A little more than four months ago, Atlantica — in the Beach House in Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s — made St. John’s food critic Karl Wells’ Top 10 restaurants list of 2013. Today, the phone numbers are disconnected and the business is being sued for half a million dollars by the Business Development Bank of Canada.
According to a statement of claim filed April 23 with the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador, the bank lent the Beach House, Inc., $650,800 in 2008 at 2.25 per cent annual interest. The outstanding balance of the loan, as of Feb. 4, including interest, is $524,623.37.
“Beach House did not repay the loan as agreed and therefore is and has been in default of the loan and the loan agreement,” reads the statement of claim. “The bank demanded payment of the loan, including by demand letter dated
4 February 2014 (through which the bank have [sic] Beach House 10 days to repay the loan). These demands were not complied with.”
According to the claim, the bank has also issued notices of its intention to “dispose of collateral” — the assets of the Beach House — but as of the date of the statement of claim, the bank had not yet taken possession or disposed of any property.
The loan was partly secured by a guarantee by Wayne Turpin and Elaine Turpin, limited to 25 per cent of the outstanding balance — requiring the Turpins to pay $131,155.82.
Kory Turpin, Wayne and Elaine’s son, was the former owner. He left the operation in September 2011 to “pursue other interests,” according to a note he published on Facebook in November of that year, and praised the new business partners taking over the operation. Kory Turpin died in October at 35 after a short illness.
The building at Beachy Cove Road was empty Tuesday, with no notices published as to the status or future of the business.
The restaurant’s Facebook page was last active in January, with recent queries from people about the disconnected phone numbers going unanswered.
One of the Beach House’s phone numbers connects to a woman who says she has nothing to do with the business, but has been receiving several calls a day for it, since being assigned the phone number last year.
The provincial government’s online business registry lists Alana Walsh Giovannini, Robert Giovannini and Taylor Giovannini as the current directors of The Beach House, Inc.
Taylor Giovannini is also listed on the Beach House’s website as a managing partner.
The Telegram left messages via Facebook and through the website for several people listed as part of the Atlantica/Beach House team, but none were answered.