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Karina’s Opens Seventh Restaurant; Open Houses to See This Weekend

This week's local real estate news


Karina’s is serving up ceviche and micheladas at its new 10,000-square-foot restaurant in Otay. | Photo courtesy of Red Coral Public Relations

By Design

Karina’s opens palatial restaurant in Otay Ranch

The family behind Karina’s Mexican Seafood continues to expand their mariscos empire with the official grand opening of their seventh restaurant on Wednesday.

Karina’s took over the space in the Otay Ranch Town Center that formerly housed Venga Venga, celebrity chef Richard Sandoval’s cantina concept, which closed last July. It’s a huge space for a restaurant—spanning 10,000 square feet—with a lounge, separate themed dining rooms, a central courtyard, and a patio.

David Contreras-Curiel, son of Karina’s founders Arnulfo Contreras and Maria Ines Curiel, designs all of the family’s restaurants. He says he wanted the new space to feel like a hacienda and to show his love of Mexican art. Venga Venga was dark and earth-toned, so Contreras-Curiel completely opened the central courtyard and brightened every room with white interiors and colorful, whimsical décor.

Depictions of famous Mexican artists, singers, and film stars are found throughout the restaurant: A stencil of composer Agustín Lara greets guests at the entrance; a portrait of Frida Kahlo is etched on a wall in the private dining room. Contreras-Curiel commissioned a replica of a famous Diego Rivera mural, Dream of a Sunday Afternoon in the Alameda Central, to hang in the restaurant’s “Library Room,” and had his parents painted into the scene.

Contreras-Curiel says he and his family are very proud of their Mexican heritage, and hopes his latest project “will show people what Mexico is about.”


Word on the Street

San Diego tech company expands to New York

Zeeto Media, which has won awards for its dog-friendly downtown headquarters and company culture, just opened its second office in New York City.

Revenue from the company’s ad platform has been doubling annually since it was founded in 2010, and an expansion to the East Coast was necessary, CEO Stephan Goss said in a statement. The New York office is in the Century Building by Union Square.


House Hunting

Open houses to check out this weekend

If you’re looking to buy a new home, are curious about what’s available in the current real estate market, or just want to get some design inspiration, this series showcases open houses that are worth a look over the weekend.


The kitchen was fitted with granite countertops and self-closing drawers. | Photo by REMAX Regal/Screenshot from Redfin

This one-story home is right by San Carlos Recreation Center and Lake Murray. It’s been completely remodeled and has a big backyard with a fire pit. Priced at $580,000, the house is open Saturday, February 6, from 1 to 4 p.m.


This Mira Mesa dwelling is listed as a “hot home” on Redfin.com. | Photo by Berkshire Hathaway HomeService/Screenshot from Redfin

Over in Mira Mesa, this $479,000 home was renovated with entertaining in mind. It has an open floor plan and a covered patio with plenty of room for a barbecuing station. It’s also close to several good Vietnamese restaurants, which we consider a bonus. See it Saturday, February 6, at 1 p.m.


A $1.3 million home near Switzer Canyon in North Park. | Photo by Pacific Sotheby's International Realty/Screenshot from Redfin

This week’s million-dollar listing is in North Park instead of the usual coastal communities. Perched on Switzer Canyon, the four-bedroom, three-bath home has a separate one-bedroom apartment on the property (with its own kitchen and laundry) that’s Airbnb-ready. Renting the spare unit out will help pay off the home’s listing price of $1.3 million. Go see it Saturday, February 6, from 1 to 4 p.m.


News Bites

  • Donut Bar is expanding its B Street store to serve craft beer and wine.

  • Reading Cinemas closed its 15-screen theater on the corner of Fifth Avenue and G Street on Monday, February 2. Developer OliverMcMillan plans to convert the building into a retail center.

  • If you want to buy a home that’s going to appreciate in value quickly, then look near a Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, or Starbucks, since these stores are considered amenities. A recent study shows that homes within one mile of a Trader’s Joe’s or Whole Foods were worth double the amount of the median home in the country.

  • Enjoy cycling near Tecolote Canyon? Stay away from the bike lines on Mount Acadia Boulevard.


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About This Blog

San Diego real estate news and gossip, from businesses opening and closing around town, to the neighborhoods that are buzzing with construction and which homes and buildings are being sold and where. Parklets, placemaking, lofts, design, cool workspaces, cool living spaces, big buildings, and tiny homes are things we find fascinating, especially right now in San Diego. The cranes are back in the downtown skyline, and so are many of our sources in the real estate industry, so you might see a heavy bent towards the urban neighborhoods here. But we see you up there, Torrey Pines Mesa. We know about your new companies, institutes, and hidden foodtrucks in office parks and cool cafes on the bluffs. And Del Mar and Carlsbad and everywhere in between. If you see a “For Sale” sign or a “coming soon” sign that we should know about, or just have a question about a building or a place, send an email our way.

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