Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

What Was The Restaurant On The Hill?


  • Please log in to reply
27 replies to this topic

#1 mattaken

mattaken

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 19 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Fort Worth, TX
  • Interests:Reading, the great outdoors, and the history of this, our fair city.

Posted 03 August 2007 - 12:47 AM

I was driving West on I30 the other day admiring the downtown skyline, and as I approached Beach St a vague memory bubbled to the surface of my brain....

Wasn't there some sort of restaurant or club that once sat on top of the hill just East of Beach St on I30 and overlooked downtown Ft Worth? In the early eighties I was just a snot-nosed kid but I do remember seeing such a place and asking my parents about it as we drove by. All I can remember them saying was that it was a steakhouse and was "expensive". I can recall looking to the other side (North) of the highway and seeing Don Carter's All Star Lanes (now a church I believe) so I know it had to be at that location. I also remember wondering how the heck people got up there as there was no service road, thus it was not accessible from the highway.

Again, this is all based on the memory of a 5 or 6 year old so I could be off on some of the details, but I would love to get some info about this place and learn how long it's been gone.

Thanks!

#2 seurto

seurto

    Elite Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 650 posts
  • Location:SWFW
  • Interests:FW, TX, history, cooking, party planning/giving (Par-Tays Plus), vino! My dogs, chickens and duck!

Posted 03 August 2007 - 06:54 AM

You'll probably get a lot of replies on that question. I believe the last incarnation was The Fort Worth Cattle Co. which was, obviously, a steakhouse. I believe originally it was called Luminaras and had a few changes in between. Considered one of the best views of downtown you had to get to it off Lancaster. It was a cool place and I believe the story goes that the original owners tried to buy out a pig farmer whose land was connected, but he wouldn't sell, so supposedly there was some "ambience" that came with it.

#3 RD Milhollin

RD Milhollin

    Surrounding Cities Moderator

  • Moderators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,537 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Haltom City

Posted 03 August 2007 - 08:29 AM

QUOTE(seurto @ Aug 3 2007, 06:54 AM)  

You'll probably get a lot of replies on that question. I believe the last incarnation was The Fort Worth Cattle Co. which was, obviously, a steakhouse. I believe originally it was called Luminaras and had a few changes in between. Considered one of the best views of downtown you had to get to it off Lancaster. It was a cool place and I believe the story goes that the original owners tried to buy out a pig farmer whose land was connected, but he wouldn't sell, so supposedly there was some "ambience" that came with it.


I thought that "pig farm" scenario belonged to what is now the Ambassador at I-30 and Beach, once a Holiday Inn (??).

#4 Phil Phillips

Phil Phillips

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 238 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:DWG, TX

Posted 03 August 2007 - 02:46 PM

QUOTE(Prairie Pup @ Aug 3 2007, 09:29 AM)  

QUOTE(seurto @ Aug 3 2007, 06:54 AM)  

You'll probably get a lot of replies on that question. I believe the last incarnation was The Fort Worth Cattle Co. which was, obviously, a steakhouse. I believe originally it was called Luminaras and had a few changes in between. Considered one of the best views of downtown you had to get to it off Lancaster. It was a cool place and I believe the story goes that the original owners tried to buy out a pig farmer whose land was connected, but he wouldn't sell, so supposedly there was some "ambience" that came with it.


I thought that "pig farm" scenario belonged to what is now the Ambassador at I-30 and Beach, once a Holiday Inn (??).


Yes, I remember the pig farm. Also, smelled it every time we came into and left downtown in the 60s. The pig farm was between the hotel and the Twin drive-in and was gone by the time the restaurant opened. The restaurant had a great bar on the back with large windows and the downtown view. I was there last in the mid 80s. The lack of access is what killed it.

#5 cbellomy

cbellomy

    Elite Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 650 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Wedgwood

Posted 03 August 2007 - 03:54 PM

I don't remember the pig farm but I do remember both the smell and that the sewage treatment plant back then was in present-day Gateway Park between Beach and Oakland. I always assumed the odor came from down there.



