HIGHLAND PARK — More than 50 years ago Gustavo and Irene Montes opened a small Mexican restaurant in the 5600 block of York Boulevard. The restaurant moved to larger storefronts on the same block as it expanded and became a neighborhood institution serving up classic Mexican-American cuisine and Margaritas in a dark interior. But now, the family-owned El Arco Iris is preparing to close its doors for good.
The restaurant and property have been sold to a real estate investment firm, said Jesse Gomez, who owns El Arco Iris with his mother, Angie Montes. The restaurant is expected to close when escrow is completed, he said.
Gomez said his mother, who manages the Highland Park restaurant, was looking to retire and take care of her mother after spending most of her adult life working at El Arco Iris. That’s why he approached Coda Equities about buying the property and business.
“It was a hard decision,” said Gomez, who co-owns Yxta and Mercado restaurants. “But we felt it was the right one.”
Jonah Garb, co-owner of Coda Equities, said the firm will be looking for a new tenant once the deal is completed. He said he does not know if any new development will take place on the site.
“We are sensitive to the neighborhood and the wants of the community,” Garb said.
What does Highland Park need or want in a new restaurant? Sushi seems to be missing, said Gomez. But whatever replaces El Arco Iris should continue to be a welcoming, neighborhood place, he said. “I would like it to be something that the neighborhood wants, enjoys and needs.
- More Highland Park stories
- Got a story, tip, question or photo to share? Submit it here
Deals & Discounts for Eastsider Readers