EL CENTRO — Council members voted 4-1 to approve a loan request in the amount of $100,000 for NUMA, Inc., DBA La Resaca and The Loft at the council’s regular meeting Tuesday evening, Sept. 17, at city hall.
Currently, La Resaca restaurant and its adjacent event center, The Loft, have been in operation at the corner of Imperial Ave. and Broadway St., since 2014.
“We are moving to the new location,” said Diana Nuricumbo, the business owner who operates both the restaurant and the event center. The loan will fund kitchen apparatuses, tables, and chairs. The total cost for the renovation of the historic site is about $2.3 million.
“It is an ambitious project. I’m very excited about this project and I’d like it come to fruition,” said Mayor Edgard Garcia.
The new site of La Resaca and The Loft will be at the corner of State and 6th streets in El Centro. The historic building in downtown El Centro has been vacant for at least 30 years.
Records provided by Anna Garcia, an El Centro code enforcer officer, show a street map illustration indicating that Imperial Irrigation District and the Masonic Temple both occupied the building. The document was dated Feb. 1922.
“I thought it is a very beautiful building. I really like historical buildings. To me, they are pieces of art,” said Nuricumbo, who also also owns restaurants in Calexico and Yuma.
Nuricumbo said the new location will feature two restaurants and two event centers. La Resaca restaurant functions as a family oriented seafood restaurant and later in the evening as a sports bar.
The other section will be the Sonora Fusion Steakhouse that will specialize in fine dining. The second floor will have two event centers capable of accommodating meetings, corporate events, weddings and quinceañeras. The third floor will serve as the corporate office.
According to Nuricumbo, construction began in July and they hope to open for business in May, 2020. A service truck and a worker were seen working Thursday.
“We plan on having 46 new jobs,” said Nuricumbo, who mentioned doubling their operation at the new site. Furthermore, the company will hire others, such as security guards and bookkeeper assistants.
On the walls of this historic building were about six to eight murals. “We are doing everything we can to conserve them,” said the restaurateur. The paintings will serve as a backdrop as customers dine. An additional mural, reflecting life in Imperial Valley, is being planned as well.
“I just want to thank the City of El Centro for their support,” said Nuricumbo.