Closed for Business: Diddy Shuts Down His Famed Atlanta Restaurant, “Justin’s”
After 14 years in the restaurant business, Diddy is moving on to other endeavors. The mogul has closed his once wildly successful Buckhead restaurant “Justin’s” that specialized in Southern and Caribbean food.
“There was speculation that Justin’s was shut down for renovations and would reopen. Not. Once known for “Martini Mondays” and celebrity-filled weekend nights, Justin’s fell off in recent years and was unable to relocate its early magic.
Combs’ first Justin’s restaurant, in New York, closed after 10 years in 2007.
Bad Boy Worldwide Entertainment Group (BBWEG), founded by Combs, said in a statement that Justin’s was closed in order to pursue “other business ventures in music, television, fashion, fragrance and spirits.” It added that is is “actively exploring business opportunities in Atlanta” and promises “to have a strong presence in the region.”
Diddy isn’t the only entertainer to have his restaurant close in recent years. Usher, Ludacris and Jermaine Dupri’s restaurants have all reached the same fate.
In fact, Gladys Knight’s and Ron Winan’s chicken and waffle joints make them the only entertainers left thriving in Atlanta’s restaurant industry.
This isn’t the first time this restaurant has made headlines. In 2009, the restaurant reportedly owed the IRS $8,000 dollars in back taxes. And last summer, Tony Austin (former A&R man for Def Jam and President of Russell Simmons Music Group) sued Diddy for “failing to maintain a safe environment” after Austin was shot multiple times in the restaurant’s parking lot in 2010. Sheesh!
No one likes to see a black-owned business fail, but we’re pretty sure Diddy isn’t hurting for money. Last year, Forbes magazine estimated his net worth at $500 million dollars, making him the richest figure in hip hop.
Have you ever visited Justin’s in Atlanta? Why do you think these entertainer-owned restaurants don’t survive in that city?
Alissa Henry is a freelance writer living in Columbus, OH follow her on Twitter @AlissaInPink