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Opinion: Pier South/Sea180

I'm a local IB resident, just as curious about the the new resort and hotel as everybody else has been around here.  So I went to check out the buzz this weekend. Service at the new Sea180 restaurant is very slow, even during uncrowded times, and the air very is stuffy and odorous during peak times.  The oversized 'reclaimed wood' pillars inside the restaurant floor layout really obstructed the panoramic ocean views that they have named their new establishment after. Breakfast came out cold and was nothing at all unique--made me wish I just went across the street to The Wave Cafe or Jalisco's on Palm instead, for bigger portions and a lower bill.

This new resort/restaurant is noticeably and immediately changing the local landscape here in IB.  From my personal perspective, it  looks/feels like a mere extension of Coronado and very out of place in this blue-collar community.  They totally blew it with their whole entire concept, if you ask me.  How much more fun and unique would it be, had Pier South and Sea180 been, say, Mexi-Tiki/exotica-themed, (!) instead of the current sterile, generic Cohn/Marriott formula?  How about less like high-class Denny's/downtown condos, and more like Trader Vic's/Bali Hai-meets-Baja!?  I can only hope someone out there with the kind of money that the Cohn investors have can take note on opening something up that enhances the character, casual surf culture, and authenticity of Imperial Beach.  Price ranges and atmospheres should be kept unpretentious enough for us local residents to frequent what is at our very own doorsteps.

IB is one of the only working class beach communities remaining in southern California, and it is for this very reason that we chose to settle here.  The last thing my neighbors and I would ever want is to feel alienated by the effects of gentrification, pushed out by the wealthy, and surrounded by overrated tourist traps, the way so many other places have unfortunately transformed into in recent years.
Elle Jay January 29, 2014 at 03:04 AM
@Buster: Re: the arrival of Coronado Brewing - You must have mistaken my expressing of just how awful Jersey Boys was for not 'making up my mind'. The former Jersey Boys is an existing structure, and my post here is about my concern on the effects of this newly-built structure, and its character (or complete lack thereof) at a prominent beach location in our community. My post here is based on just that - my discerning personal experiences (dining, financial, aesthetic, occupational, and sociological), hence my title: OPINION. With that in mind, I should also add that it's total suckers like you, with your bland bourgeoisie taste, so easily seduced by such mediocrity-- that allow these '4-star' formulaic corporate business investors to laugh all the way to their banks. And may I emphasize THEIR banks--much more proportionately so, than creating this badly-needed tax revenue that you claim is the result (and contributing to the working-class residents of IB, you mean?) Your name-calling, accusations, and overall self-righteousness can't sway my own experiences and what I care about. I don't have to like it, Buster, I really don't.
ibsandyshores January 30, 2014 at 01:10 PM
We are very happy to have such a nice hotel and restaurant in IB. We have been there three times (1 lunch, 2 dinners) - every time a thoroughly enjoyable experience, excellent meals and accommodating staff. Do they have a few wrinkles to iron out? I am guessing they do, but we didn't notice any while we were there. As Buster said, IB deserves a place like this. We heartily agree and wish them nothing but continued success! (Our Opinion)

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