Serea Restaurant Slated To Open In Hotel Del Coronado In June 2019 - Coronado Eagle & Journal | Coronado News | Coronado Island News: Coronado Home And Business

Serea Restaurant Slated To Open In Hotel Del Coronado In June 2019

by David Axelson | Posted: Friday, April 19, 2019 3:24 pm

Plans and construction for the anticipated June 2019 opening of Serea Restaurant at the Hotel Del Coronado are nearing completion. The new eatery, under the direction of Clique Hospitality Partner and Executive Chef JoJo Ruiz will replace the former 1500 Ocean Restaurant and feature upscale, sustainable, sea-to-table Coastal Cuisine.

"Ruiz, who will oversee the food offerings at Serea and is currently the Executive Chef at Lionfish in the Pendry Hotel, was recognized by the James Beard Foundation as a Smart Catch Leader in February 2019. The award was created to recognize sustainability of the seafood supply chain and is one of only three San Diego restaurants to have won the award. Both Lionfish and Serea, which means ‘Mermaid’ in Portuguese, are operated by Clique Hospitality. Ruiz will serve in his current capacity at both restaurants.”

The history of the 1500 Ocean space is both interesting and varied. Originally the area was occupied with bowling lanes, with a sitting area located nearby, flanked by a Ladies restaurant. Through the 1920’s and into the late 1940’s it served in turn as the Silver Grill, a cocktail lounge and then a beauty shop. In 1949 it became the Luau Room which offered a Polynesian menu until 1969. Then it became the Prince of Wales Grille, which opened in January 1970. The room was named for the former King Edward VIII (1894-1972), who abdicated the English throne in 1931 to marry Wallis Simpson and was later known as the Duke of Windsor. The Duke and Duchess visited the Hotel Del Coronado in 1920.

Everything will be new at Serea, including the décor, which is being created by Studio Munge based in Toronto, Canada. Account Supervisor Diana Robbins of J Public Relations, who represents Clique Hospitality for Serea said of the design firm, “They are pretty incredible. They worked on the William Vale Hotel in New York City. They have done a lot of work with Clique and their design approach very clean, textural and beautiful. The look will be fresh and lush, while mixing blues and yellows into the décor. It will be very Mediterranean, meets Coronado.”

Other design features will include a fish display where dining guests can select their own catch of the day. There will also be retractable French doors, which will open onto a two-tiered patio. The dining tables will be made of raked white oak and the lounge chairs will be woven teak. And of course Serea will have the benefit of the ultimate décor components the Pacific Ocean and Coronado sunsets.

Studio Munge will have plenty of space to work their magic, as Serea will encompass 2,573 square feet and seat 276 people. There are plans for an Ocean View personal dining room that will seat 20; an Indoor personal dining room which will also seat 20; the larger indoor room will hold 90 diners; an outdoor bar will accommodate 17 people; and the two-tiered outdoor dining area will seat 129.

Clique Hospitality was founded by Andy Masi in 2015. His resume includes being co-founder and CEO of The Light Group in Las Vegas in 2001, which owned and operated 26 venues worldwide by 2014, with annual revenues of over $300 million. Clique partnerships in the hospitality industry include MGM Resorts International, Pendry Hotels, Station Casinos, Cosmopolitan Las Vegas and the Blackstone Group. Their recent projects include three venues in the recently revamped Sycuan Casino in addition to Lionfish in the Pendry Hotel in San Diego. Clique also has 12 venues in Las Vegas including the Palms Casino Resort, Mandalay Bay, the Cosmopolitan and the Mirage. Clique also operates venues in Washington, D.C.

Ultimately, the success of Serea will be about the food and in Chef Ruiz, it appears they have the man for the job. A San Diego native, Ruiz launched his culinary career as a sushi chef, including a stint at Yokozuna’s, where he learned the art of butchering meat and fish. Other stops included JRDN Hotel’s Tower 23, as Sous Chef at the Oceanaire Seafood Room, and then Chef de Cuisine at Searsucker in Downtown San Diego in 2010 under Chef Brian Malarkey. He was Executive Chef at Herringbone in La Jolla and then Gingham before joining Clique Hospitality and Ironside Fish and Oyster.

Clearly seafood will be the primary culinary focus of Serea, with their sea-to-table, sustainable approach. But according to a press release the menu will be expansive. “Serea will spotlight the best of the region’s ocean, as well as farms and fields from California to the Baja Peninsula. It will offer a robust, environmentally friendly menu that includes raw and cooked options from fresh whole catch, to seafood towers and composed dishes. The menu at Serea will showcase the comprehensive, complex and expressive flavor profiles of the best fresh fish, intricate seafood and heritage meats the region has to offer.” Robbins added, “There will be a lot of small bites and shared plates, but definitely there will be more traditional entrees.”

From a highly curated art display with gallery style walls, to the creative cocktails and the fresh seafood-centric menu, Serea will be a welcome addition to the Coronado dining scene. Robbins said in conclusion, “Serea is bringing something to the Hotel Del that has never been available there before. The Del is staying innovative and taking it to the next level. It’s great to work with such an engaged client, which has been around for 130 years and is working toward another 130 years.”