Home About town Crystal Jade Opens With Much Anticipated Fanfare

Crystal Jade’s First US location – the San Francisco Flagship at Embarcadero Center – Offers Authentic, Regional Asian Dishes and Opulent Surroundings

All photos by Drew Altizer Photography

Gus Murad and Yiutung Ip

Gus Murad and Yiutung Ip

San Francisco’s social set turned out in full force for the grand opening of San Francisco’s Crystal Jade Restaurant on Friday, November 14th. Renowned designer Ken Fulk bestowed his midas touch on the 20,000 square foot restaurant, which is comprised of a large indoor dinning room, several private dinning areas, a luxurious bar — that harkens back to an English gentlemen’s club — a terrace with breathtaking views of the Ferry Building and the Bay Bridge and a to-go concept.

Ken Fulk and Olga Dubrovsky

Ken Fulk and Olga Dubrovsky

The entire space was beaming with excitement after the ribbon cutting ceremony performed by Mayor Ed Lee, local restauranteur Gus Murad and Crystal Jade CEO Ip Yiu Tung. Guests sipped on sparkling rosé and signature cocktails, such as the Drunken Poet, while waiters served delicious small bites highlighting four of the eight culinary traditions of China, throughout the evening. This included Sichuan, Jiangsu, Hunan and Zhejiang cuisines.

Bahya Murad, Chris Cheang, Gus Murad, Anita Lee, Mayor Ed Lee, Yiutung Ip, James Quek, Scott Wiener, Katy Tang an dWillie Brown

Bahya Murad, Chris Cheang, Gus Murad, Anita Lee, Mayor Ed Lee, Yiutung Ip, James Quek, Scott Wiener, Katy Tang an dWillie Brown

As the first restaurant that LVMH has invested in, via their L Capital Asia satellite, the opening of Crystal Jade drew tons of fashionistas who showed up in furs, severe high heels, and Chinoiserie which threatened to overrun their foodie counterparts on this particular occasion. Happily, the focus remained on the delectable appetizers, luscious cocktails, and excellent service that is sure to make Crystal Jade one of the most popular restaurants in San Francisco.

Joy Venturini Bianchi, Yiutung Ip, Paula Carano and Tanya Powell

Joy Venturini Bianchi, Yiutung Ip, Paula Carano and Tanya Powell

Several groups installed themselves in the main dining room, Jiang Nan, while other guests refused to leave the natural beauty of the “Flower Rain Terrace”. Corporate types will love the well appointed private dining rooms which, close off entirely from the rest of the restaurant and provide the perfect environment for important business transactions. We found a nice corner room ensconced behind the “Liu Ling Bar” that we couldn’t resist. It is called The Xiao, after the stunning beauty and clever Empress Xiao (581-618 AD) who enchanted six emperors during the war times including her last husband, the strongest emperor of the Tang Dynasty, whom she married at the age of 50 while he was only 17 years old. This petite lounge features an enticing large sofa and high-backed velvet chairs, Chinoiserie wall paper, mood lighting and semi-private dining booths. Large enough to accommodate small group of friends, it is the perfect spot for a decadent birthday party.

Willie Brown and Sonya Molodetskaya

Willie Brown and Sonya Molodetskaya

Rokelle Sun and Ching Nola

Rokelle Sun and Ching Nola

Johnny Moallempour, Beth Schnitzer, Raghu Shiviram and Natalia Urrutia

Johnny Moallempour, Beth Schnitzer, Raghu Shiviram and Natalia Urrutia

Natalia Urrutia, Victor Vargas

Olga Dubrovsky

Olga Dubrovsky

Damion Matthews, Paula Carano and Joel Goodrich

Damion Matthews, Paula Carano and Joel Goodrich

Author
Victor Vargas is a passionate, dynamic and highly accomplished fashion and beauty stylist, editor and publisher with nearly 20 years experience working with some of the biggest names in the fashion and beauty industry. After being hired by French Vogue Editor-in-Chief Richard Buckley, Victor’s talents as a fashion editor and stylist attained international status. Victor worked as the Fashion Editor at Improper Bostonian Magazine, successfully elevating the reputation of the publication’s fashion section, and has served as Contributing Fashion Editor to San Francisco’s SOMA Magazine and Singapore's Brave Magazine. He has developed fashion articles, TV commercials, and advertising campaigns for notable brands such as WE tv (Women’s Entertainment Television), Toyota, John Frieda Hair Products, Reebok, and Benefit Cosmetics. Currently, Victor is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of WWW.LUXETIGERS.COM, an online international fashion and lifestyle magazine with a special emphasis on philanthropy.