SSP America opens local eatery at Tampa International Airport


SSP America has opened a 7,700 square feet marché at Tampa International Airport comprising six brands that offer travelers a taste of the Tampa Bay region.

The opening of The Eatery at Terminal F is part of a larger 10-year, US$298 million contract awarded by the Hillsborough County Aviation Authority to operate 14 units occupying over 22,168 square feet at Tampa International Airport (TPA).

TPA reported more than 18.9 million passengers in 2016.

Michael Svagdis, SSP America Chief Executive Officer, said: “There’s a great synergy among this all-star group which includes our operating partner Perez of Florida Inc and design team Alfonso Architects as well as this extraordinary group of local restaurant leaders. We are passionate about this long-term partnership and a collective focus on bringing the TPA passengers a unique taste of place from the Tampa Bay region.” 

Ruben Perez, President of Perez of Florida Inc, said: “Having worked with SSP America since 2001 as an Airport Concessions Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE), I love that my own passion for great local restaurants is equaled by the SSP America team. And, of course, it’s great to see these amazing local brands continue to expand and develop their businesses airside.”

Alfonso Architects, a Tampa-based architectural design firm, has delivered many complex projects at Tampa International Airport, including Airside C, the recent international addition to Airside F, and the exciting new Eatery at Airside F.

TPA Marché F offers passengers a local market-place style eatery with multiple paying options, either at the counter where they order or at a central point of service location.

Bella Veloce: Opened in 1986, Bella’s Italian Café is known for its authentic Italian food and warm, welcoming neighborhood ambience. At The Eatery, Bella Veloce will emphasize a carefully curated “best of” list, focusing on its brick oven pizza, sandwiches and fresh salads.

Asked about the opening, General Manager Eric Potts said: “After 30 years in south Tampa, we are honored to join SSP America’s TPA concessions team and are very excited about the exposure and the opportunity to reach new customers.”

Square 1: At Square 1, all proteins are hormone- and antibiotic-free, from the Angus beef to ground chicken and buffalo. Owners Joanie Corneil, Bill Shumate and Ray Leich source ingredients from the best purveyors, using only the finest seasonal produce, fresh dairy and freshly baked breads.

Vice President Bill Milner said: “Square 1 is excited to partner with SSP America and TPA to bring our 11th location to market. Square 1 is an up-and-coming concept that appeals to all demographics. The exposure for Square 1 at the airport is incredible, and the partnership will only strengthen our brand.”

Buddy Brew Coffee: Dave and Susan Ward source the highest quality coffee beans from the most dedicated sustainable farmers around the world.

Speaking on the opening, Dave Ward said: “We couldn’t be more honored to represent Tampa by having a Buddy Brew Coffee bar at The Eatery. The opportunity to be exposed to domestic and international travelers in this wonderful airport is beyond measure.”

Fitlife Foods: David Osterweil’s Fitlife Foods offers passengers healthy grab-and-go meals. Using fresh local ingredients, salads, wraps and snacks meet every dietary preference, including gluten-free, low-carb and vegetarian.

Commenting on the opening, Osterweil said: “We're excited to be a part of this opportunity and represent Tampa and the local business community. At Fitlife Foods, we are committed to powering travelers to be at their best with our fresh, grab-and-go items that are nutritious, delicious and perfectly crafted from scratch.”

Yogurtology: Yogurtology is a frozen yogurt specialist providing a self-serve experience for travelers.

Director of Operations Kyle Walker commented: “We’re beyond excited to have the opportunity to share our fabulous product with everyone that travels through our great city. It truly has been an awesome experience bringing the local fare to TPA and giving them a little taste of what Tampa really has to offer.”

Liquid Provisions: A focal point in The Eatery, Liquid Provisions is a full-service bar serving local craft beer. A small plate menu features shareable plates such as the charcuterie and cheese board.

SSP America Vice President of Business Development John Clark said: “We are honored to deliver a concept that is tailored to TPA’s vision of an extraordinary passenger experience that attracts travelers from around the globe. Liquid Provisions will truly offer TPA travelers a taste of place.”