Patricia Burnside, a personally loved and professionally respected local business broker, has died. She was 72.
Known to the hospitality industry as the “go-to” person for buying or selling a nightclub, she specialized in marketing properties with hard-to-obtain licenses, including nightclubs, sports bars, restaurants, liquor stores and adult entertainment-related businesses.
“Pat was an icon throughout our community, South Florida, and nationwide. Specializing in the real estate market of bars, clubs, restaurants, and liqueur licenses … Pat was the person,” said Toni Barone, who along with Julie Negovan, are associates with Pat Burnside’s realty office. “Anyone engaging to buy, sell, inquire on any establishment, the first question was, ‘who you gonna call?’ Pat Burnside was the answer.”
Although she had been addressing an illness for several months, Burnside had kept her condition private to most.
Burnside had over 25 years of experience as a realtor in South Florida, and ran a Hollywood office, Pat Burnside Realty.
Described as “unequivocally, the queen of bar and liquor licenses,” by her colleagues and industry insiders, Burnside, recognized by SFGN in its out 50’ awards in 2014, always stated that she loved her work, “that I like the bars, I like club people, I like the energy they bring to the table.”
Barone added, “This amazing woman encompassed a wealth of knowledge, integrity, compassion, and most of all the ability to create lasting friendships.”
Local bar owners were saddened by her loss.
Johnny Pak, the owner of the Alibi in Wilton Shoppes noted, “Pat is an amazing person and helped the community to its fullest. She was very smart and supportive to us all. She will be missed tremendously and her love will flourish among us.”
That expertise even led to Burnside addressing adult entertainment conferences, from coast to coast, conducting seminars and offering guidance for club owners on how to market, value and sell their clubs.
Burnside developed a fondness with those proprietors, which became mutual. Upon learning of her passing, testimonials came pouring into SFGN from those club owners, demonstrating how much they loved her back.
Mark Hunter of Hunters said, “Pat was one of those few special lights in my life. She was charming, delightful in every way, smart, a successful businesswoman, very supportive of our community, caring … plain and simply one of the good ones.”
The tributes also came from lifelong friends, like photographer Gio Spano, who wrote on Facebook that “words like kindness, warmth, laughter, good food & wine, big hugs, a true friend, strong leader, community activist, entrepreneur, compassionate, dog lover, adventurer, big smile with warm hugs and true love pass through my mind.”
Spano added that “Pat was an exceptional woman who was as driven by success in her business balanced with a deep commitment to her family and friends.”
Burnside’s neighbor and close friend in Hollywood for over 15 years was Howard Andrew, the owner of Fab Scout Entertainment. He stated that “Pat was one of the most amazing and beautiful friends I have ever had. From hanging out one-on-one or going to a restaurant, she had the biggest heart of anybody I had ever known. We have lost a very special person.”
Those thoughts were also echoed by Sue Martino, who runs the Pet Project, remarking how big a supporter of animals that Pat Burnside was.
A statement from her family read, “Our beloved sister and aunt, Patricia Hickling Burnside, will be missed by her family and friends. Her loving spirit will be with us forever. Her memory will be a blessing.”
On Oct. 20, there will be a Celebration of Life for Pat Burnside at Hunter's Nightclub from 6-8 p.m. VIP, family and invited guests arrive at 4 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please donate to American Cancer Society and/or The Pet Project. Food to be served.
SFGN will update plans for memorial tributes as information becomes available.