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No Martinis But Maybe Toasters: Los Feliz Derby to Become Bank

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One of the city's former Brown Derby restaurants will no longer sit vacant, reports the Los Angeles Business Journal. The restaurant/club/bar that recently occupied the former space (called The Derby) went kaput last year and the space has sat idle since--in a $2.8 million deal, owner Hillhurst Los Feliz LLC signed a lease with Chase bank for part of the space (maybe they can open it up for dancing on Sundays) and will subdivide the property for another 2,000 square foot retail space that has yet to be leased. The bank signed on for 10 years, and Louise's Trattoria, already a tenant on the property but facing Los Feliz Boulevard, signed on for another decade. Hillhurst Los Feliz LLC brought the entire property in 2004 with desires to tear it down and build a mixed-use development, but preservationists scuttled that by getting the Derby a historic/cultural designation. The city's other three Brown Derby structures have met the wrecking ball, but the "hat" on the former Koreatown Derby can be seen on top of a stripmall.
· New Lease on History [LABJ, story is second item]