Arby’s Iconic Hollywood Restaurant Closed After 55 Years

  • The franchisee that operated the 55-year-old Arby’s restaurant on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood has closed its doors.
  • “The truth is, I think it was the pandemic that destroyed us,” 91-year-old owner Marilyn Leviton told KTLA-5.
  • California’s $20 minimum wage for fast-food workers and the need for new equipment also led to the restaurant’s closure, she said.

Beef sandwich chain Arby’s has closed its restaurant on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood after 55 years of operation under one owner.

The location is no longer listed on Arby’s website. Local station KTLA-5 announced it closed its doors Saturday.

Since its opening in January 1969, it has had only one owner: Marilyn Leviton, now 91, according to KTLA-5.

“The truth is, I think it was the pandemic that destroyed us,” Leviton told the station. “I really think we would have closed during the pandemic, without the federal loans.”

A general view of the atmosphere during the FYC event for FX's "Baskets" at Arby's on May 29, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.

Location of the Hollywood Arby during the FYC event for FX’s “Sneakers” on May 29, 2018.

Rich Fury/Getty Images

Restaurants have had to drastically change their operations during the pandemic and simply offer delivery, pickup and drive-thru, as restaurant dining was prohibited under waves of lockdowns. Restaurants have also faced soaring food and labor costs.

There were other stresses on the business as well, Leviton told KTLA-5.

“Arby’s requires more technical equipment, which we couldn’t afford, and I don’t think the $20 an hour wage increase helped either,” she said.

California raised its minimum wage for fast food chain workers to $20 an hour in April, 25% higher than the state’s overall minimum wage. The restaurant industry lobbied against the legislation, arguing it would force them to raise prices, lay off staff and close restaurants.

Arby’s did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider outside of normal business hours.

KTLA-5 reported that when Arby’s opened, it was the only fast food restaurant on Sunset Boulevard with a view of the Hollywood sign.

Speaking about the closure of her restaurant, Leviton said: “I’m terribly sorry it’s come to this.”

“I think we’ve done a good job for 55 years,” she said.

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