Owner of building that may house controversial restaurant in Loo - KMOV.com

Owner of building that may house controversial restaurant in Loop will not renew lease

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UNIVERSITY CITY, Mo. (KMOV.com) - The owner of a building that may soon house a restaurant known for topless waitresses who wear body paint said he will not renew the lease of the person looking to bring the restaurant to the Delmar Loop.

After news broke that a Social House would be coming to University City, the owner of the building issued the below statement that was posted to the UCity Voices Facebook page:

"I own the property being leased by John Raccanelli in the name of Market Pub House.

John recently closed the Market Pub House and decided to involve himself with the Social House to bring their operation to my property under his existing lease.

John's lease ends in March of 2017 and I have advised him that I will not renew or extend the term of the lease.

That limitation should make opening a Social House operation a far less attractive proposition, and that, coupled with the City's expected opposition and the lawsuit I intend to file, should bring an end to this."

Many area residents, business owners and city officials spoke out earlier in the week against the plan to replace the failing Market Pub House at 6655 Delmar Blvd. with the controversial establishment.

“I think putting an adult entertainment complex in the middle of the U. City Loop sends the wrong message,” said Stephen Kraft, University City Councilman.

Social House’s attorney, Al Watkins, said the owner of the Market Pub House is partnering with Social House’s owners to renovate the building and introduce the body paint concept. The Soulard Neighborhood has been home to a Social House restaurant for years. Despite the landlord's comments, Watkins said the the push to open in the Loop will continue.

Watkins said there would be men and woman servers. The servers would be topless, wearing only body paint and underwear bottoms. Missouri law requires women to wear pasties.

“This is not a strip club, there will be no stages,” said Watkins.

Watkins said Social House II will have an upscale feel, with 30 big screen televisions and a menu prepared by an executive chef. However, some business owners that are near the new establishment want to put a stop to the expansion plans.

 “The city of University City does not have the jurisdiction on how a restaurant owner will operate its restaurant,” said Watkins. “This restaurant has been in existence for five plus years, now it's getting a makeover.”

“I fear this will be a detriment to the community that exist in the Loop right now,” said Boo McLoughlin, Executive Director at Craft Alliance.

Councilman Kraft said the city’s legal team is looking at what options they have to stop the Social House from coming to the city. There is a council meeting on February 22 at University City Hall to discuss the issue.

University City officials said no plans have been submitted by the owners of the proposed Social House II.

Copyright 2016 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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