Looking to better incorporate the best ocean view in Rehoboth Beach, restaurateurs Mike Venanzi and Bob Frankis have remodeled the former Greene Turtle space on Wilmington Avenue and turned it into Above the Dunes.
Venanzi said the Greene Turtle name served them well for the past 17 years, but the sports bar theme had run its course. When the restaurant first opened, he said, customers visited to watch sports on 50-inch televisions because it was too expensive to have those cable channels or to buy a television that large for home use.
“That’s not the case anymore. It’s a risk changing, but we felt it was time to modernize the space,” said Venanzi, during an interview March 24.
Venanzi said there haven’t been any structural changes to the space, but the cosmetic work makes a big difference. Gone are the dark colors and multi-television displays. Now, there are teal-colored tiles, white paint, bamboo lamp shades and ceiling fans, exposed beams and wood tabletops.
It’s much more of an unfinished, beach porch look, said Venanzi.
In addition to the new feel of the restaurant, Venanzi said the menu has also been redone. It’s more of a seafood-forward concept, he said. There’s a greater wine selection, bourbon, and there’s been a specialty cocktail menu created.
The menu will also feature a new raw bar, and, during the season, there will be happy hour buck-a-shuck, said Venanzi.
While the menu may have been redone to be more seafood-centered, there are still going to be a number of items on the menu for families looking to get lunch off the beach. There are five different flatbread pizzas, burgers and fresh-made salads, he said.
“Just because it’s been upscaled doesn’t mean Above the Dunes isn’t going to be a place to get lunch,” said Venanzi, adding the balcony can seat 52 customers, while the interior can seat 298.
As for the name, Above the Dunes, Venanzi said the space basically named itself.
“It’s the best dining view of the ocean in the tri-state area,” said Venanzi. “From up here, customers are seated above the dunes and the people walking on the Boardwalk. It feels like you’re dining on top of the ocean.”
Venanzi said Above the Dunes is opening mid-April. The hours of operation to begin will be dinner, he said, but when the season hits, they will be 11 a.m. to 10 or 11 p.m., daily.
For more information on Above the Dunes, 101 South Boardwalk, Floor 2, go to abovethedunes.com, call 302-226-2000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.