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Santa Maria Restaurant Remains Locally Owned after Sale
Connell family sells waterfront landmark to David White and daughters after more than 65 years in business
By: Transworld Business Advisors
Carl Connell has sold the waterfront restaurant that his father started in 1949 to David White and his daughters Jennifer and Julie White, who own several of the area's most reputable dining venues.
“It ended up being a plus that not only were we able to sell to somebody with a phenomenal reputation for the quality of their restaurants but he also has historical roots in St. Augustine,” said Bianca Evans, business broker with Transworld Business Advisors.
David White, who at one time owned Potter's Wax Museum, has owned O.C. White’s since 1992. He also owns properties located at 1 King Street. His daughters own The White Room.
White’s knowledge of local business will be beneficial in renovating and expanding the Santa Maria Restaurant, A Team Realty owner John Robinson said. “He’s absolutely the perfect person to own this property.”
Evans and Robinson helped Connell complete the sale to White by working through complexities stemming from the age of the property and permissions from the city. The Santa Maria Restaurant is one of a handful of properties around the country that are actually located over the water.
The business and property sold. Carol Lagasse of Estate Title had to go back to Spanish Property records dated 1762.
The property includes the sea wall at Avenida Menendez to the canal, approximately 450 feet. The restaurant is built on a pier, which is connected by a long dock.
The restaurant is 6,928 square feet with an 18-foot deck. A second story could be added and a dock could be built for boat access.
Now retired, Connell worked at the restaurant since 1952, when he was 10 years old. His family also had several long-time employees, including one who has worked at the restaurant for 21 years and another who has been there 17 years.
White also once worked at the restaurant, when he was young and it was run by Connell’s father.
“It feels good to have the Whites come in and buy the property,” Robinson said.
About Santa Maria Restaurant
Santa Maria Restaurant is on the Matanzas River in downtown St. Augustine, Fla., within walking distance of the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, and just south of the Bridge of Lions. The restaurant is minutes by foot from St. George Street, Flagler College, the Lightner museum, bed and breakfasts, and other St. Augustine attractions.
Page Updated Last on: Apr 01, 2015