The Greene Turtle made its New York premiere May 14 with a new restaurant in Franklin Square on Long Island that was met with great enthusiasm by the local community. With the parking lot full, lines waiting outside as the casual dining restaurant/sports bar opened its doors, and a high and diverse volume of businesspeople, families, couples, sports fans, and other locals streaming in throughout the day, the new restaurant recorded very strong opening-day revenues to welcome the popular Maryland-based brand to the Northeast.
Operated by sibling franchisees John and Jeff Froccaro, who also more than three dozen Burger King quick-service restaurants throughout both Nassau and Suffolk Counties, and a third partner, Harry Braunstein, managing partner of Long Island-based Sunset Capital Fund, the 7,100-square-foot building brings a bright, fresh look to a property formerly occupied by a long-defunct casual dining brand. Many guests arriving at the new restaurant throughout the day earnestly expressed their appreciation to the owners and staff for bringing a relaxed neighborhood gathering place back to the community, while others who know The Greene Turtle from its locations in key destination and high-traffic venues such as Ocean City, Maryland, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Washington, D.C.’s Verizon Center and Baltimore’s BWI airport were thrilled to see that the brand had opened in New York.
The new restaurant is the first of 10 locations the franchisees have committed to develop on Long Island, and becomes the foundation of a Northeast expansion effort in which The Greene Turtle hopes to develop in all five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, New Jersey, Connecticut, and further north into New England. The company also is seeking franchisees in Pennsylvania, Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida.
The restaurant employs 130 managers, servers, bartenders, and kitchen staff and offers seating for 220 guests. Throughout the interior a legion of more than 50 TVs, including individual booth TVs, broadcast all the day’s local, national, and often international sporting events. It features The Greene Turtle’s popular menu of comfort food standards, proprietary favorites, and crab-based specialties reflecting the chain’s Maryland roots. The bar offers a mix of mainstream beers and featured craft selections, as well as specialty and standard cocktails, soft drinks, and more, helping drive The Greene Turtle to a segment-leading 35 to 45 percent sales of high-margin beverages as a portion of overall sales.
Bob Barry, president/CEO of The Greene Turtle said the location is ideal to cater to the chain’s demographic, with several universities including Hofstra and Adelphi nearby, major sports venues including Nassau Coliseum and Belmont Racetrack a short distance down the same road, a major high-traffic thoroughfare right out its doors, and a diverse surrounding community that is equally passionate about its professional and youth sports teams.
“We are thrilled to be bringing The Greene Turtle to Long Island, and very excited to have secured the Franklin Square property for our first site,” he says. “This is an ideal location, with high visibility on a well-trafficked street, proximity to the area’s key sports venues, situation in the heart of a market with many professional teams, and exposure to a community dotted with dozens of youth soccer, lacrosse, baseball, and other athletic fields regularly filled with our core young-family customers. We are greatly encouraged by how strong the restaurant’s opening-day sales were, and look forward to welcoming many more guests and becoming increasingly involved in the community in the days ahead.”
Barry also praises the Froccaros for lending their obvious expertise to the successful location, development, and launch of the new restaurant.
“John and Jeff are picture-perfect in terms of the type of individuals we’re seeking to facilitate our growth throughout the East,” Barry says. “Existing multi-unit operators of other full-service and quick-service restaurants combine the market and industry knowledge, the existing corporate infrastructure and access to financing to have the greatest potential for rapid, successful expansion in new markets. We feel with our strong brand awareness, growth potential, and a flexible format that lets operators capitalize on available buildings, we offer strategic franchise partners a great opportunity to expand in their existing geographic footprint where they can no longer add more units of their original brands.”