Monday, July 16, 2018

New two-story office and restaurant project Downtown

If you are an urbanist, you are probably already freaking out with the headline of a new two-story building in the most dense part of San Jose. However, it will make more sense when you look at the photo down below and see where it is being built.

Storm Land Company is planning to build a 34.5 foot-tall building at the corner of Santa Clara Street and North Almaden Avenue. You might remember this as the patio for the Mmoon or the exterior staircase for the SVG Innovation Center. It is a small sliver of land connected to a historic building, so there are severe limitation on what can be developed here.

The plan is to have a new full-service restaurant on the ground floor that would potentially sell alcohol and stay open until 2am. The second floor would be used for corporate offices. It could actually a pretty neat infill project that would better utilize the space. I love the outdoor seating, but perhaps they could use accordion or roll-up doors to open up the restaurant to the street (similar to Olla Cocina).

Source: SVBJ

Thursday, July 12, 2018

More millennials are moving to San Jose than SF

Based on 2016 immigration and emigration data, it looks like more San Jose is getting more traction among millennials. This generation is currently defined as those aged 22 to 37. In 2016, San Jose gained 5,496 millennials (this is net, immigration - emigration). On top of the list for net migration was Seattle, followed by Columbia and the only other Northern California city in the top ten, Sacramento.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Terminator Virtual Reality attraction coming to San Jose

An LA entertainment startup called Spaces is launching their first US-based attraction and we are one of two planned stateside locations. The 30-minute experience sets up teams of guests to take on Skynet, so the location couldn't be more appropriate. In addition to VR headsets, there will be physical effects like wind and explosions.

Even though you probably have never heard of Spaces, they were spun out of DreamWorks Animation and have an impressive list of executives and investors. This will likely be a big-budget experience. The company also has a $30 million contract to bring VR and mixed-reality to a Chinese theme park and are working on other VR experiences using their own intellectual property.

There will be an exclusive sneak peak at a secret location sometime soon. You can register for a chance to be one of the first to try out the experience over here.

It will be interesting to see how these next-generation entertainment experiences pan out. Hopefully we are not taking too many steps towards becoming a Black Mirror episode.

Source: SVBJ

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Dine Downtown San Jose Restaurant Week is July 13-22, 2018

Downtown's best restaurants offer prix fixe menus or chef's specials
SAN JOSE - Some of downtown San Jose's best restaurants will celebrate Dine Downtown Restaurant Week with prix fixe meals, chefs’ specials and food-and-drink pairings from July 13-22.
Participating restaurants include:
71 Saint Peter
Cafe Stritch
Élyse Restaurant
Enoteca La Storia San Jose
The Farmers Union
Forager Tasting Room & Eatery
The Grill on the Alley
Hawaiian Poke Bowl
Lobby Lounge at Fairmont San Jose
Loft Bar & Bistro  
McCormick & Schmick’s
Mezcal Restaurant
Mosaic Restaurant & Lounge
Nemea Greek Taverna
Nomikai Social Food + Drinkery
Olla Cocina
Poor House Bistro
Uproar Brewing Company

Foodies need only show up at the restaurant of their choice and ask for the Dine Downtown option.
By expanding from prix fixe menus, newcomer eateries can join Dine Downtown this year.  For example:
  • District’s sampler plates featuring cheeses, charcuterie, yellowfin tuna poke and lamb meatballs are paired with sparkling, red and white wines and whiskey flights.
  • Fairmont Lobby Lounge chef James Hoang offers three courses including Wakame seaweed salad or summer rolls, fusion tacos or Fairmont Sushi Roll, and Moet Imperial champagne sorbet.
  • Olla Cocina Chef Alex Jimenez has put together a Mexican meal including marinated and grilled half chicken, frijoles and rice, all paired with the restaurant's featured craft cocktail, the Latin Lover Margarita.
  • Nomikai’s chef special by Emil Marquez is a summer pizza loaded with freshness:  salmon sashimi, avocado, microgreens, pickled red onions and aioli.
  • And Elyse restaurant goes all out with prix fixe menus at two price points, including mushroom tarts and grilled oysters as appetizers, seafood trio and short ribs bourguignon as main course choices, plus dessert and optional wine pairings.

Longtime supporters of Dine Downtown just seem to get better, creating new and inventive dishes for their patrons:
  • 71 Saint Peter’s Dine Downtown menu by head chef Cordial Pajor offers summer melon gazpacho, followed by charred ceviche and entrée of duck confit risotto or marinated bavette steak, plus passion fruit crème brulee for dessert.
  • Nemea Greek Taverna executive chef Sandra Martinez has put together classic Greek choices for a four-course meal.
  • Poor House Bistro has a price-fixed offering of classic Cajun fare.

