More than 20 years after they first opened, Chuck’s Waterfront Grill and The Endless Summer Bar Café are permanently closed. On the morning of April 30 the waterfront restaurant announced its closure with a farewell post on its Instagram account.
The post read, “It is with heavy hearts that we announce we have closed our doors for good. Thank you for your constant support. The memories will never be forgotten.”
Despite the current economic chaos due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the prospect of Chuck’s and Endless Summer ceasing operation dates back to before the outbreak. According to the agenda of a March 24 Santa Barbara City Council meeting in which assignment of the restaurant’s lease to a new operator was the first item, Chuck’s and Endless Summer co-owner Steve Hyslop informed the Waterfront Department of his desire to sell the establishment in August 2019.
After receiving the department’s lease assignment requirements, Mr. Hyslop began searching for a new buyer and ultimately found it in businessman Aaron Petersen, who operates a number of restaurants in Solvang including Chomp, The Coffee House by Chomp, Brekkies by Chomp, and Mortensen’s Danish Bakery.
The initial lease for the Chuck’s and Endless Summer property is 10 years with four, five-year options to extend the term of the lease. Mr. Petersen is inheriting the existing lease with only the four, five-year options remaining, with an average seasonally adjusted base rent of $23,585 per month.
Though Mr. Petersen plans to continue running Chuck’s and Endless Summer in line with its current operation for a time, the restaurant has upgrades planned for around the fall. According to the agenda, under Mr. Petersen’s business plan the second floor of the establishment will be converted into a traditional deli café focused on sandwiches, soups, and salads, with a gourmet grocery area selling wine, beer, and prepackaged foods. For evenings, the second floor will have a full bar and a dinner menu focusing on “adult food and beverages.”
The restaurant’s ground floor is proposed to be similar to Mr. Petersen’s Chomp restaurants. Its menu of burgers, fries, and shakes will cater to families, young adults, and retirees, and for evenings will be converted to a “dinner type atmosphere.”