Omega Restaurant Owners Hope to Reopen this Winter
The popular Downers Grove eatery has been closed since mid-July after it lost water and electricity service, but it's now hiring servers and kitchen staff.
Omega Restaurant in Downers Grove could reopen in the next month or two, according to the owner.
The popular eatery, located at 1300 Ogden Ave., closed in July 2012 after a series of legal issues involving unpaid utility bills and village code violations. A sign in front of the restaurant has promised its imminent return for several months, but now the reopening is closer than ever, according to co-owner Nick Christopoulos.
"We're still working through some things, getting everything up to code and making sure we're ready, but we're hoping to open in the next month or so," Christopoulos said Thursday.
In anticipation of its opening, Omega is currently hiring new servers and kitchen staff.
"We're accepting applications right now," Christopoulos said. "We don't have a start date yet, but we want to be ready."
George Andrews, the majority owner of the Omega building, took over the restaurant in July from former owners George and James Stavropoulos, who filed for bankruptcy in May, according to court documents.
Andrews and the Stavropouloses became partners in 2007, but the relationship quickly deteriorated over legal and financial issues. In 2009, Andrews filed an injunction to have the father-son team banned from the restaurant, but the dispute was ultimately settled and a new lease signed.
Over the next few years, Omega racked up a number of unpaid bills for tens of thousands of dollars to various vendors, according to a Chicago Tribune report.
In May 2012, Andrews went to court claiming that Jim Stavropoulos—who took control of the entire business when his father retired—hadn't paid rent since February.
That same month, ComEd turned off Omega's electricity after Stavropoulos failed to pay a bill that was close to $50,000, court records show. After losing electricity, Stavropoulos used a diesel generator to restore power for several days, a violation of village code. He was cited with half a dozen violations.
The village shut off the restaurant's water supply in July due to a $5,600 unpaid bill, according to Downers Grove Communications Director Doug Kozlowski. Omega also owed nearly $14,000 to the Downers Grove Sanitary District.
The Stavropouloses agreed to vacate the restaurant in July and pay Andrews $81,000, according to court documents. Several court cases involving unpaid bills are still pending, according to DuPage County records.
Christopoulos, who now co-owns Omega with Andrews and Andrews' son Telly Andrianopoulos, said he hopes the restaurant can leave the controversy in the past.
"We want to put it behind us and concentrate on the re-opening," Christopoulos said.
On Nov. 1, the trio appeared before the Downers Grove Liquor Commission to apply for an R-2 license to serve beer and wine at Omega. According to the meeting minutes, members of the liquor commission said they were happy to see the restaurant making a comeback, and recommended the restaurant be granted a license.
Christopoulos said the restaurant will make a more formal announcement as the opening date nears.
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