Back in October 1956, the south side of Pitt Street East, between Goyeau and Ouellette was hopping. “Urban Renewal” would bring a massive parking garage to the corner, and the buildings from the Canada Salvage at 65 Pitt Street East and everything to the left of that were demolished for that project. A huge Fire in July 1976 would take out the Windsor Recreation building, leaving the building at 53 Pitt Street east as the last man standing.
I first visited in the mid 1990’s when the upstairs space was known as Fanny’s Starlight Lounge. Opened by Kelly Hoppe and J. P. Lepage of the Windsor Dukes, Jeff Rowe of the Jessie Grooms Band and Cynthia McCarney, the former manager of the Coach and Horses, it was a blue bar for a few years, before it briefly became Tin Can Alley.
In the summer of 1995, Roberto Cence, who had previously been responsible for Buzz’s Bar & Grill which was at Wyandotte & Campbell until the building was demolished for the Shopper’s that now stands on the site, opened up the Terradactyl Lounge, which operated until replaced by Dean Martini’s.
During this time period in the early 2000s, the building was hopping. Longtime stalwart LaGuardia was in operation on the main floor as was 3 A Tasting Bar, one of Windsor’s more original dining establishments. Also operating out of this building was Junk. Unless my brain is mush these day, I believe that Chanosos also got its start in this building in the location where 3 A Tasting Bar was located.
By 2012, the White Star Lounge operated upstairs, with Sushi California (in its original home), LaGuardia and Panache on the main level.
By 2015, Tequila Bob’s dominated the space, along with LaGuardia and Panache.
For a brief period the Rondo opened on the second floor, but never really took hold. On A Roll Sushi moved into the ground floor, while the other two remained occupied by LaGuardia and Panache.
Most recently it looks like the upper level had become a place called Insomnia, although I must admit, I’ve heard nothing about this place.
The building has long been an eating and drinking destination, I would love to hear your memories of this place and any of their businesses over the years,