Lisa Wong, the owner of Southtown staple Rosario’s, has purchased El Mirador, another Tex-Mex fixture in the neighborhood, and will close it, she told the Heron on Wednesday.
The restaurant’s last day of service is Nov. 18.
Some time in 2019, Wong said she will open a new restaurant in the El Mirador building.
“I really don’t have any immediate plans,” Wong said. “It will be a restaurant. In the near future, I’m really not focussing too much on that. I’m trying to get through the balance of 2018, and put some plans in place going forward (for 2019).”
Wong purchased the property for more than $3 million from Esquire Tavern owner Chris Hill.
For Wong, the purchase means she will eventually have two restaurants in Southtown. Rosario’s, which Wong acquired in 1992, is Southtown’s most popular restaurant, judging from the crowds that pack the restaurant every lunch and dinner. Besides Rosario’s, Wong also owns Ácenar on East Houston Street, and a handful of other Rosario’s locations.
Hill, who is developing the 22-story Canopy Hilton hotel at the northwest corner of Commerce and St. Mary’s streets, next to the Esquire, purchased El Mirador in 2014 from the original owners, Diana and Julian Treviño. The restaurant was a Southtown staple of its own having opened on St. Mary’s Street in 1968.
In mid-2016, Hill closed El Mirador for a six-month makeover, and reopened it with contemporary decor in December 2016.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to omit a potential error related to El Mirador’s history, not the recent purchase.