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Debbie's Plants, 2505 Sunset Boulevard / Pizza House 2507 Sunset Boulevard / Columbia Rehabilitation Clinic 2509 Sunset Boulevard: 2000s   20 comments

Posted at 12:00 am in business,historic,restaurants,stores

I noticed this defunct building / strip mall on Sunset Boulevard recently when I stopped to take some pictures of the old Quincy's building next door.

Of the three businesses that google suggests were here, I can only sort of recall hearing about or perhaps seeing Pizza House. At one point back in the 90s, I went on a quest for Columbia's best pizza and hit a large number of pizza restaurants, but never this one. At this remove I'm not sure why. It could be the distance, but during that time, I did try the nearby Grecian Gardens for pizza, so I doubt that was it. It could be that it was one of those places where you order at the counter rather than at your table -- I try to avoid those. Or perhaps it looked decrepit even back then.

The other two businesses I'm fairly sure I never heard of. Debbie's Plants seems like a fairly self-explanatory name, but not one that would attract me, and the medical facility seems to have either been eldercare or mental health care or perhaps both.

I see that the whole complex is for sale. It looks like it would take fairly extensive work to make it look decent again -- it wouldn't surprise me if whoever buys it just knocks everything down.

UPDATE 11 April 2010: Added 1977 Bellsouth yellow page ad.

UPDATE 18 October 2012 -- As I speculated above, the whole place was knocked down some time ago. I have a more extensive set of pictures (though taken on a much less sunny day) somewhere, but for now these from 19 February 2011 tell the story:

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Written by ted on May 6th, 2009

20 Responses to 'Debbie's Plants, 2505 Sunset Boulevard / Pizza House 2507 Sunset Boulevard / Columbia Rehabilitation Clinic 2509 Sunset Boulevard: 2000s'

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  1. We really liked Pizza House and miss it. It had a very similar feel to The Villa back when The Villa was a great place. And it reminded me of Joe's Italian House of my childhood. Full service -- you did not order at the counter.

    A new pizza place is about to open a couple of blocks from there on the other side of I-26, called Primarily Pi. Being started by the same guy that owns Salty Nut and Za's.

    Dennis

    6 May 09 at 7:55 am

  2. Thanks for that comment, Dennis. I've been wondering about Primarily Pi...the professional look of signage indicates it's a chain, but I've never been able to find anything out about it online. If the pizza is as good as za's, it'll be worth a try.

    Brian

    6 May 09 at 8:20 am

  3. I really enjoyed Pizza House, too. I can remember when Al Loftis (of Al's Upstairs fame) used to work there.

    Back in the early/mid 80s, there was another pizza place nearby -- across I26 toward Lexington, on the right. It was pretty good. The name of it now escapes me. The same location is now a Hawthorne Pharmacy.

    E.J.

    6 May 09 at 7:39 pm

  4. Spoke to the owner of The Villa and sons are back from service in the war and they are looking to restart lunch in June -- It will be a good day for local pizza!! Glad they are back safe!

    Kc

    7 May 09 at 2:41 pm

  5. Yes, definitely good they're back, and thanks for their service! I have no problem with the food or staff at The Villa -- just wish they had windows! I am just too claustrophobic to go there often.

    ted

    7 May 09 at 6:04 pm

  6. Why don't you like counter service? I prefer it. One less middleman between me and my food. And having been on a rather disappointing similar quest, who did you find with the best pizza?

    Nobody

    7 May 09 at 11:18 pm

  7. It's hard to describe exactly, but it's something like "it's not my job to stand here and then carry food to my table -- it's your job to come out and serve me". (I don't like self checkout aisles at stores either). It's part of what makes eating at a restaurant nicer than standing over the sink with a sandwich. I'm not as rigid as I used to be -- I love Moe's for instance, though part of the no table service thing there manifests in the tables not getting wiped down as often as they should.

    As for my pizza quest -- in the end I decided there was really no contest: It was The Parthenon all the way.

    ted

    7 May 09 at 11:30 pm

  8. Primarily Pi Pizza is not a chain. Like Dennis said, it's owned by the same guys as Za's, Salty Nut, and Pavlovs. The menu has pizzas (create your own and specialty), wraps, pasta, salads, soups, and paninis. It is counter service, though there will be food runners who bring you the food rather than you taking it to a table yourself. It opens in early June.

