Thursday, February 17, 2011

Villa Mexico in Boston's Beacon Hill Is Losing Its Space; A Move Is in the Works

A quirky little Mexican restaurant in Boston's Beacon Hill neighborhood is in danger of losing their spot in the back of a gas station, as developers are planning to tear down the station and start construction of a new building at the site.

According to The Boston Globe, the Cambridge Street space occupied by Villa Mexico and Grampy's gas station (which houses the eatery) may become home to retail and office space. The Globe mentions that the site has been looked at for awhile now for possible development, but the poor economy has delayed any actual development. In the meantime, the mother and daughter who operate Villa Mexico will apparently continue to keep the place up and running until they are told to leave. It is unknown where Villa Mexico might move to (if it does) once the family behind it is forced out, but it is possible that the restaurant may open in another spot, according to the Globe.

Villa Mexico features house-made burritos, tamales, tacos, quesadillas, and more, as well as a salsa that food critics and diners alike rave about. The restaurant has been featured within our sister site (Boston's Hidden Restaurants), with the review being at this link:

As soon as we find out a specific date as to when Villa Mexico has to close, we will post an update here.

For more information on this story, please go to the Boston Globe link below.

Beacon Hill merchants in limbo awaiting office, retail building

Thanks to Boston Zest for bringing this to our attention via the Chowhound site.

The address for Villa Mexico is: Villa Mexico, 296 Cambridge Street, Boston, MA, 02114.

[August 22 update: A message from the restaurant indicates that Villa Mexico will indeed be closing and the gas station will be demolished to make way for a new building. It appears that the eatery will be shutting down sometime in September, depending on the outcome of a hearing that takes place on September 1. The message also states that a new home has not yet been found for Villa Mexico, though they are still looking; Beacon Hill does not seem likely with the high rents there, but the message does mention that Villa Mexico might possibly be moving to the South End, though this is by no means a done deal yet. It is also possible that Villa Mexico could end up operating a food truck in the city, though again, nothing has been confirmed as of yet. Stay tuned for more updates as we get them.]

[August 23 update: Here is a link to the letter sent out by Villa Mexico concerning its closing: News on our move]

[September 2 update: According to their Twitter page, Villa Mexico will remain open in its present location until December of this year. More information from them: The latest update]

[November 15 update: According to a link that can be accessed from their Facebook page, Villa Mexico is hoping to move to a nearby space on Grove Street in Beacon Hill. A message sent to us from the owner indicates that she is currently working to get a permit for the Grove Street location and is also trying to raise money for the restaurant via donations. More information from them: Villa Mexico gets a new home!]

[December 1 update: According to an email from the Mass. Market Blog, the address for Villa Mexico's planned new home will be 12 Grove Street, and it appears that it will be a takeout spot with no seating.]

[December 9 update: According to the Stoneham Patch and Eater Boston, the Beacon Hill Civic Association and Licensing Committee rejected Villa Mexico's plan to open on Grove Street. The Patch indicates that the rejection was based on the fact that the building had not been used for commercial purposes in awhile, and neighbors were also worried about commercial properties encroaching on the hill and smells from the eatery bothering nearby residents, among other concerns (parking, increased foot traffic, etc). One final note is that the folks behind Villa Mexico need to be out of their present space by the end of this month.]

[December 27 update: A note sent to us from the owner of Villa Mexico indicates that the restaurant has received a permit to remain open until the end of January.]

[January 6, 2012 update: According to Eater Boston, Villa Mexico has reached its fundraising goal, allowing it to relocate--and the goal was reached a scant four days before its deadline. Now it appears that the possibility of opening on nearby Grove Street is back on the shelf once again, pending permits and approval by Beacon Hill neighbors. If all goes as planned, Villa Mexico might be open in its new home by next month.]

[January 17, 2012 update: According to their Facebook page, Villa Mexico is still open for business at its Cambridge Street location. The restaurant is waiting for the necessary permits to open at their new home on Grove Street, but in the meantime, the restaurant remains open in its current space.]

[March 10, 2012 update: A note from Villa Mexico mentions that the restaurant is still open on Cambridge Street, and that a Zoning Board of Appeal hearing is scheduled for March 27 at City Hall concerning the Grove Street location that the place is hoping to move into. This will apparently be a crucial hearing for Villa Mexico, as the note states that "1) either we get the variance permit to move into 12 Grove or 2) we go out of business in Beacon Hill."]