Monday, April 6, 2020

BART Phase 2 Updates

A video was released a few weeks ago that provides an excellent visualization of how BART Phase 2 will extend from San Jose's Berryessa Station to Little Portugal, Downtown San Jose, Diridon, and finally Santa Clara. I was surprised at how detailed the 3D renders were throughout the entire video.

I was also shocked to see how deep the stations actually were in San Jose. The Downtown and Diridon stations will both have high speed elevators to help get passengers in and out of the stations as quickly as possible.

Source: aphelion2100 from the San Jose Development Forum

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

New Mural in San Pedro Square

It has been a rough month and we could all probably use something colorful to brighten our day. The San Pedro Square Paseo next to the Modera apartment project has a beautiful new mural highlighting the buildings that make up San Pedro Square. Even the Old Spaghetti Factory has a spot.

Lila Gemellos is the muralist and it's worth checking out next time you are in the area.

Source: SJNewKid from the San Jose Development Forum

Monday, March 30, 2020

New Hotel proposed in Little Italy San Jose

Little Italy could get a significant addition in the near future. Developer BPR wants to replace a trio of single-family homes on West St. John Street with a six-story hotel (the homes would likely be relocated). The hotel would have 105 guest rooms and parking for up to 41 vehicles. I'm saying it that way because most of the parking spaces will have mechanical lifts to hold two cars each.

The exact location is across the street from Henry's Hi-life and next to Enoteca La Storia, two excellent restaurants. Bel Bacio Coffee and Paesano Ristorante Italiano are within a block. It would also be next to Guadalupe River Park with easy walking access to the SAP Center and San Pedro Square. This is a great opportunity to create a boutique hotel in an up-and-coming neighborhood that might be little but is big on character.

Source: SVBJ

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Garden Gate Tower plans purchased by British developer

Scape, a London-based developer specializing in student housing, has purchased the plans for Garden Gate Tower at the tail end of the SoFA District in Downtown San Jose. The current design calls for a shiny 27-story tower with an impressive penthouse amenity floor as you can see below.

Gardent Gate Tower was slated to have 290 condos and 4,840 SQFT of retail space. However, it is possible that Scape will try to convert this into a co-living or student housing building given that is their expertise. If they make the change, they would be in good company. The Graduate already starting taking tenants and KT Urban is planning an 850-bedroom co-living tower nearby.

Source: SVBJ

Monday, March 23, 2020

Silicon Valley Strong

The city of San Jose has put together a website to consolidate COVID-19 related news and resources. Silicon Valley Strong also features volunteering opportunities, starting with helping distribute food to the most vulnerable residents in San Jose and Silicon Valley. The site is your one-stop-shop for the latest emergency notifications, protocols, and city service updates.

Bookmark the Silicon Valley Strong website over here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Platform 16 breaks ground

The next office megaproject in San Jose in now underway. Platform 16 is a 1.1 million SQFT campus within a 10 minute walk of Diridon, the SAP Center, Whole Foods, the San Jose Market Center, and the San Pedro Square Market. It's located off of Julian and Autumn Parkway.

The total build out will cost over $1 billion. Boston Properties made sure this would be attractive to our largest tech companies with large floor plates, 15-foot ceilings, and 16 outdoor terraces. There is a good chance a flagship tenant like Google will take the whole space.

The first phase will be ready in early 2023. For more information, you can find the official brochure here and a promotional video below.

Source: SVBJ

Now Arriving at Platform 16 from BXP SF Region on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

San Jose Development Map

The San Jose Economy blog has updated the map of new development projects in San Jose. The Sharks Ice expansion, Tribute Hotel, Garden Gate, 200 Park, Platform 16, Building 7 at Coleman Highline, and Danco Housing @ West San Carlos have been added. The planning team is reviewing development permits for more than 9,000 residential units and a staggering 15 million SQFT of office space citywide. Hopefully this will still come to fruition after the pandemic boils over.u

Most of the new project are centered around Downtown San Jose. Half of the proposed office space and 40% of the residential units are in the Downtown core. 551 hotel rooms and 86,000 SQFT of new retail are in the mix as well.

