Winery owners, brothers and wine-lovers Georges and Daniel Daou have just raised their love of San Luis Obispo County.
The uber-successful brothers, whose commercial enterprises include Daou Vineyards & Winery in Paso Robles and the future Daou Ocean project in Cambria, closed the deal late January on the nearly century-old Bank of Italy building in Paso Robles.
The historical building is on the corner of Park and 13th streets, just a block north of Downtown City Park.
The Daou brothers elaborate plans include to remodel, renovate and convert the brick building (listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1998) into its downtown headquarters, according to Daou senior vice president Maeve Pesquera.
She said the 15,000-square-foot building “is historically significant for its Renaissance revival architectural style and its devotion to commerce in the early days of growth and prosperity in small town Paso Robles.”
“Our goal is the continue to vision and purpose of the original architect — Arthur Nyberg — and activate this building’s position as a center of commerce in the world-class wine growing region of Paso Robles,” Pesquera said.
“We will utilize the upper floors of the building for our corporate offices and there will be a hospitality venue on the first floor” that will feature Daou wines, she said. “We will clean the exterior of the building and maintain its iconic façade and existing architectural style.”
“We will not change the façade or any historic elements of the building,” she said, which “has been vacant for a number of years and there are no current tenants. It will be used exclusively by Daou.”
Pesquera said permitting will start immediately. “We’re hoping to open our offices there for the 100-year anniversary of this special property in 2021,” she said.
Pesquera said the brothers declined to say how much they paid or to whom for the building, “out of respect for the seller.”