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The Grand Marlin Restaurant and Oyster Bar is expanding eastward as investment partners in the successful Pensacola Beach restaurant plan to open a second location later this year.

The Grand Marlin Panama City Beach, located at the Lighthouse Marina on Grand Lagoon, will emphasize many of the same fresh menu items as its anchor location and will seat approximately 350 people, representatives said.

The main floor will feature temperature-controlled dining and an oyster bar, while a second floor will highlight The North Drop, an open-air bar named after a world-class marlin fishing destination off the coast of St. Thomas in the Caribbean. In addition, private dining will be available with audio/visual capabilities for corporate meetings and special events.

“We’re excited to be a part of the Panama City community,” said president and partner Bryan Housley. “Our focus has always been about people. We look forward to building a family of locals and team members within the community.”

Gregg McCarthy, The Grand Marlin’s executive chef and partner, will be spearheading the cuisine at the new venture in Panama City Beach.

Rendering of the new Panama City Beach location of The Grand Marlin Restaurant and Oyster Bar. (The Grand Marlin/Special to The Pulse)

Rendering of the new Panama City Beach location of The Grand Marlin Restaurant and Oyster Bar. (The Grand Marlin/Special to The Pulse)

“Our focus will remain the same: To provide upscale-casual dining focused on fresh, local ingredients paired with exceptional service in an inviting and relaxed atmosphere,” said McCarthy. “Our menu will continuously evolve and be printed daily.”

The acclaimed Pensacola Beach restaurant has earned top honors, including Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence six years in a row, TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence, Open Table’s Diner’s Choice Award and local Best of The Bay awards. Representatives said the restaurant has created more than 125 jobs in its six years of service.

McCarthy and Housley are quick to credit their success to their team members, who provide exceptional customer service with the commitment to serving the finest quality food.

“We feel like The Grand Marlin has been successful because of a special factor we refer to as the soul of a restaurant,” said Housley. “A restaurant that has a soul treats its team members like family, goes above and beyond to please each guest and promises never to cut corners for the sake of saving money.”

The Panama City Beach restaurant is expected to open in early fall 2016.

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