Leo’s sat for many years on the northwest corner of North Broadway (then U.S. Route 101, now California State Route 135) and McElhaney Avenue below Bunny Avenue. It is another part of California’s eating and car culture history that is long gone.
EDIT: In the 1990’s, a standard-looking Taco Bell was built on the lot. Parent company Yum Brands then abandoned the location and it became an oddball place called Seafood Express. Today, it is now one of several locations of a local fast food chain called Tortilleria Mexico.
ADDENDUM 2021-08-16: Thanks to Andrea Hartman for providing corrected information on Leo’s which I was able to corroborate in comments left on the I Remember Santa Maria When… group on Facebook. Leo’s burned down sometime in the late 1960’s. At this time, I cannot find any information on what if anything was there from that time until the Taco Bell was built.
4 thoughts on “Leo’s Drive In Restaurant of Santa Maria”
Leo’s Drive In burned down in the late 1960’s. This article is wrong on the dates.
Leo’s Drive In, in Santa Maria, California burned down in the late 1960’s. This article is wrong on the dates.
Thank you for the corrected information! I have made the appropriate edit and addition to the post. Somebody must have also informed my original source as I can no longer find it online.
I remember Leo’s drive in, In 1959, I hitchhiked from St Paul to Santa Maria with a friend that was born and grew up there. We came out to finish his 48 Mercury and drive it back to St Paul. We were there for most of the summer and hit Leo’s every night since that was the center of the universe for everyone under 30. Pismo Beach was the daytime place to go.