Cliff House Restaurant To Return, But Probably Won’t Be Called ‘Cliff House’
When the Cliff House announced its permanent closure in mid-December, they blamed their landlord, who happens to be the National Park Service. But now the National Park Service service says they’re determined to see another restaurant there. The Chronicle reports that the site of the Cliff House will probably be a restaurant again, perhaps “as soon as this spring.”
BREAKING: San Francisco's famous Cliff House building is likely returning as a restaurant after all, landlords say.https://t.co/wgz7sLjY2W
— San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) February 3, 2021
But it’s not likely to be called the “Cliff House,” and it will not be owned by the Hountalas family that have operated the place for the last 47 years.
At last night’s SF Board of Supervisors meeting, the supes unanimously passed a resolution “urging the National Park Service to work with the community and stakeholders to establish an immediate interim activation for the Cliff House “ That resolution is symbolic, non-binding, and has no teeth in forcing the National Park Service to do anything.
Hundreds turned out at noon to see the iconic letters come down, booing as workers began. As the E dropped, members of the gathered crowd sang Tony Bennett's 'I left my heart in San Francisco.'
Many wept at the end of an era. pic.twitter.com/C4v6tgAMJr
— Christopher J. Beale (@realchrisjbeale) December 31, 2020
But for the heck of it, the Chronicle reached out to the National Park Service to see if they intended to comply. The NPS made it sound like they were already planning to find a new restaurant tenant for the building.
“We are committed to maintaining the Cliff House building as a restaurant and public space,” NPS spokesperson Julian Espinoza told the Chronicle. “Since the start of this process, we have asserted our belief that the building belongs to the public — and not to any single group or commercial entity.”
With a crowd of several hundred watching, the “C” on the Cliff House’s sign is unbolted and lowered to sidewalk on orange rope at high noon.
— San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) December 31, 2020
And it sounds like they may let a pop-up open there, just to have something in the space.
“We intend to look at short-term, temporary uses for the building so that it can remain occupied in the interim before a long-term lease is secured,” he told the Chron.
But it’s probably not going to be a “Cliff House,” because according to the Chronicle, the Hountalases have trademarked the name. Their relationship with the National Park Service seems to be frayed beyond repair. And just this afternoon, the Cliff House posted a Facebook announcement that said on March 4th and 5th, the Cliff House will be auctioning off all of their historic stuff, including their historic decorative furnishings, paintings and wall hangings, and the framed celebrity photographs of famous Cliff House diners.
After so many inquiries we promised to let everyone know so here is the information about the upcoming auction of the Cliff House memorabilia and restaurant items. Truly the end of an era!