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Circo Orlando Scrapped

Written By Scott Joseph On October 25, 2017

Rendering Circo

Circo, the Italian trattoria from the Le Cirque restaurant group in New York, will not be opening in Orlando as previously announced.

The restaurant concept had been intended for the top of the currently-under-construction parking garage next to Mango’s on International Drive. The franchise had been optioned by Andrew Gross of Sunshine Ventures.

Disclosure: Sunshine Ventures was a client of Scott Joseph Company’s consulting services.

Le Cirque, which opened in 1974 and made owner Sirio Maccioni a celebrity restaurateur, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New York in March. At the time, the Maccioni family said that it intended to keep both Le Cirque, which is in the Bloomberg building on East 58th Street in Manhattan, and Circo open during the bankruptcy proceedings. However, it was announced last week that Le Cirque would close its current location, probably by the end of the year.

No such announcement has been made for Circo, and another Circo franchise opened recently in Dallas.

But Gross said that he was terminating the agreement to open in the new structure on International Drive, known as Hollywood Plaza, while he sees “how the NY troubles play out.”

In a statement, Gross wrote: “Although the prospects of bringing a world-famous brand to Orlando were exciting, [Hollywood Plaza developer] Josh [Wallack] and I mutually agreed a short time ago that now is not the time to open a Le Cirque brand location with the recent economic issues plaguing Le Cirque/Circo in New York City. As such, we mutually agreed to terminate the lease in Hollywood Plaza…”

Gross said he does not currently have plans to open Circo at another location in Central Florida. Instead, he is devoting his attention to a new sports and entertainment themed restaurant called Groovy Goat at a new theme park in Foley, Alabama.

Maccioni originally developed the Circo concept for his sons to operate. One of the sons, Mauro, has told New York press that the family is considering relocating Le Cirque next year.

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