Iconic Café in Safety Harbor Face Closure Amidst Rising Costs


In a heartfelt farewell to the community, the iconic Bassano Cheesecake Café on Main Street in Safety Harbor announced its impending closure, sending shockwaves through Pinellas County.

Tom and Cindy Bassano, the passionate owners who poured their hearts into every slice, recently shared the heartbreaking decision to close the café’s doors in a poignant Facebook video.

The cherished family-owned restaurant has been a symbol of culinary delight and community connection since its opening in June 2019.

The decision to shutter the doors early next year comes as a result of the substantial increase in rent, a financial burden that the couple, like many small business owners, found insurmountable.

The news reflects a broader economic challenge faced by businesses in Florida, where 53% reported rent spikes in January 2024, as revealed by Alignable, an online network of small business owners.

The impact of rising costs extends beyond rent, with supplies registering a 70% increase compared to the previous year.

Despite the impending closure of the café, the Bassanos are exploring alternative avenues to keep their passion alive. Their bakery in Oldsmar will continue to supply cheesecakes to other local restaurants, and they are considering options like a food truck to maintain a connection with their loyal patrons.

In a most recent post the couple expressed deep gratitude for the overwhelming love and support from the community, emphasizing that this support is what they love about the community. They also made it clear their landlords are not to blame as they are facing significant increases in insurance rates and taxes, while also trying to run a profitable business rather than a nonprofit charity.