The Figueroa Street building that houses Mr. T’s Bowl & Nightclub, a former Highland Park bowling alley turned nightspot, has been put up for sale as nearby blocks attract new restaurants and shops.
The owners of the two-story building near the Highland Theater are asking $3.125 million for the 14,000-square-foot structure, according to LoopNet. While the ground floor contains, two storefronts and Mr. T’s, the upstairs features 3,000-square-feet of offices as well as 20-feet high ceilings, skylights and wood, bow-truss ceiling beams – features that would certainly appeal to the lovers of loft-like spaces. Says the listing:
The property could be an excellent fit for someone who would like to continue a similar venue or for someone who would like to turn the space into creative office/ retail space.
It’s not clear if Mr. T’s would be part of any sale. The Eastsider has contacted the owners for comment.
So, who was Mr T? He would be Joseph “Mr. T” Teresa, who bought the property in 1966, according to an L.A. Weekly story posted on the venue’s website. The story provided more details:
Joseph “Mr. T” Teresa, a son of an Italian immigrant by way of Louisiana, who owned a nearby liquor store, bought the property in 1966. Live big-band music, Mr. T’s favorite, filled the space. Mr. T set up home-style buffets for hungry bowlers. And students from nearby Occidental College and other Eastside campuses indulged in the tradition of collegiate drinking there.
But by the late 1980s, interest in the sport had waned considerably. The lanes went dark. And Mr. T’s turned into a retiree bar. Not much more.
Mr. T’s rebounded after it was discovered by a young generation with, according to the Weekly, “an acute sense of irony.”
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