Discovery in Midtown
Boutique bowling alley in Ventura entering final phase of construction
By Shane Cohn 07/25/2013
The Pembertons are ready to break ground.
With the final building plans now approved by the city of Ventura, twins Jeremy and Joshua Pemberton, 29, can now enter the final construction phase of their boutique bowling center in Midtown Ventura.
Replacing the Ventura Bowling Center, which closed its doors last December, the brothers are introducing a multimillion-dollar project called Discovery, which has been described as a “a complete social experience with bowling, cocktails and farm-to-table cuisine.”
A groundbreaking ceremony with city officials will take place on Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 11 a.m. Construction and renovation are expected to be finished in mid-November and the facility open in time to book holiday parties. Jeremy said Discovery will be throwing the biggest New Year’s Eve party on the Central Coast, and a grand opening in late January.
Discovery had been slated to open this spring, but the process stalled.
“With a 70-year-old building [and] the amount of upgrade requirements, the city had increased our overall startup budget and we had to secure required funding in order to move on with the project,” said Jeremy. He estimated the project costs to hover around $2.5 million, backed by a local group of private investors.
Along with nine bowling lanes with string pinsetters, Discovery will feature billiards, shuffleboard, lounge seating, a horseshoe bar, a VIP room and lanes, 160-capacity banquet room and, eventually, live music.
Following the erection of Fresh and Easy, the construction of Discovery marks one of the more ambitious business projects of late in the Midtown-Thompson Boulevard area, an area that has been known for seedy motels and used-car lots. But Jeremy said the area is ripe for revitalization.
“Living here for the past two years, I’ve identified what a gem this place is, and there is a misperception on the quality that Ventura has to offer,” he said. “And that is exactly what we found in Midtown. … With the proximity to the mountains and beach, it’s very valuable real estate; and I think that if we start to turn over a few stones and show the gem that Midtown really is, we can really improve the entire area.”