Buzz’s Original Steak House announced Thursday it has permanently closed its Pearl City restaurant.

“After a half century of serving the community, we made the difficult decision to close our Pearl City restaurant,” said owner Bobby Lou Yeackel. “We opened Buzz’s Original Steak House on Kamehameha Highway in 1967, and 10 years later, in 1977, we moved to our current location on Kuahao Place. However, due to the deterioration of the building, it has become difficult and impractical to continue restaurant operations at this location. This led to our decision to not renew the lease which was set to expire in December.

“We would like to extend our thanks and gratitude to the community and to all the loyal customers we have had the privilege to serve over the past 51 years,” Yeackel added.

For the past several months, Buzz’s owners have been working with its landlord to address major repair and maintenance issues, including the plumbing system and leaking pipes and a roach infestation that is believed to have originated from under the building due to the moisture.

The restaurant voluntarily ceased operation on Friday, June 22, following a Department of Health inspection.

The Department of Health said in a statement:

“The Hawaii Department of Health consulted with the owner of the Pearl City Buzz’s Original Steak House after its most recent health inspection on June 22. The Pearl City facility did not pass its inspection and because the owner decided to close the restaurant, its permit has been rescinded and the facility is no longer required to post an inspection placard. We understand the Pearl City Buzz’s Original Steak House has decided to close due to leasing issues.  The Kailua Buzz’s Original Steakhouse was issued a green placard during its most recent routine inspection and its license remains in good standing.”

Buzz’s Pearl City restaurant had 31 employees. Five employees will transfer to Buzz’s Lanikai restaurant. The remaining employees, the majority of whom were part-time, hourly employees, will be paid through June 22, and all of the employees will receive an additional two-weeks pay. Those who were receiving health benefits will be covered through the end of July. Employees who participated in the company’s profit-sharing plan will be compensated accordingly.

Buzz’s restaurant in Lanikai, which opened its doors in 1962 and currently employs approximately 120 people, remains open and is in good standing with the Department of Health.

Its operations have not been impacted by the ongoing building-related issues that the Pearl City restaurant has been dealing with for the past several months.

The attached video aired on KHON2 News at 10 p.m. Wednesday, following news of a roach infestation. Stay with KHON2.com and KHON2 News at 5 and 6 p.m. for updates.