As for the projects currently under construction, you're looking at 8.7 million SQFT of office space, 1.3 million SQFT of retail, 470 hotel rooms, and 4,131 new residential units.

Check out the interactive map over here!

Monday, March 16, 2020

Valley Fair's $1.1B expansion is now partially open

I swung by Valley Fair this weekend to check out the new 500,000 SQFT expansion. Thanks to the Coronavirus, it was almost completely empty but just about every new store was still open.

Parking is now a lot easier with a new six-story garage right off of Steven's Creek that goes underneath the expansion and has direct connections to the new Bloomingdales. Speaking of which, it's a true flagship department store with San Jose branding everywhere. Unfortunately I couldn't afford most of the cool things in there, it's more expensive than Nordstrom yet not quite as insane as Neiman Marcus. I did find my favorite clothing store near one of the two entrances of the expansion--Untuckit. This is the first one in San Jose. The expansion also includes Forward (premium doctor's office), Orangetheory Fitness, Bulgari, Cole Haan Grandshop, and a few ex-Santana Row brands such as Anthropologie, Pinkberry, and Urban Outfitters.

The new Santana Row-style outdoor concourse will feature a bunch of high-end restaurants including Maestro's. I have a feeling that they will get another Michelin-recommended restaurant or two this year. Din Thai Fung already has that rating. Salt & Straw is the only place open so far, but the ice cream was exceptional (Bone Marrow and Smoked Cherries... wow). I loved the interactive art on the walls near the entrances too.

They have five new stores focused on retail concepts. One had a bunch of cool Kickstarter projects in it and is similar to B8ta at Santana Row. Definitely worth checking out.

While not part of the expansion, I also finally got to try Ramen Nagi. Even with the Coronavirus, it still took an hour and 15min in line. Totally worth it, it was some of the best ramen I have ever had. It goes by faster than you think since you customize your food while waiting in the line and the food comes quickly once you get inside.

Once the virus boils over, this is hopefully going to drive a lot of extra tax revenue to San Jose. It's hands down the nicest mall in the Bay Area and they are making an effort to be more Santana Rowish with the outdoor space. I truly hate going to traditional malls, but this experience was way better than what I expected. I'll definitely be back to check out the new restaurants as they open.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

March 2020 Downtown Dimension Highlights

The latest addition of Downtown Dimension is now live. Below is a summary of the content this month.

The MARCH 2020 Downtown Dimension is now available.

In this edition:
  • SJDA has released a policy document outlining its vision of downtown and how it can be achieved.  Click here to see the document.  The March Dimension summarizes the vision and some of the thinking behind it.
  • San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art will have a 40th Anniversary party in June.  Dimension takes a look at what it takes for arts groups to survive in San Jose.  It starts with a strong Executive Director, which ICA has.  But not for long -- Cathy Kimball will retire after the June bash.
  • Several briefs about investments and plans sure to have an effect on downtown's future.
  • CINEQUEST begins Tuesday, March 3, and continues through March 15.
SJDA in the News:

Response to Platform 16's plans for March groundbreaking. (Mercury News)

Riverpark Towers fills to the brim. (Mercury News)


Downtown Dimension is a leading source for information about downtown San Jose news, events and businesses. Subscribe with a simple email to, subject line:  Subscribe

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Santana Row Springs Forward with Party-Packed Events and Zesty Restaurant Openings

Santana Row has two brand new restaurants Zazil and Sauced BBQ & Spirits. Zazil is a re-imagining of Consuelo. They did an amazing job of blending indoor and outdoor areas and I really enjoyed the food and drinks there. Sauced is Santana Row's first real BBQ restaurant. You can learn about both restaurants and upcoming events below.

San Jose destination unveils brand-new eateries, community events for Spring

Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!” and that’s precisely what Santana Row is rolling out for visitors this season! A carpe diem approach to dining, playing and all the little moments in-between because life deserves to be celebrated.

Recent dining additions are offering a zesty range of flavors and palettes for foodies to experience on The Row. Sauced BBQ & Spirits kicked off the party recently with a mid-February opening, and its authentic, smoked meats and ‘southern charm’ style are already capturing hearts. Carnivorous guests can expect to come hungry, and leave happy after one of these meaty meals!

