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Feb 13, 2018 3:55 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays To Get Two New Waterfront Eateries As Edgewater Owner Plans Expansion

Edgewater restaurant. VALERIE GORDON
Feb 13, 2018 3:55 PM

Hampton Bays residents still mourning the loss of the Hampton Bays Diner and Friendly’s on Montauk Highway may soon see two new eateries on the opposite side of the hamlet, along Shinnecock Bay.

John Venesina, the owner of Edgewater Restaurant, a seasonal Italian and seafood restaurant facing the bay, recently purchased the two properties adjacent to his restaurant on Montauk Highway and intends to open both a grill house and coffee house, according to David Gilmartin Jr., an attorney and partner with Farrell Fritz in Water Mill.

The old Hampton Star Motel, which was directly west of Edgewater, was purchased by Mr. Venesina for $750,000 in 2016, according to public records. It will ideally become Hampton Bays’s newest grill house, Mr. Gilmartin said on Monday.

Mr. Venesina had also purchased 5 South Valley Road, a single-family five-bedroom house, to the east of Edgewater, for $800,000 in 2014, according to public records. Mr. Gilmartin said this week that the plan is to turn that 3,825 square-foot two-story home into a lively coffee house.

“This is what we hope to do,” Mr. Gilmartin said on Monday. “We’re constantly losing places where you can eat on the water.”

In addition, both properties will house several two-bedroom employee housing apartments, which would require a special exception variance from the Southampton Town Planning Department, according to Mr. Gilmartin.

Mr. Venesina must also obtain several variances from the town in order to create ample parking for all three restaurants, Mr. Gilmartin explained. He added that the plan also includes connecting the parking lots between Edgewater and the proposed coffee house for better flow.

The front of the proposed coffee house currently is blocked from the road by 8-foot-tall hedges along Montauk Highway, which Mr. Gilmartin said the owner plans to trim.

“The uses that we have proposed are permitted,” he said, noting that all three properties are located in the resort waterfront business district. “But we need some area variances.”

Mr. Gilmartin and Mr. Venesina attended a pre-submission conference with the Town Planning Department last month to discuss the plans for the three properties. He said he expects to receive a report from the town on March 8, laying out what variances are needed.

“Then we’ll go to the zoning board and see if we can get them and adjust from there,” Mr. Gilmartin said. “We’ll work through the process.”

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My favorite place to eat. Great staff, great food. Good luck John.
By dnice (2098), Hampton Bays on Feb 13, 18 4:15 PM
Nice... Good luck John, Your steak is the bomb . Keep up the good work

Now if someone buys Jacksons and develops it like Grossman's... Good god Hampton bays hang on ! Your best days are clearly ahead of you. I still believe you folks will have the last laugh. Best Water, Best Food
Best Commute back to NYC and still close to the action from Westhampton to Montauk... and Yes I am heavily invested in HB real estate but its for a reason!

MHBGA
By joe hampton (3008), The Hamptons on Feb 13, 18 4:43 PM
Hey Joe, You missed the article about the Marina. Couldn't agree more about the possibilities in HB. Let's see if the Town of "no" comes through for these people who want to invest in our community, or is it just Jay using the Southampton Press to win the votes for him and Julie in the musical chairs they call local politics.
By HB Proud (829), Hampton Bays on Feb 13, 18 5:02 PM
2 members liked this comment
In other Hampton Bays news it looks like the Town is finally taking steps to fix up the Neptune Beach property that it made the stupendous blunder of removing from the tax rolls a number of years ago.

The lookout tower of the historical building, ordered destroyed by an earlier misguided, despotic town board as a punitive measure against the then owners has been raised to its original height.

Now, if someone can only get the Town to understand that there are far better uses for ...more
By VOS (1036), WHB on Feb 13, 18 7:20 PM
Joe, I still love the idea you had a few years back about rebuilding our lighthouse!

Why don't we start a fund raiser for this ?

Who could possible not be for this resurrection of our identity and added tourism it would promote.

WHAT DO YOU SAY ABOUT THAT HAMPTON BAYS ?
By Erin 27 E (965), hampton bays on Feb 13, 18 7:36 PM
2 members liked this comment
yippee no sarcasm
By BrianWilliams (31), on Feb 13, 18 8:42 PM
Go John!!! Edgewater is consistently the best restaurant around!!
By EQmom (12), East Quogue on Feb 13, 18 9:08 PM
1 member liked this comment
That's fantastic news! John Venesina is possibly the only person who can pull this off successfully! Edgewater has consistently excellent and large portioned food - GREATEST staff ever - amazing views, what more can a Hamptonite ask for? I almost can't wait - Good Luck on the project!
By DisgustedHamptons (27), Hampton Bays on Feb 14, 18 1:54 AM
Only member of his family who can actually run a restaurant.
By even flow (575), East Hampton on Feb 14, 18 6:25 AM
Would you like some fries with your salt?
By Pacman (79), Southampton on Feb 14, 18 12:57 PM
1 member liked this comment
All the Best to you John.
By Tomjulie (30), Hampton Bays on Feb 14, 18 12:13 PM
Best food in the Hamptons. I would expect the best coffee coming soon. The owner is a great guy and staff is top notch. Great idea hopefully the Town gets on board and starts to become more pro business.
By yogi1 (8), on Feb 15, 18 11:33 AM
2 members liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By yogi1 (8), on Feb 15, 18 11:33 AM
I suggest that people write/email the Town Board to show support for this project I don't know the owners nor do I have a vested interest in the project, but I was at the Planning Board hearing and spoke in favor of the project. IMHO, the Town does need to be more pro-business and I don't even own a business here, but I want to see Hampton Bays move forward in a positive and progressive way.
By G.A.Lombardi (114), Hampton Bays on Feb 15, 18 11:42 AM
1 member liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By C Law (311), Water Mill on Feb 15, 18 2:04 PM
Is this a fact? Boy, am I out of the loop. Thanks for the tip, time to go dancing!
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (1308), HAMPTON BAYS on Feb 15, 18 2:07 PM
Yes, thats a fact jack! Now go get some luvin'
By C Law (311), Water Mill on Feb 16, 18 2:30 PM
1 member liked this comment
That ship has sailed for me, but I'm not too old to shake my bon-bon!
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (1308), HAMPTON BAYS on Feb 16, 18 2:41 PM
Parking big SUVs on a major thoroughfare Montauk hwy at night in front of Edgewater is a major accident waiting to happen and should be prohibited. Cars pull blindly out of the restaurant driveway into 50 + mph traffic, plus many cars in the overcrowded parking lot create more bad maneuvers.
By Non-Political (33), Hampton Bays on Feb 16, 18 11:18 PM
Keep that talk up we're gonna get a traffic light on that beautiful straightaway.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (1308), HAMPTON BAYS on Feb 17, 18 7:31 AM
1 member liked this comment
Bay Burger, Sag Harbor