Yale St. Grill Says It’s Unlikely To Be Bothered by Building Sale

The proto-strip center that houses Yale St. Grill in the Heights went up for sale earlier this month, but Barbara Guidry, who’s been the vintage-y diner’s manager for 30 years, doesn’t expect any changes: “[The building’s] been sold before,” she tells Swamplot, “but this is like an institution.” The 1952 building has been listed at just under $3.2 million. The restaurant shares the 18,000-sq.-ft. structure — located a couple blocks north of the 19th St. shopping district — with Heights Antiques and Dr. Ullman, an optometrist. All 3 are long-term tenants on triple-net leases. Guidry says, “No, this place is a gold mine.”

Photo: Flickr user jgeo

16 Comment

  • The Roll N Saloon was a Houston institution too, until its lease ran out and the landlord decided to kick it out.

  • If by “institution” you mean reeking of cheap cigarette smoke, requiring earplugs when the train passed, and a beer selection that rivals old 4th ward corner liquor stores then absolutely Roll N was an institution.

  • When the economics say to buy out the three tenants and redeveloped, no amount of “institution” status will save you.

    Buildings are sold all the time and nothing happens to the tenants, but that is not always the case especially with the Houston market warming up quickly again.

  • But the Heights needs another high rent midrise!!!!

  • Gold mine is the only thing she got right. This is an excellent location for another CVS or other retail. Yale St.’s den of greasy eggs and tchotchkes is out of time.

  • 2013 nominee for Swamplot Best Demolition.

  • There’s already a CVS two blocks away. And a vacant lot right across the street, and two vacant commercial properties next door.
    Yes, highest-and-best use for this property may not be a greasy spoon, but it’s not like this is the only available property in the area.

  • I am going to call “meh” on the prospects of a quick demo or booting of the old tenants. It is not a big lot with very little parking. Not enough room to build a pencil box midrise apartment complex. Kaplan’s Ben Hur had almost three times the land. Not enough parking to chop up into restaurants and shops. Also, there are a number of very choice large properties that have been on the market in that area without much interest to date. The old phone company building on Ashland & 18th is on the market with no takers so far. The Baptist Temple on 20th and Rutland has also had brokerage signs on the corner for quite some time with no bites. Both sites are large enough for just about anything. But, so far there is nothing. Redevelopment is moving quickly in the Heights, but not that fast (yet).

  • Look what is across the street and tell me again about this “gold mine”?


    That property has been empty for 5 years or at least long enough for the dead pigeons I saw in the windows to disintegrate into a pile of dust. The Yale St Grill building is an oasis in between long empty retail, the “Death Kroger”, a plethora of nail salons, and pay day lenders. I would assume anybody looking at redeveloping a property like this would be better suited picking off an empty/vacant building nearby rather than shutting down some of the only businesses that keep that area decent.

  • There is a CVS and Walgreens literally a block away, but point taken.

  • I think gold mine refers to the fact that the landlord is collecting pretty decent rent. A triple net lease means the tenant is paying rent, utilities, property taxes, and many repairs.

  • @ old school…both sites you are referring to above have substantial environmental issues :) those are albatrosses. Yale deal is a gold mine. excellent returns in the what most consider hottest neighborhood in the city.

  • @ bedmondson…once again complete lack of knowledge causes ridiculous assumptions. the kroger site i.e. the NWC of Yale & 20th has not been redeveloped due to the long term lease w/ kroger, as they refuse to allow the land owner off the hook so they can play the “keep out” game with other grocers. and the site across from the Yale deal is v. similar to this guy… http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/couple-refuses-move-apartment-building-lies-middle-roadway-article-1.1206400?localLinksEnabled=false

  • If no need for a CVS or Walgreens it’ll be a bank or a dry cleaners.

  • There is a midrise condo building nearing completion on Studewood on a 25,000 sf lot. Seems to me that if you can build a midrise on a 25,000 sf lot, you ought to be able to build one on a 26,400 sf lot.

    But, hey, what do I know?

  • I like going to the Grill every now and then. The food may not be spectacular, but there are so few places left in Houston where you can feel like you are part of a neighborhood as opposed to “anywhere America” or some 20 something chef’s latest chic fusion resturant. We have a lot of choices on the chic front, but the list is shortening on the “hi, I know you, good to see you again” type of places. Its not always a new building or apartment complex that makes a neighborhood a good place to live.