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LA Girl would LOVE any help on venue suggestons on Chinese Banquet style Wedding in SF !!! Please!!!!!

Thanks for reading my post!
I'm basically looking for a venue for my reception anywhere near San Francisco (chinese style banquet) next year. I'm open to pretty much any chinese restaurants or hotels that offer chinese banquet style and is externally pretty. The only ones I already researches are Yank Sing Rincon Center (my dream spot-waterfalls, atrium, but overpriced), Hilton Financial District (currently getting quote). Any other names or suggestions would be HIGHLY appreciated!! Please Help me..UGH! THANKS!!!!!

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  1. Yank Sing is lovely venue for a Chinese wedding banquet. The food is pretty good and it's clean. But, like you already know, it's pricey. If your budget allows, then I would choose Yank Sing.

    - Koi Palace (in Daly City on Gellert Blvd.) and Asia Pearl (in Millbrae on El Camino Real).
    Both have decent banquet food, but it really depends on who's cooking that night. Easy parking. I would not use the word pretty to describe them, but rather "generic nice Chinese restaurant decor". In my experience, the food at Koi Palace is more consistent than Asia Pearl.

    - Grand Palace (in South SF on Grand Ave.)
    I haven't tried Grand Palace for a wedding banquet, but I have been there for birthday dinners (usually around 60 guests) and a red egg and ginger party (around 100 guests). Service and food were decent but each time our party host knew the manager or chef so we may have gotten special treatment.

    These are in San Francisco's Chinatown. I would not call any of these "pretty". Difficult parking but not impossible. So-so food. A bit greasy. A bit dirty.

    -Empress of China (on Grant Ave.) They can seat up to 800 guests but even with only 500 it's a tight squeeze.
    -New Asia (on Pacific Ave.)
    -Gold Mountain (on Broadway)

    Like with many Chinese restaurants, if you are sharing the restaurant with another wedding party, service and food quality will suffer.

    HTH. Good luck.

    -----
    Koi Palace Restaurant
    365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

    Grand Palace
    359 Grand Ave, South San Francisco, CA 94080

    11 Replies
    1. re: marysf

      Wow Mary!! You know soo much about this! I appreciated your thought VERY much! I'm racking my brain here. I guess using the word "pretty" isn't really appropiate..hehe! I was just trying to find a venue that was easy on the eyes also, but seem there isn't much of the chinese restaurants that are. Would you happen to know if there are nay hotels that cater chinese banquet style also? I just know of The Hilton Financial District. :(

      1. re: ca12ol

        We attended an 80th birthday party with about 300 close friends and relatives of the honoreeat the Empress of China.
        It was a selected menu of her favorite dishes and was spectacular in every way. Food was served promptly and hot. They really know how to host a huge crowd. Give them a visit before you go with the Hilton.

        1. re: Bruce in SLO

          Bruce...You are the bomb! I was looking at that spot too! On the website they said it a rooftop restaurant...does it really have a beautiful view? Also they mentioned a little garden area...did you get to see it by chance? Sorry so many questions :)

          1. re: Bruce in SLO

            Plus they have a stage and a dance floor in the 5th floor dining room.

            1. re: wolfe

              Oh WOW! I'm gonna go visit them this month! I hope they have a elevator for the elderly or empresses like me LOL...Thanks a Ton Wolfe! :)

              1. re: ca12ol

                2 elevators although I would ask clarification about access to the restroom. I took the stairs and I don't remember about whether the elevator stops on that floor..

                1. re: wolfe

                  Well that's good....I guess! It's ok...my guest and I could use the exercise after eating that 8 course chinese oily ass meal LOL!

          2. re: ca12ol

            I've been to at least 20 Chinese wedding banquets in the SF Bay Area and all of them have been at a Chinese restaurant. I have never been to one at a hotel where they cater it Chinese banquet style so I cannot offer any thoughts on that topic. But a hotel would definitely be easier on the eyes than most Chinese restaurants. :)

            Even though I have been to the Empress of China 4 or 5 times for wedding banquets, I had no idea that they had a rooftop garden. I wonder if it really looks as nice as the pictures on their website?

