Orlando Restauranteur Signs Lease & Development Agreement With legendary Le Cirque Restaurant Brands

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Circo Orlando, to open in 2017 next to Mango’s Tropical Café as International Drive’s highest restaurant. Circo Orlando will Offer Exceptional Italian Tuscan Dining From NYC’s Famed Le Cirque Family, Maccioni Restaurant Group

Sunshine Ventures, a Longwood-based restaurant group owned by Andrew Gross, has signed a Florida development agreement with New York-based LC International, the owners of the renowned Le Cirque, Osteria del Circo and Sirio Ristorante restaurants throughout the world.

The agreement gives Sunshine the exclusive rights to develop any of the company’s current brands and any additional concepts in Central and South Florida. The first restaurant, Circo Orlando, is scheduled to open in the second quarter of 2017, near Mango’s Tropical Café.

“Orlando is craving an extremely high-end Italian restaurant for both residents and its convention visitors,” Gross says. “As we’ve looked at various concepts over the past two years, the Le Cirque brands stood out for their reputation throughout the world.”

Gross was the president and CEO of Sunshine Restaurant Corp, which held the local development agreement for Buffalo Wild Wings. He operated 10 locations from Daytona to Kissimmee until the holdings were purchased by Buffalo Wild Wings corporate in 2014.

Since 1974, Le Cirque has been recognized among the top restaurants anywhere, with dozens of the world’s top chefs including Daniel Boulud, Geoffrey Zakarian, Bill Telepan, David Bouley, Marc Murphy, Michael Lomonaco, Terrence Brennan, Jacques Torres and many others starting in the New York City restaurant’s kitchen. Featuring a high-end French cuisine, it’s often referred to as one of New York’s iconic restaurants and frequented nightly by celebrities, dignitaries and world-figures for more than 40 years.

In 1996, after Le Cirque won the James Beard Foundation’s Outstanding Restaurant Award, the family-owned restaurant opened Osteria del Circo in New York, bringing the playful, circus theme to Italian fine dining.

“We are thrilled to partner with Sunshine Ventures to bring Circo to Orlando, one of the most important business and leisure destinations in the world,” Carlo Mantica, CEO, LC International. “We are looking forward to bring authentic Tuscan cuisine to the many Floridians that have visited Circo regularly in all our locations.”

Circo Orlando will become an iconic location as well, on the top floor of the new commercial development and parking facility adjacent to the $40 million Mango’s Tropical Café. Circo Orlando will reach 120-feet high towering over International Drive as its highest restaurant.

“Anytime a brand such as this chooses to come to Orlando, it is very exciting and shows we are truly transforming this area into an upscale entertainment district,” said Joshua Wallack, COO of Mango’s Tropical Café and the developer of SKYPLEX. “There is nowhere else in the world where you can ride the world’s tallest roller coaster, dine at one of the finest Italian restaurants in the world and then have a VIP experience at a world-famous dance club.”

With the area’s first retractable glass roof, dining at Circo Orlando will have sweeping views from its dining area overlooking the I-Drive Entertainment District to the east and showcasing breathtaking sunsets and Walt Disney World firework shows to the west, all with seating under the stars. Also under the retractable roof, will be ’la Vetta’, the restaurant’s signature lounge.

The restaurant’s menu will mirror the Circo restaurants in New York City and in Abu Dhabi, with new dishes exclusive only to Orlando.

"We are thrilled to add a world-renowned establishment like Le Cirque's Circo to the International Drive/Convention Center area," says George Aguel, president & CEO of Visit Orlando, the region’s tourism association. “This announcement responds favorably to the growing demand from our convention and leisure travelers for this type of high-end experience and shows how Orlando has evolved as a world-class dining destination for visitors across the globe."

When complete, Circo Orlando will have more than 10,000 square feet of space and its being designed by The Gravity Company with offices in Orlando and Dallas. Construction costs are estimated to be approximately $3.5 million for location. Specifics and timing for additional restaurants have not been determined.

Bobby Palta of CBRE represented the Landlord, Wallack Holdings in the lease of Circo Orlando and structured the agreement between Sunshine Ventures and LC International.

“Orlando deserves world class culinary experiences and there is no doubt that this Circo concept by the Maccioni family & legendary Le Cirque brand at this location in this unique setting will be one of the hottest tables in town,” Palta says.

The Le Cirque brands of restaurants are open in New York City, Las Vegas, New Dheli, Mumbai, Bangalore, Abu Dhabi the Dominican Republic and aboard of 15 Holland America cruise ships.

Video walkthrough of the restaurant and high resolution images are available for download on Dropbox here.

For more information, please visit on the web at CircoOrl.com or CircoNYC.com, at Facebook.com/CircoOrlando or @CircoNYC

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