The Varsity Grill is closing its doors after just under two years. The owners blamed its demise on both the local economy and its inability to attract a loyal following among students. The past two years has been a abysmal time to get a business off the ground and we are sad to see the Varsity Grill go. It would seem that with all of the construction nearby that the Grill would soon have a large base of patrons.
UPDATE: According to the Diamondback the real reason for the sudden closure of the popular restaurant is because the landlord is selling to property to a high-rise developer.
Varsity Grille co-owner Jim McGinnis said his landlord informed him late last week the property was under contract by a high rise housing developer and he had just three days to clear the premises.
Joining the ranks of its failed predecessors, Varsity Grille was empty by Monday as the owners loaded all of the televisions, wall hangings and other personal items into moving trucks.
Bad business was never the problem, McGinnis said, adding that the restaurant and bar had seen steady sales increases since its opening.
McGinnis said he and his business partners were planning to purchase the restaurant themselves but had difficulty securing financing. After discovering floodplain, or foundation prone to flooding by water beneath it, on the property, their lender backed out of the deal, he said.
“If people want wall to wall high rise, we can’t compete with that,” he said. “It was a developer coming in and offering a big number to take the property, and our pockets are only so deep.”
Speaking of construction, the Varsity mixed-use development, a six story 258 unit project, broke ground at the location of the old Jerrys Subs and Pizza and Merchants Tire. See our previous post Vogel Proposes New Student Housing Project.