Popular Seattle coffee shop forced to shut down after almost 2 decades in business

A popular Queen Anne coffee shop says it's being forced to shut down after almost two decades in business.

The Diablo Coffee Co. said Monday it got notice from the building’s owner to vacate the property by April 30.

Coffee director Neil Oney said the news came as a shock to both the staff and their customers.

“This came out of nowhere,” said Oney. “To see something like this, it hurts.”

Oney said his boss has been trying to negotiate a new lease with the building’s owner, Erickson Family LLC, but they won’t respond.

Diablo's lease expired more than year ago but they had been paying rent month to month.

“They did approach us earlier about raising rent but we did not agree to that,” said Oney.

KIRO 7 learned Queen Anne Book Company, located next door to Diablo, just renewed their lease for five more years.

Bookstore co-owner Janis Segress would not say if they agreed to higher rent, but did say they are sad to lose a good neighbor.

“We had a symbiotic relationship and totally feed off each other,” said Segress. “It will negatively affect us for sure.”

The property manager of both businesses said Diablo Coffee Co. should have negotiated when their lease was current. The owner has decided to move in another direction.

The owner of El Diablo told KIRO 7 the business had been trying to get the owners to come in to fix and upgrade their aging electrical and plumbing system if the rent were to go up, but that the owner had never agreed to do it.

Diablo’s management said they hope to stay in the neighborhood and keep their employees.

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