Hunter's restaurant old photo

STORIED PAST — An archival photo of Hunter's Restaurant from the 1950s. This photo now hangs in the restaurant.

Family-owned Hunter’s Restaurant has been in Downtown DeLand longer than many DeLandites have lived here. And now the restaurant is moving to the fourth location of its 72-year history.

After 40 years at 202 N. Woodland Blvd., the breakfast and lunch mainstay is moving to 111 E. Rich Ave., where Bellini’s Italian Restaurant and Deli long had its home

Hunter's Michael Marlow, Nancy Hunter and Ken Marlow

FAMILY AFFAIR — Hunter's owner Michael Marlow, at right, in 2013 with his brother, Ken Marlow, and their mother Nancy Marlow. Nancy Hunter died in 2017. The restaurant, which opened in 1949, has always been owned by a member of the family.

Hunter’s owner Michael Marlow said the restaurant will close March 15, but he hopes to reopen in a few weeks. He also said only the building will change.

“It’s the exact same menu, same food, just a new location,” Marlow told The Beacon. “I am not sure of an exact opening date, but we are reopening. It’s just a matter of getting everything moved over there.”

Hunter’s Restaurant opened in 1949 and has operated at three Downtown DeLand locations, including 210 N. Woodland Blvd., where the restaurant operated from 1949 to 1955, and the corner of Rich Avenue and Woodland Boulevard, where Hunters stayed from 1955 to 1981, offering buffet-style service. After a fire at that location, 202 N. Woodland Blvd. has been the restaurant’s home ever since. 

Lee Gartside at Hunter's Restaurant in DeLand

RESTAURANT REGULAR — Lee Gartside of DeLand has been a regular customer of Hunter's Restaurant since 1962. While this photo is from 2013, Tanna Gartside, Lee Gartside's wife, said he is still an avid supporter of Hunter's Restaurant. "He will definitely continue going there when they move," Tanna Gartside told The Beacon.

With Hunter’s lease up for renewal and rent increasing beyond their reach, Marlow said, it was time for a change. He hopes patrons will come see them when they reopen at their new location. 

“Thank you, everyone, for 40 years of patronage at our old location,” Marlow said. “Hopefully, we’ll have 40 years at the new location.”