The diner at the corner of Charles and Lafayette Streets in Station North stood vacant and papered-over for so long that its long-promised opening started to seem like an impossible dream. Which was heartbreaking, since it’s the perfect spot for a diner — and, in a city that sorely lacks late-night greasy spoon-type spots, a boon for anyone craving fries and a milkshake after midnight. “The Lost City Diner is lost,” moaned Baltimore Magazine a year and a half ago.

But despair no longer, residents of Station North — or patrons of the Charles & Everyman Theatres (right across the street), or the Club Charles (practically next door), or fans of the once-great Zodiac Restaurant. The Lost City Diner is actually for-real-this-time open for business, and it looks great. The walls are lined with blown-up versions of pulp novel covers, the counter is fully of shiny milkshake-making implements, and the whole place has a rosy glow that makes you want to hunker down with a cup of coffee.

From what I hear, the long-delayed opening had something to do with a liquor license, and (for now at least), Lost City is BYOB. Price-wise, with  $10 burgers and $15 entrees it’s not really serving up cheap eats. But with a long list of special milkshakes/ice cream sundaes and the powerhouse force of Joy Martin (owner of the Club Charles) behind it, we’re not complaining.

Photo by Flickr user Charlemagne OP