Published On: Fri, Apr 28th, 2017

City Council Unanimously Pass Ordinance That Prohibits the Sale of Alcohol from 2-7 a.m.

By: Nikki Colonna

beerThe Boca Raton council unanimously passed an ordinance that prohibits the sale of alcohol between 2-7 a.m. The new rule only affects two businesses — Blue Martini in the Town Center plaza and Nippers on Military Trail east of Town Center Mall. Both currently serve alcohol until 5 a.m.

Blue Martini and Nippers opened outside the city limits before Boca Raton annexed the land back in 2003. These two businesses were given permission to operate under Palm Beach County’s rules, which allow alcohol to be served until 5 a.m.  

“When the City annexed the Town Center area in 2003, it allowed the businesses in the annexed area to keep their business hours, but has the right to change them to be in accordance with the city code,” said Chrissy Gibson, Communication and Marketing Manager of City of Boca Raton.

In order to limit alcohol sale to only 2 a.m. will hinder Nippers’ ability to stay in business.

“[This] will devastate our business,”  said Danny Rosenberg, a Nippers manager. “The hours of 2-5 a.m. are when we cater to restaurant service industry workers who get off work and like to come, relax, unwind and get together with their other co-workers,” said Rosenberg. “That’s the bulk of our business.”

With only four incidents reported at Nippers in the last year by Boca Raton Police, and none violent, patrons and employees of Nippers are struggling to find justification behind this ban against their business and service.

“It’s just not fair, so to speak, it is unjustifiable that we are involved with this ordinance,” added Rosenberg.

Ten incidents have been reported at Blue Martini this year — including three batteries and two assaults on officers, according to Boca Raton Police.

Blue Martini generates a lot of customers in that window of time between 2 a.m. to 5 a.m. as well and is a lively hot spot, especially Thursday nights; college night, and Saturday nights; Latino night.

Under the approved ordinance, both businesses have four months to stop selling alcohol past 2 a.m.

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