Oceano restaurant surfacing in former Crab Louie’s spot in Midlothian

Maria and Michael Oseguera are preparing to open Oceano at 1352 Sycamore Square. (BizSense file)

Two seasoned restaurateurs from the city are dropping anchor in Chesterfield County.

Maria and Michael Oseguera, owners of Maya restaurant on East Grace Street downtown, are preparing to open Oceano at 1352 Sycamore Square in the Sycamore Square Shopping Center.

The space had been home to Crab Louie’s Seafood Tavern for more than 30 years until its closure in 2020.

Oceano will be another seafood-heavy concept, one that Michael describes as a New American restaurant with European influences.

“I think we’re going to be leaning towards Italian with pastas and other Italian fare,” Oseguera said, noting Oceano’s menu will have dishes from around Italy’s Amalfi Coast where seafood is abundant.

Crab Louie’s closed in Midlothian in 2020 and its space has been vacant since. (Mike Platania photos)

Oceano will have room to seat around 110 and include a full bar with over 100 types of wine. Oseguera said they’re planning to start out with only dinner service but plan to eventually offer lunch.

He said they leased the roughly 5,000-square-foot space last spring but as they set out to renovate it and bring it up to code, they hit delays in permitting and receiving new equipment.

“Anything to do with metal (has been delayed),” Oseguera said. “I still haven’t gotten stuff that I ordered back in October.”

Crab Louie’s canary yellow facade has been repainted as the Osegueras and their general contractor, J.A. Heisler Contracting Co., look to modernize the building.

Oceano’s menu will feature plenty of seafood and other dishes popular in the coastal Mediterranean regions of Italy.

“It’s definitely going to look very, very different. The plus is there’s a lot of history there with the building and the restaurants. So, I’m looking to embrace the history and make it a little more modern and give it an exciting, trendier feel,” Oseguera said.

While supply chain issues persist, Oseguera said another other pandemic-induced challenge is beginning to abate.

“Staffing’s still a little hard. It’s not as bad as it was last year, but it’s still challenging,” Oseguera said. “I think we’ve slowly improved on that.”

Oceano is aiming to open in mid-to-late April.

The Osegueras also previously owned Pink Flamingo at 416 E. Grace St. downtown. That space is now home to Lillie Pearl.

Maria and Michael Oseguera are preparing to open Oceano at 1352 Sycamore Square. (BizSense file)

Two seasoned restaurateurs from the city are dropping anchor in Chesterfield County.

Maria and Michael Oseguera, owners of Maya restaurant on East Grace Street downtown, are preparing to open Oceano at 1352 Sycamore Square in the Sycamore Square Shopping Center.

The space had been home to Crab Louie’s Seafood Tavern for more than 30 years until its closure in 2020.

Oceano will be another seafood-heavy concept, one that Michael describes as a New American restaurant with European influences.

“I think we’re going to be leaning towards Italian with pastas and other Italian fare,” Oseguera said, noting Oceano’s menu will have dishes from around Italy’s Amalfi Coast where seafood is abundant.

Crab Louie’s closed in Midlothian in 2020 and its space has been vacant since. (Mike Platania photos)

Oceano will have room to seat around 110 and include a full bar with over 100 types of wine. Oseguera said they’re planning to start out with only dinner service but plan to eventually offer lunch.

He said they leased the roughly 5,000-square-foot space last spring but as they set out to renovate it and bring it up to code, they hit delays in permitting and receiving new equipment.

“Anything to do with metal (has been delayed),” Oseguera said. “I still haven’t gotten stuff that I ordered back in October.”

Crab Louie’s canary yellow facade has been repainted as the Osegueras and their general contractor, J.A. Heisler Contracting Co., look to modernize the building.

Oceano’s menu will feature plenty of seafood and other dishes popular in the coastal Mediterranean regions of Italy.

“It’s definitely going to look very, very different. The plus is there’s a lot of history there with the building and the restaurants. So, I’m looking to embrace the history and make it a little more modern and give it an exciting, trendier feel,” Oseguera said.

While supply chain issues persist, Oseguera said another other pandemic-induced challenge is beginning to abate.

“Staffing’s still a little hard. It’s not as bad as it was last year, but it’s still challenging,” Oseguera said. “I think we’ve slowly improved on that.”

Oceano is aiming to open in mid-to-late April.

The Osegueras also previously owned Pink Flamingo at 416 E. Grace St. downtown. That space is now home to Lillie Pearl.

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Kevin Pierpont
Kevin Pierpont
3 months ago

I wish them well and for an even longer tenure than Crab Louie’s.

Daniel Cooper
Daniel Cooper
3 months ago

Does the ghost come with the property?

Jackie Chandler
Jackie Chandler
3 months ago

I have been watching your progress, eagerly anticipating your opening.
I was hoping that the new owner would bring back some of Crab Louie
popular dishes or at least be something similar. Crab Louie was “Unique” and has been dearly missed in my home.
We do not need another pasta restaurant in Midlothian….we have enough of them.
We wish you much success hopefully you won’t disappoint.

Paul A Cruser
Paul A Cruser
3 months ago

Excellent news. We wish them all the best. Maria’s creativity and knowledge of seafood is outstanding. Glad to hear of the new venture.

Arlene Fultz
Arlene Fultz
3 months ago

We were so in hopes it would be another seafood restaurant ala Crab Louie’s. We are up to our armpits in Italian restaurants in Richmond. Crab Louie’s was unique and we visited it often because of that.

Gary Edwards
Gary Edwards
3 months ago
Reply to  Arlene Fultz

I sure hope they will bring back the gluten free crab cakes that Crab Louis had!

Lori Phinney
Lori Phinney
3 months ago

I can’t wait. I hope to be your first customer. I loved crab Louie’s and wish you all the best. I went there often. My daughter was a waitress there.

Leon Phoenix
Leon Phoenix
3 months ago

We need an all you can eat crab leg restaurant in Richmond, like Captain George’s in Williamsburg and Virginia Beach. Maybe they could try it one night a week.

Ed Christina
Ed Christina
3 months ago
Reply to  Leon Phoenix

If that was a profitable model for Richmond then the Capt George’s on West broad would still be here