#6 Ghost Writer in Disguise

Ghost Writer in Disguise

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 282 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ridglea West

Posted 06 August 2007 - 12:56 PM

QUOTE(seurto @ Aug 3 2007, 07:54 AM)  

You'll probably get a lot of replies on that question. I believe the last incarnation was The Fort Worth Cattle Co. which was, obviously, a steakhouse. I believe originally it was called Luminaras and had a few changes in between. Considered one of the best views of downtown you had to get to it off Lancaster. It was a cool place and I believe the story goes that the original owners tried to buy out a pig farmer whose land was connected, but he wouldn't sell, so supposedly there was some "ambience" that came with it.

Yes, it was called Luminarias and was at the end of Ben St. It was there as early as 1975 and I'm pretty sure that was when it was built.


#7 mattaken

mattaken

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 19 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Fort Worth, TX
  • Interests:Reading, the great outdoors, and the history of this, our fair city.

Posted 06 August 2007 - 04:51 PM

Thanks for the replies. It's funny to hear about the pig farm. In this day and age it's hard to imagine something like that being so close to downtown.

Does anyone remember how long ago the building was demolished? It looks like the parking lot/foundations are still there.


#8 FWFF'r

FWFF'r

    Junior Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 27 posts
  • Location:Fort Worth
  • Interests:Hunting, Fishing, Camping, Antiques, Artifacts, History, Rustic Furnishings, Baseball

Posted 14 August 2007 - 10:30 PM

QUOTE(mattaken @ Aug 6 2007, 05:51 PM)  

Thanks for the replies. It's funny to hear about the pig farm. In this day and age it's hard to imagine something like that being so close to downtown.

Does anyone remember how long ago the building was demolished? It looks like the parking lot/foundations are still there.


I don't know when it was demo'd. I remember it best when it was a fairly hot night spot called Calamity's.


#9 Giraffe

Giraffe

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 181 posts

Posted 02 December 2007 - 11:23 PM

Well, you just solved a minor mystery for me! I've driven past that restaurant I don't know how many times but not once did I ever even try to go there. I didn't live in that part of town and wasn't familiar with the roads, so I had absolutely no idea how to get to it. (Apparently, not many other people did, either.) Satellite photo of the area shows it's been demolished. It was at 1900 Ben Ave. and was not at all easy to get to.

#10 John Cirillo

John Cirillo

    Junior Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 32 posts

Posted 24 January 2008 - 10:43 PM

QUOTE (Giraffe @ Dec 2 2007, 11:23 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Well, you just solved a minor mystery for me! I've driven past that restaurant I don't know how many times but not once did I ever even try to go there. I didn't live in that part of town and wasn't familiar with the roads, so I had absolutely no idea how to get to it. (Apparently, not many other people did, either.) Satellite photo of the area shows it's been demolished. It was at 1900 Ben Ave. and was not at all easy to get to.


Just to clarify further, the last incarnation was called Fort Worth Cattle Drive Restaurant.
The old Cyberrodeo website from 1996, which is still floating around in Google's cache somewhere, listed it as "Steaks, seafood. Elegant." It's funny, there are several restaurant sites on the web that still list this restaurant. Be the first to review it smile.gif Does anyone have a photo of this place in any incarnation? It was one of those places I always passed but never thought to snap a shot of.
John


#11 Papaw

Papaw

    Elite Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 532 posts
  • Location:South Fort Worth

Posted 24 January 2008 - 10:54 PM

I don't have pics but had several good meals there. The view was really neat and the food was very good. I had a hell of a time finding the place the first time.

#12 Buck

Buck

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 397 posts

Posted 27 January 2008 - 03:53 PM

It was owned by the same company as Baby Doe's in Dallas.

#13 lonnzer

lonnzer

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 12 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin and Fort Worth

Posted 26 May 2008 - 11:29 PM

QUOTE (FWFF'r @ Aug 14 2007, 11:30 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
QUOTE (mattaken @ Aug 6 2007, 05:51 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thanks for the replies. It's funny to hear about the pig farm. In this day and age it's hard to imagine something like that being so close to downtown.

Does anyone remember how long ago the building was demolished? It looks like the parking lot/foundations are still there.


I don't know when it was demo'd. I remember it best when it was a fairly hot night spot called Calamity's.



I do remember it being called Calamity's when it first opened but it went through several different name changes after that. I don't know what it was by the time I moved to Austin but I remember it as Calamity's.

