This Sunday, the iconic Quarterdeck bar and restaurant in Fort Lauderdale will be closing—but not for long.
It’ll be closed hopefully for just two weeks as it moves down the street to a new home, and celebrations are planned this weekend to say goodbye to the building.
“One of the things that was really important to us, to me, was to maintain the legacy, the heritage of the old Quarterdeck,” says founder Paul Flanigan. “Some of those pictures have been on the wall for 40 years, so all the pictures are coming over. We’re taking about a third of the booths over and using them over here.”
Quarterdeck opened in October 1966 as Big Daddy’s Liquor Store and Lounge by the Flanigan family (Paul’s cousin owns the Flanigan’s chain of restaurants). Paul bought Quarterdeck in 1986 and opened more locations throughout the tri-county area, as well as other restaurant ventures like Good Spirits and the soon-to-open bar Whiskey Neat.
For more than a half a century, Quarterdeck has been a hot spot for family gathering and late nights out. It’s also been a big part of the community, supporting local charities and high schools—Flanigan proudly thinks of the roughly 100 people whose first job was working for him.
“I have kids working for me now whose parents worked for me,” he says.
The restaurant has been on leased land, and Flanigan says he was never able to purchase it from the landlord. When another building opened up just down the block on 17th Street, he took the opportunity.
The new, two-story location will be at 1035 Southeast 17th Street, the same block as Village Well Pub and Waxy’s Irish Pub.
To celebrate the move and say goodbye to the old space at 1541 Cordova Road in Fort Lauderdale, the staff will be hosting a party from April 19 to 21 with food and drink specials, cornhole, beer pong, Jenga, and music from Lucian White, DJ WellFed Boy and Marcus Amaya.
“We’re moving around the corner to a much better facility. Everything’s changed, and nothing’s changed,” Flanigan says.