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20 Year Old O'Brien's Pub Closed for Months-Long Remodel in Santa Monica

The Main Street space in Santa Monica won’t be back this year

O’Brien’s Irish Pub, Santa Monica
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

You might have noticed more dark nights than usual at O’Brien’s Irish Pub on Main Street in Santa Monica. As of a week or two ago the place has been buttoned up tight, with paper over the windows and a "closed for maintenance" sign taped to the front door. But don’t worry: they’ll be back.

Management for the more than two decade old Westside dive bar icon says construction is indeed going down inside, meaning it’s not just some shutter masquerading as a refinishing of the floor. Unfortunately, what’s not known is just when that construction will be completed, though Eater is told it’s not going to be any time soon. The sign in question is below.

What was apparently supposed to be a quiet couple of weeks with the doors locked has apparently ballooned into a series of major changes that will take months to complete. That is to say: don’t expect to be drinking at O’Brien’s again any time this year. Reached for comment, ownership only had the following to say:

So, yeah. At this point a mid-winter re-arrival is the most likely scenario, though all bets are off on official timing at the moment. Luckily there are plenty of other longstanding bars in the neighborhood like The Galley to choose from, so you’ll at least be able to drink well in the absence of O’Brien’s.