Sunday, December 17, 2017
Business

Tampa International to revamp its entire dining and shopping lineup

TAMPA — Imagine a Taco Bus at Tampa International Airport. Or maybe Cinnabon making its long-awaited return flight. Get ready for a slew of new places to eat, shop, drink and maybe even get a massage and facial while waiting for flights at the airport.

Tampa International is set to revamp its entire dining and shopping lineup by 2017. The Hillsborough County Aviation Authority, which governs the airport, got its first glimpse of the plan to assemble a new roster of eating and shopping options in the next few years.

"In days gone by you used to see hot dog stands at the airport, like it was a bus station," said Tampa International chief executive officer Joe Lopano. "Now customers are arriving two hours before departure, and aboard the airplane there's not much to offer."

Lopano said research shows its customers want a bigger variety of options: healthier food, more places to drink wine, to sit down to some fine dining, even a spa to relieve their travel stress.

Lopano has made it a priority to give patrons more options — and thus more incentive — to spend money at the airport. In fiscal year 2012, the airport made $9.60 per passenger. In fiscal year 2017, the airport projects that will rise to $13 a passenger.

When the new lineup is assembled and construction on the new shops and eateries in the main terminal and four airsides is complete by 2017, the airport expects that will boost concession revenue by 31 percent. This fiscal year, the airport projects $16.7 million in revenue. But by 2017, that revenue figure is projected to grow to almost $22 million.

That doesn't even include the concessions that could be added to the new consolidated rental car facility, a building that will be built 1.3 miles south of the main terminal. It's also slated to be finished by 2017.

Concessions are big business. In fiscal year 2012, Tampa International saw $81 million in total sales from the main terminal and four airsides. The most sales came from Airside C, which accounted for $23.5 million. That was even more than the $22.9 million generated by the main terminal. Airside C is home to the airport's biggest carrier, Southwest Airlines, local brands like Shula's Bar & Grill and Cigar City Brewing and national chains like Chili's Too and Quiznos.

The airport is gearing up for 2015, when its contract with longtime concessionaire HMSHost expires. HMSHost has been the airport's only concessionaire since it opened in 1971.

Instead of having just one concessionaire, Tampa International will be signing contracts with eight to 12 different concessionaires who will be providing the new food, drink and retail options. In the coming weeks the airport will host a series of informational meetings to brief local businesses on how to do business with the airport. Next year the airport will start accepting bids and awarding contracts.

For years airport officials said local franchises like Taco Bus and growing brands like Evos have called. The airport could also consider bringing in entirely new services, like a spa that could offer facials, manicures and pedicures. Or it could bring back brands that disappeared years ago, like the aforementioned Cinnabon.

But Tampa International wants to do more than just build its own mall, and Lopano said he doesn't want his airport to look like every other airport.

"We want to create a sense of place," vice president of operations John Tiliacos said. "When we develop the program, we want to create a sense of the Tampa Bay area."

Jamal Thalji can be reached at [email protected]

$13

Amount the airport projects to make per passenger in 2017. It made $9.60 per passenger in 2012.

$22 million

Estimated concession revenue in 2017. This fiscal year, the airport projects $16.7 million in revenue.

$81 million

Total sales from the main terminal and four airsides in fiscal year 2012.

Comments

Bitcoin futures begin trading on CME, price little changed

NEW YORK — Another security based on the price of bitcoin, the digital currency that has soared in value and volatility this year, began trading on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on Sunday. The CME Group, which owns the exchange, opened up bitcoin f...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Fueled by indulgence and machismo, restaurants are a hotbed for sexual harassment

Fueled by indulgence and machismo, restaurants are a hotbed for sexual harassment

When Brenda Terry was 16 and living in St. Louis, she was a host and food runner at a sports bar where female employees wore cute little cheerleading skirts. One night, she said, a patron grabbed her crotch. She ran to her management team and they de...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Taxpayer subsidies of Tampa golf courses are on the rise as struggles continue

Taxpayer subsidies of Tampa golf courses are on the rise as struggles continue

TAMPA — For the half of the year that Harry Nichols lives in Oldsmar, he plays 18 holes several times a month at Rocky Point Golf Course. On a good day, Nichols said he shoots close to par on the Dana Shores course. And if he’s really lucky, it’ll on...
Published: 12/15/17
Updated: 12/16/17
Pigs can be therapy animals too. So can horses and rats and cats and llamas and … (w/video)

Pigs can be therapy animals too. So can horses and rats and cats and llamas and … (w/video)

Shrieks of laughter echoed off the walls of the hospital as Thunder the mini pig flopped onto his side and the children huddled around him, scratching his pink, hairy belly. He and his wet-nosed partner, Bolt, drew patients in wheelchairs and bandage...
Published: 12/15/17
Vology landlord challenges property tax assessment

Vology landlord challenges property tax assessment

LARGO — Eight months after paying $10.15 million for the office building that houses IT services company Vology, a New York company is suing the Pinellas County Property Appraiser and Florida Department of Revenue contending its $5.5 million tax asse...
Published: 12/15/17
Florida’s $1.1 billion Hardest Hit Fund winding down after some hard knocks

Florida’s $1.1 billion Hardest Hit Fund winding down after some hard knocks

In 2010, Florida was in the throes of an unprecedented housing crisis. One in every eight homes was in some stage of foreclosure. Today, the foreclosure rate is one in every 83. Because of that enormous drop, Florida’s Hardest Hit Fund will s...
Published: 12/15/17
Report: Rich will get still richer unless policies change

Report: Rich will get still richer unless policies change

By ELAINE KURTENBACHTOKYO — Global inequality has stabilized at high levels in recent years, a report said Friday, despite gains among the poor in China and much milder disparities in incomes and wealth in Western Europe. The World Inequality Report ...
Published: 12/15/17
How the Disney/Fox deal will shake up Hollywood

How the Disney/Fox deal will shake up Hollywood

Associated Press NEW YORK — After years of tremors, the earthquake that had long been predicted finally shook Hollywood. Disney’s deal to purchase most of 21st Century Fox ends the era of the "Big Six" major movie studios, toppling one ...
Published: 12/15/17
St. Petersburg’s Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement set to be complete in 2019

St. Petersburg’s Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement set to be complete in 2019

ST. PETERSBURG — The Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement, under construction since 2015, is scheduled to be complete by the summer of 2019.The five-story, 137,100-square-foot building will house businessman and collector Rudy Ciccarello’s...
Published: 12/15/17
Obamacare enrollment ends today, but some can get an extension

Obamacare enrollment ends today, but some can get an extension

Today is the day that open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act will close for most people. But those affected by the slew of hurricanes that pummelled Florida, Texas, Puerto Rico and other states earlier this year can take advantage of a two-week ...
Published: 12/15/17