What was last known as a German beer hall called the Hofbrauhaus will soon become a GolfSuites City Club, an indoor golf simulator lounge, bar and restaurant in downtown St. Petersburg.
The historic 17,000-square-foot building opened in 1930 as Bob’s Cafeteria, later renamed the Tramor in 1939, and it served as a cafeteria for Tampa Bay Times employees that was also open to the public. The building at 123 Fourth St. S was sold in 2014 for $2.7 million by the Times Publishing Co.
A $3 million renovation modeled the Hofbrauhaus after the iconic beer hall in Munich when it opened in 2015. The restaurant closed in 2020, and the building has sat empty since then.
The building features magnificent Mediterranean Revival features, such as iron rail balconies, cypress beams, ceramic Spanish tile and a famous azure sky ceiling. The Hofbrauhaus renovation added wood accents throughout that were imported from Austria.
It doesn’t exactly scream “golf.”
Clearwater-based architect Robert Resch is working on the design, and he said his team has been gathering photos and plans of the building “going all the way back to the Depression.” They intend to marry the high-tech with the historic.
Christine Walker of Realty One Group Sunshine in St. Petersburg, who managed the transaction, said the building is “just gorgeous.” Brandon-based GolfSuites Inc., which is leasing the building from its current owners, intends to preserve as much of its historic integrity as possible and work closely with the local historical society.
“They are really trying to utilize all its beautiful features and it’s going to be spaced out beautifully from what I have been told,” Walker said.
The GolfSuites City Club aims to open in mid-2024. It will have indoor golf simulator lounges with dining and beverages available both inside and outside. There will be memberships available, but there will also be dining and simulators open to the public.