Seems it might be time for a reality TV show about Casa Bonita because drama around the iconic, cliff-diving, sopapilla-serving restaurant is heating up.
On Monday, Casa Bonita’s owners filed a lawsuit against the City of Lakewood and several public agencies to keep “sensitive” documents related to its renovation from being released to the public.
The lawsuit was filed by The Beautiful Opco, LLC, the company that purchased Casa Bonita out of bankruptcy from its previous owners, Summit Family Restaurants. Locals know the owners colloquially as Matt Stone and Trey Parker, creators of the venerable TV show “South Park,” which just celebrated its 25th anniversary with a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheatre.
Stone and Parker recently told The Denver Post the Casa Bonita renovation has been like an episode of “Kitchen Nightmares” – “the very, very worst one you could possibly ever imagine,” Parker said.
The lawsuit, however, was filed following the publication of permitting documents, photos and construction plans procured by 9News using the Colorado Open Records Act, or CORA. The $12 million renovation calls for improvements and repairs to the diving pool, Black Bart’s Cave, seating areas, the kitchen, bathrooms and more, 9News reported.
Additionally, documents confirm what Stone and Parker told The Post about necessary infrastructure updates – “health and safety stuff, like so someone won’t die,” Stone said – including accessibility, HVAC, electrical and plumbing.
“Although the CORA Request is likely in furtherance of an innocent human interest news report, when TBO learned of the CORA Request, it had serious concerns about the release to the public of the sensitive Building Materials,” the lawsuit reads. “TBO, as owner of the Casa Bonita restaurant and tenant of the Casa Bonita building and therefore person in interest as to the CORA Request, seeks to protect from public disclosure its sensitive schematic and security information that is set for imminent public disclosure by Lakewood.”
The lawsuit continues: “Out of more than 800 pages of Building Materials, TBO seeks the protection of only a fraction of those materials. The Sensitive Materials contain the critical schematic and security information for Casa Bonita. This information, in the wrong hands, could be used by a person intent on doing mass harm in a public space.”
Stone and Parker could not immediately be reached for comment.
Locals are eagerly awaiting the reopening of Casa Bonita, which closed in 2020 due to the pandemic. The restaurant, known for its lackluster food and unique features like mariachi performers and rides, promised it would once again serve. However, in April 2021, its owners filed for bankruptcy.
Stone and Parker purchased the property for $3.1 million in September last year and brought on James Beard Award-nominated chef Dana Rodriguez to lead the kitchen with aspirations to “change nothing and improve everything,” Rodriguez told The Post at the time.
Originally, the owners were targeting a late-2022 reopening, but Stone and Parker said recently they are no closer to figuring out when Casa Bonita may make its re-debut.
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