New Gold Dust Lounge Filled With Old Funkiness

What's old is new again at Fisherman's Wharf

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A legendary Union Square bar closed down back in May, but that is not the end of the story for the Gold Dust Lounge. Joe Rosato Jr. shows us how it is getting back in business. (Published Friday, Dec 14, 2012)

    San Francisco’s legendary Gold Dust Lounge will reopen on Fisherman’s Wharf on January 11, and anyone nostalgic for the old joint should feel right at home.

    The owners of the famous Union Square bar, which was evicted in May to make way for a Limited department store, have spared no detail in recreating the old place.

    Owner Nick Bovis said the bar will look nearly identical to the Union Square location.

    The light fixtures, cushy red booths and even the ceiling mural, reportedly commissioned by former co-owner Bing Crosby will make the trip North.

    Bovis even found an exact replacement for the funky gold Victorian wallpaper in the old spot. “This is the new Gold Dust which is just like the old Gold Dust,” said Bovis. “Just moved to a new location.”

    In his quest for authenticity, Bovis tracked down one of the original contractors who built the theater-like façade of the original Union Square location.

    The Fisherman’s Wharf location will get the same treatment. “So it’s the same contractor that built the front of the Gold Dust,” said Bovis. “He’s a little old now.” 

    There are a few notable differences in the new place.

    The bar is longer, the ceiling shorter, and the band will be on a different side.

    “It’s difficult to try and create the same,” said Rich Young, longtime drummer for the Gold Dust house band.

    “But we’re going to try and create the same atmosphere of fun.”

    Most of the bartenders and waitresses will come along to the new bar, as will the Johnny Z and the Camaros, the bars venerable cover band.

    On Friday, construction crews were scattered inside the location, tucked into Jefferson Street near the Wax Museum and Ripley’s Believe It Or Not.

    But despite a new location, the owners plan to infuse the spot with an old vibe.

    “In the end I think the stars lined-up and said you know what...” said Young, Wwe’re going to keep this place alive but you’re just going to have to do it at a new address.”