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Buy A Piece of West Loop History At La Lucé Auction Next Month

By Stephanie Lulay | March 28, 2017 11:22am | Updated on March 29, 2017 8:53am

WEST LOOP — Historic treasures from the Victorian-aged La Lucé building will be sold at auction in early April, a sign that the building could be torn down soon. 

Billed as a "pre-demolition sale," U Demo and Cronin Auction Services, Inc. will auction off antiques, building relics and even La Lucé's sign — all part of the Italian restaurant's legacy on Lake. A sale is slated for 9 a.m. Saturday, April 8, with an auction starting at 10 a.m. 

The brick structure dating back to 1891, looming over the pie-slice intersection of Lake Street and Ogden Avenue, was home to La Lucé Italian restaurant until it closed in summer 2016 after 27 years there.

In its prime, the restaurant was known for its amazing red sauce and great collection of antiques, according to the auction's description posted online. 

Items slated for auction include: 

• La Lucé's neon sign, starting bid $250

[Before U Demo]

[DNAinfo/Alex Nitkin]

The building's beautiful front door, starting bid $1,500

[Before U Demo; DNAinfo/Alex Nitkin]

A brass gothic-style coach light fixture from the building's entrance, starting bid $100

[Before U Demo]

A 4-foot by 8-foot La Lucé Italian restaurant sign, starting bid $50 

[Before U Demo]

A Lovell clothing wringer No. 32, starting bid $35 

[Before U Demo]

Check out all of the goods being sold online. 

As the booming neighborhood changes, the La Lucé auction follows the closing auctions of two other beloved West Loop restaurants: The Parthenon, in business for 48 years at 314 S. Halsted St., in 2016, and Carmichael's Steakhouse, in business for 18 years at 1052 W. Monroe St., in 2015. 

It is unclear if, or when, the building may be torn down.

The four-story brick building, a relic of the Queen Anne architectural style that was popular at the time, was cleared for demolition in July 2016. 

That same month, La Lucé owner Michael Moretti told Eater that the building was in in the process of being sold, and that he wasn't sure if the new owners would tear down the 19th Century building. 

In December, two inspection violations were levied against the building for failure to post the owners and manager's name and failure to make the building accessible to inspectors. 

The property at 1393-1401 W. Lake St. was listed for sale in 2013, but is now off the market. 

The building was saved from the brink of demolition twice in its 125-year history, including once in 1989, when it was "dilapidated" and "seemed beyond repair" before the owners of La Lucé moved in and restored it, said Eric Nordstrom, whose business Urban Remains salvages artifacts from buildings on the demolition list. 

Bad Axe Throwing, an indoor axe-throwing facility, opened in the former La Lucé banquet hall at 165 N. Loomis St. in September 2016. 

The building at 1399 W. Lake St., formerly home to La Luce Restaurant, is slated for demolition this summer. [DNAinfo/Alex Nitkin]