FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Another S.F. Landmark Under Fire
San Francisco’s Historic Grant’s Pipe Shop has been served with a 30-Day
Notice to Terminate Tenancy after 49 years at its current location and 163 years
San Francisco, CA, September 2012 – Grant’s Pipe Shop is San Francisco’s
oldest operating traditional tobacco shop, and its historic walk-in humidor was the
first in the State of California. Premium Tobacco enthusiasts from around the
world have been stopping by Grant’s Pipe Shop’s current Market Street location
since 1963, but the shop’s history begins with the Gold Rush of 1849. Originally
supplying miners and merchant seamen with premium tobaccos and fine pipes.
One of Grant’s most famous customers in the 1800s was local eccentric,
“Emperor Norton.” Grant’s Pipe Shop is one of San Francisco’s oldest small
Store managers of the previous shop owner, Edward L. Grant, had an
opportunity to continue this San Francisco legacy when they successfully took
ownership in 2004 after Mr. Grant’s passing in 2003. In 2006, the lease expired,
and the shop has been on a month-to-month lease ever since, despite numerous
attempts to negotiate for a longer-term lease.
The Chancery Building, in which Grant’s Pipe Shop is located, changed
ownership in 2009, but the building’s management, Kevin Colombo of Terra
Verde Commercial and new landlords Chelsea Pacific Holdings, LP, and
manager Zack Faidi of Chelsea Pacific Group, LLC, have rejected reasonable
Recently, the owners of the Chancery Building applied for a permit through the
San Francisco Building Department to construct build outs that will affect Grant’s
current space, including its historic walk-in humidor. When one of the General
Partners of Grant’s, Joe A. Barron, inquired about details, such as the length and
timing of multiple planned construction phases and other normal concerns of
tenants when negotiating these matters, the owners of the Chancery Building in
return served Grant’s with a 30-Day Notice to Terminate Tenancy, bringing about
what could be the end of this San Francisco institution.
Grant’s Pipe Shop is the latest in a series of San Francisco landmarks to come
under fire by local landlords eager to raise rents. Prior to serving the conviction
notice, the Chancery Building initially suggested doubling the rent in 2009, which
would have effectively put Grant’s out of business. Additionally, the Chancery
Building’s management has seemed more interested in probing Grant’s current
owners into selling the business or misleading Grant’s proprietors over the last
three years, leading to speculation that the building’s management or landlords
have never intended to offer the current owners of Grant’s Pipe Shop a long-term
lease to stabilize this historic shop.
Grant’s owners remain dedicated to maintaining the legacy and tradition of
quality expected of San Francisco’s oldest and most well known tobacconist.
Quality inventory of tobacco products will be on clearance starting
September 18, 2012.
Needless to say I’m a bit pissed and upset. As are the guys at Grants