Seafood Kitchen's updates reeling in new business, owner says

Renovations 'pay you back tenfold,' says owner of popular restaurant

By Crystal Chen - Assignment editor/reporter

ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. - Seafood lovers don't have to look far in the River City for a fresh catch, and one popular seafood spot is turning the tide with some much-needed renovations.

Seafood Kitchen in Atlantic Beach had been dealing with missing sign letters, a tattered ceiling and a weathered building.

But now, fresh changes are making waves at the restaurant, which has stood at the intersection of Atlantic Boulevard and Royal Palms Drive for three decades.

Owner Nathan Stuart, who can often be seen warmly greeting his regular customers, said his popular restaurant's recent makeover is reeling in more business than ever.

“We've always had good food. It's just trying to keep up with the 80-year-old building, and it's like we now have a fresh canvas,” Stuart said.

Gone are the red tiles and columns outside the building. 

“We tore all those down, framed everything to give it a beachy look,” Stuart said.

When a wall came down in December, health inspectors detected some pests and Stuart had to close for several hours to get rid of the bugs. 

The building now boasts a fresh coat of paint, with more updates that have washed ashore in the diner.

Stuart has worked hard to land success, and encourages other restaurant owners to do the same. 

“It was important for me to start over with a new everything and not to cut costs where it's most important,” Stuart said. “Spend the money, keep everything updated and it will pay you back tenfold.”

He spent more than $150,000 to remodel the restaurant.  

“I tried to keep it homey and beachy. Nothing like five-star fancy,” Stuart said. “This is a family spot that people come after they go to the beach for the day or out on the boat all day.”

Reviews can be found on TripAdvisor, where you'll find Seafood Kitchen anchoring the No. 1 spot. 

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