The fun continues with the recent debut of Zazil, a traditional Mexican dining concept curated by the respected Chef Yerika Muñoz Rodríguez. After earning an esteemed culinary background, Chef Yerika has gone back to her Mexico City-roots to bring this vibrant culinary expedition to life. The menu boasts traditional flavors and dishes from various culinary regions of Mexico!

Food isn’t the only reason to get your party poppers out, though - Santana Row’s calendar of events is jam-packed with Springtime celebrations! So, whether you’re looking for food or fun, Santana Row invites you to join the party.

Here are some of the action-packed events you can expect to enjoy in March-April:

Makers Market in The Park
Saturday, March 7 | 11:30 am - 5 pm | Santana Row Park
Saturday, April 4 | 11:30 am - 5 pm | Santana Row Park
Join us for a highly-curated marketplace of local makers and artisans! Enjoy live music as you shop for U.S. Handcrafted goods like jewelry, handbags, ceramics/glassware, soaps, succulents, candles & more! Stop into our Santana Row shop (adjacent to the market area) for libations and more locally-handcrafted goods.

Makers Market aims to bring you products that honor the ideals of American craftsmanship and are Modern + Heritage inspired. Join us in our mission of Rebuilding the Legacy of American Made, while supporting our local merchants and the community.

Spring Festival & Photos with the Easter Bunny
Saturday, March 28 | 10 am - 2 pm | Park Valencia
This EPIC Spring Festival will feature a mini petting zoo, live music, roaming entertainment, face painting, balloon twisting, arts & crafts, and a FREE digital photo with the hoppiest guy around: the Easter Bunny! *This event is rain or shine! In the event of rain, meet in the VIA directly behind Left Bank & Sino.*

Post your favorite Spring Festival memory on social media for a chance to win a special gift! Must include #SpringOnTheRow and tag @SantanaRow to enter.  All entries must be in by Sunday, March 29. A winner will be selected at random, and announced on Monday, March 30.

Spring Fling Wine Stroll benefitting the Junior League of San Jose
Wednesday, April 22 | 6 pm - 9 pm | Santana Row
Enjoy a night out at the Santana Row Spring Fling Wine Stroll! Relax and unwind with wine tastings from local growers, DIY flower crowns, light bites, live music, exclusive discounts from Santana Row shops, and more. Tickets are $40, and event proceeds will benefit Junior League of San Jose.

Voices for Autism Benefit Concert
Saturday, April 18 | 12 pm - 4 pm | Park Valencia
Join us for a day of fun, food, and music in Park Valencia! The Youth Leadership Committee is hosting the 5th Annual Voices for Autism Benefit Concert to increase autism awareness and raise money for the programs at Pacific Autism Center for Education (PACE). The concert will feature youth bands and other musical performances from students around the Bay Area!

This is a free event and perfect for families with children of any age. There will be live music, interactive autism awareness demonstrations, and select restaurants participating in fundraisers to raise money for PACE.
All proceeds from this event benefit Pacific Autism Center for Education. PACE provides high-quality behavioral therapy, education, and residential care for children and adults with autism.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Great America 2020 Announcements

Last week I had the opportunity to learn more about Great America's 2020 plans for events and new attractions. The big news is the expansion and re-branding of the water park from Boomerang Bay to South Bay Shores. Just about everything in the existing park will be updated and they are in the process of doubling the size of the water park. There will be seven new water attractions this year: four drop slides, two tube slides, and a kid-friendly lagoon area with private cabanas. Admission is included

They also announced three new festivals:

