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Thursday, March 7, 2013

A wedding and special event flex venue: SF80

It's been a while since I've attended a swanky launch party. Earlier this week I spent a day in San Francisco's Portrero Hill neighborhood for a daytime showcase and evening cocktail party at SF80 a luxe, urban flex, event space located at 80 Missouri Street between 16th and 17th.

The entryway was glammed up with a classic red carpet. The warm chandelier light glowing in the foyer was inviting. And even though valet parking was offered by California Parking, street parking was plentiful just before 6:00 PM when the cocktail party started.

The building is divided into multiple spaces including this black and white room (known as The Conference Room) just to the left as you leave the foyer. The glass coffee tables and white and crushed blue velvet couches were provided by Hartmann Studios.

The expansive Great Room was strikingly lit with multi colored wall washes and floor gobos (light and shadow design patterns) by Enhanced Lighting. I love event lighting. It can take a dramatic space over the top and transform a mundane space into something special.

The draping and some of the furnishings are included with the venue rental. Not only does the draping cover the walls, there are small alcoves along the back where, with tables and chairs, people can sit and chat.

Adjacent to the right of the Great Room was another room beautifully lit with a shimmering disco ball, green, polka dot, gobo floor lighting, and blue wall washes that enhanced the dramatically draped bar. A high ceiling, dark wood high-tables and high-chairs by Hartmann Studios, and floral designs by Hunt Littlefield completed The Lounge.

Also adjacent to the ballroom was a smaller more intimate lounge just beneath The Loft.

Upstairs in The Loft was a long King's Table designed by MB Wedding Design and Events. The Golden Gate Bridges were provided by Well Rehearsed, the floral arrangements by Michael Daigian Design, dinner menus by Cards de Luxe, and linens, chairs & tabletop settings were from Hartmann Studios.

Serving a light lunch at the showcase was Work of Art Catering. Their Little Gem Lettuce Cups with Chicken, Thai Chili, Mint, Lime, Shallots, and Toasted Coconut with a Peanut Sauce and Sweet-chili Dressing were set up as a build your own lettuce cup buffet. Dessert was tiny Pots dé Creme.

Across the way Carrie Dove Catering was serving Walnut Breadcrumb Encrusted Halibut with Roasted Fingerline Potatoes, and Sauteed Haricot Vert with Lemon Dill Sauce and Micro Greens. They also offered take home bags of super yummy popcorn.

I tried it and the breading on the halibut was AMAZING. The flavors were so pronounced, it wasn't your generic crust. I even tasted a hint of wasabi which turned out to be horse radish. It would be good on anything, I'm sure of it.

Oye Productions provided live entertainment that added a nice extra touch to the daytime showcase. We enjoyed Dia Pa' Son, a group that performs a Mexican style of music called Son Jarocho popularized in the Mexican State of Veracruz.

A table top display by Well Rehearsed reminded me that soon the America's Cup would be taking place in the Bay. To the right San Francisco Photobooth had set up an "open air" photobooth. The circle at the top of the speaker shaped box held the camera and the monitor below allowed guests to see their pose as it was about to be shot. So clever and space efficient.

And very impressive were the evening's libations offered by Bartenders Unlimited. Not only was there wine, champagne, cocktails, and beer, there were plenty of non-alcoholic options including sodas, teas, and spring water. I've been to events in the past where only wine or wine and sodas were served so I particularly appreciated the selection. I had a plain glass of spring water, and was very glad I could!

The party was designed by MB Wedding Design and Events. Over the years I've attended many events designed by Michelle Barrionuevo-Mazzini and they are always spectacular. For SF80 Michelle was involved in the logistical planning and the overall event design. Maile Trapini is SF80's Event Venue Manager. She was a perfect hostess! She was there to greet and welcome guests while representing Bartenders Unlimited, our host for the event.

This huge monitor that featured the Denon & Doyle DJ's control panel was an eye catcher. Very cool and he kept the party hopping. I have to add the volume was set perfectly so people didn't need to yell or scream to socialize. I love when that happens.

And if you came hungry you were in luck. . .

One of the most fun hors d'oeuvres I've ever seen, no, make that the most fun I've ever eaten was the Shocking Chicken by Small Potatoes Catering. They were small Black Pepper Biscuits, with a smear of Honey Butter, and a bite sized piece of hot Buttermilk Fried Chicken topped with Cotton Candy. With what?

Yes I said cotton candy! I LOVE cotton candy! It was the cotton candy that made the dish "shocking."

Since I don't eat chicken I asked if I could order a custom bite with double cotton candy and no chicken. :D I tore off a tiny bit of pink fluffy goodness and whoa....... It was SPICY because it was infused with tabasco. It was really, really, crazy and equally yummy!

Michi Japanese Restaurant and Catering served Spicy Salmon with Mango, Spicy Kani Crab & Avocado, and Assorted Vegetable Sushi Hand Rolls. There were also martini glasses of Sweet Potatoes with Braised Short Ribs. I had a Spicy Salmon with Mango Hand Roll and it was delicious.

Also offered were generous portions of Moroccan Spring Lamb Tagine served on Pistachio and Apricot Couscous by Jane Hammond Events.

And there were plenty of desserts both upstairs and downstairs.

Upstairs in The Loft were delectable, bite sized cupcakes by Cake Coquette. They were adjacent to the overhead view of the Great Room below.

Downstairs were cake pops by Sweet Lauren Cakes. They were very popular. It seemed as if everyone was eating at least two or three of them. LOL

Flowers by Hunt Littlefield

My thanks to Bartenders Unlimited for inviting me to the Grand Opening of SF80, to Maile Trapini and Mateo Medrano for the warm welcome, and to Michelle Barrionuevo-Mazzini and all of the sponsors for creating such an outstanding showcase for guests to enjoy. Having never been there before I appreciated the opportunity to view the venue. If you're looking for somewhere to host your wedding, corporate event, or party it may be just the space you've been looking for.

SF80 - Website
80 Missouri St
San Francisco, CA 94107 - Map
(415) 454-3731

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