Iconic Scottsdale restaurant Don & Charlie’s closing, hotel may go up
PHOENIX — Popular downtown Scottsdale restaurant Don & Charlie’s will likely be torn down and replaced by a hotel in a few years, but some form of the restaurant could be part of that.
Restaurant owner Don Carson intended to see through a proposal to shut down the sports-themed restaurant at Camelback Road and 75th Street.
But “Don and Charlie’s is not closing tomorrow,” a spokeswoman for the project, Susan Bitter Smith, vice president of Technical Solutions in Scottsdale, said Tuesday.
Carson, 74, was “working with the local investor family on what we’re calling Don and Charlie’s 2.0,” Smith said. The new restaurant would be smaller, she said, but retain the atmosphere of the original.
A formal application for the boutique hotel project has not been submitted, Smith said. “We’re at the very beginning stages.” The process would take at least a year.
The stages included a public meeting about the hotel that was scheduled March 5 at 6 p.m. at the Scottsdale Marriott Suites.
Scottsdale development attorney John Berry represents the investors, who can remain unnamed until the proposal has been filed.
The hotel would have about 180 rooms.
The restaurant opened in 1981 and became a favorite hangout for locals and of ballplayers, managers and coaches spending spring training in the Valley.
The memorabilia on display on the walls is a who’s who of famous athletes.
“It’s been fun,” Carson said in a 2015 interview on the collection. “I’ve met a lot of interesting people.”
Signed magazine covers from Ted Williams to Ichiro Suzuki hang on the walls. Baseballs signed by Babe Ruth, Willie Mays and Bob Gibson sit in a glass display case. Signed jerseys hang from the ceiling.
Carson’s family has owned the property for 50 years, Smith said.