  • Spring Fiesta – This three-weekend-long festival celebrates Hispanic culture with authentic food, live music and entertainment. Each weekend brings a different focus: Dia del Nino (April 25–26) offers kid-friendly crafts, games and activities; Cinco de Mayo (May 2–3) brings traditional, folkloric dance; and Latin Music Festival (May 9–10) showcases Bay Area performers.
  • Monster Jam® Thunder Alley™ – Popular Monster Jam® trucks roll into Great America this summer, offering a larger-than-life experience where park guests can get nose-to-grille, sit inside and even take an adrenaline-charged ride in a Monster Jam truck. Meet-and-greets with drivers, a themed kids play area and the Monster Jam garage round out the limited-time event, which takes place June 20–July 12.
  • Carnivale at Orleans Place – Authentic New Orleans food, glittering floats and costumed street performers come together in a unique nighttime festival that marries the best of Great America’s fan-favorite Taste of Orleans event with the excitement and vibrancy of Mardi Gras. Highlighting the festival is the Spectacle of Color full-scale parade, with extravagantly decorated floats and performers who draw the audience into the action. The exclusive event takes place nightly July 18–August 2.

The "Red, White and Brews" beer festival, Halloween Haunt, and WinterFest will all return this year. Halloween Haunt will get a brand new Asian-themed maze called Shadowlands. Oh, and several new food offerings will be available throughout the year such as fish tacos and sesame chicken on a crispy fried wonton. I hear Micheladas will be available as well inside the park.

It seems like an action packed year, I'm especially looking forward to Carnivale and Halloween Haunt this year!

For more info head over here.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

San Jose gets first round of tiny homes for the homeless

Homelessness is one of Silicon Valley's top issues, and it seems to be getting worse with over 6,000 individuals living on Santa Clara County streets. Fortunately, San Jose is taking a novel approach by building inexpensive tiny homes to house the less fortunate.

The first community of tiny homes is off of Mabury Road and consists of 40 "sleeping cabins," showers, a shared kitchen, laundry, and computers. Comcast is also donating WiFi service. The community is expected to serve 120 people a year (each resident can stay up to 4 months).

A second project is already underway near Felipe Court at the intersection of 101, 280, and 680. 

It's not a perfect solution but is helping move us in the right direction. I wish developers would also build inexpensive 150-200 SQFT studio apartments to provide additional housing options for everyone.

Monday, March 2, 2020

Camera 12 redevelopment renders

Urban Catalyst revealed a few new renders of their plans for the former Camera 12 site, and it looks much better than what I expected. The shape of the theater is preserved but two additional floors are being added in the interior for additional office space (73,000 SQFT total). Rooftop patios will now be accessible from the 4th and 5th floors. Oh, and the 13,000 SQFT of ground-floor retail will extend onto the Paseo.

I still miss the movie theater, but this looks like it will greatly help activate the Paseo area. The project should be complete around the 2nd quarter of 2021. It is one of seven Urban Catalyst projects scheduled to break ground this year, all of which are in Downtown San Jose. The company plans to invest $700 million into San Jose.

Source: SVBJ

Monday, February 24, 2020

Diridon-SJC People Mover concepts

Last year, Mayor Sam Liccardo started collecting innovative ideas for connecting Diridon to both SJC and Stevens Creek (Santana Row, Valley Fair, Apple HQ, etc.). He received several interesting proposals ranging from autonomous pods, monorails, handing trains, and hyperloops. The goal would be to use a system with significantly lower costs than the current mass transit options and a shorter deployment time.

The only option that I think is truly feasible at a low cost would be a loop (not hyperloop), which the Boring Company is currently building in Las Vegas to connect various parts of their sprawling convention center. It might be possible for a couple hundred million (including stations) and everything would be underground, minimizing conflicts with other modes of transportation and completely taking weather out of the equation. It would also be scaleable to other parts of San Jose with much additional effort.

Our current transit options are failing us, so I have to applaud the city for thinking outside the box to make these two transit hubs together as quickly and cost effectively as possible.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Eataly coming to San Jose

With two very successful food halls in Downtown San Jose and Santana Row across the street, Valley Fair might be feeling a bit left out when it comes to the South Bay food scene. Fortunately, their big expansion that starts rolling out in March has a major focus on cuisine. Several flagship restaurants have been announced, but the biggest addition will be an Italian Marketplace called Eataly.

The market clocks in at an impressive 51,000 SQFT. Eataly is large enough to house multiple restaurants, cafes, food stalls, bars, and take-out counters. If you're a foodie that likes Italian food, this may be your new favorite location in the mall. It will also be the only Eataly location in Northern California.

