CORAL GABLES (CBSMiami) – An old school restaurant with one of the best views of a golf course in South Florida is in danger of shutting down due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Burger Bob’s, located on the Granada Golf Course in Coral Gables, specializes in what else, burgers.
“The food is good and the crowd is fun,” said customer Frank Cooper. “This is a meeting place for the neighborhood.”
Breakfast is served any way you want it, but bring cash, because credit cards are not accepted.
“This is an institution and it has the best scrambled cheese in the world, believe me,” said long time customer Hal Wanless.
Burger Bob’s is the classic meetup place for Coral Gables movers and shakers and just folks looking for a no frills meal with friends.
“This is family. This is more than a burger,” said fan Lynn Bauer.
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It’s located in the city owned pro shop at the Granada Golf Club.
The restaurant has been here over 60 years and burger Bob McGuire has been the operator for 27 of those years.
“I’ve got people coming in here all the time doing business deals. I’ve got regular customers coming in two or three times a day,” Bob explained.
But there’s big trouble for Bob. The coronavirus shutdown hit him hard including the rent, utilities, vendors insurance issues. He’s more than $20,000 in arrears.
“For me and 3,000 other restaurants, we didn’t see it coming and I ran into a little bit of trouble just like the rest of them,” said Bob.
During the height of the pandemic, the building was shut down. Bob could not even produce takeout orders.
“Bob’s been a fixture here for a good many years and we all love him and we got to stand behind him and try to help him,” said customer Curt Robinson.
Longtime customers are hoping to come to the rescue.
They set up a GoFundMe page to help keep the classic diner style restaurant going.
“He’s under great duress between all the expenses that he incurred during the COVID closure period, not to mention how reduced income is now. And if he’s not able to take care of his responsibilities and discharge his financial obligations, we could lose him,” said Steve Krams who organized the GoFundMe page.
There are talks with the city about adjusting the rent obligation, a fundraising event is being planned and locals are getting out the word to come on down and have a burger.
“One thing that he has here is his food and I think that’s what’s important and I don’t know what would happen if Bob closed,” said customer Hank Langston.
The Burger Bob’s GoFundMe page has raised more than $7,200 of its $20,000 goal.