2014-04-24 / Community

Red Robin restaurant closes

In its place: Lovi’s Delicatessen

Local community leaders and loyal Red Robin restaurant patrons gathered one last time at the longtime Calabasas restaurant to mark a special moment.

Red Robin on Calabasas Road opened in 1979, and it closed its doors for the final time at 10 p.m. April 13.

Patrons say they will miss the landmark local restaurant.

“I have literally decades of fond memories of the Calabasas Red Robin, and I was truly sorry to see it go,” said Calabasas City Councilmember James Bozajian, who organized the informal gathering.

Bozajian, 48, grew up in the area and was a regular client at the local burger place for 35 years.

“ It was there so long. So much has changed around it. The whole city kind of grew up around it,” he said.

After he was elected to the council in 1997, Bozajian said, he often went to the restaurant in the evening to study the council agenda, and he also took groups of people from the city there for meals.

The council member and other longtime Calabasas residents and leaders spent several hours at the restaurant before it shut down for good last week.

“It was very sad. We were there until the very last moment,” Bozajian said.

Before Red Robin, a Howard Johnson’s restaurant occupied the space at 24005 Calabasas Road.

Most Red Robin restaurants are now inside shopping malls and there had been longtime rumors that Red Robin wanted to close its standalone operation in Calabasas. The company opted not to renew its lease for the local restaurant.

The property near the 101 Freeway and the Civic Center will be home to a new delicatessen owned by the Lovi family.

The Lovis got their start in the restaurant business in the 1970s with the Country Deli in Chatsworth. The company offers traditional deli fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and it has expanded to the Conejo Valley with Agoura’s Famous Delicatessen in Agoura Hills and Pickles Deli in Newbury Park.

The new venue, named Lovi’s Delicatessen, will be different from the other three sites because it will be an upscale deli with a sports bar, said a manager from the Agoura Deli.

The new restaurant is set to open this fall.

Sylvie Belmond LAST SUPPER—Old friends and longtime Red Robin patrons gather for one last meal. From left, David Shapirio, Calabasas mayor; James Bozajian, City Council member; Karyn Foley and her husband James Foley; Greg Marcus, retired Superior Court judge; Charlotte Meyer, former school board president; and Dennis Washburn and Bob Hill, both former mayors.

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