Reports of Le Tub’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. The venerable bar and burger joint on the Intracoastal in Hollywood is alive and well after Hurricane Irma, despite internet rumors to the contrary.
“We’ve been getting calls from people all over asking if we are still in business,” weekend manager Michael Chandler says. “We were back open a few days after the storm. We want to get the word out that we’re fine.”
After Irma tore through South Florida, a dramatic photo posted on Facebook by a local resident on Sept. 11 appeared to show Le Tub in tatters. A toppled tree, wrecked fence and sand-covered parking lot triggered overblown speculation that the restaurant had been destroyed.
One Facebook user wrote, “Have friends in Florida. Several have posted [Le Tub] is gone, creamed. They’re saying it is not there.”
Sun Sentinel reporter Susannah Bryan quickly set the record straight, posting photos on a Facebook page Sept. 11 showing some damage to dockside tables and reporting that the main building had survived intact and that the restaurant would reopen later that week.
Chandler says the restaurant reopened soon after getting power back with limited seating. The main bar, inside tables and lower-deck outside tables all emerged from the storm unscathed. The dockside tables were closed for repairs, but all 23 seats along the Intracoastal reopened this week, Chandler says.
Yet the destruction rumors have persisted, Chandler says, and it has put a dent in Le Tub’s business. Only the parking lot is still closed for repairs, and Chandler says it should be open by next week. Patrons are asked to park at a city garage at the Margaritaville resort across the street.
Le Tub had its burger anointed best in the country by GQ magazine in 2005, which spurred a publicity barrage that included being featured on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” Le Tub opened in 1975 in a converted gas station. The restaurant is decorated with porcelain toilets and bathtubs, some of which got blown over in the storm.