The Historic Grand Pacific Redevelopment Project – Gaslamp, San Diego


The Historic Grand Pacific Redevelopment Project – Gaslamp, San Diego

Walking around San Diego’s Gaslamp District, you might notice an array of historical buildings with golden plaques, engraved with stories of ghosts past and brave new entrepreneurs. This area boasts of roots tied to San Diego’s humble beginnings, honoring its ancestry and protecting its structures. Guests of the city often take tours of these landmarks, learning about the Old City Hall Building, erected in 1874, or gathering around Jessop’s Clock, a Gaslamp icon since the 1900’s, located in Horton Plaza. San Diego has respectfully maintained the history and buildings that helped it gain recognition for being “America’s finest city” (or the “Whale’s Vagina” for pop culture fans).

The Grand Pacific Hotel, built in 1887, was the only Victorian hotel of its era, and is still located at its original site. Its architecture and design elements make it one of the most symbolic buildings in the Gaslamp District. When the RMD Group, a hospitality company in San Diego, had the opportunity to take on a new project and transform this legend into an entertainment venue San Diego could be proud of it, they didn’t hesitate. Though some may say it’s too challenging to honor the restrictions set when owning a historical property, the RMD Group team saw it as an honor, and quickly dove head-first into the Downtown San Diego development project.

So what do you do with a three-level, Victorian-style venue? The first idea was to break the levels up into separate concepts. A restaurant on the first and second floor, event space on the third…but why stop there? RMD Group decided to take the project to new heights by also adding a rooftop restaurant to the venue space, utilizing the gorgeous San Diego landscape and fresh air atmosphere. And that’s how Huntress and Lumi were born.

The team at RMD Group knew Downtown San Diego was in need of something different, a restaurant that was unique in both concept and design. A steakhouse project had always been alluring, and now the perfect venue had presented itself. A modern steakhouse was not a new idea, but a steakhouse with a strong feminine name, and an adventurous menu that brought out guests’ primal instincts was! Huntress began to take on a life of her own. Dark lighting and white table clothes turned into designer light fixtures and marble tabletops. A stuffy environment and predictable menu turned into a social atmosphere and a fearless cuisine line-up, developed by People’s Chef and San Diego native, James Montejano.

With space to spare, Huntress steakhouse grew upward, filling the main floor dining room with artsy accent walls and contemporary design before shining its spotlight on the Mezzanine. An aerial extension of the dining room, the Mezz shows off a different side of Huntress, one that is more intimate, sexy, and a bit more casual. Of course, exquisite ambiance has to be paired with extraordinary food, which is why Huntress prides herself on offering the finest cuts of meat, signature dishes, and exceptional service. Only the best for she who has it all.

The development project’s next task was to create an event space, designed for both form and function. Paying homage to its roots, The Grand Pacific Room, located on the third floor of the venue, needed to be something special. An event space that was sophisticated and imaginative, innovative and edgy, conservative and classic. A space for special occasions, corporate gatherings, and private parties.

Finally, it was time to move skyward, developing a rooftop restaurant unique from any other in the San Diego area. RMD Group partnered with two-time Michelin-star Chef, Akira Back, to create Lumi, an energetic, upscale Japanese cuisine and sushi restaurant. San Diego isn’t lacking sushi restaurants, which is why this particular development project had to be innovative and exciting. With a master chef like Akira Back leading the culinary team, the menu organically presented itself to be a modern take on Japanese fare and sushi using local ingredients and adventurous flavors. Pairing well with the vibrant menu is the look and feel of Lumi: colorful, eclectic, chic, and lively; the perfect setting for DJ beats, socializing, and a side of stars.

Find out more about Huntress, a contemporary steakhouse.

Find out more about Lumi by Akira Back, a rooftop dining and drinking experience.

Find out how you can improve your existing venue, or to turn your bar, restaurant, or nightclub dream into a reality with RMD Consulting.