8905 Lake Avenue
Lakewood, Ohio 44102

(216) 961-6700


Our History

Since 1972

In the Beginning

Our Roots

The roots of Don’s Lighthouse Grille date back to 1911 German immigrant Otto Poschke founded “Poschke’s Barbeque” when Edgewater Park was all the rage.

In the early 1900s Otto was a beloved streetcar conductor on the old St. Clair Avenue run. Then in 1911 he married Elma and the two of them opened a 10’x10’ “barbeque shack” on the north area of Lake Avenue and Detroit Avenue at West 57th Street.

It just so happened that the Edgewater Beach Bathhouse was built in 1911. It attracted throngs of people. In those days, the lake level was much higher and the water came up to the bathhouse. Otto and Elma’s “barbeque shack” served those people who frequented the Edgewater Park area.

From Hot Dog Stand to...

Palace on the Park

Refreshments included Coca-Cola, peanuts, popcorn, taffy, hot dogs and hamburgers along with a variety of barbequed meats. Success made it possible for Poschke to grow into multiple locations. By the middle 1920’s the Poschkes became so successful that they were ready to expand once more – this time consolidating all of their “barbeque shacks” into one “Palace.” Otto had grown tired of people saying, “Oh, you’re the owner of that little hot dog stand.” So, Otto hired revered Cleveland architect Henry Hradilek and charged him with creating a new building that would stand as a landmark and resemble either an elegant library or an art museum.

The result was a $250,000 renaissance pastiche which could easily serve as a movie set. History has it that the first floor contained an elaborate version of his old barbecue and deli counter. On the mezzanine level there was the traditional soda fountain. The second level became the ultimate hang out, hosting society parties and the occasional ritzy private affair.

The entire third floor was the new Poshchke’s residence with their five children. Served by an elevator which opened privately to the third floor, there were a series of bedrooms, a large bathroom complex off a long hall leading to a paneled library, living room and an elegant solarium with a glass domed ceiling complete with a marble floor and beautiful fountain. French doors to the solarium opened onto a spacious and very private roof garden-sun-porch.

End of an Era

New Beginnings

By 1941, Otto Poschke, as a result of the depression and other circumstances, lost the “Palace.”

A year later, Don Strang, Sr. bought the building and opened the first Howard Johnson’s restaurant west of New Jersey. Howard Johnsons remained open until 1972 when Don Strang, Jr. renovated the building and opened Don’s Lighthouse Inn to fabulous reviews and soon became known throughout the city as the place for the freshest seafood, best steaks and generous drinks. Today, Don’s Lighthouse Grille continues its tradition of serving the best seafood and steaks in town paired with a commitment to service that strives to exceed the expectations of our guests.

We look forward to serving you!

Join us for lunch, dinner, or your favorite beverage

Make a reservation with OpenTable or call (216) 961-6700
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