Lehigh may be getting what its owner says is a "high end" nightclub if all goes as planned. He told members of the Lehigh Acres Community Planning Commission that he has leased a site on South Loop, behind the Winn-Dixie Shopping Center.
It is the site of the home of the former Eagles club and plans are to renovate and rebuilt the interior, said Bruce Keisling of Lehigh Acres.
"I'm talking about something nice, not a sports bar and no big TVs with sports channels. I'm talking about a nice intimate place a couple can go to and enjoy themselves with a glass of wine and perhaps listen to some great music, which would vary from time to time, but often with local band and orchestra talent.
"We would have tables with white clothes and nice seating for eating and I plan to work with area restaurants that may provide food on different evenings," he said.
Members of the LACPP like the idea, but noted that the area in which Keisling is talking about, is targeted for future redevelopment when the county soon approves funding for three "community centers" in that area of Homestead Rd.
But Keisling say he was aware and excited about what is being planned for the downtown area and says he would consider relocation when redevelopment begins.
He told LACPP members and guests that the bar at his high end night club or supper club would not have a background of liquors and wines and glasses, but rather a collection of crafts, such as paintings and other collectibles to show off what local artists and others interested in the fine arts.
He brought a few items to illustrate what would be displayed behind the bar. One was a painting and the other items were silver pieces and glassware.
"I want to reach out to artists in our community and give them a place that they can come and paint and to sit and enjoy their friends. It would be a place that the women would enjoy," he said.
Keisling said he had considered a private club or a performance arts center but probably will end up with a high-end night club or supper club.
The address is 1113 on South Loop and is not far from the Lehigh Post Office. Also nearby are several condos facing South Loop.
Keisling said when there was music at the club, it would not bother nearby residents and he has talked to some of the residents already and everything seems positive for them, he noted.
Steve Conti, a member of the LACPP said it was what Lehigh Acres needed.
"Something like this would be good for Lehigh Acres. But I question the size because it not very large. But I like the idea," Conti said.
Keisling, who is a general contractor, said he had plans for the interior and there would be room for a nice club, which could also be a private club, but no decision has been made about that yet, he said.
He said there are tentative plans for an outside area with a few tables and chairs for those who may want to sit outside when the weather is not so hot.
Linda Carter, another member of the LACPP, said residents in Lehigh are tired of having to drive to Fort Myers and back, "and pay up to $4 a gallon for gas" to go to a nice place.
"I'm all for it," he said.
But before the doors open, Keisling must come up with a site plan, get proper permitting and that may take several months. He then will be asked to come back before the LACPP and presents his final plans for the club.
He said he has a name for the new club: Rolling Stone Libation.
"I was a real fan of the Rolling Stones magazine," he said.
If you're wondering what "libation" means, Webster's Dictionary lists synonyms as beverage, drinkable, drink, potable and quencher.