Club 21 closed out its eighty year run on January 15 after owners Marcus Archambeault and Warren Boothby signed over their 11-year lease on the divey burger castle to a Los Angeles billionaire developer—clearing the way for a new 212-unit apartment complex.
Their talk of moving Club 21's entire building to a vacant lot down the street didn't lead anywhere, but it looks as if the spirit and decor of Club 21 may live on—albeit, in somewhat less distinctive architecture.
Club 21 owners Warren Boothby and Marcus Archambeault have just filed a liquor license to take over Coaster's Bar and Grill on Southeast Powell Boulevard and 60th Avenue—and insiders tell WW that Coaster's is planned as the new home of Club 21's iconic decor, and probably some of the staff.
At the moment, the trade name of the bar is listed as the "Lay Low Tavern."
When they announced Club 21's closure to the Portland Mercury, the owners pledged that they'd transfer as much of the guts of Club 21 as possible to a new bar, including the burgers and the people. The article reported none of their bartenders would lose their jobs.
"The bar's decor will be transferred to a new place that Boothby and Archambeault are opening later this year," the Mercury reported. "That new bar is still in the works ("we're 95 percent done," Boothby says), but they're hoping to transfer as much of the bar's interior as they can over to the new space. The as-yet-unopened bar will also provide a home for Club 21's existing food program."
But Boothby and Archambeault have been reluctant to tell even members of their own barstaff where they're moving the bar, reportedly so as not to "jinx" it.
Coaster's staff says they were informed the changeover was planned as early as January 31, and insiders tell WW that Club 21's decor will then make its way over to the Coaster's spot.
Coaster's co-owner Frederick Keiper declined to comment on Club 21's takeover. "You'll have to talk to the owners," he told WW.
Reached by phone, Boothby declined comment.