The Mason Bar and Grill in the Village of Arroyo Grande plans to expand into the space next door, adding a full dining room and larger menu.
Bill Hales, who owns the restaurant, leased the approximately 3,000-square-foot space next door, formerly occupied by Robert’s Restaurant. After renovations are completed in about April, the Mason Bar will span about 5,000 square feet, occupying both 303 E. Branch St. and 307 E. Branch St.
Hales and his business partners own nine other local bars and restaurants in San Luis Obispo County, including Shell Beach Brewhouse, Mother’s Tavern in San Luis Obispo and Rooster Creek Tavern in Arroyo Grande.
A partial wall will section off the bar area — the current Mason Bar space — from the dining room, the area next door. The larger kitchen will allow the restaurant to expand its menu and be more entree-driven, Hales said. The full menu will also be available in the bar area.
Hales plans to change the restaurant’s name to Mason Bar and Kitchen.
Renovations include adding a garage door to the front of the next-door space to match the Mason Bar’s current exterior, along with a large double-door entryway connecting the areas.
The new dining room space will include booths along one wall, a window looking out onto Mason Street and a fireplace. The dining room will have the same Mason Bar atmosphere with reclaimed wood, brick and stone finishes, Hales said. He declined to disclose how much the renovation will cost.
Hales is waiting for permit approval before work can begin.
He declined to disclose the restaurant’s annual sales and profits. Mason Bar employs a staff of about 15 — a mixture of both full- and part-time workers. Hales expects its staff will grow to about 40 or 45 employees with the expansion.
Hales said lots of exciting things are underway in the Village, in particular the proposed 51-room boutique hotel that would share a parking lot with the Mason Bar.
“We wouldn’t be making the expansion if we didn’t believe in the direction that the city of Arroyo Grande is going,” he said.
A representative from Robert’s Restaurant could not be reached for comment.
Danielle Ames: 805-781-7902