Boy oh boy, it sure seems like King Eddy Saloon just can’t catch a break. A little more than one year after being the catalyst for the bar’s tumultuous turn from Skid Row dive space to hip nightlife destination, ACME Hospitality wants out.
According to multiple sources, the hospitality group is officially in escrow to hand the place off to someone else (no one is saying who just yet), after attempting to sell the spot for some time. Reached for a quote, ACME’s Jonny Valenti had this to say:
ACME loves and respects the history of the property. We’ve decided to step away and focus on current and upcoming tavern concepts, which is more of our wheelhouse, but we won’t leave without a bon voyage party to celebrate one wild ride.
One of the city’s most respect dive bars, the Downtown King Eddy has been in almost continuous operation since 1933, and even features a basement speakeasy from the days of Prohibition, which ended the same year the King Eddy opened. It’s well-known that Charles Bukowski drank there, and endless numbers of down-and-outers (or anyone just looking to get away from it all) have populated the barstools since.
Not everyone was happy with last year's plans to transform the bar into a place more fitting for the new breed of Downtown dweller, however, and a backlash to King Eddy kicked up before the sale to ACME had even finished in the first place. As for who these new owners are, and what their plans are for the bar, that remains to be seen.