“Thank you for dining with us in our living room”
~ The Kwaterski Family
Welcome to the Florian II with its eclectic history spanning forever, well, almost! Birthed in the 1885's as a stage coach inn, the now-Florian II served weary travelers making their way up the county for farming, logging, fishing, hunting and trapping. The Inn was soon the bustling hub of the Door Peninsula, and was made the first county seat! (later moved to Sturgeon Bay because we were too much fun for politics)
The early 1900’s reeled its transformation into the Panter Hotel and Fishing Lodge, and later the Cotton Club, Amends Peterson's Bar & Dance Hall, and Charkowski's House of Mr. C - all serving & entertaining travelers and entrepreneurial spirits eyeing our bountiful Lake Michigan. Supper Clubs rose following the Depression and were a way for communities to all work together as "Club' members. They were a place for the townspeople to gather, eat, and be entertained, while doubling as a trading place. Club members would simply sign their tab and later the Supper Club owner would collect in whatever material or services could be bartered. Local economy. Life was simple.
In 1956 the property unexpectedly and synchronously landed in the Kwaterski family. As legend has it, Florian Kwaterski went out to buy a hay bailer and instead came home to wife Ada with a deed - an epic turn in history for the family, Baileys Harbor & Door County.
Of course it was fitting to name the new hotspot The FlorAda Club after its two new entrepreneurs. Not to be totally confused with 'Florida' in spite of tables lined with grass skirts and two large metal palm trees adorning the front entrance in the dead of winter. Florian and Ada ran the business almost completely with family. Florian’s mother Great Grandma Walther ruled the kitchen and was in charge of making ALL the homemade recipes. The kids were not off the hook working the floor, the bar, the stage, the kitchen, the toilets, the dumpsters, the mop, the secret tunnels in the basement (wait, what?). And The FlorAda made its mark as Door County’s hottest Supper Club!
An electrical fire brought dark days in 1971, completely destroying the original building. Bailey's Harbor was shaken to its core and the family was on the edge of loosing the business. But like the legendary Phoenix that is the symbol of our Polish heritage, a new magnificent creation would rise from the ashes. In 1972, Florian’s twin sons Joe and Jerry left college early to purchase the burnt property from their father in order to rebuild the business and save the family legacy. In 1973 they reopened as The Florian II, later adding the waterfront glass solarium dining room in 1985. In 1975 the twins also purchased the Blue Ox Bar & Grill across the street. Erected in 1887, that building has its own wild history. Do check it out for more great times!
The twins later hatched their own families as all Polish Phoenix do. Jerry married Mindy Keough and they have two children, daughter Sheena and son Shane. Joe settled down shortly after and married Tina Hart. They have three sons: Dylan, Brandon, and Ryan. All five children were raised working all aforementioned spaces (except pre-fire secret tunnels), now making four generations in the family business. You will find various combinations of us running orders, grilling steak, stirring sauce, slinging drinks and shlepping vacuums!
Our family is here to serve you in the personal ways only a family can, with the same old fashioned home grown recipes that Great Grandma helped start all those years ago. Jerry's got the prize on his BBQ rib secret sauce though. Just Sayin'.
So again, welcome to the Florian II, a true Door County Supper Club landmark for 66 years. Let us help you remember old time memories and form new ones with your family and ours!