Holly's Lighthouse Cafe

As many restaurants have started coming back for dine-in service as Covid-19 guidelines allow them to, others have stuck with takeout-only, and others remain closed entirely. In some cases, restaurants are shutting down entirely. 

Such is the case for Holly's Lighthouse Cafe in Pacific Grove, a classic breakfast and lunch spot that was family run for 15 years. 

An announcement on the cafe's Facebook page, addressed "to our loving patrons and amazing community" posted by Amy Hanmer reads in part: 

"As the Covid-19 crisis set in it became clear that we wouldn’t be able to be the Holly’s as you all knew it again, perhaps for a very long time. The safety of my family, my staff, and all of you comes first. We simply weren’t set up for a pandemic, and the difficult choice had to be made.

"I would like to personally thank all of you for your years of patronage and support and above all else, LOVE! The community support for my mother both before and after her death will always mean so much to my family and I, as will the support you all showed as I took the helm. Thank you all so so much from the bottom of my heart."

Hanmer is the daughter of Holly Summers, who bought Lighthouse Cafe in 2005 and renamed is Holly's Lighthouse Cafe. After Summers died in 2016, Hanmer channeled her mom's love for hospitality. 

"It's the way she would smile at you and talk with you when you were at the restaurant," Hanmer said at the time. "She wanted you to feel like you were home. She was family to everyone she met."

Holly's epitomized the vibe of America's Last Hometown, with a blue-and-white striped awning, tight quarters and a line out the door on weekend mornings. Portions of brunch staples and decadent pie were hearty and filling, and they accurately kept the slogan "just the way mom always made it" even after Summers died. 

Sara Rubin loves long public meetings, red pens and reading (on newsprint). She has been editor of the Monterey County Weekly since 2016, and has been on staff since 2010.

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