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SAN DIEGO – Anthony’s Fish Grotto, the seafood restaurant that has been a fixture on the downtown waterfront for more than five decades, will be closing its doors for good after the Port of San Diego did not renew its lease, restaurant officials announced Wednesday.

While the Embarcadero restaurant will be closing Jan. 31, the La Mesa location will remain open, keeping alive a 70-year tradition for local families.

“I’m grateful to the patrons who have been loyal to our restaurant over the years,” said Craig Ghio, grandson of founder Mama Ghio said. “We’ve served more than 22 million people during our 52 years at the Embarcadero, and in recent months we have received thousands of emails expressing sadness about Anthony’s upcoming forced closure.”

“It’s been incredibly heartwarming to hear from so many of the people we’ve had the honor of serving.,” he said.

Catherine “Mama” Ghio opened the original Anthony’s as a 16-seat diner at the old downtown ferry landing in 1946. The restaurant moved to its current location in 1965, partnering with the Port to energize the development of San Diego’s waterfront.

“Staying true to the traditions that made us San Diego’s favorite seafood restaurant, we not only look forward to welcoming guests one last time along the waterfront, but at our La Mesa location for years to come,” Craig Ghio said.