Charro Mexican Restaurant opened May 20

Charro Mexican Restaurant opened May 20 at 2500 Sunrise Dr., just off South Dirksen Parkway.

The family-owned business started in the St. Louis area and also has locations in Taylorville and Decatur. Earlier this year, owner Ezequiel Camacho purchased the building that formerly operated as Springfield Char House and remodeled it for a fourth Charro's location.

Springfield Char House closed in 2020 after just under five years in business, citing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The property in Whitney Business Park has been vacant ever since.

click to enlarge Charro Mexican Restaurant opened May 20
Charro Mexican Restaurant has opened at 2500 Sunrise Dr., just off South Dirksen Parkway.

"Back in 2011, I was planning to open a second location in St. Louis,” Camacho said. The original Charro’s is in Chesterfield, Missouri. “But one of my workers told me about a place in Taylorville that was closed and for sale.”

Camacho decided to open his second restaurant in Taylorville instead, and it now occupies 10,000 square feet in a shopping center he has named Charro Plaza. He also opened a home goods store, Camacho’s Home Center, in the space next to his restaurant.

Camacho then continued his expansion into central Illinois. “Three years ago, there was a location in Decatur that used to be a Bennigan’s. I bought that building and made it into a Charro’s,” Camacho said. “Now I've bought the old Char House property in Springfield.”

Camacho said the proximity to other Mexican restaurants doesn't concern him. Rancho Chico held a grand opening in March in the former Cancun building across the street, and Blue Margarita is just down the road.

“It doesn’t bother me; your success all depends on how you take care of your customers and the presentation for your product,” he said. “We’re unique, and I do things a little bit differently than my competitors. I’ve had good success with my other restaurants.”

Charro will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

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