            -----
            Empress of China
            838 Grant Ave Ste 5, San Francisco, CA 94108

            1. re: marysf

              Yah me too...I wonder if it's nice! I think it's a just a rooftop restaurant and they have like a one small room garden somewhere in the floors....only if they had it on the rooftop! That would be soo beautiful! How would you rate 1 to 10 on Empress of China's food taste and Decor? Wow you really are a pro at wedding banquet restaurant tasting :)

              -----
              Empress of China
              838 Grant Ave Ste 5, San Francisco, CA 94108

              1. re: ca12ol

                On a scale of 1-10, I give Empress of China 5 for food and 6 for decor. (Just for comparison and to get a sense of my personal preferences, I would give Yank Sing 8 for food and 9 for decor and Koi Palace 7 for food and 7 for decor. )

                -----
                Koi Palace Restaurant
                365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                Empress of China
                838 Grant Ave Ste 5, San Francisco, CA 94108

                1. re: marysf

                  That helps alot Mary! You are so wonderful! :)

        2. Yank Sing may be pricey, but the Hilton doesn't seem particularly inexpensive, either, judging from the $50 entrees on their banquet menu. However, a former mayor attended an event there recently and liked the food.
          http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/blog/...

          3 Replies
          1. re: nocharge

            Wow... Thank you soo much! Price is definately an issue for me especially since our family is huge as it is. Very informative Article! I thought maybe doing a chinese banquet style wedding would be more cost efficient but doesn't look like it i guess. WOW! I need to get me one of those Ice Sculptures now :)

            1. re: ca12ol

              Or you can have it in Emeryville and look at the skyline across the bay from Hong Kong East Ocean.

              1. re: myst

                Wow Myst! Thanks! That sounds like a beautiful view! I will check them out also. All your suggestions are soo wonderful!

          2. There's dozens of places you could have a Chinese Wedding banquet, as there would be in Los Angeles. You haven't mentioned how important the quality of the food is, nor what you consider to be near San Francisco. For example I wouldn't recommend anybody go to Empress of China for a one off dinner, but on the other hand they have a large capacity and have been doing banquets for decades. I remember going to my uncle's wedding banquet 40 years ago at Four Seas, also on Grant Ave., and they're still in business so you know they have the experience even if the food isn't otherwise recommendable. If you want better food and Millbrae isn't too far away, then that would be a good alternative locale.

            -----
            Empress of China
            838 Grant Ave Ste 5, San Francisco, CA 94108

            Four Seas
            731 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94108

            12 Replies
            1. re: Chandavkl

              Yah..since everyone is coming from LA to attend my wedding, I definately care about the food taste. Especially if my motto is really "The way to my heart is through my stomach".
              Regarding location, i'm open to anywhere nearby i guess.. I guess within a 15-20 minute range from the city would be ideal. Any spots in Millbrae that has good food and decor not so tacky?
              Your expertise would be most appreciated!!!!

              1. re: ca12ol

                Asian Pearl and Zen Peninsula in Millbrae are popular for wedding receptions.

                -----
                Zen Peninsula
                1180 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA 94030

                1. re: Cindy

                  Wow! Thanks Cindy! I like how they have different style indoors for decor!

                  1. re: ca12ol

                    You have basically a few hitters in Millbrae to choose from:

                    South China Seafood Village
                    Zen Peninsula
                    Asian Pearl
                    HK Flower Lounge
                    The Kitchen

                    Zen Peninsula is easily the biggest, might be one of the best, if not most modern of the lot, but I would strongly advise to make sure you know exactly what you are getting (down to any dishes that contain high end seafood ingredients, and whether each person will get an exactly one serving per table of ten, very very very important) and set up expectations up front with the restaurant to avoid any squabbles at the end (even throwing around "what if this happens" type of questioning. If they put up a fuss, take your business elsewhere... HK Flower Lounge is the oldest but at least exterior wise looks the nicest. Koi Palace is another place worth considering, but could end up being quite expensive.

