Business

Operators Of SF’s Gold Dust Lounge Sued Over Failure To Vacate

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Gold Dust Lounge

A bartender works at the historic Gold Dust Lounge in San Francisco’s Union Sqaure. (Photo via Radio Alice)

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The owners of the San Francisco building that houses the Gold Dust Lounge filed suit against the operators of the longtime establishment Monday for failing to vacate after being given three months to do so, Handlery Hotels spokesman Sam Singer said.

Handlery Hotels filed an unlawful detainer action against Bovis, Inc., the operators of the Gold Dust, for failing to leave the Union Square location.

“Handlery Hotels did not want to file this suit, but they were left with no choice when the Gold Dust failed to honor their word and leave the property as they expressly agreed to in their lease,” Singer said.

According to Singer, the Bovises signed a lease with the property owners in March 2011 with the specific language, “Landlord shall have the right to terminate the Term of the Lease, as amended by this Amendment, without cause, at any time, but with no less than 90 days prior written notice to the Tenant.”

The Gold Dust, which has been in its current location for 47 years, was given a 90-day notice in December to clear out, but has failed to do so. Since the notice, the bar has held rallies and attempted to garner local support to keep the Gold Dust open.

More than 3,200 people have signed a petition on the establishment’s website, but that has not curbed the landlord’s push to vacate its property.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

A spokesman for the Bovises said that Monday’s lawsuit was expected.

“Everybody at the Gold Dust had been told to anticipate this unlawful detainer action. It takes nobody by surprise,” spokesman Lee Houskeeper said.

An attorney for the Bovises filed a lawsuit several weeks ago against Handlery Hotels to prevent the bar’s eviction.

That lawsuit alleges that the Bovises unknowingly signed an amendment to their lease and that, because of the Bovises’ “advanced age,” the misrepresentation constitutes financial elder abuse.

Houskeeper said Monday’s action by the building owners was fully anticipated and that the Bovis family “has complete and total confidence in their attorney, who has been preparing for a long and protracted lawsuit.”

“Nothing has changed for us. We’re prepared to go all the way,” Houskeeper said.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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