After sitting vacant for more than two years, a legendary Georgetown restaurant and nightspot is getting a complete renovation and makeover.
A chain link fence and construction equipment surround the boarded up building at 8 Main Street in Redding that once housed The Georgetown Saloon.
In operation since 1978, for decades the Saloon was popular with crowds that enjoyed its country-western style ambiance and open mic nights which drew surprise visits from local musicians Keith Richards and José Feliciano.
But the Saloon fell on hard times in 2012 when owner Nancy Silverman closed it down. It was opened and closed again briefly two times after that, until the current owner of the property, 8 Main Street Georgetown, LLC, decided to give the Saloon a new look.
The building will remain in the same footprint, but the facade will change from country brown to a more sophisticated gray. The first-floor, downstairs area will be available for one or two retail tenants, and the upstairs will be expanded from two residential apartments to six.
“It’s a great spot historically and has been very successful for Georgetown,” said Sam Nickerson a developer and principal of 8 Main Street Georgetown, LLC.
There are no committed tenants yet for the retail space, so Nickerson could not say if a restaurant will be going in there.
Renovation on the property began in October 2018 and was initially expected to take one year to complete. However, after opening up some walls in the building, structural issues were uncovered that needed attention, according to Redding Building Official Shaun Donnelly.
“We had to go down to the foundation to fix it,” said Nickerson. “The target date to finish is still October 2019. At the end of the day, the building should be beautiful and a benefit to the community.”
Florio Osorio, owner of Rancho Allegre, a Mexican restaurant next door to the Saloon property, hopes the renovation will move along quickly. He has complained to town officials about the construction site’s chain link fence, which goes out to Main Street, blocking some parking spaces.
“We had the owner put up the fence because of the demolition that was going on and to protect the public,” Donnelly said.
Nickerson acknowledged Osorio’s complaint. “As far as the fence goes, I don’t have a choice. The building department requires it,” he said.