‘Let the fin begin!’: Daytona Landshark applies finishing touches to beachy vibe

DAYTONA BEACH — Outside, lingering heavy mist from a morning rain obscured the ocean view from the inside the new Landshark Bar & Grill, but the restaurant’s Jimmy Buffett beach vibe was undimmed on Thursday in its tropical wood-paneled décor, accented with sunny splashes of yellow, aqua and lime.

Even amid the din of construction workers drilling, hammering, finishing outdoor walkways, climbing ladders to string electrical wiring in the high ceilings and planting palm trees, the restaurant reflected the advice offered in the greeting posted by the door:

“Let the fin begin!”

For the Landshark Bar & Grill, the fin — er, fun — will start with a soft opening on Jan. 22, said David Crabtree, president and CEO of Orlando-based IMCMV, licensee of the restaurant chain started by Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville Holdings company.

At 10 a.m. Jan. 25, Crabtree and Rich Torella, the restaurant’s general manager, will join area officials and business leaders for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open both Landshark and the adjoining, separately owned Cocina 214, also nearing completion on the 6-acre lot at 451 S. Atlantic Ave.

“We work very well together,” Crabtree said of the two restaurants, which intend to collaborate on promotions together in a grassy shared space between them. On Thursday, that area still was covered by fill dirt, one of numerous tasks to be finished before the eateries debut.

“It’s coming along,” said Torella, who has worked for 15 years in Margaritaville-branded restaurants. “The health inspector was here this morning and she was very pleased. We expect the parking lot to be poured in the next couple of days and then we can start loading in stuff: Tables, chairs, pots, pans, utensils, glasses and other small wares. Our retail inventory is coming on Monday, so we’ll have a lot of the hats and T-shirts.”

Vibrantly colored booths already line the walls inside and gleaming silver scaffolding overhead is in place to accent the Shark Cage, a rectangular interior bar with a capacity of roughly 40 customers and an ocean view. Outside, a similar-sized bar, the Shark Bait, is covered by a thatched tiki-hut roof.

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