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.
Libi Uremovic January 26, 2014 at 07:35 PM
it takes some time for a restaurant to 'find itself' and develop a rapport between the customer, the house, and the environment.... it will probably never serve a breakfast equivalent to the wave because their money is in lunch and dinner....
Buster January 26, 2014 at 10:58 PM
Lame! Myself and many many friends have been their for lunch, dinner and cocktails, service was awesome, food was outstanding , overall great feel! IB deserves a place like this. How are you going to feel when Coronado brewing company opens down the street in a few months? There's always the few who will put down something, moron!
Elle Jay January 27, 2014 at 01:36 AM
@Libi Uremovic: "Because their money is in lunch and dinner" is simply not a valid excuse for lowered standards, especially at a premiere upscale destination. The Cohn Restaurant Group already has more than plenty of successful restaurant experience, Sea180 has obviously long been in the plans, and is also really nothing unique, so how much time would they still need to "find itself"? @Buster: Glad you and your friends love it there so much. Do they live in Coronado, by any chance? As far as your name calling, I would indeed be a 'moron' to keep spending my hard-earned working class dollars there. Does IB "deserve" new 'lame' establishments in prime locations that the predominantly blue-collar population here cannot afford to frequent? --is the very subject of my opinion write-up. As far as Coronado Brewing moving into an existing structure: Anything else would be better than Jersey Boys-- that place was downright awful.
R Keen January 27, 2014 at 02:52 PM
LJ, thanks for posting and sharing your experience!
Elle Jay January 27, 2014 at 05:22 PM
@ R Keen: Thank you very much for reading my post!
Buster January 28, 2014 at 09:40 PM
So LJ make up your mind! You whine you don't want the new hotel and restaurant to start to look like Coronado. Yet you welcome CBC with open arms which happens the have Coronado all over it. Why does it matter where anyone come from to eat or stay there , so what if they are from Coronado or Arizona? IB needs the tax revenue, the hotel and restaurant were not built so the residents of IB could stay there, why would you want to? Crazy .... The prices of the restaurant reflect the average prices in most 4 star restaurants, I haven't eaten breakfast there, I don't believe you did either ...I think you have an axe to grind cuz you just don't like it.
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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