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UPDATED: Olde Towne Owner 'Blindsided' by Restaurant Closure

Moravek said Friday that a bankruptcy court decision required the closure December 20.

Updated December 28.

The owner of Olde Towne Tavern & Grille in Suwanee said Friday morning that he was "blindsided" by the court decision that forced him to close the popular restaurant Thursday afternoon.

Robert Moravek, who purchased the Town Center restaurant in 2011, said he learned about 1 p.m. on Thursday (December 20) that he would have to close the restaurant that day. About 3 p.m., the doors were closed and locked by a court-appointed locksmith, and a bankruptcy filing notice had been posted on the door.

Morava said he had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy about four months ago, and that he had intended to continue operating and bring the restaurant out of bankruptcy.

However, the case was converted to a Chapter 7 at the request of the bankruptcy court trustee, and that forced a liquidation, which required shutting down the restaurant.

The court documents, which were furnished to Suwanee Patch, said that the ownership group had failed to meet several obligations of the Chapter 11 filing. The trustee filed its motion to convert to Chapter 7 or dismiss the case on November 20.

Moravek said that business had been struggling, with sales in 2012 off about $200,000 from the previous year. Prices of chicken, beef and tuna "went through the roof, and those are our biggest sellers."

Moravek also said the restaurant was "overstaffed." He noted that some employees had not been paid, and that they would have to go through the bankruptcy court to recover any back wages.

"I had 51 employees, and I loved them all."

Moravek noted that "we were a little slow in paying some things."

Olde Towne was Moravek's first venture into restaurants. But he also noted that the market changed somewhat. Just in 2012, restaurants such as Hammerhead's, Gulf Coast Grill and Twisted Taco opened in the nearby area.

"I love the business and I love Suwanee. To leave us in the lurch hurt greatly."

NOTE: Previous references in this post to landlord Madison Retail have been deleted. Madison Retail did not propose converting the case to Chapter 7 liquidation.

-- What do you think will happen to the Suwanee Olde Towne location? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

See also:

  • Olde Towne Restaurant Closes Suwanee Location

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Keely December 21, 2012 at 05:20 PM
AHHHHHH I'm so sorry to hear of this news. I really liked dining here and I will miss the people that worked there :-(
Jim McCall December 21, 2012 at 08:52 PM
Why can't Suwanee & Sugar Hill support nice resturants? Are we fated to having a McDonald's on every corner???
Ross Crawford December 21, 2012 at 10:05 PM
I rarely eat at the restaurants in Suwanee Town Center because I don't like the parking. I've had my car dinged twice in the small, front parking lot. And the one in back isn't much better. Plus, there are too many kids whose parents don't control them, and I worry about backing out of a parking place and hitting one.
Jack Kobaba December 21, 2012 at 10:06 PM
I enjoyed their food and their varied menu. However, the service was extremely slow for the past year and despite complaints of such from many of their best patrons the speed of service did not seem to improve. Methinks speed of service could have been a bigger factor than rising food costs. They will be missed.
MEW December 21, 2012 at 10:45 PM
This doesn't surprise me. The place really changed when the ownership changed. New owner didn't seem to care about the customers.
Nichole P December 22, 2012 at 02:56 AM
Confirmed by inside sources and managers of Olde Towne the owners knew of this possibility . Added to this they filed the bankruptcy so they would absolutely be aware of possible closure . You can blame rising cost but they opened a restaurant in Buckhead ( which also failed ) so business couldn't have been so bad from previous year before ownership or 2012 to make that possible.. The cost of another restaurant led to this . Also confirmed from employees they had been very understaffed for several months . They manage to not pay employees for a 3 pay period but took a couple vacations and drive BMW's so asking for pity for the owner vs the employees they did not pay and left without jobs right before Christmas seems a little selfish and very undeserving .
Vic December 22, 2012 at 02:57 AM
They didn't know what they were doing. Good Management is the key. Town Center and their location is great. The original owner did a great job!
Jeff Parker December 22, 2012 at 06:53 PM
He is the real truth about robert and bob moraveck. he knew this was coming the restaurant had been failing for the whole year. they had to stop using sysco to get food because they never paid them. numerous employees were not paid or had checks bounce, this goes all the way back to january. at the time this was going the moraveck's were buying new cars and spending excessive amount of money on themselves. they also opened a location in buckhead that they had to close and rename and close again because they never paid their licensing fees or rent. while they may put on a good face to the public they are very shady and inept buisness people, who DO NOT car about there staff.
Paul Brown December 23, 2012 at 06:48 PM
I hear that a Friends Sports Grill may be coming where the Indigo Joe's and Coralejo Mexican restaurant used to be located. They have a restaurant in Dacula and one in Dawsonville. Hopefully, they'll last. Noone else has made it in that shopping center.
Steve Burns (Editor) December 24, 2012 at 10:32 AM
Thanks, Paul, I'll check on that.
Joy Calloway December 26, 2012 at 04:48 PM
I agree that the service had gotten verrrrrrry slow the past year since the new owners took over, although the staff was very nice and looked like they were trying hard. Being in the legal field, the owner could not have been "blindsided" that change was coming (unless his attorney failed to tell him, which I doubt). I would like to see a similar place come in there, so you have food variety and a choice of burgers and atmosphere from Five Guys (don't worry Five Guys - we love ya!), or maybe a good restaurant with Mediterranean/Greek or Middle Eastern cuisine as a change from what Suwanee offers - you have to drive a ways to find one of those. Parking improvements would be nice, but they are not terrible -- at least not at night.
Marie Leahy December 31, 2012 at 02:50 AM
I knew several people who worked there and they will tell you the owner was a douche. the second story is a bunch of garbage. he knew!!!

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