July 28, 1911|
|Died||May 20, 2005
Swampscott, Massachusetts, USA
|Known for||Anthony's Pier 4, one of the most successful restaurants in the USA|
Anthony Athanas (July 28, 1911 – May 20, 2005) was a multi-millionaire Albanian-American restaurateur and philanthropist. His restaurants included Anthony's Pier 4, known throughout United States. In 1976 the National Restaurant Association named him Restaurateur of the Year.
Born in Korçë, southern Albania, then part of the Ottoman Empire, on July 28, 1911, he and his mother Evangeline traveled on a donkey to a port and emigrated to Bedford, New York in 1915–16, where his father, who was a mason, and siblings had settled. At the age of thirteen Athanas left school and worked in several restaurants until 1938, when he bought his first restaurant: Anthony's Hawthorne Café in Lynn, Massachusetts, which by the early 1950s had become the highest-grossing restaurant in Massachusetts, with profits of more than $1 million annually. In 1963, he opened Anthony's Pier 4, which by the early 1980s was grossing about $12 million annually and was the highest-grossing restaurant in the United States, but closed in August 2013. His other restaurants included the Hawthorne by-the-sea Tavern in Swampscott, Massachusetts, and Anthony's Cummaquid Inn in Yarmouth Port.
Athanas had also served as president of Massachusetts's Restaurant Association, a member of the board of the National Restaurant Association, while in 1976 he was named Restaurateur of the Year. In 1999 during the Kosovo War he became a member of the congressional delegation of the United States, Albania, Kosovo, and Macedonia. Although Athanas had no formal education he was a popular lecturer at Harvard Business School, the University of New Hampshire and Cornell University, and was awarded the Horatio Alger Award by the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans in 1978. He died at his Swampscott home on May 20, 2005 of Alzheimer's disease at the age of 93. The funeral was held at St. George Albanian Orthodox Cathedral in South Boston.
- Arnett, Alison (21 May 2005). "Anthony Athanas, Boston's iconic restaurateur, dies – The Boston Globe". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- Driscoll, Edgar; Levenson (Michael). "Boston's iconic restaurateur Anthony Athanas dies". Wyoming Tribune Eagle. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- Taylor, David (17 September 2007). "Anthony's Pier 4, the long-standing temple to perfectly cooked seafood, remains Boston's freshest catch.". Forbes. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- Eliot Engel. Congressional Record. Government Printing Office. p. 1141.
- "Anthony Athanas". Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans. Retrieved 21 December 2010.