JESSE LUNSFORD, TRANSFORMATIVE DEVELOPMENTS. THRIVING INVESTMENTS.
In 2006, I purchased the dilapidated 1889 house located at 97 Rainey Street. The folk Victorian's front yard faced the Austin Skyline. Something could be done here. But what?
After considering many alternatives, I decided to repurpose: Old building, new use. Advertising on Craigslist, I found the perfect operator and soon work began on the original Lustre Pearl.
Lustre Pearl became the Queen of the Street. After she opened just before SXSW 2009, all eyes were on Rainey Street. In 2011, we even got press in the New York Times.
From that point, the street developed quickly. At first, small redevelopment occurred in the hospitality space. Rainey became a unique and vibrant entertainment district, tree lined and human scale.
Nowadays, major, large-scale developers have taken to Rainey Street. We have many towers on the street, with more to come. In fact, the Queen of Rainey Street was forced out, a victim of her own success.
Large scale developers purchased all the land around Lustre Pearl in 2012, leaving us few options. So I purchased land in deep east Austin and moved the original Lustre Pearl building to a new site. A site that is now Lustre Pearl East.