Flip-flop and sandal shop gets a toehold at Pier
As everyone focuses on the Eye, the Wave and the Lens, one tenant of the current Pier has created a premakeover edgy concept for the tourist attraction. Jon Reno La Budde, who operates Jonny Reno's Waterfront Grill at the Pier, recently opened Reno's Flop Haus there. The store specializes in flip-flops, sandals and accessories. But what really sets it apart from other beachwear retailers, or any retailer for that matter, is its design. The decor looks like what might be found at a cheap downtown hotel known as a flop house. Hip brands such as Rainbow, Sanuk, Cobian, Havaianas and Reef are displayed on old dressers, with cloudy mirrors and vintage TV sets. Co-owners Kristin and Elliott Bedinghaus helped create the nonconventional design. Elliott Bedinghaus is the creative director at Spark, a Tampa ad agency. The Pier is 100 percent occupied. It is slated for demolition and a $50 million makeover in 2013 or early 2014.
Katherine Snow Smith, Times Staff Writer
St. Pete beach
Familiar names have a new restaurant
The Salty Rim Grill is open in the location that used to house Ocean Breeze at 9524 Blind Pass Road. It calls its offerings "Floribbean cuisine," with foods influenced by tastes of the Caribbean, Florida Keys and other places that rim the Gulf of Mexico. Dishes include fish tacos, Sierra Madre pulled pork, seafood barbecue and a daily selection of fresh fish. The new eatery is headed up by Scott Estes, who was an owner of Lee Roy Selmon's and Rattlefish Bar & Grill, and Jeff Hawks, who owned Hawks Neighborhood Grill.