More restaurants closing, struggling to find new homes

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Earlier this month Gordon Biersch and Hooters closed down at Aloha Tower. Next month Jimbo Restaurant and Pint and Jigger in McCully will be closing as well.

The closure comes as the Hawaii Law Enforcement Federal Credit Union begin construction on a new headquarter and main branch in that area.

In a statement, Rene Matsuura, HLEFCU president and CEO said:

“Our valued tenants have been wonderful and we are sensitive to the needs of their business operations. We wanted to show them every consideration by giving them adequate advanced notice about our plans for relocation to the King Street property so that they can also plan accordingly.”

Pint and Jigger said they’ve been searching for a new place house their joint pub and speakeasy business, but it hasn’t been easy.

“It’s been an incredibly challenging process,” said David Newman, Pint and Jigger Business Partner. “Yeah, there’s days where we’ve gotten together and discussed over lunch, you know, not reopening because of the difficulty involved.”

He said it can be difficult to find the right price, especially in the city.

“Some of the amounts that people are asking for leases now are just astronomical,” said Newman.

Richard Stula, of Teddy’s Bigger Burgers and Tex 808 Barbeque, knows all about the cost. He owns 12 restaurants across Oahu.

“When in Waikiki for instance, you could be paying $20, $30 a square foot, whereas you go into the neighborhoods, it’s more like $6, $7, $8 a square foot,” said Stula.

But he said the higher prices are usually worth it.

“That’s the key saying everyone says – location, location, location. Right? And we are finding that the stores that are in really densely populated areas, even if the rent’s a bit higher, you do those numbers and you make the money, and we’re finding that we need to move more into those areas,” said Stula.

If one restaurant moves out, there’s also a chance for another new type of restaurant to come into the community.

“What most landlords tend to do is look for mix concepts. So they don’t want to have two burger places, or mexican plate places, so they try to get a diverse group,” said Stula.

Jimbo Restaurant and Pint and Jigger say they are currently searching for new places for their business.

“We definitely want to let people know that we’re working as hard as we can to re-open and we love what we do, and we’re incredibly appreciative,” said Newman.

Jimbo Restaurant will be closing on March 26. Pint and Jigger will be closing on March 27th.

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