“The chef’s specials and pairings opens the possibilities for more restaurants to get involved and gives customers more choices to explore,” said Julie Carlson, SJDA marketing director.

Check for offer specifics.  Dinner begins at 5:30 p.m. nightly.

Check for offer specifics. Dinner begins at 5:30 p.m. nightly. Reservations made through OpenTable.

Dine Downtown is produced by the non-profit San Jose Downtown Association.

Many of the participating restaurants have validation programs. Parking information is available on

Monday, July 9, 2018

Hank Coca's Downtown Furniture will become a boutique gym

A 61-year old furniture store at 82 E. Santa Clara was recently purchased by KSP Holdings with plans to transform it into a fitness club. Hank Coca's Downtown Furniture has been a Downtown staple for as long as I can remember. However, the writing has been on the wall that its days are numbered--literally, it has been having a "liquidation sale" for countless years.

KSP Holdings owns ClubSport fitness clubs, The Studio workout clubs, and Renaissance ClubSport hotels. It is not clear exactly which of those brands will hang on this 120 year old, 43,210 SQFT building. The only thing know for certain is that change is coming and this key Downtown corner is going to get a significant makeover.

Source: SVBJ

Thursday, July 5, 2018

3Below Theaters & Lounge is hosting Slapstick Sundays

Who: 3Below Theaters & Lounge presents
What: Slapstick Sundays
When: July 1st through September 16th 
Where: 3Below Theaters & Lounge, 288 So. Second Street, San Jose, CA 95113
Why: Every Sunday young and old alike can enjoy the company of others who appreciate this high art…the art of slapstick comedy. With origins dating all the way back to Ancient Greece and Rome, the slapstick genre has charmed audiences throughout time: commedia dell’arte, Punch and Judy, Amercian and English vaudeville. Across time and geography, audiences have been treated to these hilarious actors performing acrobatics and intentionally harming themselves, all in the name of laughs. Thankfully, the physical blows were not damaging; the comedians you’ll see in our Slapstick Sunday celebrations are most definitely masters of timing and comedic illusion.

Tickets: $10.00  (Discounts available for Students, Seniors, Military and Educators)   Online at or 408.404.7711
Double Feature: See two movies on one day and take 25% off ($12 to $15)

Schedule: The same film(s) will be shown on the 1st and 3rd Sundays with another pair on the 2nd and 4th Sundays. Showing times are 11:00am and 12:45pm.
Sunday, July 1 & 14 at 11am: City Lights with Charlie Chaplin
Sunday, July 1 & 14 at 12:45pm: Modern Times with Charlie Chaplin
Sunday, July 8 & 22 at 11:00am: The Nutty Professor with Jerry Lewis
Sunday, July 8 & 22 at 12:45pm: The Caddy with Jerry Lewis & Dean Martin
Sunday, July 29 & August 12 at 11:00am: Buster Keaton in The General (+ a series of Keaton shorts)
Sunday, August 5 & 19 at 10:30am: The Cocoanuts with The Marx Brothers
Sunday, August 5 & 19 at 12:15pm: Animal Crackers with The Marx Brothers
Sunday, August 26 & Sept 9 at 11:00am: Laughing 20’s with Laurel & Hardy
Sunday, September 2 & 16 at 11:00am: Horse Feathers with The Marx Brothers
Sunday, September 2 & 16 at 12:30pm: Duck Soup with The Marx Brothers

Photos courtesy of 3Below: Charlie Chaplin in City Lights and The Marx Brothers in The Cocoanuts

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

San Jose Rotary Fireworks 2018

Tonight, join the Rotary Club of San Jose at Discovery Meadow for a free fireworks show. While it can be seen from most of Downtown San Jose, the best viewing spots will be close to the Children's Discovery Museum. The family-friendly event kicks off around 9:30pm. For more info and a list of sponsors head over here.

Have a happy and safe Independence Day everyone!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

San Jose adding 4,000 cell stations for 5G wireless

San Jose has been planning to utilize street lights for a next generation wireless grid for quite some time. Now, those plans are taking some concrete steps towards action.

Verizon, AT&T, and Mobilitie are laying out the groundwork for improved 4G LTE and new 5G internet infrastructure with the largest small cell deployment of any city in the United States. About 4,000 new cell stations will be added to light poles throughout San Jose.

Collectively the three companies will also contribute $24 million to San Jose's Digital Inclusion fund, which was designed to close the digital divide and help low income families acquire fast and reliable internet access.

The initiative is great news. If we are going to maintain our lead as the innovation capital of the world, our infrastructure has to keep up.

Source: SVBJ