Our grandmother, Eloise Franklin opened La Fonda in 1967 at a shopping center located on Scottsdale Rd. and Curry in Tempe, Arizona. She opened as a small restaurant with only a dozen tables serving Sonoran-style Mexican food, which was inspired by my great-grandmother. As the city of Tempe grew so did La Fonda. It doubled in size in 1985 when a neighboring suite became available.
Working with our grandmother and parents gave us, a sense of pride, appreciation and respect for the family business quickly developed. My grandmother passed away in 1995 leaving the restaurant to my father and mother. In 2011 we received notice informing us of plans to demolish the shopping center where the original La Fonda was located. After 45 years in business, we closed the doors in April of 2012 at the original location. We moved the restaurant to a freestanding building on Baseline and McClintock in Tempe, which we opened in July of 2012.