Rose Bakery Cafe’s owners will return to the city’s Planning Commission on Thursday for a review of their permit — a review required by the commissioners in December 2010.
According to a staff report included in the meeting’s online agenda, the purpose of the review “is to determine compliance with the conditions of approval and effectiveness of the Parking Management Plan.”
Rose Cafe’s owners were allowed to expand their outdoor dining area and were allowed to waive 15 required parking spaces by arranging for patrons to use 29 nearby spaces at 409 Orchid Ave. That lot is used by Landmark Steakhouse patrons during evenings, but Rose Cafe must close by 8 p.m. and currently closes at 7 p.m.
This winter, the restaurant at 3536 East Coast Highway was closed for a major remodel, which included adding 37 outdoor seats to a patio area. The restaurant reopened in February; read our earlier story here.
The staff report is supportive of the business, and staff recommends that no changes be made to the existing permit.
“Staff believes the establishment operates in conformance with the conditions of approval and the parking management plan,” the staff report states. “Staff has observed that the restaurant is busy, especially during the morning and around lunchtime. Observations indicate some customers walk and bicycle to the establishment, which helps reduce parking demand.”
Owner Shawn Lim wrote a letter to the commissioners, which also was included in the staff report. The letter describes the restaurant’s fans, who are not only Corona del Mar residents but also include visitors from China, Saudi Arabia, Ireland and other far-flung places. Some visitors have asked the Lims to expand into a franchise, he wrote, and have even offered financing.
His letter also stressed the importance of the patio space, describing it as the “core success of our business.”
“I can remember, it wasn’t that long ago when we slave away for years with a few staff, my wife and I was making less per hour than our staff,” he wrote. “Without the outdoor seating, this beautiful cafe that we work so hard to establish would not survive with only four interior tables with these days rent that we are paying.”
The staff report states that three complaints have been made against Rose Cafe to city code enforcement officers related to trash and graffiti. A complaint in May led to a notice of violation being issued to Rose Cafe, “requesting that they keep the area in and around the trash enclosure remains clean and the lids are closed at all times,” the report states. A later inspection showed compliance. A complaint in February resulted in a notice of violation sent to the property’s management company. And on June 28, a $100 citation was issued to the property owner because of trash cans with out lids, trash needing to be placed into containers, recycled goods needing to be placed into containers with a secure lid. 4, and the trash enclosure area needing to be power washed. On July 10, a follow-up inspection showed compliance, the report states.
The Planning Commission meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. in Council Chambers at City Hall at 3300 Newport Blvd. The public may attend and make comments.