Hilltop Steakhouse

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Hilltop Steakhouse Sign
The iconic Hilltop Steakhouse Sign still stands today where the original restaurant was once located on Route 1 in Saugus, Massachusetts - courtesy Aerial Attitude

The Hilltop Steakhouse, founded in 1961 by Frank Giuffrida,[1] was a chain of restaurants in Eastern Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire that existed from 1961 to 2013. The original location opened in Saugus, Massachusetts in 1961, and operated until 2013. In a hilltop location with a giant saguaro cactus sign, the restaurant was a landmark on Route 1 north of Boston. The last restaurant existed only as a butcher shop in Weymouth. The other locations with Hilltop restaurants were Hartford, Nashua, Braintree, and Springfield.

The Saugus property has been sold and the items auctioned off.[2] A restaurant and shopping plaza have been proposed for the site, opening as early as October 2015.[3]


The Hilltop was known, in part for their decorations outside including a 68-foot-high neon cactus and cows. At least at one time, they were "America's largest restaurant, both in number of customers served and sales volume. On a typical Saturday, the Hilltop, a sprawling Ponderosa that accommodated 1,300 carnivores, rustled up about 7,800 meals. It served nearly 2.4 million customers annually, three times the volume of the nation's second-largest restaurant, Tavern on the Green in Manhattan." In 1987, they exceeded $27 million gross.[1]


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