Every chain of restaurants has its roots, and a starting point somewhere in history. For Michigan, pizza was a big deal. Domino's, Little Caesar's, both now Major national chains, were started right here in the Mitten.

As was a smaller, but still important chain of pizza joints, Cottage Inn. And sadly, the building where it all started, in Ann Arbor, is now up for sale.

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"The Original Cottage Inn Pizza" has been at 512 E. William St. in Ann Arbor for 75 years. It first opened its doors in 1948, and was known for its Greek dishes, and of course, its pizza.

Eventually, it grew into the chain that most of us are more familiar with, but the original location never franchised, and stayed independent for its entire existence. Now, though, it's for sale.

However, the owners of the location are doing it right, and holding out for the right person. Jim Michos, told MLive he put the building up for sale months ago as he starts thinking about retirement. However, he wants to make sure it goes to the right person.

"We're holding out for the right person. Talk is talk, so when someone has areal offer, then that's when we will entertain it."

For now, Michos is looking for $3.4 million, or leasing it for $23,000 a month. But he knows it could become a new home for, "an aspiring chef, restauranter, or entertainment investor looking to tape into the thriving Ann Arbor community."

And just to really clarify, he says the restaurant is doing fine. In fact, it's doing really well.

"But at some point, you do want to retire or do different things."

And he's not only sticking by his want to make sure the right people buy it, but that his staff will included with it.

"I want to make sure that they're taken care of. I need to make sure that I do what's right for them as well."

The Original Cottage Inn building is also host to Iorio's Gelateria. But its owner, Nick Lemmer trusts MIchos in how he will proceed if an offer is made.

"Cottage Inn has been around forever, and it is fun to be involved and have a partnership, but at the end of the day everybody has got to do what is best for them. I have no qualms about that."

Cottage Inn's first franchise opened in Ypsilanti in 1986, and still has more than 50 stores in Michigan and Ohio alone.

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