Note: Updated below.
Las Alamedas Restaurant — the hacienda on the Katy Freeway — is on hiatus pending renegotiation of its 28-year-old lease.
According to a message on the restaurant’s voice mail, the storied location of countless wedding, birthday and anniversary fiestas is “temporarily closed” while negotiations continue.
When Las Alamedas opened in 1980 it was the first grand, high-end Mexican restaurant in town. The Memorial location — 8615 Katy Freeway at Voss — attracted diners who sought genuine Mexican cuisine in a large elegant setting. Colonial-style architecture, bayou views, banquet facilities and highly professional service pleased customers for whom Ninfa’s on Navigation was terra incognita.
The restaurant’s Spanish-colonial magnificence includes double- and triple-height ceilings, massive dark turned-wood chairs and tables, saltillo tile multi-level floors, wrought-iron accents, walls painted ochre and cantaloupe and yellow-gold, bright “Mexican-style” paintings, and a splendid bar from a 19th-century San Miguel de Allende hacienda. Expansive floor-to-ceiling windows offer a green view of a tributary of Buffalo Bayou bordering the rear of the restaurant — a surprising contrast to the enormous concrete parking lot facing the freeway.
Update: Allison Wollam provides some detail in today’s Houston Business Journal:
[Restaurant owner Jorge] Sneider says the owner of the land died in a plane crash about a year and a half ago and the family is currently fighting over ownership.
â€œAs long as the property is in contest nothing can be done with the property anyway,â€ he says. â€œHopefully, Iâ€™ll have some good news to share very soon.â€
Photo: Rachel Dvoretzky