Hasta luego, ex-Hacienda

What’s left of the old Guadalajara Hacienda restaurant on Cali north of Morgan Junction is likely to be swept away any second now (if the backhoe’s not there already; we will be driving by shortly) – the city just granted a permit for townhouses on the site (and five other related project permits for townhouses and single-family homes, all California Ave addresses: 5919, 5921, 5925, 5927, 5929). The restaurant closed last February; the following photo was taken shortly afterward (the “bell tower” has since been taken down but the bulk of the building has stood, deteriorating):


24 Replies to "Hasta luego, ex-Hacienda"

  • A.A. October 4, 2007 (10:19 am)

    This makes me sad. Not only did they have pretty decent food (for what passes as Mexican food in this area, anyway), but that building had some beautiful murals on it. I wonder if they are being preserved/relocated in any way.

  • Kayleigh October 4, 2007 (10:30 am)

    Dang. I enjoyed more than one margarita there.

  • Aidan Hadley October 4, 2007 (11:53 am)

    Apparently the new, modern twelve unit condo complex directly across the street from that site is having trouble selling its units. Of the twelve only three or four have sold. Realtors say the prices are set too high but the builder seems to think it is an issue with location.

  • Thomas October 4, 2007 (12:41 pm)

    “Realtors say the prices are set too high but the builder seems to think it is an issue with location.”

    Well then they’re welcome to take their expensive condos out of my neighborhood and put them somewhere else.

  • OP October 4, 2007 (12:59 pm)

    Realtors say the prices are set too high but the builder seems to think it is an issue with location.

    The builder is certainly in denial. The housing market has been slowing to a slothful gait across the country for months now. None too surprising they aren’t moving. I’m sure they’ll be dropping the prices soon on these, and even then that may not be enough.

  • Elizabeth October 4, 2007 (1:43 pm)

    Those units are great, but they are still overpriced, esp. for the neighborhood. They’re priced like they are down at Alki. That neighborhood finally starting to get some amenities (new park, new pub, etc). The area north of the Morgan St. Junction is currently probably the most “underachieving” and under-serving business district in West Seattle.

  • OP October 4, 2007 (1:44 pm)

    Thomas, do you not like having your property values increase? Wouldn’t you rather a nice new 4 or 6-plex condo near you versus an empty lot strewn with garbage? Or worse yet, a dilapidated building with blue tarps on the roof and overrun with ivy, morning glory and blackberry bushes? (Obviously I have a neighbor with this type of house, so pardon me whilst I project a little…lol). Pretty easy to answer, wouldn’t you agree? :-)

  • Brandon October 4, 2007 (3:51 pm)

    Sure OP, I love more foot traffic and cars congesting my neighborhood, not to mention the increase odds of 1 in 4 or 6 being a crappy neighbor too. I don’t buy that a new building improves the area, and increased taxes and services are merely just the beginnings of that increased property valuation. After everything else has gone up 50%, your new/next house is up 50% too.

    As for Mexy, yes, that does shoot down the only Mexi place in WS worth mentioning. Looks like its back to Green Lake…

  • OP October 4, 2007 (4:40 pm)

    I don’t buy that a new building improves the area, and increased taxes and services are merely just the beginnings of that increased property valuation. After everything else has gone up 50%, your new/next house is up 50% too.

    You don’t “buy” an economic fact? Interesting. And increased taxes? Agreed, King County and Seattle city property taxes are pretty outlandish, but you do realize that you make those back up in the relative market value of your house when you go to sell it, yes?

    As for local WS Mex, try the place across the street from Elliott Bay Brew pub (the name is escaping me). Not the one with the nice seating, the other place. That place has good, cheap Mex. And tequila selection at Matador is very good. Try the Don Camillio anejo. Very good stuff…

  • westseattleite October 4, 2007 (4:41 pm)

    Does anyone know if the two homes next to it are also being torn down? It’s a shame, they look to be pretty nice. I don’t know what the restaurant looked like before, but I’m glad to see it go in it’s current condition.

