Owners of the recently closed sister restaurants Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina and Playa at Safe Harbor Sportsman Marina are being sued on claims they defaulted on nearly $2 million in loans and …
Owners of the recently closed sister restaurants Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina and Playa at Safe Harbor Sportsman Marina are being sued on claims they defaulted on nearly $2 million in loans and credit cards.
ServisFirst Bank claims the restaurants and two principals in the restaurant defaulted on $1.8 million in loans and more than $400,000 on two credit cards. Besides the restaurants, the lawsuit also names namesake Johnny Fisher and the late Charles Bennett Long as defendants.
According to the filing, the restaurants received $1.8 million in loans for the restaurants in October and November of 2018 when Playa was first opened at Safe Harbor Sportsman Marina in the space formerly occupied by Shipp's Harbor Grill.
"Pursuant to the terms of the promissory note, guarantees and Commercial Loan Agreement, it is an event of default if Playa ceases to do business or the death of any member of the LLC," the filing states. "Both Playa LLC and Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina have ceased doing business, and a member of Playa LLC, Charles Bennett Long, is deceased, therefore the loan is now in default."
Long passed away on Aug. 27. On Oct. 4, it was announced Playa was closing on the restaurant's Facebook page.
"We have decided as a company to focus our talent and energy on our sister restaurant Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina," the post states.
On Oct. 31, Fisher's posted on its Facebook page its doors were also closing.
"It is with heavy hearts that we announce Fisher's Restaurant will be closing its doors permanently on November 7, 2023," the post states.
The lawsuit goes on to say the outstanding balance on the loan is $1.1 million, saying "The note in question also provides for attorney fees and expenses if Plaintiff has to retain counsel to enforce their rights under the terms of the agreement."
Additionally, the lawsuit says in May 2015, Fisher, Long and Fisher's at Orange Beach Marina established a credit card that according to the filing "is now in default, and the outstanding balance is currently $217,858.27."
The filing states that in March 2018, Long and Playa established a credit card account for that restaurant, and the "outstanding balance is currently $243,503.09."
The lawsuit outlines four counts in the filing, including three breach of contract claims. ServisFirst seeks possession of restaurant equipment "or a judgment for its alternate value."
As to Fisher's restaurant, the suit seeks a total of $1.32 million and $1.34 million from Playa, $1.56 million from the deceased Long and $1.32 million from Fisher. All counts also seek interest on the owed amounts, attorney fees and court costs.
Both restaurants were recognized by Southern Living magazine as a top 10 place to eat on the Alabama Gulf Coast.
When called for comment, defendants said they have been advised not to talk about the case pending litigation.