LaPrade's Getting Bold New Look
|Peter Anzo is dwarfed by one of the logs serving as the framework for a new restaurant, grill and store being built on the Lake Burton waterfront. He is one of three managing partners for Vinings Marine Group, owners of the former at LaPrade's Marina.
By Donald Fraser
Staff Writer The Clayton Tribune
Thursday, May 24, 2007 8:51 AM EDT – Lake Burton's former LaPrade's Camp is receiving a brand new look.
Peter Anzo, one of three managing members of Vinings Marine Group, is supervising the restructuring of the camp that was famous for its family style restaurant and rustic rental cabins.
In April 2006, Vinings purchased the central 43 acres of LaPrade's for $10 million from LaPrade's Investors and Developers, a subsidiary of Tricord Capital, based in Atlanta.
Vinings operated the marina at LaPrade's last summer as the company firmed plans for revamping the moldering site. Today, huge timbers intersect in the sky at the waterfront as a two-story, log-framed combination restaurant, grill and store is being constructed.
The nearby former marine repair building has been expanded and sided with cedar shingles. It soon will be a boat repair shop and boat show room, Anzo said. Plans call for the sale of Chris Craft ski boats and Harris Float Boats, a brand of pontoon boat.
"We will probably run the store out of here," Anzo said of the boat show room. The main building construction is not expected to be completed until later this year.
In addition to boat fueling operations this season, the marina also will have six new Harris boats in its rental fleet.
The second floor of the main building will have a fine dining restaurant, Anzo said. His plans call for the space to be leased rather than operated by Vinings. "It probably won't start until next year."
A portion of the first floor of the building will be a counter service grill, with access from both inside the building and the spacious waterfront deck. "I'm hoping the grill will be open this summer, maybe in July," he said.
An extensive boardwalk now fronts the marina's revamped waterfront with a wide deck in front of the main building.
Tables with umbrellas will be available on the deck for marina customers, many of whom Anzo anticipates will be arriving by boat. Courtesy docks "should be able to handle 20 boats for people wanting to come to the grill or the store," he said.
Vinings is installing temporary floating docks to replace the boat slips it removed during the winter. This fall will see the installation of permanent docks with all boat slips covered and having electric boat hoists. "There will be 62 slips," Anzo said. "Almost half are already rented."
Further down the boardwalk from the main building will be a 30-by-40-foot covered pavilion, which will be available for rent for private parties, he said. The pavilion will have a fireplace, making it cozy both in early spring and later fall seasons.
While building at LaPrade's waterfront is going full steam ahead, the balance of the former camp property lies fallow. "When this is all done, then we'll worry about the other side of the road," Anzo said.
His gaze swept across the waterfront construction activities Friday. "I love this place," he said. "I love what I'm doing here."
Vinings Marine Group owns and operates nine marinas in Georgia, Alabama, Kansas, Michigan, North Carolina and Virginia.