?

  16. I read this article. All seems normal. Seems like a market lease. Why continually attack staff? NIMBYing is great and all, but I live seven blocks away and never go despite my nostalgia for Burger Bob’s. If there’s no parking, people can uber. I don’t get the issue here other than trying to be difficult.

  17. Well, the Barreto Group missed another “possible ” venue to bring in a fancy restaurant! After all,
    the Venetian Pool does have a food area and events take place there. Just imagine what a favor he would do the City Beautiful! In case you all are not aware the pool could use some refurbishing and the food area could become a real restaurant. ….. But, of course some changes may have to take place, the pool may have to be shrunk to accommodate some extra tables, and some of the parking area could become the outside seating. All that they would need to do is to come up with a fancy proposal and send it in as an unsolicited bid. No doubt that some staff member will be ready to play along and some outside counsel will be willing and able to come up with an agreement!

  18. Thank you Gables Insider for….The Rest Of The Story
    I remember when I used to have feelings of pride in a d for our city Beautiful and the integrity of our city government. Seems that has gone the way of the dirty corruption of city of Miami. There is no greater insult
    Just what we need, another high priced restaurant in coral gables. I just can’t believe how lacking we are I them….she writes in her best sarcasm font….leaving us with ZERO options for a quick and cheap and fast eggs or burger meal that doesn’t break the bank. Not all of us have unlimited disposable income to drop in the endless list of expensive CG eateries. What a crappy deal Burger Bobs has had all these years. Menu approval?? Really? Big Brother is now ready to acquiesce all. The city becomes just another 8th street hooker selling themselves and their integrity to the highest bidder. Color me disgusted.

  19. “Justice is pushed back, And righteous behavior stands far away; For truth has fallen in the city square, And integrity cannot enter”.

    Isaiah was right…. again!

  20. To Frank Labrador: you say you can’t name another place that does not accept credit cards. Ever been to Duffy’s echo is two miles away?

    As to the rest of this mess: A county grand jury should be impaneled to investigate this deal.

    Or maybe the Gables should just run a shuttle between the new restaurant and the brothels on its northern boundary that our Commission refuses to shut down. But it manages to shut down a landmark restaurant!

  21. Substance aside, thank you for this high-quality investigative work. Coral Gables and its citizens are lucky to have a devoted and talented journalist holding the city accountable.

  22. If those renditions become reality, we will use one of our last iconic spots. So what that they don’t take cards, bring cash. It’s a diner and it has diner food and a nice staff. I hope Rita will find a way to stay.

  23. We live on the street and used to love going to Burger Bob’s even though they didn’t take card which was an inconvenience. We were sad to hear of it closing so we went during the week for lunch a few weeks ago and stood waiting for 40 minutes for a table. By the time we went to sit we overheard someone say they were out of burgers and chili – the two things they are known for. It was not even noon yet and the place is called Burger Bob’s – how after this many years do you run out of Burgers!!! We ended up leaving and crossing the street to Liberty Cafe. The service has always been weak but to not even tell customers waiting 40 minutes that you were out of two major menu items is insane. I am sad to see them go but business is business and they just can’t keep up anymore. I’m excited to see a new place that can match the demand of the neighborhood’s residents.

  24. I, for one, welcome the refurbishment of this beautiful area, which is pretty sorry at this time in utilization, road maintenance, landscaping and lighting. Alternatives for the CC lease and service to residents on the top of my list. I live nearby on Zamora Ave and real estate prices are around the million and over! The city is behind on development in our neighborhood.

  25. This is the Gables version of the Mayor Suarez sweetheart deal with Jorge Mas to monetize public land at the only public golf course in the City of Miami, Melreese. And, make no mistake, after Barreto brings haute cuisine to the golf course, the next question will be, “Isn’t there a better use for this valuable land than a dopey old nine-hole golf course?”

  26. Burger Bobs is a lot more than a place for a meal Ana a cup of coffee it’s a place where friends have been meeting and enjoying all the latest gossip, business deals have been made here and happy and sad times discussed by families and friends it’s a meeting place for many and we love the food and service. The big looser here is the city of Coral Gables if that try to change things.