#14 mother earth

mother earth

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:East Fort Worth

Posted 27 May 2008 - 09:04 PM

My mother worked there as a cashier when it was called Luminaries. I ate there once or twice and the main thing I remember was that the windows all faced west, giving a great view of downtown. However, the sun was blinding in the afternoon and evening which made me not want to return even though the food was good, in my opinion. I hope whatever is built there next has a little more thought behind the design. I am pushing for an ecovillage to be built on the sight.

#15 wren

wren

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 205 posts

Posted 27 May 2008 - 11:19 PM

Once when my husband and I ate there a huge storm blew up. There was a lot of rain and lightning. I don't remember what I ate, but the storm was awesome to witness. I'll never forget the sight of lightning bolts flashing through the sky and lighting up the skyline. It was a beautiful sight!

#16 courtnie

courtnie

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 474 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Fort Worth Texas
  • Interests:History, Historic Preservation, Art, Antiques

Posted 28 May 2008 - 07:50 PM

I remember it was a steak house before it was torn down and they had a big ole texas long horn there. It was a pretty view but kinda weird. I still look up there when i drive by..even though its gone.

#17 Birdland in Handley

Birdland in Handley

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 276 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:birdland in handley
  • Interests:Architecture (deco, love that we still have a lot! endangered googie, all other historic) FTW's good photography reputation (Blessed Carter Collection) city parks, local history, vegetarian options, green living.

Posted 30 May 2008 - 01:14 AM

Location, Location, Location--but hard to locate?!?
I remember going there for a special family get-together in the early 70's; in its first incarnation, Luminarias. It was frustrating--so visible from I30 but so puzzling to get to. I remember mom & dad got lost, but, fairly soon got there. (And the view was great!)
I think some owners may have invested eventually in a billboard telling people on 30 the route to the restaurant. I suspect that was not enough without a convenient exit and straightforward route; thus all the restaurants failed.

#18 redhead

redhead

    Elite Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 718 posts
  • Location:Cultural District

Posted 30 May 2008 - 12:42 PM

We lived in Arlington in the mid-80's and had to go to DTFW for something late one afternoon. We had always talked about eating at Calamity's, and decided just to do it...had a hell of a time finding it, and when we did, there was a fairly long wait. I remember that behind the building, there were paths to multiple fire-pits. So we waited outside with our own private fire-pit, drinking adult beverages until we were called to a table...nice memories...Oh yeah, we had gone to court to get married.

#19 The Haltom City Kid

The Haltom City Kid

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 17 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Haltom City
  • Interests:History, Music, Cooking, Politics

Posted 25 July 2008 - 09:30 PM

This thread prompted me to join this site and I must say that I am really enjoying the trip down memory lane.
My wife and I enjoyed our first dinner together on our wedding night at Calamities. Although I cannot remember exactly what we ate, I was a little preoccupied, I do remember it as being a very romantic evening.

Thanks for great memories,
The HC Kid

No trees were harmed in the transmission of this message, however, billions of electrons were temporarily disturbed.

#20 stgo2019

stgo2019

    Junior Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 38 posts
  • Location:Northern New Jersey

Posted 17 November 2008 - 09:08 PM

I moved into a house on Mount Vernon and Ben St. in 1999 and it was still there. I want to say that it was demolished in late 1999 or early 2000.
It's still a great view of downtown, just watch out for the burning stolen cars and the "Johns" with their "dates".

#21 danny

danny

    Newcomer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:bohnam,haltom city,hurst in that order
  • Interests:Custom Trim Contractor

Posted 18 November 2008 - 09:54 PM

QUOTE (stgo2019 @ Nov 17 2008, 09:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I moved into a house on Mount Vernon and Ben St. in 1999 and it was still there. I want to say that it was demolished in late 1999 or early 2000.
It's still a great view of downtown, just watch out for the burning stolen cars and the "Johns" with their "dates".

what was the place east from there on the same side of 30 or the old turnpike
that had a gangster theme it had a secret stairway that lead to some tunnels ??
maybe somewhere around east chase on the south side of 30

dan h


#22 JBB

JBB

    Skyscraper Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,324 posts
  • Location:Bedford

Posted 18 November 2008 - 10:24 PM

I believe you're talking about the Top O' the Hill Terrace, now on the Arlington Baptist College campus. There's a thread about it on here somewhere.

