West Tampa's famed clock tower cigar factory may have found a new owner

One of West Tampa’s most iconic cigar factories, the Y. Pendas y Alvarez Cigar Factory, may soon be operated by new owners. Currently under contract, the property went up for sale this fall with an asking price of $3.6 million.

Located at 2301 N. Albany Ave, the century-old red brick cigar factory is famous for its tall clock tower, which provided West Tampa residents with a clear view of the time when it was first built in 1909.

The main factory building features 40,000 square feet, with an additional 17,000 square feet of warehouse space in the back. The building’s current owner is Jeff Freeman, whose company, Tampa Tarp, occupies part of the factory and is looking to downsize, according to Michael Braccia, a real estate agent representing Freeman at Baystreet Commercial.

Braccia declined to reveal who the building is under contract with and for what price, though he said the prospective buyer is local and has initial mixed-use plans for the building.

Just a couple dozen of the couple hundred cigar factories built during Tampa’s busy Cigar City days still survive, and they’ve been hot commodities in West Tampa over the past year. In January, Bustillo & Brothers & Diaz was purchased for $1.95 million, according to the Tampa Bay Times. And another famed factory, the Santaella Cigar Factory Building, was purchased in March for $3.2 million.

“West Tampa has all the geographic markers of being the next great thing,” Braccia says. "It has a lot of beautiful history, buildings, and cultural significance."

Read more about Braccia and opportunities in West Tampa.
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Read more articles by Dyllan Furness.

Dyllan Furness is a freelance writer and born-again Floridian based in Tampa. He covers the Tampa Bay Area’s development boom for 83 Degrees, with an eye out for sustainable and community-driven initiatives.