Breathe easy, fans of the iconic Norm's Restaurant on La Cienega. According to Jim Balis, the CEO of Restaurant Management Group and new owner of the Norm's Chain, the iconic Googie building on La Cienega will not be demolished.
In a statement to the press, which was given first to Eater LA, the owners of the property filed for a permit after hiring an architect to "explore future possibilities for the site." However, the owners will only go forward with any plans after discussing with the community, stakeholders, and Norm's Restaurant.
In addition, Norm's is actually pleased that the historic designation will go through, though that might limit any future development possibilities that the current property owners may have with the site. Finally, Balis concludes by saying that his company acquired the stake in Norm's from the Roybarks in order to maintain the ethos and brand as a neighborhood establishment. Phew.
Read the full statement below:
We have never had any intention of demolishing NORMS La Cienega, nor do we intend to do so in the future. The demolition permit in question was filed by the Norman Cienega Property Group, the owners of the property from which NORMS La Cienega is leased. They have assured us that they have no current plans to demolish the building. The owners just purchased the property last month, and we understand they have just started working with an architect to explore potential future opportunities for the site. They have also assured us that there will be outreach to the community, the stakeholders and us before moving forward with any proposal for the property.
When we acquired NORMS Restaurants in December 2014, we established our commitment to carry on the NORMS tradition that Southern Californians have adored for nearly 75 years. It is our continued mission to not alter, but maintain the excellent service, food and atmosphere that make NORMS a favorite neighborhood establishment.
We are thrilled with the recent decision to consider NORMS La Cienega a Historic Cultural Landmark. We appreciate the immense outpouring of support from our loyal customers and communities. We are dedicated to maintaining the success and legacy of the iconic NORMS restaurants for many years to come.