Florida landmark closing

Chalet Suzanne shuts down Aug. 4

July 8, 2014

AOPA file photo.

A Florida destination known for Moon Soup and other gourmet delicacies will be closing in August, with the entire property—including a restaurant and inn listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the eclectic mix of antique furnishings, a cannery, and 100 acres that includes a shooting range and a 2,313-foot lighted turf strip: X25.

The Hinshaw family has run Chalet Suzanne Restaurant and Country Inn for 83 years, and decided recently to call it quits as of Aug. 4. They are entertaining offers for portions of the property—or the entire spread.

As noted in the March 2013 issue of AOPA Pilot, the award-winning gourmet restaurant has sent its signature Romaine soup into space: it was selected by NASA for two Apollo moon missions, and also supplied Russian cosmonauts.

The space set represent only a portion of the long list of celebrities who have dined on the Hinshaw family’s culinary creations, a menu that includes a traditional five-course meal, and more recently added à la carte options. News of the Hinshaw’s decision to close was mourned as “a sad day for Lake Wales” by local resident Jerry Miller, interviewed by a local newspaper when the impending shutdown was announced.

"A lot of people that travel and eat and like fine dining, they know Lake Wales because of the Chalet," Miller told The Ledger. "Bok Tower and the Chalet help define who we are as a city. That gives us our charm."

The family has detailed online a planned silent auction of the furniture and other distinctive items that helped create the Chalet Suzanne’s distinctive, eclectic charm; and they are also posting various historical notes and tributes on their Facebook page.

Jim Moore

Jim Moore | Online Associate Editor, AOPA

AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore joined AOPA in 2011 and is an instrument-rated private pilot who enjoys competition aerobatics.