These 12 Old Vacant Portland Restaurants Are Looking For New Tenants

PORTLAND, Maine – As the second year of the global coronavirus pandemic draws to a close, its effects on the city’s restaurant scene are still being felt.

A new list of empty commercial spaces with available catering potential stands at more than three dozen. But all is not sad for the burg magazine Bon Appetit named Restaurant City of the Year in 2018. The list is a little shorter than that of last year.

The December 2020 list included 40 Portland properties for sale or for rent. This year the number has fallen to 38. Of the retail spaces listed last year, 19 were former restaurants. The new count only includes 12.

“I think we were a little shocked at how it bounced back,” said Topher Stephenson, vice president of commercial real estate at Boulos Company, who listed with the Portland food card. “But there are still quite a few on the market.”

The list is a mix of former vacant dining spaces, as well as commercial and industrial properties ready for redevelopment. New buildings with potential catering spaces are also included. Some properties are for rent, others are for sale.

Here are the 12 restaurants closed in Portland looking for new tenants.

235 Vaughan Street

This 700 square foot space most recently occupied by Other Side Deli was the longtime home of Vaughan Street Variety.

554, rue du Congrès

Dunkin Donuts used to call this 1,621 square foot storefront.

555, rue du Congrès

This address is where the eponymous Five-Fifty-Five restaurant operated. It has been closed for a year and the building is listed for sale for $ 2.4 million.

15, rue Châtaigne

A former great church, this massive 14,000 square foot building behind City Hall was Grace’s former home. It is for sale for $ 3.73 million.

1 commercial street

It is the original home of longtime sushi restaurant Benkay. It has been vacant for over a year.

446 Avant Street

A sign for rent advertises empty space on Fore Street in Portland on Thursday, December 9, 2021. The corner unit once housed the Pearl Lounge. Credit: Troy R Bennett / BDN

The Old Port water point called Pearl was here. The space has entrances on Wharf and Fore streets.

55, market street

This 3,700 square foot location was occupied by the Big Easy years ago. It has been vacant for some time.

25, rue Perle

You could once have a Subway sandwich here, but not anymore.

3 spring street

Lio restaurant served here. It closed in September.

41, rue du quai

A man walks past the closed Jager Bar on Wharf Street in Portland on Thursday, December 9, 2021. The Empty Waterhole is one of 38 vacant restaurant-friendly spaces in the city. Credit: Troy R Bennett / BDN

This is the old Jager House, a 1,107 square foot bar.

42, rue du quai

This massive old beverage house offers 3,770 square feet inside plus a 2,000 square foot patio outside.

155 Riverside Street

The Season’s Bar & Grille and the Banquet Center operated here. The lease for the 23,750 square foot facility includes parking and all furniture, fixtures and equipment.


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Sandy A. Greer