Former Montrose Collection site to become a restaurant

The former site of the controversial Montrose Collection, which has sat vacant since 2010, will become home to a new restaurant — Chandelier — after the owner addressed concerns about inadequate parking and gave assurances that the business will not operate as a banquet hall.

It will be open until 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 11 p.m. the rest of the week.

Alfred Teichert has owned the property in the 2800 block of Honolulu Avenue for several years, including the period of time during which Montrose Collection ran into trouble for operating as a banquet hall and wreaked havoc in the surrounding neighborhood because of a lack of parking.

But the Montrose Collection was operated by someone else. Teichert now plans to open the new restaurant himself.

Last week, the Planning Commission revised a lower-level refusal of Teichert’s request to continue using 1,200 square feet of office space that was part of a city-approved expansion while Montrose Collection occupied the space, and a permit to have nine fewer spaces than required, which sparked neighborhood complaints in the past.

Since his earlier hearing, Teichert made changes to his plans.

At his appeal before the Planning Commission, he requested using only about 430 square feet of the office space that was converted to handicapped-accessible restrooms for the restaurant.

The remaining space will be set aside for another type of use, Teichert said.

Because of the change, the project is short only three parking spaces — the limit that can be covered through what’s called an administrative exception, which the Planning Commission approved for the project.

Montrose Collection was closed by the city in 2010 after officials determined the restaurant had violated city regulations, including by operating as a banquet hall. Armen and Takui Aivazian, who operated the business, later filed for bankruptcy.

Teichert told the Planning Commission he wasn’t aware of the problems that were occurring at Montrose Collection.

“They came in and told me they wanted to do an expansion and they got the legal permits and everything,” said Teichert, who was a teacher at Hoover High School for many years. “What they didn’t tell me was that they were going to have banquets only.”

He added, “We’re going to have a nice, quiet steakhouse.”

Commissioner Chang Lee said it wasn’t Teichert’s fault if the owners of Montrose Collection misled him.

“The property owner is not at fault when there’s a violation with the operations,” he said.

Chandelier will have a 1920s theme and its menu will be “simple, but extensive,” said Sev Nazarian, who will manage the restaurant. An opening date has not been announced.


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