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Wednesday, December 19, 2018


Horton Plaza mall, San Diego

--"...You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away..."
                                               --Lyrics by Simon & Garfunkel, 1977.

Thirty-three year old Horton Plaza shopping mall is being converted into a business campus after failing as a downtown retail center in the heart of downtown.   Why?  The modern mall designed by Jon Jerde is remarkable, a masterpiece actually, but it never kept its stunning alure in later years because of parking and traffic woes coming in and out of San Diego’s central core.  Turning it into a business campus works.  It will now be a mix of retail supporting smaller office sites.

Ninety-year-old Pekin Café, the venerable Asian cuisine restaurant in the historic North Park neighborhood in San Diego is closing its doors.  Why?   Owners say its time.  What will become of it?  Owners probably own the land now in 3rd generation hands.  It’s prime real estate and at the top of its market value.  Good move.  Historic sign will probably find its way into a local museum (just sayin’).

The Red Fox Room Restaurant has been part of the Lafayette Hotel complex in North Park.  It was saved from becoming a social service center by the late, beloved Bud Fischer, the same savvy developer of the North Park theatre redux and the Gaslamp Quarter.   The Red Fox is a dark, red upholstered steakhouse that is old school.   Hotel owners, who hold the lease, are gently prodding the Red Fox management to move the eatery across the street.  Hotel owners would like to replace the space with something that’s a bit more in tune with its hipster clientele. 

Analysis by Tom Shess, Editor, daily online magazine

Current vibe (above) of the craft beer, fun and sun, hipster crowd at the Lafayette Hotel vs. old school, piano bar crowd, which patronizes the Red Fox Room (below).
Red Fox Room, Lafayette Hotel, San Diego

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