Fisheries History

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Fort Lauderdale Waterfront Dining Landmark Since 1978

This is a historical photo from the early days of the restaurant at the marina.

Lauderdale Marina was founded by Robert Cox in 1948. Mr. Cox would later go on to become Mayor of Fort Lauderdale from 1986-1991.

 

In 1976, Bob Cox and his family erected the waterfront building on the property which was to become 15th Street Fisheries in 1978. The structure was designed by architect Bill Bigoney, a Harvard educated designer, with his specialty being rustic, tropical design. 

 

In 1979, Michael Hurst, a past president of the National Association of Restaurants and a professor at Florida International University, became the first tenant in the new building. The restaurant, then called 15th Street Fisheries & Boathouse, quickly became one of the most popular eating establishments in South Florida.  Mike made it a success with his open hospitality and vast knowledge of innovative restaurant management practices.

 

In 2001, Mike Hurst passed away suddenly, after a brief struggle with pancreatic cancer. His son Andy Hurst took over the operation of 15th Street Fisheries and ran it successfully until his own untimely death in 2006. 

 

After a year, a period in which the restaurant was managed by Mike Hurst’s widow and daughter, it was finally decided the Hurst family would sell the rights to the 15th Street Fisheries name (and restaurant operation) to their landlord, the family which owns Lauderdale Marina. The Drum and Clark family members are descendants of Bob Cox who passed away in 2013.

 

From 2007 to 2015, 15th Street Fisheries was successfully managed by Carlos Rives, a consummate restaurant professional who was much loved by all who worked for him and by a huge contingent of pleased guests who regularly frequented the establishment. This period was marked by steady growth and renewed popularity. Fisheries Dockside was christened during this era and became one of the most popular casual waterfront eateries in South Florida.

 

In 2015, the owners added Aqua Bar, which is a fully-remodeled version of the original waterfront bar, now with an illuminated bar top, glowing primarily in blue, but with the ability to transform into all colors of the rainbow.

 

Carlos passed away suddenly in January of 2016. This tragic loss was devastating to all employees and to the restaurant's owners. But they picked up where Carlos left off, as he would have wanted them to do, and continued on with the successful operation, now under the management of Kevin Burke, another well-known restaurant professional, who is famous for making Chuck’s Steakhouse a local dining landmark.