                    You might also want to consider ABC Seafood in Foster City, although much further away from SF (about 20 mins south of Millbrae), in case they have promotions/specials/discounts/packages during your wedding month

                    http://www.abcseafood.net/

                    1. re: K K

                      WOW! You sure do know your stuff! Your post really helped me alot! I think i'm leaning more towards Millbrae then SF for sure! Thanks for taking the time out to reply to my post, KK! :)

                      1. re: K K

                        pretty hard to find really good reliable consistent dim sum
                        from LA, I like Elite and Sea Harbour
                        sometimes koi palace is good
                        yank sing will be expensive
                        asian pearl millbrae is the one i like for taste for that area
                        maybe hk lounge sf
                        could try city view sf
                        empress of china has no worthy ambiance but they can do a banquet upstairs
                        hk east ocean emeryville does have a view if that's important

                        1. re: ankimo

                          Thanks Ankimo! I tried googling Elite and Sea Harbour in San Francisco, but I can't seem to find info on them. I'm looking for restaurants in SF, if you from LA actually. Thanks for your thoughts on the other restaurants too. That helps me alot to get points of views from different people! I hope I can help you guys later in the future for any suggestions as well!

                      2. re: ca12ol

                        Sorry Cindy, but is it Asian Pearl or Asia Pearl? There's two..one in Millbrae which is Asia Pearl and in Richmond Asian Pearl?

                        -----
                        Asian Pearl
                        3288 Pierce St, Richmond, CA 94804

                        1. re: ca12ol

                          There are three. The Richmond Asian Pearl is the smallest, I think. The newest of the three is Fremont Asian Pearl and has a much more attractive interior plus more parking.

                          -----
                          Peninsula Asian Pearl
                          1671 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA 94030

                          Asian Pearl
                          3288 Pierce St, Richmond, CA 94804

                          Fremont Asian Pearl
                          43635 Boscell Rd, Fremont, CA 94538

                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                            Wow! Thanks alot! I really like the attractive interior design one with more parking since I have alot of out of towners! Thanks so much Melanie!

                    2. re: ca12ol

                      If food matters you'd want to head out to Millbrae or one of the other suburbs where the food is much better. Foodwise, holding your wedding banquet in SF Chinatown would be like having it in L.A. Chinatown instead of Monterey Park, San Gabriel or Alhambra. Another Millbrae possibility is Hong Kong Flower Lounge.

                      http://www.projectwedding.com/vendor/...

                      -----
                      Hong Kong Flower Lounge
                      51 Millbrae Ave, Millbrae, CA 94030

                      1. re: Chandavkl

                        Wow it really does seem like Millbrae is the spot, Chandavki! Your true expertise is highly appreciated!! :)

                  2. Far East Cafe, Grant Ave, SF. fareastcafest.com. I've attended two weddings and a Red Egg & ginger party at this venue. Good luck!

                    -----
                    Far East Cafe
                    631 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94108

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: joisey al

                      Ohhh Wow! That's a new place! You really helped me out! :)

                      1. re: ca12ol

                        Far East Cafe was the first Chinese restaurant in SF Chinatown I ever ate at, back almost 50 years ago. I think it falls in a similar category as Empress of China and Four Seas, i.e., the primary attraction being the capacity of the restaurant and its location in SF Chinatown.

                        -----
                        Empress of China
                        838 Grant Ave Ste 5, San Francisco, CA 94108

                        Far East Cafe
                        631 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94108

                        Four Seas
                        731 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94108

                        1. re: Chandavkl

                          Oh I see Chandavkl Roomy spots are always nice. I hate being soo cramped up in the room! You're the best!

