Henry’s Restaurant, Pomona

Today’s column is a capsule history of this fondly remembered drive-in, restaurant and coffee shop, which lasted from 1957 to 1971, became a nightclub and then a disco and fell to the wrecking ball in the mid-1980s. Architecture buffs are still mourning the loss of the structure, a notable example of John Lautner’s work. Here’s Lautner’s Wikipedia entry.

We’ve talked about Henry’s on this blog before — click here to read that — but now we have photos.


The two photos above are courtesy of the Pomona Public Library’s special collections room and date to 1957. The restaurant is so big it’s hard to get a good view of it, but these aren’t bad. The top photo emphasizes the drive-in area, whereas the dine-in entrance is highlighted in the other. You can see a bit of the Henry’s sign on the corner in the top one.


This photo above of the dining room is from Charles Phoenix’s book “Cruising the Pomona Valley 1930 Thru 1970.” To call it stylish doesn’t do it justice.

The photo at right below is also from Phoenix’s book and shows a bartender in the cocktail lounge hard at work.

The photo at left below is from Barbara-Ann Campbell-Lange’s book “Lautner,” a handy overview of the architect’s work, and shows the coffee shop portion. Note the cutouts in the wall, through which a sliver of the kitchen can be seen, and the huge window. No wonder critic Alan Hess, in his midcentury architecture classic “Googie Redux,” writes: “Indoors and outdoors flowed together smoothly.”

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And here’s the corner today. *Yawn*

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