Make us your home page

Banyan Cafe, Margarita Mama's arrive in St. Pete; charter boat starts in Gulfport


Banyan cafe reopens downtown

The menu and homey atmosphere of Banyan Cafe & Catering are still the same since recently reopening after owner Erica Allums took a nine-month hiatus. She temporarily closed the restaurant but continued paying rent so she could spend more time with family, including a daughter who was in her senior year of high school.

"I felt like I had just missed her whole high school because of the restaurant and wanted to take some time to be with my family and figure some things out with the restaurant," Allums said. She opened Banyan Cafe, her first restaurant, three years ago at 689 Dr. Martin Luther King St. N. It seats 35.

A few of the staff are back after the break and many of the customers are saddling up to the same bar and tables to order homemade soups, Nutella scones and the turkey sandwich on multigrain bread with sage dressing and cranberry chutney.

"It's the same concept we had before, kind of like your home away from home," Allums said. Her favorite entree? The pork sandwich with caramelized onions and banana peppers on Cuban bread.

Katherine Snow Smith, Times staff writer


New diving charter

A new diving and fishing charter business is hitting the waters off Gulfport. Scuba Cat Charters specializes in six-passenger scuba trips to sites off the St. Pete Beach coastline. It will head out from the Gulfport Marina at 4630 29th Ave. S. Dives with two or three tanks range from $100 to $140 per person.

The 29-foot boat can also be reserved for full- and half-day fishing and exploration excursions for $300 to $975. There are special prices for sunset cruises, marriage proposals and ash scatterings at sea.


Grand opening is Friday

Margarita Mama's and Banana Joe's pulled up their roots in Channelside and found a new home in downtown St. Petersburg's Kress Building, 475 Central Ave. Friday's grand opening celebration includes music, free cocktails, games, shuffleboard and a silent auction from 6 to 8 p.m. Proceeds benefit the Children's Dream Fund. No cover. For information, call (727) 667-1530.

News of businesses and business people can be faxed to (727) 893-8675 or emailed to

Banyan Cafe, Margarita Mama's arrive in St. Pete; charter boat starts in Gulfport 08/07/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 7, 2012 3:47pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Study: Tampa Bay a top market for homebuyers on the move

    Real Estate

    The Tampa Bay area is among the top markets for homebuyers who are likely to move in the next few months, ATTOM Data Solutions says.

    The Tampa Bay area is among the top markets for homebuyers who are likely to move in the next few months, a survey found.
[Associated Press file photo]
  2. Ousted to political Siberia by Corcoran, Kathleen Peters sets sights on Pinellas Commission

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — The perks of power in Tallahassee are a coveted chairmanship, a Capitol office in a prime location and a prominent seat on the House floor. Now Rep. Kathleen Peters has lost all three, but here's the twist: Her trip to "Siberia" might actually help her reach the next step on the Tampa Bay political …

    Rep. Kathleen Peters, R-South Pasadena, has been relegated to the back row in the State House chamber, moved to a fouth floor office and stripped of her job as chairwoman of a House subcommittee after a series of disagreements with House Speaker Richard Corcoran. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  3. UPS relocates express operations from St. Pete-Clearwater to TIA


    TAMPA — United Parcel Service Inc. is switching airports for its express air operations. Beginning in October, UPS will relocate from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport.

    Beginning in October, UPS will move from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport. [Associated Press file photo]

  4. Richard Corcoran takes aim at public financing of campaigns

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, may not be running for governor — not yet anyway — but his latest idea will get the attention of those who are.

    House Speaker Richard Corcoran wants the Constitu?tion Revision Commis?sion to ask voters to repeal the state’s system of partial financing of statewide elections.
  5. Related Group breaks ground on complex at old Tampa Tribune site

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — When Miami developer Jorge Perez first eyed a 4.2-acre tract on the west bank of the Hillsborough River two years ago, people asked him if he wouldn't prefer to build on the opposite side closer to the downtown core.

    No way.

    From left, Related Group executive associate Arturo Penaa, Jorge Perez, center, founder and CEO of the Related Group, Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Steve Patterson, the President of Related Development dig their shovels  during the groundbreaking ceremony of the 400 unit Riverwalk Manor apartment complex on site of the old Tampa Tribune building on Wednesday. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]