Su Casa, Eric’s Bar compound to reopen this month |

Su Casa, Eric’s Bar compound to reopen this month

Longtime restaurant and bars on Hyman Avenue closed for good last month but will reopen for the summer after Casper family subleases the space

Su Casa is dead. Long live Su Casa.

The locally owned restaurant that has been serving up margaritas and Mexican food for 30 years in the subterranean space on Hyman Avenue had closed its doors last month for good.

That was what Mary Lynn Casper, proprietor of Su Casa, thought was the end but the new tenant of the building, Gravity Haus, has subleased the space back to her.

On May 26, Casper is reopening Su Casa, as well as the adjoining Eric’s Bar, Aspen Billiards and Cigar Bar.

“We are really excited about it,” Casper said Thursday. “It was difficult to get the sublease and they finally said yes. It’s really nice of them.”

The sublease runs through Sept. 30 for all four establishments and business will be as usual except for Su Casa, which will offer a limited, taqueria menu this summer.

Casper said she has hired enough staff for the back of the house but not for the front as many of her employees found new jobs after the closing. As a result, the restaurant will offer a menu that is self-service, pickup at the Su Casa bar.

The bars in the rest of the building will operate as they did before.

“All the bartenders are coming back,” Casper said, adding that many things like lamps and ashtrays were taken on closing night and she asks that they be returned in exchange for a free drink. “I just bought about 25 ashtrays.”

The April 16 closures came after developer Mark Hunt paid $10.6 million to the Casper family for a majority of the Wheeler Square building in January 2020 and acquired the rest of the condominium building for $7.4 million from attorney Gideon Kaufman in August 2020.

Hunt has leased the entire building to Gravity Haus, which is opening a coffee shop in the street-front space that once housed the Hub of Aspen bicycle shop.

Gordon Bronson, who is working with the Gravity Haus ownership to open the Aspen spot, said he and the group offered the sublease to Casper knowing that it will take some time to get the permits from the city to remodel the space.

“We were able to work something out that was in the best interest of the community,” he said.

The Gravity Haus bills itself as “a social club that enables a modern active lifestyle — the seamless merging of work, play and outdoor adventures,” according to news reports.

With locations already in Breckenridge, Winter Park and Vail, the company also is expanding into Truckee, California, near Lake Tahoe.

Gravity Haus has a permit under review with the city to renovate the former Hub space that includes the interior renovation and change of use from retail to coffee shop, according to Amy Simon, the city’s planning director.

The work involves a second egress path through a formally separate unit, as well as renovating two existing restrooms, adding new ventilation and a new “no” cooking prep kitchen.

“We have been asked some general questions about renovation of the rest of the building, but nothing has been submitted for review,” Simon said via email. “We are processing the permit for the coffee shop and are not holding up any other activity on the property.”

How long Su Casa, Eric’s, the Cigar Bar and Aspen Billards will actually stay is a question for the future, Casper said.

“I’m going to enjoy the next six months and we hope everyone else does, too,” she said.

Closing T-shirts are displayed in the window of Su Casa in the Eric’s Bar compound. All of the businesses in the subterranean Hyman Avenue location will reopen on May 26. (Carolyn Sackariason/Aspen Times)