Local Spotlight

APRIL 2024

Central Square

Have you ever walked in somewhere and you immediately know it’s something special? That’s what it feels like walking in to The Kitchen and The Mini Bar. The vibes are all at once casual and sophisticated, making everyone feel at home. The large outdoor eating area exudes the Florida charm we all love – live music, casual picnic tables and palm trees lit up at night. The bar gives off a vibrant Key West feel, and the extensive menu of food and cocktails will make you want to stay for hours. You will walk in asking yourself “Where am I” as they have created a hidden paradise right off one of the busiest areas of Naples. The best part – this is all part of a larger concept called Central Square Naples.

Central Square encompasses one full city block, from Goodlette-Frank to 12th Street South and Central Ave to 1st Ave South. Although the plaza has been there for some time (formerly Victoria Square), a group of locals came up with the idea of putting a collection of destinations there to make for an easy night out for dinner and drinks, walking from one spot to the next. Christopher Shucart, Marty Kenney, and Christopher Lee are the trio behind the concept, including four distinct and fantastic locales to visit. Central Square includes The Kitchen and The Mini Bar, District Naples, The Alley and Staff Only – all offering unique experiences while providing exceptional food and drinks.

From The Kitchen and The Mini Bar you have three additional, very unique options to choose from. The Alley is a throwback to an era of boom boxes and Gin & Juice – exuding 90s vibes off every inch of the graffitied walls, and will be opening very soon. You can enjoy a menu of small plates and 90s inspired cocktails in this urban themed bar, before heading to your next stop – District Naples. District is an edgy, craft-cocktail lounge and we’re excited to be among the first to share that they will be offering a fantastic sushi menu in just a few short weeks. And you can’t miss the opportunity to visit Staff Only, a roaring 20s speakeasy – that you’ll have to be directed to as its discreet location is part of the fun of your visit.

We had the opportunity to speak with one of the owners, Chris Shucart, as the idea for the space was his brainchild and vision over the last 3+ years. Chris says he was down in Islamorada, enjoying a drink at Morada Bay and realized Naples needed a destination like Morada Bay – a breezy, outdoor paradise where locals and visitors alike can relax with a drink and enjoy a casual island vibe. As we also love the atmosphere of Morada Bay, we couldn’t be more excited that Chris and his partners have brought their vision to life. Chris Shucart, Marty Kenney and Christopher Lee bring together combined expertise in entrepreneurship, construction, food and beverage and development and they are all equally invested in the success of Central Square – both financially but also in their sweat equity. They truly believe in the concept they are creating, and their mantra has always been – the details matter. They continually strive to perfect the details in order to create the fabulous experience that will have their guests returning again and again.

Don’t wait to visit one or all of these fabulous spots, and learn more about each concept on their website. If you need a reason to go check them out, The Kitchen and the Mini Bar will be having a Cinco de Derby event coming up in May, so stay tuned for details. They also have live music many nights at The Kitchen and the Mini Bar, making every night a great one to head to Central Square and enjoy good food, craft cocktails, live music and a fun night out with friends. You can check out their event calendar here.

PAST Spotlights


Flowers are good for the soul is the theme driving local business Flora and Fauna. Business owner Allison Keevan loves designing the perfect floral arrangement to provide beauty through nature to those around her, spreading joy around the Naples community. Allison explained the name of her business with flowers of course being the Flora, but that the community of Naples and its residents being the Fauna. We loved that analogy, and the effort this small business is making to create joy within our community. Allison has been in business as a local florist since January of 2022, but her love of all things flowers and nature goes back to her childhood, growing up right here in Naples. Allison says she remembers asking for different types of plants and flowers as birthday presents as a child. As she took on chores around the house, she always gravitated towards setting the table, which evolved into creating beautiful tablescapes and floral arrangements for family gatherings. Allison went on to become an interior designer. While she loved her work in this field, she realized she wanted to use her talents in design to focus on her first passion – flowers.

Flora & Fauna can provide floral arrangements for weddings, fundraisers, bridal showers and all types of events. They also offer subscription flower delivery, floral arrangement workshops and more. We are very excited for the brick-and-mortar Flora & Fauna Flower Shop that will be located in Old Naples on 12th Ave S., and we’re thrilled to share that they will tentatively open in December 2023. Allison’s vision for the Flora & Fauna Flower Shop is to provide a curated experience for her guests – with an uplifting environment, beautiful tablescapes for inspiration, homeware gifts and floral tools for purchase – and of course, stunning floral arrangements. You can expect step by step workshops at Flora & Fauna Flower Shop to help you create your own beautiful arrangements, and we know we’ll be signing up for a class or two.

Brookside Market

Brookside Market, located adjacent to the Freedom Boat Club, may just be the epitome of a local business – owned by locals, a hangout for locals, and a constant flow of other local businesses supported. When you walk through the door, you will immediately feel the welcoming vibe, perfect for grabbing a beer and hanging with friends.

We had the chance to speak with one of the owners, Bryan Flores, and he says that friendly, local vibe is exactly what they hoped to accomplish in their establishment.

Brookside Market is owned by a combination of family members and friends. A joint effort between Bryan, his brother Matt and sister-in-law Taylor Flores, and his high school friend Cody Shadley.


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