According to Piero Selvaggio, the amiable owner of 41-year-old Santa Monica Italian institution Valentino, one of Los Angeles' few remaining true fine dining establishments, he has decided to list the restaurant for sale. Says Selvaggio, "I am tempted by the HOT Westside real Estate market and the many offers I receive... I have owned the land all along and If somebody wants the whole package, it will be contingent to move Valentino to a quainter location. After 40 years will be fun to have something new, different, smaller and bring some fun back into the name." A broker for Conroy Commercial adds that everything but the name is for sale, including the real estate, the furniture, fixtures and equipment, and liquor license.
But Selvaggio isn't going to walk for cheap. See full details here, but he's asking $4,900,000, which comes with a full 47 liquor license and over 8,000 square feet of wiggle room. Is it the end of an era? Drago, another upscale white tablecloth Italian place faced a similar fate after 21 years in Santa Monica, shuttering early last year, and making its comeback with the smaller and more current Osteria Drago.
For now though it's business as usual at Valentino. If a buyer isn't willing to cough up nearly $5 mill, the restaurant will stay as it is, where it is. Meanwhile, there's always Valentino in Vegas (although word on the street is that it will close in June) and Valentino Vin Bar in Houston. [EaterWire]