Tao Group Hospitality Acquires Hakkasan Group's Three San Diego Properties In Blockbuster Deal

April 28, 2021

News broke today that dining and nightlife brand Tao Group Hospitality has acquired Hakkasan Group and its 3 San Diego properties - Searsucker, Omnia and Herringbone - which the new parent company plans to reopen imminently. 

It was announced today that Tao Group Hospitality has acquired Hakkasan Group, creating a hospitality powerhouse that includes a global portfolio of 61 entertainment dining and nightlife venues in 22 markets across five continents. In San Diego, Hakkasan Group owns three concepts - Searsucker restaurant and Omnia night club, both in the Gaslamp Quarter, and Herringbone in La Jolla. Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp., an American entertainment holding company based in New York City, owns a controlling interest in Tao Group Hospitality and, as a result, also owns a controlling, indirect interest in the newly combined company. The new company will continue to work with MSG Entertainment "to create innovative experiences that can be integrated across MSG Entertainment’s portfolio of live offerings, including its collection of venues featuring New York’s Madison Square Garden," explains the press release detailing the sale. Financial details of the transaction have not yet been disclosed.

In early 2014, San Diego nightlife guru James Brennan and local celebrity chef Brian Malarkey sold the majority stake in their then-depleted Enlightened Hospitality restaurant and nightlife collective to Abu Dhabi-based Hakkasan Group. At the time, this included Searsucker (San Diego, Del Mar and Austin) and Herringbone restaurants (San Diego and Los Angeles), as well as the Gaslamp nightlife destination that was then Stingaree. Stingaree was subsequently rebranded to become Omnia nightclub, a second location of Hakkasan's popular Las Vegas destination. Searsucker Del Mar closed in September 2019 and downtown San Diego's branch has been shuttered since July 2020, leaving the Las Vegas outpost at Caesar's Palace as the last remaining Searsucker unless Tao Group revives downtown San Diego's branch. Locally, Hakkasan also operates Herringbone restaurant in La Jolla, which remains open at this time. Omnia currently is closed in the Gaslamp. 

"Hakkasan Group is a strong strategic fit with a venue portfolio that not only expands our U.S. presence, but gives us an important foothold in key global destinations," commented Tao Group Hospitality CEO Noah Tepperberg. "Over the last 20 years, Hakkasan Group has built some of the most successful brands in the hospitality industry. This partnership provides a tremendous platform to use our combined scale to create new opportunities that drive value."

A representative of Tao Group Hospitality has confirmed their plan is to reopen all San Diego venues as soon as possible. There is currently no specific timeline in place.