An LA hospitality group known for its clubby restaurants and bars is bringing its particular brand of party to San Francisco. The H.wood group, whose establishments like Blind Dragon, the Nice Guy, and Delilah are known for bacchanalian atmospheres and celebrity sightings, will open a new restaurant (name TBD) and a new bar called Lower Mason Bar inside a forthcoming hotel in the Tenderloin, part of a growing chain called Found Hotels.
Found, representatives write, is actually a “co-living lifestyle brand,” which is 2019 marketing speak for part hotel and part hostel. The space at 140 Mason Street was previously the SF International Hostel, and Found will keep that model in part, with 75 rooms, some of them private, but with a total of 226 beds, many of them bunks.
According to a release, this model “blends [an] affinity for travel with rising generations who live life with a free-spirited attitude in a shared economy,” which is a very euphemistic way of saying that young people in cities like SF are forced to live in hostel-like arrangements all the time and can deal with it. Found Hotels are already located in Chicago, Boston, and San Diego, with more outposts coming to LA and NYC, too.
Found has apparently struck a deal with the H.wood group, a company Eater LA calls a “celebrity-friendly” hospitality chain. At the Found Hotel in Chicago, H.wood opened another restaurant called Mason in 2018: It’s filled with leather booths, mirrors, and big ticket items like shareable steaks. Found Chicago also features a clone of H.wood’s LA karaoke bar and lounge, Blind Dragon.
Back in 2014, leading clubstaurant company the Hakkasan Group bought up a majority stake in the H.wood Group, but last year, founders Terzian and Toll bought back 100 percent of their H.wood equity from Hakkasan and vowed to expand. That’s definitely happening: At Found Hotel SF, the group’s Lower Mason Bar will open first. It’s “a fully immersive speakeasy bar and lounge” with dark plush leather booths and wood paneled walls with beveled mirror accents to create “a dark and edgy feel.”
Lower Mason Bar hopes to greet customers as early as this October, with the upstairs restaurant to follow later. The concept there hasn’t been fleshed out yet, but it will “echo the Found Hotel experience.” Does that mean communal tables and shared plates? Stay tuned to find out.