Eataly San Jose will open sometime in 2021.

Source: SVBJ

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

10th Street Distillery in San Jose

San Jose now has a whiskey distillery, which apparently is our first since Prohibition. It sits near our craft breweries at 2131 S. 10th St., just one building over from Strike Brewing. Two tech engineers decided to follow their dream and created 10th Street Distillery to make Scottish-style spirits right here in San Jose.

They carry a couple different types of whiskies, a Peated Single Malt (smokey) that has won multiple awards and a STR Single Malt that is smooth and slightly sweet. Total Wine & More as well as several liquor stores have started carrying the product. You can also find them in San Jose's top craft cocktail bars such as Haberdasher, Paper Plane, Miniboss, 55 South, District, and Five Points.

10th Street Distillery doesn't have a public tasting room setup yet, but they do offer tours and tasting events if you sign up on their website over here.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Former Camera 12 Theaters space will become office and retail

It's a bittersweet solution to a key space in the middle of Downtown San Jose, but at least it is better than the empty shell that exists today. Camera 12 was my favorite movie theater, and one of the few three-story movie theaters in the country. I was hoping this could be repurposed into a high-end theater with luxury seats, cocktails, and upscale dining similar to the Showplace ICON in Valley Fair. However, it appear Urban Catalyst has a firm plan for the 70,330 SQFT site.

The plan is to convert the space into a five-story building called "Paseo." This will be interesting to see executed given the existing configuration. They will likely have to gut the whole building. The top four floors will support 73,000 SQFT of office space while the ground floor will have 15,000 SQFT of retail.

I am excited about what the retail opportunities could be, especially given the whole street is starting to fill up. Scott's Seafood is moving to the former Social Policy space on the same block and Hapa Musubi is a few doors down (one of Downtown's most popular eateries, often completely selling out of food daily). It may no longer be a movie theater, but I'm certain this can be an anchor for urban activity Downtown.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Guadalupe River Park - Adopt a Rose

Looking for a great last-minute Valentine's Day idea? The Guadalupe River Park Conservancy is offering a $60 package that includes adopting a rose (post your personal message in the garden), a box of chocolates, a cookie, and a free rose each month for a year.

Best of all, the proceeds go towards support the park and the purchase is partially tax deductible. You don't have to tell your significant other that last part.

To learn more and to order this special Valentine's Day package, head over here.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

All That Jazz with "Chicago" @ The San Jose Stage

They had it comin'
They had it comin'
They had it comin' all along
'Cause if they used us
And they abused us
How could you tell us that we were wrong?

Back in high school, I was wondering why so many people loved CHICAGO when it first came out in theaters in 2002. Before I knew I loved musicals, I found the songs "Cell Block Tango" and "We Both Reached for the Gun" to be sensational and fascinating. Of course, being quite an ignorant child believing that justice will always prevail, I had no idea that the outcome of this musical's riveting storyline and dazzling musical numbers would be a scandalous travesty of justice. It was so scandalous in storyline, outcome, costumes, and choreography, that the original 1975 Broadway production of CHICAGO only ran for 968 performances, which is a relatively short run for an open-ended broadway production. Thankfully, two decades later, a more accepting Broadway audience and significant production tweaks paved the way for the current revival of CHICAGO, which is now the longest-running musical revival and longest-running American musical in Broadway history.

"We Both Reached For The Gun" musical number Center Stage: Monique Hafeb Adams (as Roxie Hart), Keith Pinto (as Billy Flynn), Kyle Bielfield (as Mary Sunshine) Ensemble: Patrick Wayne, Jill Miller, Jacqueline Neeley, Zoey Lytle, Matthew Kropschot, Tony Wooldridge, Tracey Freeman-Shaw, Monica Moe, Vinh G. Nguyen, Nick Rodrigues. Photo By Dave Lepori
"We Both Reached For The Gun" musical number
Center Stage: Monique Hafeb Adams (as Roxie Hart), Keith Pinto (as Billy Flynn), Kyle Bielfield (as Mary Sunshine)
Ensemble: Patrick Wayne, Jill Miller, Jacqueline Neeley, Zoey Lytle, Matthew Kropschot,
Tony Wooldridge, Tracey Freeman-Shaw, Monica Moe, Vinh G. Nguyen, Nick Rodrigues.
Photo By Dave Lepori

