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China Live’s Owner Is Planning a New Restaurant Despite Ongoing Landlord Issues

Plus, the upcoming bar at the One Sansome conservatory space just got its liquor license, and more Bay Area food intel

Patricia Chang
Dianne de Guzman is a deputy editor at Eater SF writing about Bay Area restaurant and bar trends, upcoming openings, and pop-ups.

In the midst of a number of lawsuits between China Live and its landlord at 644 Broadway, chef and owner George Chen has announced plans to open a new restaurant in San Francisco in the next 18 to 24 months, SFGATE reports. Chen wouldn’t disclose the new restaurant’s address, but told the news site it’s in “a great location.” “I think we’ll pay substantially less rent and have better sales,” Chen says. “We’ll be able to do business on a more geographically well-located location and have lunch business.”

There’s been a flurry of lawsuits between China Live and its landlord Cypress Properties in the past year. In May, China Live was hit with the latest suit, the third time since 2022 Cypress Properties has filed to evict the restaurant, San Francisco Business Times reports. In addition, China Live is also suing Cypress Properties for $25 million over breach of contract — with Cypress countersuing. Still, Chen told SFGATE he’d like to remain in China Live’s current space if a deal “that makes sense for both parties” can be worked out.

One Sansome is close to reopening with a new bar and event venue

Most downtown workers know the light-filled conservatory situated at One Sansome, and a $28 million makeover promises to revitalize the space with a new bar and restaurant called Holbrook House and an event space dubbed the Conservatory at One Sansome. It seems the project is getting closer to its opening goal: The San Francisco Standard reports a liquor license and catering permits were issued last week and the space is set to open on September 6.

A new fine-dining restaurant from embattled Hi Felicia owner

A lot has been said about the working environment at Hi Felicia since its sudden closure in May 2023, including accusations of alleged sexual harassment, inappropriate comments, and bounced paychecks. Yet in the wake of Hi Felicia’s closure, owner Imana has since flipped the Oakland space into a wine bar called Jellybean and now promises to open another fine-dining restaurant in San Francisco next year called Apples and Oranges. A post on Jellybean’s Instagram account shares the news. “I can’t share details,” it reads in part, “but it’s coming. I will never ever give up until I achieve my goals.”

Happy summer produce to all who celebrate

It’s peak summer produce season and that means the annual Agricultural Institute of Marin’s Dine Out Farmers Market Week, running from August 6 through 12, as the Marin Independent Journal so kindly reminds us. A number of high-profile restaurants in San Francisco and Marin are working on special, produce-driven dishes or menus, including Angler, Lazy Bear, Saison, and more. A portion of the proceeds will go toward the Agricultural Institute of Marin’s Racial Equity Fund.