Cava on Coast Village Road to Close

By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   September 21, 2021
Cava Restaurant & Bar will close this week after 24 years in business on Coast Village Road

After 24 years of serving up elevated, authentic Mexican food on Coast Village Road, Cava Restaurant & Bar closed its doors on Wednesday, September 15. 

“It’s certainly sad to see this wonderful chapter close, but we are absolutely making the right call,” said owner Carlos Lopez-Hollis. “There is virtue in decisiveness with a difficult but correct decision and we are absolutely making the correct decision.”

Lopez-Hollis tells us recent events including the Thomas Fire and 1/9 Debris Flow, quickly followed by the COVID-19 pandemic, all took a toll on the business. A recent rent increase and ongoing issues with the building played a hand in the decision in the close.

“We are very proud of our team for staying the course through such trying times. It is gratifying to end Cava’s long run on a positive note, with heads held high, as we do right by employees, customers, and vendors alike. We realize this is incredibly rare in our industry and we feel fortunate to be doing so,” Lopez-Hollis wrote in a press release last week. 

The Lopez-Hollis family has deep roots in both the Montecito and Santa Barbara community, opening the popular Carlitos Café y Cantina on State Street across from the Arlington in the late ‘70s, followed by Cava in 1997 in Montecito, in what was then considered Montecito’s sleepy Lower Village. Carlos became managing partner of Cava back in 2004, before he and his wife, Amanda, purchased the business from the family in 2011. They also opened a Santa Ynez Valley outpost, Dos Carlitos Restaurant & Tequila Bar, in 2009, and that eatery continues to be a culinary destination in the heart of downtown Santa Ynez.

“We hope our loyal patrons will continue to enjoy the same delicious Mexican cuisine and signature Margaritas at our sibling restaurants. You will undoubtedly see many of the familiar smiling faces from Cava’s beloved staff at one of our other locations,” Lopez-Hollis said. 


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