Friday, February 3, 2017

The O.C. Locations: The Balboa Lighthouse Restaurant

The Balboa Lighthouse exterior The O.C.

What: The Balboa Lighthouse Restaurant
Where: Located in Newport
When: Season One
How: The Lighthouse was a restaurant venture started by Sandy and Jimmy
Actual location: 655 N. Harbor Drive in Redondo Beach, CA.

Jimmy and Sandy talk about buying the Balboa Lighthouse The O.C.

Story: 
While Sandy and Jimmy share appetizers and drinks at The Balboa Lighthouse Restaurant Sandy convinces Jimmy that they should partner-up and buy the place. Jimmy agrees after hesitation and gets excited, they both feel its a fantastic and fun idea. Lacking the funds Sandy and Jimmy have to get Caleb on board as a silent partner.

concept model of The Balboa Lighthouse Restaurant The O.C.

They put a down payment on the place, design it, renovate it, host a food tasting but last minute they are denied their liquor license. Sandy assumes its because his affiliation with Jimmy. This problem basically makes the business "worthless", due to the lack of alcohol sales that they would need to thrive. Without a liquor license Sandy and Jimmy decide to cut their losses and sell the property to Caleb, each of them getting over a million dollars in the deal. Jimmy and Sandy feel like they got quite a good offer considering perhaps maybe too good to be true. Then a little later they find out that Caleb was the one that blocked their liquor license purposely, buying the restaurant cheap from Sandy and Jimmy with the intention of selling it to someone else for way more money!

The Balboa Lighthouse Restaurant interior The O.C.

It would have been really cool for this to have worked out for Jimmy and Sandy. Even if they only
owned it for a season. Nana Cohen's meatloaf would have delighted many Newport dwellers. Sigh.

Venezia Italian Grill porch area redondo beach

The actual filming location of the interior/exterior building was in Redondo Beach and not Newport, as most of The O.C. was. It simply costs too much to film outside L.A..The building housed many restaurants over the years, with the last restaurant being named "Venezia Italian Grill" and "Harbor Drive" before that.

Venezia Italina Grill Menu Redondo Beach
 The most recent Yelp review was in 2008 with an average rating of 3/5 stars.
redondo beach shade hotel la construction

Sadly in 2013 the original Balboa Lighthouse building suffered the same fate as The Bait Shop, the building was torn down and construction started on a new modern and sophisticated hotel. We lost yet another O.C. landmark.

redondo beach shade hotel la

The hotel is called "Shade Hotel". Regular rooms start at $250-269 per night but if you want to live large the luxury suites will set you back $1500 a night!