  • Aidan Hadley October 4, 2007 (6:45 pm)

    Elizabeth: I agree. The builder is Greg Walton and he really has excellent taste. I looked at one of the models over there and I was really impressed with the materials and workmanship. Walton’s company also built the gray modern townhouses that are just off Oregon on 41st near the Junction which was designed by the excellent West Seattle architect David Foster. With so many condo projects in Seattle it is nice to see someone doing something with a bit more design integrity than the cheap, cookie-cutter faux-Craftsman stuff that is so common these days.

  • Jen V. October 4, 2007 (6:51 pm)

    yes, those homes are slated for demolition as well….

  • Erik October 4, 2007 (7:14 pm)

    I’m sure someone would demo 87yo bungalow if they bought it. I won’t because I like it when the ladies walk by and tell me ‘it’s’ cute.

  • Erik October 4, 2007 (7:16 pm)

    my, even. Sheesh.

  • WSB October 4, 2007 (8:01 pm)

    Erik, we hear ya — we live in a WWII-era home that we know no one else will ever buy (not that we’re selling) except to tear it down and build something three times its size.

  • pam October 4, 2007 (8:28 pm)

    I wish that in addition to all these condo conversions, we’d get more businesses at this end of Cali.

  • Jan October 4, 2007 (10:13 pm)

    I sympathize, Pam. It’s interesting to see the buildings go up that have retail on the first floor, and then just sit there with “For Lease” signs on them. Maybe if they were all required to have commitments from people already, tho I have no idea how that could be done…

  • chas redmond October 5, 2007 (1:03 am)

    That stretch between Alaska and Morgan junctions was among the last remaining areas on California where there were free-standing houses – hence low density. I suspect once these new condos or apartments go up and the density increases that businesses will see opportunities and open up stores – but, please, no more nail or tanning salons, unless they get new and better neon, then I might say “okay.” The corner store near Chuck and Sally’s (former?) seems to have found a market.

  • Claire October 5, 2007 (9:46 am)

    The industrial looking condo’s that have not sold on the 5900’s Cali block sold the last units to some other company and they are trying to sell them now. My husband and I went into one of the open houses this summer and while the wood they used is kind of nice its a very tight feeling home. I cant really imagine anyone who spends much time at home living in such a unit. Also the units with the view were most likely the higher priced and now another tall buliding will go accross the street and block it.

    There are small bussiness’s from there to Morgan junction missing lately too. My husband and I walk to Thriftway often and we have noticed in passing empty windows and for lease signs.

    Perhaps some of the property owners are on a greed momentum with all the new building right now and raising rent?

  • old timer October 5, 2007 (11:24 am)

    Everyone seems to want ‘local business’ but, at what specific ‘business’ would you spend your hard earned money on a regular basis?
    These ‘first floor retail’ spaces can’t support places that offer hardware, appliances, automobile showrooms, furniture, etc.
    Besides, we already have these stores in the area.
    We also already have framing shops, card shops, pet shops, massage studios, record stores, and more.
    So, what kind of businesses do people want and will they spend enough there to make them viable?

    There’s more to making a healthy business environment than having folks walk by and look in the windows.

  • OP October 5, 2007 (3:55 pm)

    My Top 5 businesses/restaurants WS could use:
    1.) Red Mill Burgers. Yum!
    2.) Noah’s Bagels. I love Zatz’s, but Noah’s makes a real good, close-to-authentic NY bagel.
    3.) A great NY-style deli, like The Other Coast Cafe Ballard.
    4.) A decent sports bar that doesn’t feel like you’re walking a cave (aka: Rocksport).
    5.) A good, independent new/used book store. It’s a pain in the hindquarters to go Elliott Bay books in P. Square.

  • Jen V. October 5, 2007 (11:48 pm)

    OP – pssssht! go to Pegasus for used books and Square One for new!

  • dave October 6, 2007 (12:24 am)

    actually..we could use a few more nail salons, frame shoppes, and Starbucks.


    one extra vote from me for Red Mill,

  • Keith October 6, 2007 (10:18 am)

    OP, I second the Jan’s suggestion of Square One. It’s no Elliott Bay, but it’s pretty good. And as for EB Books, it’s a pain to park around there but it’s easy by bus.

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