Clique Hospitality, the Las Vegas-based restaurant and nightlife hospitality group, is expanding its San Diego footprint.
With about 400 employees locally, Clique Hospitality is scheduled to open Joya Organic Kitchen in La Jolla next month. With over $100 million in revenue annually, according to a 2019 San Diego Business Journal interview, Clique’s growth strategy is projected to have a significant impact on the company’s earnings.
“This area of La Jolla is a central hub for some of our county’s biggest innovators in science, medicine, and technology,” said Andy Masi, founder and CEO of Clique Hospitality. “We wanted to create a space where some of San Diego’s brightest minds as well as locals and visitors to the area, could come together over organic, fresh, delicious food while soaking up the beauty of Joya’s open restaurant concept. With Chef Jojo Ruiz taking the lead on Joya’s culinary direction, our guests can anticipate a fantastic, seasonal, and ingredient-driven menu.”
Eighth Location in S.D.
Clique Hospitality currently owns and manages 37 venues throughout San Diego, Las Vegas, Nev., Delray Beach, Fla., and Chicago, Ill. Located at The Boardwalk at Science Center Drive, Joya Organic Kitchen will mark the company’s eighth location in S.D., according to the Clique website.
Other Clique Hospitality concepts based in the county include Oxford Social Club, The Pool House, Bull & Bourbon, Retreat Pool, Lionfish, Serea and Elicit Lounge.
Joya Organic Kitchen will be a contemporary concept serving organic farm fresh menu items, daily specials and grab-and-go salads, sandwiches and pressed juices, said Masi. It will be open for breakfast, lunch, happy hour and on-site catering.
With over 4,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor dining space, the restaurant hopes to also serve as a hosting venue for both small and large parties.
Beyond the restaurant, The Boardwalk at Science Center Drive offers an additional 10,000 square feet of conference and private dining space.
James Beard Smart Catch Leader
Chef Ruiz was named a James Beard Foundation Smart Catch Leader in 2019 for the then newly opened Serea, making it the only restaurant on Coronado Island to receive the recognition. Ruiz was also recognized by the culinary foundation for the second time as a Smart Catch Leader for Lionfish, making it the only restaurant in downtown San Diego to receive the recognition.
Both honors came as a result of the restaurants’ commitments to sustainable seafood and menu diversity. Fewer than 20 of California’s 76,000 restaurants are recognized by Smart Catch.
Ruiz said the same dedication will be made at Joya Organic Kitchen.
“We were committed to sustainable sourcing when we opened both Lionfish and Serea, not for the accolades, but because it was right,” Ruiz added. “I grew up in San Diego. The ocean is part of who I am. There was never a question that my menus wouldn’t be focused on sustainability. To be recognized twice as a Smart Catch Leader is humbling, but to be able to do my part to make sure future generations have sustainable food sources is even better.”
Ruiz will prepare the menu with Ryan Bullock, Joya Organic Kitchen’s chef de cuisine.
Revolutionized the Nightlife Scene
Clique Hospitality made its debut in the San Diego market in 2016 when Masi was contracted to conceptualize and create Pendry San Diego Hotel’s three concepts: Lionfish, Oxford Social Club and The Pool House rooftop lounge. In 2014, Masi kicked off Clique Hospitality with the opening of Clique Bar & Lounge in the Cosmopolitan hotel in Las Vegas. Prior to that, he co-founded and sold The Light Group, which is often credited with helping revolutionize the nightlife scene in Sin City in the early 2000s.
The Light Group was behind such hotspots as 1 Oak Nightclub at The Mirage, The Light Vegas at Mandalay Bay and Yellowtail Japanese Restaurant & Lounge at the Bellagio Hotel & Casino. The company was acquired by the Hakkasan Group, a hospitality company, in 2014 for $36 million.
FOUNDER/CEO: Andy Masi
EMPLOYEES: About 400 locally
HEADQUARTERS: Las Vegas (local office in Gaslamp Quarter)
BUSINESS: Restaurant and nightlife hospitality group
REVENUE: Over $100 million annually
NOTABLE: Company founder credited with helping revolutionize Las Vegas strip in the early 2000s.