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Charlie's Wine Cellar and Wine Bar is closing

SOHO — Another business in the old Whaley's Market plaza will soon see its demise: Charlie's Wine Cellar and Wine Bar.

The shop, which opened in 1992, was two doors down from Whaley's, the 75-year-old South Tampa institution that closed after its owners and landlord could not agree on a new lease. Whaley's routinely led customers right to Charlie's, said Glynn Giacone, who has owned the business since 2001.

"People would stop at Whaley's and they'd stop and get wine or beer on their way home," Giacone said. "There was a symbiotic relationship. With them gone, our foot traffic went away."

Giacone said that as much as he has enjoyed working with customers over the years, the store's prospects looked dim amid an economy in turmoil and a largely empty plaza.

Charles Mendez, plaza co-owner, said the 7,500 square feet that used to be Whaley's will be divided into three smaller units. He expects to sign tenants before year's end, but wouldn't name them earlier this week, saying contracts weren't final.

Charlie's, at 533 S Howard Avenue, will host its final wine tasting event at 7:30 tonight. The store will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, before closing for good.

Charlie's Wine Cellar and Wine Bar is closing 10/09/08 [Last modified: Thursday, October 9, 2008 4:30am]

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