On and Off Chestnut

April showers bring May flowers

Persepolis Designs is known for its exquisite clothing Photo: Courtesy Leila Van Dyke

Or so the saying goes … but as I write this, it looks like we’re getting our first taste of San Francisco summer, which means a crisp breeze off the Bay with a foghorn groaning its lonely lament. I guess a walk around the Palace or through the Presidio in search of those flowers is in order!

Back on Chestnut Street, if not new flowers then new changes are the order of the day. After serving the Marina for nearly 34 years, Leila Van Dyke has closed Persepolis Designs at 2417 Chestnut (near Divisadero). While there is no word on what will open in its place, Leila wants everyone to know that she thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the Marina these many years. Though her shop has closed, Persepolis Designs is still open at Van Dyke’s home office in Millbrae, where she is available by appointment or for in-home consultations. If you are looking for custom couture fashions, bridal design, or expert alterations, you can still call her directly or visit her online.

Persepolis Designs: 415-929-1410,

Irving Street Pizza on Scott Street has been closed for a few months while undergoing a major remodel to the kitchen, but owner Awadalla Awadalla will be reopening the Marina’s tiniest pizza spot as Hole in the Wall Pizza, hopefully by the end of the month. With just a handful of seats, there will still be the same great New York-style pizza available by the slice, as well as salads and sandwiches and, of course, home delivery. With late-night hours until 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights, you can always get your pizza craving satisfied at this little hole in the wall.

Hole in the Wall Pizza: 3244 Scott Street (between Chestnut and Lombard), 415-775-2583

Just up the street at the corner of Lombard, The Republic has opened its new “beer garden” on Scott Street, just in time for the start of the next excruciating installment of Giant’s baseball. With 13 high definition TVs — including an 82-inch screen — and a great selection of American craft brews, why head out to the ballpark when you can catch a game right in the neighborhood? The Republic is also open for dinner nightly with happy hour specials until 7 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday brunch.

The Republic: 3213 Scott Street (at Lombard), 415-817-1337,

Chilayo quietly closed its doors on Chestnut Street a few months ago. But renovations are moving along to transform the space into Blackwood, which will be offering American Thai fusion cuisine with plans for breakfast, lunch and dinner service seven days a week. Not many details available as of yet — though the fireplace at the covered sidewalk patio has been expanded — but the contractor says they hope to be opening mid-June, so watch next month’s column for more details.

Blackwood: 2150 Chestnut (between Pierce and Steiner)

Quality Cellular on Chestnut has also closed, with no sign of what might be going in its spot between G-Star Raw and Deleuse Jewelers. And around the corner on Lombard Street near Fillmore, Peter’s Auto Radio moved out a few months ago (you can find them now at 1665 Pacific Avenue). In its place, BodyROK Studios has remodeled the former auto shop into a state-of-the-art gym facility that features aerobic workouts with spin and Pilates. The light and bright space — highly visible through the roll-up glass garage door — is getting rave reviews for its innovative workouts, friendly trainers, and high-
energy classes.

BodyROK Studios: 2128 Lombard Street (near Fillmore), 415-775-4765,

Jim Maxwell is a past president of the Marina Merchants Association and owns Architects II in the Marina. E-mail: [email protected]
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