[Maritime Week / Bell Street Pier]


Restaurant hopes residential, tourism markets add up to year-round success

Founder and Owner, Anthony's Restaurants

The Port of Seattle's revitalization of the central waterfront at the Bell Street Pier (Pier 66) provides an exciting business opportunity for Anthony's Restaurants. To be part of a public-private enterprise that brings a new waterfront gateway to the City of Seattle and develops a new urban neighborhood makes Anthony's participation a sound investment.

Anthony's newest restaurant, scheduled to open in June, will be an important retail anchor to the Bell Street area.

Anthony's and the Port of Seattle have invested a total of $6 million in the 16,000-square-foot, three-part restaurant. Our "three restaurants in one location" -- Anthony's Pier 66, Anthony's Fish Bar and the Bell Street Diner -- will offer guests the opportunity to enjoy three unique Northwest seafood dining experiences.

Some of the key factors in our decision to commit to the Bell Street Pier include:

The waterfront location: Waterfront locations are a critical part of Anthony's success. All 10 of our existing restaurants are located on waterfront sites throughout the Puget Sound region. As a Seattle native, I have been searching for the right downtown waterfront location to showcase Anthony's for several years. The Bell Street Pier is one of the last and largest undeveloped portions of the downtown Seattle waterfront. It offers an unparalleled view of the Seattle's central waterfront, the downtown Seattle skyline, Harbor Island, West Seattle and the Olympic Mountains.

Tourism dollars: Tourism is a bright spot in our local economy Several studies have shown visitor spending to outpace the rest of King County's economy. The long-term outlook is equally bright with projections of solid growth in sales and employment in this industry for at least the next decade.

Tourism dollars are of particular importance to the restaurant industry. Visitors to the state spent almost $1.8 billion in 1994 on retail purchases, of which $692 million was spent in King County restaurants, according to Washington State Community, Trade and Economic Development and Seattle-King County Convention and Visitors Bureau studies, respectively.

The Bell Street Pier will capture a large piece of the tourism market. The completion of the International Conference Center, Odyssey Contemporary Maritime Museum, a 90-slip, short-stay marina and Anthony's flagship restaurant will attract thousands of tourists each year. And the future potential for foreign cruise-ship berthing, dependent upon the passage of pending federal legislation, along with a planned hotel across the street from Anthony's, will bring even more visitors to the Bell Street Pier.

Diverse customer base: The Bell Street project's broad-based appeal to residents as well as visitors provides the foundation for a strong year-round customer base. From our past experience on the waterfront, we know the summers are extremely busy. Winter months can prove challenging, but the development of a new waterfront neighborhood with ties to existing urban neighborhoods will provide a solid customer base of local residents Anthony's can cultivate.

The location will be linked by two new pedestrian bridges to historic Seattle areas such as the Pike Place Market and Belltown, and will bring residents to the waterfront to dine and experience new amenities such as the Odyssey Museum. And the 235-unit condominium complex to be located across the street from Anthony's will provide an expanded neighborhood residential base from which to draw.

Public-private partnerships: Anthony's has had a series of successful public-private partnerships throughout Puget Sound. We have had positive working partnerships with the Ports of Edmonds and Everett, and with the Port of Seattle at Fishermen's Terminal, where we opened Chinooks at Salmon Bay in 1988. Each of these have proven to be sound investments. The Bell Street Pier location offers the same opportunity to continue this successful pattern of long-running, beneficial relationships.

Northwest showcase: The Northwest is home to Anthony's, and Seattle's central waterfront is the perfect showcase for our newest restaurant. It will give us the opportunity to build on our reputation of incorporating the best of the Northwest into our restaurants. Northwest seafood. Northwest produce. Northwest wines and beers. Northwest views. And Northwest values, such as service, courtesy and a respect for the environment. All of these elements are Anthony's. This new location offers us the chance to bring these values to our guests at a truly Northwest location.

Our commitment to bringing the finest of the Northwest to our guests goes beyond simple words. For example, we own our own seafood company to ensure we bring the very best Northwest seafood to our guests. We were particularly proud to have recently been named the best seafood restaurant in Western Washington in a KING-TV viewer's poll.

The combination of all these factors will let Anthony's present the best of Seattle to all who visit the Bell Street Pier. We know that our decision to become part of the Bell Street Pier means good business.

Budd Gould is founder and owner of Anthony's Restaurants. Established in 1972, Anthony's is a nationally-recognized, locally-based company which owns and operates 10 waterfront locations in the Puget Sound region. In June 1996, Anthony's will open its flagship restaurant, Anthony's Pier 66 & Bell Street Diner, on Seattle's central waterfront.

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