Monday | December 11, 2017
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Luquin’s to reopen as lunch wagon

Pahoa residents could soon again eat at Luquin’s.

Salvador Luquin, who owned the popular Mexican restaurant destroyed by last month’s fire, said he has purchased a lunch wagon and hopes to be cooking again in the next few weeks.

The opening date depends on approval from the state Department of Health.

Luquin said he will place it at the same property where the restaurant and the historic Akebono Theatre, also destroyed in the blaze, were located.

“It’s the same kind of food, but the menu will change a bit,” he said.

Matt Purvis, owner of the Tin Shack Bakery and Mainstreet Pahoa Association president, said residents are looking forward to seeing Luquin back in business.

“Everybody is rooting for them to be back and the theater,” he said.

Luquin said he will provide tables and chairs for customers.

The fire started late in the evening Jan. 15 and destroyed three buildings in Pahoa village.

Police and fire investigators say the blaze began outside the rear wall of a vacant building that was next to Luquin’s.

There’s no evidence of foul play, police said. One theory is that the fire was started by an overturned gas lantern.

Luquin, who plans to rebuild the restaurant and theater, which he also owned, said the remaining rubble should be removed by the end of next week.

He purchased the restaurant in 1984 and expanded it to the rest of the building. Luquin said he was unable to salvage equipment from his restaurant and is buying what he needs.

“We got to start from scratch,” he said.

Email Tom Callis at


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