I don't have vivid memories of the lavish antique collection or the 82 Tiffany-style lamps. Still, I do remember a slew of special occasions or Sunday mornings at Jackson, Michigan's Gilbert's Steakhouse. I know I'm not alone. Celebrations abound at this former restaurant that served as a gathering place for generations, legendary for its piles of shrimp on ice, rich chocolate cake, and, of course, steak. Declining sales ultimately led to its permanent closure in 2006, and today, it sits empty, waiting for the right buyer to 'reboot' Gilbert's.


Driving by this former icon for the last several years, I've watched time slowly take its toll on the exterior. Still, I've always wondered how the interior has faired after nearly two decades without a diner. While the internet often satisfies our itch for information and images, my searches went sadly unfulfilled. That's when I reached out to Detroit-based Griffin Properties, the properties broker, throwing a Hail Mary into their voicemail and asking if they had any current pictures of Gilberts Steakhouse I could share. My phone rang the next day.

Nearly Two Decades Later: A Look Inside Jackson, Michigan's Gilbert Steakhouse

A look inside Jackson, Michigan's long vacant Gilbert's Steakhouse.
Photo by Scott Clow

Griffin Properties cofounder Scott Griffin returned my call and shared my enthusiasm for the building. I was elated when he offered to take me through the structure that holds so many of my memories and those of countless others who ate under the warm glow of a Tiffany lamp while enjoying a basket of garlic bread.

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Come along with me as we walk through images that are sure to evoke fond recollections and imagine the possibilities if this property were to be scooped up (for a song, by the way) by the right person with the right vision and 'rebooted' an iconic Michigan restaurant.

Inside Jackson, Michigan's Long Vacant Gilbert's Steakhouse

Listed by Griffin Properties of Detroit, Jackson, Michigan's former Gilbert's Steakhouse has sat empty since 2006, waiting for someone to reboot this iconic restaurant. Let's look at what it looks like today, nearly two decades since the last plate of garlic bread was placed on a table.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

Gilbert's Steak House, Jackson

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Jacobson's Department Stores were a part of Michigan retail history. Founded in 1838 by Abram Jacobson in Reed City, Michigan, the single department store evolved into a symbol of upscale shopping, fashion, and exquisite gifts. Let's take a close look at some renderings and photos of former Jacobson's locations in Michigan and Florida, thanks to TheDepartmentStoreMuseum.org.

Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

Jackson's Toy House: Michigan's Destination For Kids of All Ages

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Gallery Credit: Scott Clow

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