Surf-and-turf restaurant going into old Bank of America building in downtown Lake Zurich
Two veteran restaurateurs have leased the old downtown Lake Zurich Bank of America building and plan to turn it into an upscale restaurant called Vault 232.
Restaurant owner Frank Radogna said the name reflects the restaurant's emphasis on surf and turf with "Vault" a reference to the building's past as a bank and "232" the size of the village's namesake lake in acres.
Once open, the restaurant will have a dining room and banquet hall space for 80 or more people.
Radogna and business partner and chef Jorge Ojeda hope to have their new restaurant at 35 W. Main St. open by October or November, but Radogna acknowledged that getting equipment is slower than it was before the pandemic.
The two currently run Franco's Pescheria restaurant, raw bar and fish market at 471 S. Rand Road in Lake Zurich and plan to close it when the new restaurant is ready to open. Radogna said Vault 232 will offer fresh seafood like Franco's, but emphasized that the menu will not be confined to just fish.
"We want to build on the success of who we are and who we've been and bring it to the next level," Radogna said.
Radogna said they aim to have a bar as well as two features from Franco's, a raw food bar and a market that will stock seafood as well as other goods.
"We are still creating the menus and the concepts," Radogna said. "There is still a little mystery there."
The building is owned by Lake Zurich couple and first-time developers Don and Cindy Malin, who acquired the building after walking by it for years wishing someone would do something to improve it.
In 2020, the village board approved a public/private redevelopment plan that gave the couple two adjacent village-owned properties worth a total of $390,000 as well as contributions of $150,000 in upfront reconstruction funds and another $150,000 in tax increment financing funds.
Radogna said he thinks the restaurant -- which is a short walk from many other restaurants as well as the lake and beach -- will enhance the village's downtown.
"We think this is going to be an anchor location and will make downtown Lake Zurich more of a walking location," Radogna said. "It is something downtown sorely needs."