#23 801hme

801hme

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 134 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:East Side

Posted 19 November 2008 - 08:48 AM

[/quote]
what was the place east from there on the same side of 30 or the old turnpike
that had a gangster theme it had a secret stairway that lead to some tunnels ??
maybe somewhere around east chase on the south side of 30

dan h
[/quote]

You're talking about the O.D. Stevens home at I-30 and Morrison. Stevens was convicted of murdering two robbery accomplices and dumping their bodies off the East First street bridge. I know some people who lived in that house before it became commercial property, and they couldn't get a moments peace from trespassers snooping around or trying to find unrecovered money. Later it was the "Texas Connection" restaurant and even later a day-care, I think.

#24 Birdland in Handley

Birdland in Handley

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 276 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:birdland in handley
  • Interests:Architecture (deco, love that we still have a lot! endangered googie, all other historic) FTW's good photography reputation (Blessed Carter Collection) city parks, local history, vegetarian options, green living.

Posted 19 November 2008 - 09:40 PM

The Stevens house is a church now. If any occupant can deal with, or lay, the horrible vibes that place must have, a church might. Apparently the basement was used for imprisonment/torture; and one room had no interior door--was accessed from a second story window only. But tunnels, that's Top O' the Terrace that had tunnels. Someone posted great pix of Top O' the Terrace on the Forum a year or so ago.
n801hme, must have been fascinating place for your friends to live. Were all the disturbances outside the house? Like I said, the vibe there must be weird.

#25 801hme

801hme

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 134 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:East Side

Posted 21 November 2008 - 08:55 AM

QUOTE (Birdland in Handley @ Nov 19 2008, 09:40 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The Stevens house is a church now. If any occupant can deal with, or lay, the horrible vibes that place must have, a church might. Apparently the basement was used for imprisonment/torture; and one room had no interior door--was accessed from a second story window only. But tunnels, that's Top O' the Terrace that had tunnels. Someone posted great pix of Top O' the Terrace on the Forum a year or so ago.
n801hme, must have been fascinating place for your friends to live. Were all the disturbances outside the house? Like I said, the vibe there must be weird.


The person I'm referring to is a friend of my parents from their church. She lived there in the 70's. She's talked about how "cool" the house was *lol*. Don't know if she knew ALL the details. I wouldn't think that would be a realtors main selling point. She mentioned another hidden room under a stairway. Never heard of "paranormal" activity, though...

Thought I'd tack this on-thanks, edit option-I was in the neighborhood today & drove by the Stevens house. It is a Child Development center now. The church is next door. I'd forgotten what an imposing place it was with all the balconies & the red stone walls. They've built playgrounds all around the yard-quite a different vibe from when Stevens was arrested in 1933. You have to respect Stevens' foresite when he built the place- there was no way anyone could have snuck up on him from that perch on the hill.

#26 bburton

bburton

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 311 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Fort Worth

Posted 30 November 2008 - 08:10 PM

The view of downtown Fort Worth from what was last called the "Fort Worth Cattle Drive:"
(an infrared photograph)

Bruce Burton
 


#27 djold1

djold1

    Elite Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 689 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:76179

Posted 01 December 2008 - 05:23 AM

Superb picture..

I remember when Luminaria's was on this location

Pete Charlton
The Fort Worth Gazette blog
The Lost Antique Maps of Fort Worth on CDROM
Website: Antique Maps of Texas
Large format reproductions of original antique and vintage Texas & southwestern maps
 


#28 lcbrownz

lcbrownz

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 108 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Poly

Posted 21 June 2012 - 02:13 PM

I happen to be dating one of the granddaughters of that hog farmer and she told me the story about the sale of the hog farm. A great story between the high dollar lawyers and the hog farmer. The hog farmer won but sold it to them at a higher price.

<!--quoteo(post=39410:date=Aug 3 2007, 07:54 AM:name=seurto)--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(seurto @ Aug 3 2007, 07:54 AM)  </div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->
You'll probably get a lot of replies on that question. I believe the last incarnation was The Fort Worth Cattle Co. which was, obviously, a steakhouse. I believe originally it was called Luminaras and had a few changes in between. Considered one of the best views of downtown you had to get to it off Lancaster. It was a cool place and I believe the story goes that the original owners tried to buy out a pig farmer whose land was connected, but he wouldn't sell, so supposedly there was some "ambience" that came with it.
<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Yes, it was called Luminarias and was at the end of Ben St. It was there as early as 1975 and I'm pretty sure that was when it was built.






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users