SANTA MONICA—What used to be Santa Monica’s Penguin Coffee Shop on Lincoln and Olympic, will soon be turned into a Mel’s Drive-In.
Penguin Coffee Shop was first constructed in 1959. The coffee shop was designed by architects Armet & Davis, who are also responsible for the appearance of La Cienega Boulevard’s Norm’s Restaurant, which is the oldest Norm’s establishment that is still standing today.
When Penguin Coffee Shop closed, the building became a dentist’s office in 1991. The establishment closed in 2016, before the purchase was made by Mel’s Drive-In.
The year 2017, will mark the 70th anniversary of Mel’s Drive-In. Owner Steven Weiss is hoping to have the new location open by May 2017. Weiss is the son of original proprietor Mel Weiss, who opened the first Mel’s Drive-In in San Francisco in 1947.