One of Hermosa Beach’s most prominent restaurants has closed this month, with the Daily Breeze reporting that The Mermaid is no longer afloat. The restaurant has existed just steps from the ocean for decades, but struggled through a new ownership change and issues with the city before closing around Labor Day.
The Mermaid had long been a dive bar stop for locals looking to hit the beach, and anyone else coming in from all points east on sunny summer weekends. Back in 2008 there were rumors of a proposed plan to completely demolish the building and its surrounding tenants — many of them also restaurants — in favor of some new development, but ultimately the team behind the Killer Shrimp chain elected to step in and save the place.
That was back in 2013, with loose plans to give the space a mighty upgrade over the first part of this year. Unfortunately the new owners claim to have run into some serious issues with the city of Hermosa Beach, who wouldn’t let them open up the frontage with a big new glass window, and were fighting back on some longstanding parking agreements with the property. That, coupled with rising restaurant costs and a perception that The Mermaid must always remain a ‘dive bar’, seems to all have sunk the nearly 70-year-old restaurant for good.
As for the property itself? It’s still expected to become a big new mixed development in a number of years, with room for fancy new restaurant space as well as a hotel.