Co-owner Ken Evans announced yesterday on the restaurant's Facebook page that Banana Hut will be closing Aug. 31. "Unless a buyer magically appears." The restaurant shifted to takeout and delivery for its Hawaiian barbecue and Spam musubi with the start of shelter in place, with Evans and his wife Fatima covering the kitchen and register on their own. “We’re back to where we were 14 years ago," he said.
The Evanses started the business in 2004 out of a trailer at Redwood Acres Fairground before relocating to a brick-and-mortar location there. The restaurant moved into the Fifth Street location, with its palm fronds and trompe l'oeil sky ceiling in 2009.
After Thursday's post, Evans was busy slinging Mai Tais and piña coladas to go. “When we announced that we’re closing, business definitely picked up more than it has since March," he said.
Banana Hut has been on the market since November but, "The pandemic hit us pretty hard," said Ken. He added that, partly due to health issues, the couple has had plans to retire and move closer to family for some time. Now that plan is firmly in motion. And if you've ever wanted to set up a tropical bar with moving butterflies and a machine for cranking out frozen Blue Hawaiis, everything is for sale.