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South Street

Cue the music. The second location of South Street City Oven Bar & Music launched this week in the Naples area with bigger plans to rock the house.

Anchoring The Pointe at Founders Square, the new South Street is designed to be more musically focused than the original venue that anchors Goodlette Corners retail center in Naples. “It will be more music-oriented because the stage is larger and music is needed out this way,” said Diana Pleeter, who co-owns both venues with her husband, Bruce.

“We designed it where the stage is larger to bring in the national acts. We started bringing in national acts at the other place, but this is going to be the location going forward,” said Bruce Pleeter, who knows a thing or two about live music and acoustics.

Pleeter played guitar in rock bands in the ‘70s while growing up in upstate New York. “It was a great era,” he said. “A few music influences would be Aerosmith, Boston, AC/DC, Van Halen to say a few who I also had the pleasure of meeting with and getting to know.” 

So, expect some classic rock and more at the new venue that can pack in more than 300 people. At 6,211 square feet, South Street occupies the largest unit front and center in the more than 38,000-square-foot The Pointe, a restaurant-centric showpiece at Founders Square on the southeast corner of Immokalee Road and Collier Boulevard.

Rock music videos play on a gigantic screen that serves as a backdrop to the performance stage, which will host live entertainment on the weekends. Pleeter will reach out to agencies to book bands on tour. “We’re going to be real selective for what we do here. In the meantime, we’ll have digital performances going on.”

The Pleeters expect their new place to be their busiest location. “There’s so much growing around here,” Diana Pleeter said.

Since 2007, South Street’s original location has anchored the retail center at Goodlette-Frank and Pine Ridge roads. Inspired by the bars, clubs, and nightlife on the Philadelphia Street of the same name, South Street has at least 30 craft beer selections on draft and its extensive menu includes pizza, tacos, quesadillas, sandwiches, pasta, salads, appetizers, and even vegan-friendly options. The same menu is featured at both locations.

The Pleeters wanted to do a second location for a long time. “Looking and waiting and looking and waiting and then this opportunity came up,” she said, noting that they signed the lease in November 2019, so it has been a long time coming. 

Blake Gable, the CEO of Barron Collier Companies, which co-owns both retail centers hosting South Street, asked the Pleeters if they were interested in anchoring The Pointe on property that for decades had been the Pelican Nursery landscaping business. “Right during the inception of the plaza, before they even dug into the ground, they felt that we’d be the best anchor,” Bruce Pleeter said. “We negotiated and talked over it for months. It worked out for both of us.”

Although the project was delayed for more than a year, Diana Pleeter said its opening makes the struggle to get there worth it. “It’s so much more than I ever thought it would be.” Seeing it transform from her husband’s vision to a completed project makes it that much more special for her when she walks in the door, she said.

Her husband also is pleased with the outcome of the venue, which he initially planned using a pencil, scale ruler and a piece of paper. “Everything I sketched out on a quarter-inch scale worked out great,” he said. “I couldn’t be happier.” 

Eighteen 65-inch, high-definition TV screens hang above the large main bar. Another full bar on the front northwest corner of the business has overhead doors that open the bar space to outdoor seating. The new location makes better use of the overall space, which is more open, Bruce Pleeter said.

“It’s actually a lot larger for usable space,” he said. “The other place has a lot of back-of-the-house storage.”

The Pleeters hired at least 50 for the new place. “We’ve been training them over at the other location for about a month,” Diana Pleeter said. The venue had a soft opening starting Monday night leading up to its announced opening today.

South Street, 8845 Founders Square Drive, is open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

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