"Razzle Dazzle" musical number  Keith Pinto (foreground as "Billy Flynn") alongside  Matthew Kropschot, Monica Moe, Jacqueline Neeley,  Jill Miller, Zoey Lytle, Tracey Freeman-Shaw,  Tony Wooldridge, Nick Rodrigues  Photo by Dave Lepori
"Razzle Dazzle" musical number
Keith Pinto (foreground as "Billy Flynn") alongside Matthew Kropschot,
Monica Moe, Jacqueline Neeley, Jill Miller, Zoey Lytle,
Tracey Freeman-Shaw, Tony Wooldridge, Nick Rodrigues.
Photo by Dave Lepori
Since my high school years, I have seen the musical twice on Broadway and once as a touring production through Broadway San Jose. I had no idea that the theatrical production would be significantly better than the big screen version including its simple set design, kinky costumes, and "all that jazz" expected from this musical.

CHICAGO took the stand at The San Jose Stage Company with its official opening night on February 8, 2020. The production was mostly true to what I've seen on Broadway especially when it comes to the choreography, singing, and costumes. The company at The San Jose Stage Company hit top marks for producing a Broadway quality show in its intimate setting allowing Bay Area residents to fall in love with this classic!

Branden Noel Thomas as "Matron ‘Mama’ Morton" Photo by Dave Lepori
Branden Noel Thomas 
as "Matron ‘Mama’ Morton"
Photo by Dave Lepori
Given that I've seen previous productions at The San Jose Stage Company, it was great seeing former cast members return to the show including Monique Hafen Adams as Roxie Hart, Allison F. Rich as Velma Kelly, Keith Pinto as Billy Flynn, Matthew Kropschot as Fred Casley, and ensemble members June Miller, Monica MoeVinh G. Nguyen, Tracey Freeman-Shaw.

The highlight of the show was the excellent performance of Branden Noel Thomas performing as Matron "Mama" Morton. Branden's singing, acting, makeup, and costume was impeccable. Branden knew how to pull in the audience and deliver musical notes and lines with gravity... and tenacity. Branden is a young person whom I will be paying attention in future productions.

One thing that didn't occur in the Broadway production, but which The San Jose Stage Company changed very well, was the different direction to their musical number, "Mister Cellophane." Performing as Amos Hart was Sean Doughty, who previously performed the same part at another theater. In addition to Sean applying the sad clown makeup from the movie version, it was comical and malevolent to see how the spotlight operator moved the spotlight away from Amos on stage several times. Plus, Amos never received his exit music, as other characters did. Little things like this is truly reminiscent of the character of Amos Hart who is so innocent yet easily mistreated throughout the story.

Sean Doughty as Amos Hart
Photo By Dave Lepori
All in all, this is one of the few shows I would watch again and again. So make sure you catch a performance playing Wednesdays to Sundays now until March 15, 2020. You can purchase tickets online at The San Jose Stage Company website at or at their box office at 490 South First Street, San Jose, CA 95113, (408) 283-7141. Discount tickets are available for students and seniors.

Written by John Huân Vu.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Downtown San Jose's epic development roadmap

I've been following Downtown San Jose development for the last 21 years, and I have never seen so many impressive projects in the pipeline--not even in the peak of the .com bubble in 1999 and 2000.

The Silicon Valley Business Journal has put together a list of the top 20 projects that are currently in the pipeline. Several are in the million+ SQFT category, which is equivalent to three or four typical high rise buildings. Even if half of these come to fruition, Downtown San Jose will never look the same.

As an added bonus, below is a recording of the "Future of San Jose" event, where you can hear several San Jose leaders share their thoughts on where San Jose is going.

Source: SVBJ

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

February 2020 Downtown Dimension Highlights

The latest addition of Downtown Dimension is now live. Below is a summary of the content this month.
The FEBRUARY 2020 Downtown Dimension is now available.

