The Arches closes
The Arches restaurant, a Newport Beach institution for nearly 90 years, abruptly closed last week for unknown reasons.
A company representative confirmed that the business on Westcliff Drive closed Wednesday night. The phone number is disconnected and the doors are locked.
Along with The Arches fades a relic of Newport Beach history. The old-line eatery, opened in 1922, served Shirley Temple, John Wayne and other Hollywood stars from its original West Coast Highway building. After moving out of that location four years ago, owner Dan Marcheano struggled to keep the restaurant afloat.
Marcheano, who bought the restaurant in 1982, could not be reached for comment Monday.
The Westcliff location sustained minor damage during a grease fire in August, but was able to reopen the same day.
While The Arches kept serving prime rib, lobster and other traditional dishes it was known for, Marcheano introduced pizza when the new location opened in mid-2010. Its fare and ambience were similar to competitor La Cave, about a block away.
The Arches moved out of its original buildings in 2007. The one-story red structures house a similar, yet hipper, fine-dining restaurant called A Restaurant, which has flourished under the partial ownership of film and TV producer McG, executive producer of “The O.C.”
Leading up to the move, Marcheano said he had outgrown the building. But two locations in Cannery Village, including one with dockside service, failed to catch on during the recession.
“I got my butt kicked at the last place, but I’m coming back and coming back with a vengeance,” Marcheano said in March 2010.
A Marine Corps veteran, he hosted busloads of Camp Pendleton Marines at The Arches and chaired Newport Beach’s 1/1 Adoption Committee, which cares for the city’s adopted military unit, the 1st Battalion, 1st Marines.
The Arches was reportedly the first restaurant in Newport Beach to get a liquor license.
Marcheano claimed that an alcohol permit dispute with the city led to the Cannery Village closures, but local officials said at the time that the eatery had a valid permit.