PALM COAST, FL – March 5, 2017 – Chris Marlow, who along with his father Tony and mother Carolyn operate the well-known Golden Lion Café in Flagler Beach, revealed the family’s plans to open a second restaurant, this one in Palm Coast. The announcement was made today on my Sunday morning radio show, “Real Estate Matters.” on WNZF AM/FM (right after the 9:00 A.M. news break).
Chris told of how the family took over a failed business on A1A in the early 90s to open an English style pub in what is now the portion of the present restaurant closest to the road where Marlows leased the space. There were several other establishments behind the pub at the time.
Tony bought the building in 1998 and embarked on a long and steady expansion, plowing profits back into the business. The Golden Lion now occupies the entire building including a more recently constructed roof-top deck.
History repeats itself. Chris remembers “helping out” since he was five. His father had done the same in his parents’ (Chris’s grandparents) pub in central London. The London pub was named the Golden Lion. Tony believed that the name had been good for the family once so why not continue with the same name in Flagler Beach.
The Marlows have always been active with charitable work. For instance, 50% of the profits from the sale of Golden Lion Key Lime Tartar Sauce is used to support food pantries in Central Florida, totaling 17,000 meals in the past two years. Among other charitable activities, the Golden Lion supports Surfers for Autism and the Tommy Tant Memorial Surf Contest.
After returning from college, Chris immersed himself in the family’s restaurant/hospitality business. The fact that the Golden Lion’s now famous Key Lime Tartar Sauce is sold through Publix stores is a result of his efforts. The new location will be his next challenge.
There are still challenges, primarily dealing with easements and access. Bringing a project like this to fruition is arduous with many complicated and time-consuming steps. It will take time so be patient. Access will be from the south end of the property with the entrance along the road across from the European Village traffic light. A site plan will be developed once the easements and access issues have been resolved. Land planner, Charlie Faulkner, says the city already has plans drawn and permitted to beautify the area at the east end of the access road. Golden Lion plans to tie into that improvement and to offer easy access to those using the city’s multi-use path system.
New location is outlined with a faint white line.
Conversations with city staff and adjacent land owners have gone well. Chris and Charlie met with the residents of the Palm Coast Resort Condominium Association, giving the residents immediately north of the restaurant a chance to hear the story directly from their new neighbors before rumors had a chance to dominate the discussion. Association president, Dan Smith, tells me that the group is very enthusiastic about the Marlows’ plans.
The parcel has several large live oak trees that will be preserved. They are primarily located within the Army Corp of Engineers ICW easement. The yet to be designed building will make full use of the pre-existing beauty, providing an ICW restaurant experience on the waterway’s west bank for the first time since the old Palm Coast Resort was demolished.
Chris explained that the new location will be in the Golden Lion tradition. However, the new restaurant will be open for breakfast too. You can count on Fish & Chips and Guinness Drought Beer being part of the new location's menu.