In this edition:
  • Downtown is expanding in all four directions.  Our lead story focuses on what's happening in SoDA, the South of Downtown Area.
  • SJDA Board President Katia McClain's 2020 term started with a feature story in Silicon Valley Business Journal.  Her Letter to downtown businesses includes thoughts on what it will take to make downtown San Jose look as good as possible.
  • CityView businesses are relocating as Jay Paul Co. prepares the block for demolition.  Dimension tracked down many of the new locations of former CityView tenants.
  • New owner and plans for the former Camera Cinemas building.
  • San Jose's $15.25 minimum wage is middle-of-the-pack of Bay Area cities.
  • Coming up:  CINEQUEST March 3-15 and San Jose Jazz Winterfest Feb. 14-29.
Councilmember Raul Peralez will be featured at SJDA's next public meeting -- on a special date -- Thursday, Feb. 20, 8-9:30, at Tabard Theatre, 29 N. San Pedro St.  The meeting is open to everyone.


Downtown Dimension is a leading source for information about downtown San Jose news, events and businesses. Subscribe with a simple email to, subject line:  Subscribe

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Le Meridien San Jose Hotel Tower approved

Last week, one of the most ambitious hotel projects in San Jose history received approval by the San Jose City Council. The 24-story Le Meridien hotel will cantilever over the historic Hotel Montgomery, which is currently branded as a Four Points Hotel. The juxtaposition of old and new culminates in a stunning project as you can see below.

A five-story atrium will connect the two hotels together, which are both part of the Marriott portfolio. The new tower will have 274 rooms and one of, if not the best, hotel amenity in San Jose... a rooftop swimming pool.

I can't wait to see this come together and will definitely be planning some stay-cations after this is built!

Source: SVBJ

Monday, February 3, 2020

San Jose is one of the top cities for millennials

COMMERCIALCafé has put together a study on the top 10 metros for millennials to live and work in. They ranked each metro based on seven indicators: millennial population, growth, regional price parity, millennial unemployment rate, percentage of millennials with employer-based health insurance, and commuting time.

San Jose came in 10th place and came in 1st place in terms of health insurance. Our millennial unemployment rate was also the fourth lowest in the study and we had the second best education metric. To find out more, hit the link below.


Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The 7 Wonders of the San Jose World

Searchlight San Jose has a great post about the most interesting "wonders" of San Jose. Number one is obvious and pictured below, I have yet to visit number two, there is a great movie about number three, number four is surrounded by delicious food stalls, number five is the only place in San Jose where you can find snow each year, number six is our most colorful park, number seven is a famous museum, and there is a bonus eight that will make you laugh (or cry).

Click here to find out what the 7 Wonders of the San Jose World are.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Atari-themed gaming hotel coming to San Jose

The hottest video game company of the 70s is coming to San Jose in an interesting way. A hotel developer is leasing the Atari brand to create eight video-game themed hotels in the United States and one will be in San Jose.

Each hotel will have an esports studio where pros compete, an Atari gaming playground, event rooms, co-working spaces, movie theaters, a gym, and probably a fun restaurant/bar area. This sounds like a very unique offering compared the the run-of-the-mill business hotels that mostly populate the South Bay. Details are still sparse, but hopefully we'll have more info soon.

Bonus fun fact, the founder of Atari--Nolan Bushnell--also founded the first Chuck E. Cheese in San Jose. Yes, it is the epic two-story one on Tully.  Turns out the first one was actually at 370 South Winchester Blvd in the old Town & Country shopping center, currently Santana Row.

Source: Engadget

Monday, January 27, 2020

San Jose Jazz Winter Fest: Feb 14-29

Winter Fest 2020 kicks off Valentine's Day and features jazz, blues, Latin jazz, New Orleans, and other genres in intimate venues across San Jose. Performances will take place at Cafe Stritch, the Hammer Theatre, Hedley Club, San Jose Museum of Art, the Poor House Bistro, and Art Boutiki.

