Collector’s Cafe in Myrtle Beach under reconstruction with courtyard

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The Collectors Cafe is set to reopen this year with an open-air courtyard, indoor/outdoor bar, open kitchen and more dining space.

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Collectors Cafe and Gallery will rise from the ashes and reopen with alfresco dining in a large open-air courtyard, an indoor/outdoor bar, increased dining space and other changes and additions.

The fine-dining restaurant which featured works by artists including managing partner Tommy Davis and former co-owner Mike Smith has been closed since it was badly damaged by fire in July 2020.

“We’ve been open for 26 years, and what I plan to do is build something that’s going to last for the next 26 years,” said Davis, whose family owns the building. “Now we have an opportunity. I am building a legacy for my family.

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Artist Tommy Davis plans to reopen the Collectors Cafe this year. It should include an outdoor courtyard, an indoor/outdoor bar, an open kitchen, and more dining space. Alain Blondin [email protected]

Davis said he traveled to places such as Rome, Cartagena, Colombia and Asheville, North Carolina for building and decorating ideas.

“I don’t even look at what was there before; I’m walking around now to see what’s going to happen,” Davis said. “I’m considering this and that. I already see it and feel it.

Davis plans to host ‘The Blank Canvas’ art exhibit in the courtyard in July, around the second anniversary of the fire, with drinks and entertainment to preview the restaurant, which he hopes to open by then the end of the year.

“I work on it every day,” he said.

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The Collectors Cafe is set to reopen this year with an open-air courtyard, indoor/outdoor bar, open kitchen and more dining space. Alain Blondin [email protected]

Rebuild the Collectors Cafe

The roof on the south side of the business, which housed the cafe in the former restaurant, is removed to create the open-air outdoor courtyard which will share a bar with an indoor dining area.

A V-shaped butterfly-style roof made of cypress wood and steel will span the yard 20 feet above the ground. The front facade of the building along the roof will remain, and an iron or steel door below will serve as a courtyard entrance.

The courtyard will be heated and cooled and will feature trees, ferns and other vegetation, as well as a living wall with plants, possibly including Confederate Jasmine. There will also be live plants inside.

“It’s going to be a real plush green,” Davis said.

The front facade of the building will also feature ivy or other vegetation.

“We’re going to try to make it look like a Dublin-style pub,” Davis said.

The initial dining room which will be accessed through the main entrance and courtyard will have a velor booth and table seating, an open kitchen for diners to view prepared meals, and at least two bars with seating. Davis said seating will exceed 200 indoors and outdoors, and bar space will increase 150% from the pre-fire configuration.

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The Collectors Cafe is set to reopen this year with an open-air courtyard, indoor/outdoor bar, open kitchen and more dining space. Alain Blondin [email protected]

Davis expects the main dining room to be somewhat casual, and a second room will be quieter for fine dining and can offer a more upscale menu.

“I don’t want it to be so polished all the time,” Davis said. “I want people to come in regularly and have more casual food up front, but still have a menu for nicer things like fish, steak and our specialties.”

A dessert and coffee bar is provided for the main dining room near the entrance. An additional 1,000 square feet is added to the restaurant which was previously a neighboring hair salon behind the nearby subway, and it is currently used as an art studio.

Davis is still considering its future use, and it could become a storage room for wine and high-end whiskeys and bourbons used for special events and private dining, or a speakeasy with canapes.

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The Collectors Cafe is set to reopen this year with an open-air courtyard, indoor/outdoor bar, open kitchen and more dining space. It includes a new room currently used as an art studio. Alain Blondin [email protected]

Fill in the return

The facade of the building has already been repainted, the sign and the lion’s head are black on a white background. Interior colors will be light and soft.

Perhaps most importantly, a sprinkler system is added inside.

“You gotta have it,” Davis said.

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The Collectors Cafe is set to reopen this year with an open-air courtyard, indoor/outdoor bar, open kitchen and more dining space. Alain Blondin [email protected]

Share your business advice

Alan Blondin writes about retail for The Sun News. Have a tip to share about opening or closing a retail store or restaurant, or a new build you’d like us to review? Please let us know at [email protected]

Collectors opened in 1994 after a seven-month renovation of a former doctor’s office.

“We took a doctor’s office and turned it into a restaurant,” Davis said. “Now we are able to take a restaurant and turn it into an even better restaurant by putting things where they should have been.”

Davis, who will be looking for a management team in the coming months, considered a name change to go along with the restaurant’s fresh start.

“But so many people told me they wanted it to be collectors, which encouraged me to call it the old collectors,” he said.

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Alan Blondin covers golf, Coastal Carolina University, and track and field, as well as many other sports-related topics worth covering. Well versed in all things Myrtle Beach, Horry County and the Grand Strand, the 1992 Northeastern University School of Journalism major has been a reporter for The Sun News since 1993 after working at newspapers in Texas and Massachusetts. He has won eight national Associated Press Top 10 Sportswriter writing awards and 20 SC Press Association Top Three writing awards since 2007.

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