January 4th in Seal Beach History

On This Date in 1957, The Long Beach Independent reported that:

Master Chef Walter Wyly serves diversified international cuisine at the newly reopened Garden of Allah, 8th and Coast Hwy. in Seal Beach. Dinners start at $1.95.

It must have seemed like 1957 was going to be a good year for the Garden of Allah, but it was not meant to be. In May, the Long Beach Bunco squad arrested Garden of Allah owner Robert W. Holstun for running a “B” girl drunk-roll racket at his Long Beach bar, The Gyro Room. By June, the Garden of Allah was closed and up for sale. Two months later, Reverend Guy Newton planned to buy and convert the night club into the new location for the Seal Beach First Baptist Church, but those plans fell through. The church would find a more modest location on Bay Boulevard.

This was not the end of The Garden of Allah. A new owner re-opened the nightclub in July 1958, but it never reclaimed the popularity it enjoyed under the original owner, Vivian Laird. The Garden of Allah was briefly renamed The Nile Restaurant and even spent a scant time in the sixties as a topless go-go bar before being demolished and replaced by a Jack in The Box.

Which was replaced decades later by a Fresh and Easy market. Which then closed a few years later. So it goes.

– Michael Dobkins

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2 Responses to January 4th in Seal Beach History

  1. Carla Watson says:

    These are so fun to read. Thank you !!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

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