  27. I live a block away on North Greenway and stopped going there for two reasons. First the place doesn’t accept credit cards and I can’t name another establishment that doesn’t accept a credit card. The second is because the service is lousy, and I’m being polite. I tend to root for the little guy, but there’s simply nothing here worth rooting for. Sorry,

  28. Thank you for opening our eye to the continued abuse of power by the City and commission. We do not need another high-end Chef Adrienne restaurant. We do need a good place for a quick breakfast with kids. Sadly, the city isn’t like it used to be and trying to be something it shouldn’t.

    Keep posting these gems!

  29. As a North Greenway resident I welcome Rodney Barreto a proven operator to what used to be Burger Bob’s, which has been running on fumes for a while. Bob’s is No longer open on Sundays and closing early every day. Unreliable and mediocre.

    I only wish Barreto would also take over the Gables Country Club and reinstitute a fine dining venue in addition to existing pizza /ice cream stand.

  30. Those living in the neighborhood must be thrilled by this. There is no reason to go full-on South Beach in a quiet residential neighborhood. This area is dangerous with existing traffic (cars, bikes, pedestrians, joggers). It will be that much worse with such a large facility looking to maximize traffic for profitability. Burger Bob’s ain’t that great, but Coral Gables can and should do better than this.

  31. I am surprised with the comments. It is a great location with soo much potential. I understand BOB has been there for 27 years. That place is terrible uninviting and doesn’t even invite families to go out for brunch or even lunch.

    If CG wants to be left in the wind. Keep them. Lets make the city better. The backroom deal is a disgrace but they should make it known to ALL restaurants in the city and make it a competitive process.

  32. If Barreto really wanted to help Bob McGuire his offer would have been more financial then the symbolic junk he proposed. Why doesn’t someone before April 2022 instead put up the money needed to finance a renovation project similar to Barreto’s rendering while leaving Bob in charge? Anyone thinking this is the last insider deal here in CG needs to wake up.

  33. Thank you for your continued FYIs! You are our most trusted source of info on what is really happening behind the scenes with CG’s dealings and wheelings. Please continue to report these “unknowns” to most of us. You are a true example of what journalism should be. Thank you again.

  34. Yes, proper processes should be followed, but let us get real. Bob’s Burger is an institution and should be left alone. You are tearing apart our City with redevelopment and ruining our architectural history.
    Can you PLEASE leave this place alone. It is part of old Coral Gables and we, as residents love this place. Stop changing our City. Give them a 10 year lease and let us enjoy what we have !!!

  35. Another back room deal so the connected friends can benefit. Why am I not surprised, even the new mayor Vince Lago has form for this as we saw with the “no parking” signs for rich people at West Matheson. With him leading by example it’s not surprising that the Coral Gables staff ignore the rules that are supposed to ensure transparency and open handed deals.

    Burger Bobs is part of what is charming in that area of the Gables and its size is appropriate to its location. The proposed larger footprint will interfere with the operation of the golf course, the primary function of Granada. So what next in the search to wring more money out of this area, pay to park? I wouldn’t be surprised.

  36. This is an important subject.

    It seems to me Gables Insider is correct, that this proposed Lease merits far greater public scrutiny, and adherence to RFP procedures, than appears to have taken place.

    Rodney Barreto is an extraodinarily accomplished, longtime, helpful-to-the-community!, lobbyist. His brother was Police Chief, I believe, on Miami Beach. The entire family is respected.

    Additionally, all of retail is hurting due to Covid 19, meaning solid tenants are hard to find.

    Nonetheless, the proposed changes to, and expansion of, the site, and the length of the Lease, together with parking issues, tell me a completely above board RFP — and public scrutiny — are appropriate.

  37. city hall has done it again.

    It failed to follow written procedures on deals about
    the public’s property.

    Who benefitted this time?

  38. Thank You for continuing to provide real news and information in our City.
    Your publication is like a breath of fresh air.

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