    Sarah

    29 May 09 at 4:30 pm

  9. FWIW - Primarily Pi has opened and I've been by there a couple of times. It's trying hard for the "Mellow Mushroom" feel of the place, and IMO, they're succeeding. I thought it was a very good substitute if you don't feel like driving downtown.

    Brian

    10 Jul 09 at 8:04 am

  10. I'm planning on a to-go pickup from Primarily Pi this evening. I saw the menu in the Free Times this week, and it looks very good. We could sure use one in Irmo. Aside from MM, it reminds me of The Pizza Joint based on its menu. Can't wait to try it!!!

    Jonathan

    10 Jul 09 at 8:49 am

  11. Jonathan - All I've had is their lunch special (1 big slice w/ 2 toppings, salad of your choice, and drink for $7something)...so I want to hear how a whole pie (pi) is!

    Brian

    10 Jul 09 at 10:28 am

  12. Only ointment-fly I see is that they are only open until 9pm weeknights and 10pm weekends -- that'll make it hard for me to get over there for supper.

    ted

    11 Jul 09 at 6:41 pm

  13. Back in the "day", Pizza House was a good place for Pizza and they made very good Pepperoni Lasagna. Notice I did not say the best pizza. But the folks that worked there were friendly to the hard working folks who came by every week. Making $5 hour in 91 went a long way at the Pizza House.

    Theo

    27 Jul 09 at 2:51 pm

  14. I haven't seen any comments from anyone who loved this place yet, so I thought I'd add. I LOVED this place. Yes, the inside was dingy and poorly lit, and I doubt I would have eaten there as often if the light had been bright enough to see what was lurking in the corners, but this was my favorite pizza in town for years.

    They made the only pizza where I liked the sauce as much as the cheese, and the cheese was always loaded on so heavily as to be difficult to manage. The closest pizza to this I've found Dano's, but their cheese isn't quite the same. Pizza House used some blend that I asked them about once but then promptly forgot, figuring they would be open forever. Oops.

    During the last couple of years it was open, they were taken over by some different folks and the recipes were changed slightly and it wasn't as good. I still feel wistful when I drive past.

    Chris

    23 Dec 09 at 2:02 pm

  15. Chris- I agree with your comments. I lived right down the road from the Pizza House for a year or two. I would order extra cheese and sauce, and would get plenty every time. Anywhere else, I end up paying for extra and getting less than normal, it seems. Anyways, the pizzas that I bought from there always weighed about 10 pounds a piece because of the extra cheese. They were delicious everytime, and I could eat off of one for 2 or 3 days. It's a shame the place is gone, but I'm sure it's hard to keep a place like that going in today's "chain restaurant" standards.

    Cameron

    7 Jun 10 at 9:48 am

  16. Pizza House...Ate there a few times.....the last time.... it was 97 or 98... had an order to go.... saw cockroaches run over a make table.. right in plain view of an employee.....The employee did not flinch...she must have been used to it......I just walked out......By the way Primarily PI is closed...now a Mexican Place

    Steve

    15 Aug 10 at 9:06 pm

  17. Yep.

    ted

    16 Aug 10 at 12:40 am

  18. ok folks it has just come to my attention this afternoon that this building is being razed...I am not sure what the plan is except that this afternoon, excavators were going at it full speed ahead...will keep you folks posted if I hear anything further...

    Andrew

    20 Dec 10 at 3:43 pm

  19. We loved the Pizza House! Ate there at least once a week. My favorite was ravioli with pepperoni. Their salads were really good too (had a radish cut into a flower atop a carrot curl tooth-picked to the top). It was about 30 minutes from my house at the time and caused what we called the "Pizza House Effect". Even though the food was good you had to rush home immediately after eating or you wouldn't make it to the bathroom on time (if you get my drift...). Not sure if it was the bugs or the cook who had teeth only on the right side of her mouth but the effect was a certainty you had to expect. Still miss it though...

    Ned Harkey

    24 Dec 11 at 11:30 am

  20. The pizza place on the opposite side of the road from Pizza House (closer to Lexington County Hospital) that is now Hawthorne medical supply was called Azzardos. It was a pretty decent pizza and one of my favorites back in the mid to late '80's.

    Mike

    3 Jul 13 at 3:23 pm

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