Dale Boyd, The Elite open mic night host, entertaining the crowd on the final night before the oldest restaurant in Penticton closed. Brennan Phillips - Western News

300 Block Casual Steakhouse to replace The Elite

Iconic Penticton restaurant may be gone, but it won’t be forgotten

The Elite Restaurant on Penticton’s Main Street may be gone, but it won’t be soon forgotten as the building is set to take on a new life as a steakhouse.

Fred Trainor, Penticton local and new owner, said the building is well on its way to taking its new form as Block 300 Casual Steakhouse. He said that he appreciates the past the building has but is excited to take the venue in a new direction.

“The Elite had a good run, a terrific run from 1927 to 2018, but unfortunately the best days were behind them,” said Trainor, who is a first-time restaurant owner. “When I bought it, it wasn’t to do exactly what they had been doing since 1936 since really I think that cycle has closed on itself.”

Trainor said he’s lived in Penticton for a long time and believes a steakhouse is what the city needs. He purchased The Elite in November 2018 and it was announced a month later, coincidentally, that Penticton’s resident steakhouse Black Iron Grill & Steak House was closing.

“I started planning this back in June, so it’s just coincidental that that happened. I think there’s now a bigger opportunity than there was,” said Trainor. “I think we can do a good job with it.”

Trainor said the outside of the restaurant, located at 340 Main St., will remain the same but the inside has been “completely gutted.” He said part of this was renovation was necessary due to the building’s age.

Related: Video: Historic Penticton restaurant closes

“We’re not changing the facade of the building. It’s very iconic and, as a matter of fact, it’s on the Penticton registry as well. So we’re going to re-paint it and re-skin the sign,” said Trainor. “The challenge of the building, which is 91-years-old, is I knew going in that there were going to be some surprises. And you don’t know what those are until you get in there.

“We ended up having to completely replace all of the electrical, we had to yard out every wire and start all over again. And we had to do the same thing with the plumbing. And then we had some attic issues.”

As an homage to The Elite, the interior of the new restaurant will feature some shadow box installations containing historic pieces. Trainor said renovations are about halfway complete, with a set opening date for May 3 at 5 p.m..

Trainor said this new business venture is his retirement after a career in real estate development. He’s already hired a general manager and chef for Block 300 Casual Steakhouse and they will be developing the menu together soon.

“I’m on my last project before I retire from that particular business (real estate development), but I know that I don’t want to retire for life. So this is my retirement project if you will,” said Trainor. “I was just looking for something else to do because I like to keep challenging myself… I’m just absolutely stoked, so excited, with what we’re going to do.”

According to Trainor, the new restaurant will pride itself on good food and service at affordable prices. He is still in the process of securing a liquor licence and said the business hours will run from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. with the option to stay open later if late diners so desire.

“We intend to set the bar really high in terms of consistency of food, in terms of customer service and all those things related,” said Trainor. “And we’re going to set the prices as low as we can. That’s our mantra.”

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
JordynThomson 
Send Jordyn Thomson an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A firefighter descends the ladder truck after checking on the upper floors of the Clarence House apartment building after a fire broke out Tuesday morning. See story on page 5. 
 (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
UPDATE: Flames doused for second time at fatal Penticton apartment fire

The Elm Ave. building first caught fire around 4 a.m., killing two people and displacing dozens

(Submitted)
Penticton apartment fire claims two lives

An apartment on Elm Avenue went up in flames Tuesday morning

A firefighter descends the ladder truck after checking on the upper floors of the Clarence House apartment building after a fire broke out Tuesday morning. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
There has been COVID-19 exposures at two elementary schools in District 42. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 24 additional COVID-19 cases

This includes three school exposures in Kelowna

MLA Dan Ashton (Contributed)
Penticton MLA won’t seek leadership of B.C. Liberals

Dan Ashton believes a moderate leader with broad appeal is needed

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

Los Angeles Dodgers celebrate after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 to win the baseball World Series in Game 6 Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
L.A. Dodgers beat Rays 3-1 to win 1st World Series title since 1988

National League champs claim crown in six games

Two have been taken to hospital following a vehicle crash north of Vernon on Highway 97 Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Crash north of Vernon causes Highway 97 traffic delays

Emergency crews respond to two-vehicle incident near Swan Lake; occupants taken to hospital

Seven-year-old Aaliyah Rosa was found dead in an apartment in Langley in July. (Langley Advance Times files)
Child’s body cold, no pulse: Off-duty cop testifies in Langley mother’s murder trial

The seven-year-old girl’s mother faces a first-degree murder charge

A Summerland woman has set up an online fundraiser to provide backpacks to those being released from correctional facilities.(ca.gofundme.com)
Summerland woman raising money for backpack program

Backpacks will be distributed to those being released from correctional facilities

École de l’Anse-au-sable. (Google Maps)
15 cases of COVID-19 tied to Kelowna Francophone school outbreak

Three other schools in Kelowna are also dealing with potential exposure events

People march during a climate strike in Montreal, Friday, Sept. 27, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Judge rejects 15 youths’ climate change lawsuit against Canadian government

Justice Michael Manson has granted the government’s motion to strike the plaintiffs’ claim

A four-vehicle accident on the Bruhn Bridge in Sicamous destroyed two cars and a section of bridge guardrail but remarkably injured no one. (Sicamous RCMP Image)
Sicamous’ Bruhn Bridge site of two collisions

Although a total of five vehicles were involved, no one was injured

Steven Gardner in an Instagram selfie that contributed to his arrest.
Receipt plus Instagram selfie leads to arrest of Kamloops man

Steven Gardner is facing three firearms charges

Most Read