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A new family-style restaurant is planned for 116 N. Main St. in downtown Crown Point.

CROWN POINT — Owners of a new restaurant in the city said they are excited to bring a rotating menu of high-quality foods and a family dining experience to the downtown square.

Jeff and Penny Holme presented to the City Council on Monday their plans to open an unnamed restaurant at 116 N. Main St. in a building they purchased for $350,000. They are spending about $450,000 in renovations to bring it back to the character it had when built in 1926.

The couple, who have owned Aurelio’s Restaurant in Lowell for two-plus decades, were granted at Monday’s meeting approval for one of the city’s new historic liquor licenses. Crown Point is utilizing a decade-old state law originally written to help Valparaiso develop its historic downtown. The law allows for 10 additional liquor licenses in the historic downtown.

The special three-way license (beer, wine and liquor) costs $6,000. This is in contrast to the cost of a traditional three-way liquor license that can run north of $100,000 and is meant to help those receiving the permit to invest more capital into their business, making it a benefit to the downtown.

“This is exactly what this permit is about, which is to bring new, more improved dining experiences to our downtown,” Building and Planning Administrator Anthony Schlueter said.

The Holmes plan to have a rotating menu and seating for 54 patrons, although that can change as plans are still being worked on.

Attorney John Dull, representing the Holmes in their purchase of the liquor permit, said it will take nine to 11 months to open the restaurant because the couple view it as an asset for Crown Point and want it to show in the renovations.

“They want that facility to stand for excellence,” he said.

The City Council praised the new addition to the downtown.

“We are gaining more high quality experience around the square,” Councilman Scott Evorik said. “This is awesome.”

Councilman Andrew Kyres said he knows the Holmes through their commonality of a restaurant background.

“They are hands-on,” Kyres said. “I think this is going to be a win-win for everybody.”

Best of the Region: Food and Dining

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Lake County reporter

Rob covers urban affairs and other matters in Crown Point, St. John, Winfield and beyond. Previously he covered Valparaiso, Hammond, Gary and East Chicago. He's also written for various magazines and pens a culture blog for The Times.