For a full list of musicians and to get tickets, head over here.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Santana Row 2020 Openings and Events

The first big restaurant news for Santana Row in 2020 is Momosan, a Japanese yakitori spot owned by Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto is coming this summer. Think of it as grilled tapas and ramen along with a full bar. If you have been to Morimoto in Napa, you know the quality is bound to be quite high.

Hot 8 Yoga will bring another health and wellness option to Santana Row when it opens this Fall. It should complement SoulCycle and Barry's Bootcamp nicely.

As for events, the San Jose 408k 'Race to the Row' takes place on February 2nd and the Lunar New Year Celebration will be on February 8th. For all of the details, read on below for the full press release.

Santana Row - an Oasis for Delicious Food, Sought After Brands and Action-Packed Entertainment

SAN JOSE, Calif. – January 14, 2020 – Santana Row is kicking off 2020 with the announcement of incoming merchants and community celebrations! Upcoming dining and fitness additions will bring a number of new experiences to Santana Row in 2020. Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, a Japanese master chef known for his innovative and signature style of cuisine, will open his popular ramen and yakitori Izakaya concept, Momosan, at Santana Row. This energetic and casual dining experience will feature the Iron Chef’s signature take on Japanese ramen, grilled skewers and Izakaya dishes, plus a diverse selection of premium sake, beer and spirits.

“I am looking forward to opening Momosan in San Jose’s vibrant Santana Row district,” said Chef Morimoto. “Momosan is all about enjoying ramen, yakitori, beer and sake in a fun, casual environment.”

At Momosan Santana Row, noodles will be front and center, highlighting Chef Morimoto’s varieties of Japanese-style flavor-forward ramen.  The menu will also shine with a variety of grilled dishes and Japanese bar snacks, all with Chef Morimoto’s signature twist. Playful small Izakaya plates and appetizers will take guests on a comfort food journey.

“San Jose is a city with traditional culture, including traditions that are adapted from Japan, as well as the most advanced technology as the center of Silicon Valley,” added Chef Morimoto. “I am very excited to explore the challenges and opportunities such a unique place offers me.” For more information on Chef Morimoto, visit

Group fitness concepts’ SoulCycle and Barry’s Bootcamp have become ritual for many workout enthusiasts at Santana Row, and another is in the works! Hot 8 Yoga will bring a variety of hot yoga classes to The Row in Fall 2020 that are ideal for students of all levels, paired with luxury amenities in a spa-like setting. Santana Row is the ideal fit for Hot 8 Yoga: its offering of curated shops focused on delivering premium goods and services is directly in line with the studio’s careful cultivation of the best movement and wellness experience for its practitioners.

And the excitement doesn’t stop here! 2020 kicks off with celebrations and community events for the entire family.  Here’s what’s coming up this February for all to enjoy.

San Jose 408k ‘Race to The Row’
Sunday, February 2nd, starting 8 am
Join us for the 9th annual Race to The Row, brought to you by Amazon and benefitting Pat Tillman Foundation. Featuring the famous “Mariachi Mile” and “Memorial Mile,” this fun point-to-point course will take you through some of San Jose’s most charming neighborhoods. As you cross the finish line, Santana Row shops & restaurants will be waiting for you with free yoga classes, mimosas and more. Stay tuned for the official offers!

Click here to Register for this event. For registered runners, the Packet Pick Up will be held in Santana Row Park (across from Left Bank) on January 1st from 2 pm – 7 pm, and February 3rd from 10 am – 5 pm.

For more information, visit

Santana Row Lunar New Year Celebration
Saturday, February 8th, 1 pm – 3 pm
Santana Row welcomes the Year of The Rat with an afternoon of Lunar New Year festivities, presented by NTD Television and The Epoch Times. Enjoy the drumbeats and crashing cymbals of the Dragon and Lion dances, plus other fascinating cultural performances on a large stage in Santana Row Park (across from Left Bank).

Every hour, on the hour from 1 pm – 3 pm, red envelopes will be distributed in the park filled with Santana Row shop & restaurant gifts and offers! *Available while supplies last. Also enjoy in-store events, discounts, arts & crafts and more on The Row in honor of Lunar New Year.

This event is free and open to the public. Bring the family and celebrate the start of 2020 coordinated by the cycles of the moon! For more information, visit