One of Santa Monica’s more popular Italian restaurants, i. Cugini, plans to close its doors in June.

Sam King, CEO of King’s Seafood Co., which owns i. Cugini, Ocean Avenue Seafood and the Water Grill in Downtown L.A., announced the planned closure Monday in a statement to the press.

“It was a very difficult decision for us to make,” King said. “We truly enjoyed operating i.Cugini over the past 21 years and after very careful consideration decided that the restaurant did not fit into future plans for the company.”

A spokesman for the company said King’s decided not to renew i. Cugini’s lease but would not elaborate. They said the closure was not caused by the sluggish economy.

King’s Seafood Co. operates 17 restaurants in Southern California, Nevada and Arizona and operate their own seafood distribution company in Orange County. King’s Seafood has begun planning for relocating crew from i.Cugini to other restaurants in the area.

i.Cugini is scheduled to close after Father’s Day brunch is served on June 19.

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