Foreclosure threatens Plaza Mariachi entertainment, retail center

Owner Mark Janbakhsh says he is working to restructure loan terms

Mark Janbakhsh with Plaza Mariachi in South Nashville (Getty, markjanbakhsh, TripAdvisor)
Mark Janbakhsh with Plaza Mariachi in South Nashville (Getty, markjanbakhsh, TripAdvisor)

Plaza Mariachi, a popular entertainment and retail center in South Nashville, is facing foreclosure, but its owner isn’t waving the white flag yet.

Lender First Financial Bank moved to foreclose on the property, at 3941 and 3955 Nolensville Road, last week, triggering a trustee sale scheduled for next month, the Nashville Business Journal reported

Mark Janbakhsh, the embattled former owner and CEO of Auto Masters, bought the 70,000-square-foot property for $2.74 million in 2014. That’s $39 per square foot. Janbakhsh invested about $18 million ($257 per square foot) to transform the former Kroger into Plaza Mariachi Music City, which opened in 2017. It offers events, shopping and dining, with tenants including Tres Gauchos Grill, Mazfresco Market, Panca Peruvian and Las Adelitas dress shop. 

The foreclosure is complicated by multiple federal and state tax liens against the property from 2018 to 2021, along with a federal indictment against Janbakhsh in 2022 for alleged bank fraud involving a multi-million dollar scheme. Capital One Bank, which has an interest in the property, is also involved in the foreclosure proceedings.

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Despite the foreclosure, Plaza Mariachi remains fully operational and Janbakhsh contends that it will stay that way. Janbakhsh is actively working to restructure financial terms with lenders and real estate brokers, the outlet reported. He aims to sell the exterior properties surrounding the plaza and secure a new mortgage under more favorable terms.

In response to the property’s perceived struggles, Janbakhsh noted that the plaza’s appraised value is “far greater than the debt that is owed.”

Local attorney David Anthony has been appointed as the substitute trustee, responsible for overseeing the sale and conveyance of the property. The foreclosure sale is scheduled for July 2. 

—Quinn Donoghue

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