                          1. re: ca12ol

                            As you can tell I'm not too keen on banquets in SF Chinatown since the food quality differential is so great. However in the interest of full disclosure let me throw out one other consideration. I've traveled from LA to SF to a number of banquets in SF Chinatown in which a lot of other guests were also from LA. I'm pretty sure SF Chinatown was chosen (and Gold Mountain on Broadway was usually the venue) due to the proximity to the Royal Pacific Motel on Broadway in Chinatown. The Royal Pacific is a decent motel where room rates might be as much as 50 percent less than the major downtown hotels, and is short walking distance to the banquet venues. It also has free parking for guests, which is great for those of us who drive up from LA.

                            -----
                            Gold Mountain Restaurant
                            644 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

                            1. re: Chandavkl

                              That is very helpful! I was thinking about next inquiring about room blocks for my guests stay. Thanks for pointing me to that direction also! I guess the location depends on my final pick of venue..UGH! :)

                    2. I am surprised no one has mentioned South Sea Seafood Village. It is an attractive place in the Outer Sunset in San Francisco, reachable easily by Muni (J line) from downtown hotels. I have seen them do huge weddings taking over the whole place with maybe 200 or more people and I have seen 5 table weddings. There is an upstairs balcony which could be private for maybe 6 tables.

                      They do seafood well (with tanks of all kinds of live fish). I have even been to a banquet there. Good Hong Kong chefs. Very nice and competent management. Altogether, one of our favorite places.

                      Prices are variable (depending on how much sharks fin, etc.) but are probably in the same range as the Millbrae places and San Gabriel down your way. In fact, this place is very similar to some of the seafood places in San Gabriel.

                      Good luck.

                      -----
                      South Sea Seafood Village
                      1420 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Thomas Nash

                        Yes, this is one of the more aesthetic banquet sized restaurants, but is parking a problem? Perhaps the Milbrae branch might be better in that regard.

                        1. re: Chandavkl

                          Actually I don't think parking is that bad on that part of Irving. The restaurant may even have suggestions - maybe a valet parking arrangement for a big party. Better idea would be for those in a downtown hotel to take the thrilling Muni N Judah ride.

                          1. re: Thomas Nash

                            If i like that spot, I'll definately inquire about parking prvilages! Thanks guys!

                        2. re: Thomas Nash

                          Oh I see! I am a BIG seafood fan indeed! Both my fiance and I are actually! I like the idea of the attractive look of this spot. I will check this out most definately! Thanks so much for your feedback. Thomas!
                          Chandavki, if only you were my wedding planner :)

                          1. re: Thomas Nash

                            My former company hosted our Chinese New Year party there, and the food was quite good. I have been to maybe 6 or so Chinese banquets (social events, but not weddings) at different locations and this was the nicest looking room by far.

                            1. re: manraysky

                              Hi Manraysky! Are you talking about South Sea Seafood Village by chance?

                              -----
                              South Sea Seafood Village
                              195 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA 94030

                              1. re: ca12ol

                                Sorry for the late reply!

                                Your link goes to a place in Millbrae. The restaurant I'm talking about is in the Inner Sunset neighborhood of San Francisco. Same name, though.
                                http://www.southseaseafoodvillage.com/

                                1. re: manraysky

                                  No worries..Thank you! I will check out the link now :)

                          2. Someone already mentioned it, but I would recommend Hong Kong East Ocean in Emeryville. It's just across the Bay Bridge from SF, has a great water view, and free parking. Parking is much easier than anywhere in SF proper. I don't know how it compares on costs... we had both of our Red Egg & Ginger parties there for our sons and had good experiences.

                            (Just to brag, my husband and I were married in the '90s at the Palace of Fine Arts in SF and our wedding party drove across the Golden Gate -- very dramatic! -- to the now defunct but then beautiful North Sea Village restaurant in Sausalito. Great banquet, and a wonderful day.)

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: bemused42

                              Cool! When you guys double pick a spot, I love it cuz it eliminates my MANY choices! Thanks for giving me your feedback! I love the free parking idea since we will be having alot of out of town guests. Thanks for pointing that out!
                              WOW Your wedding sounds amazing! OH wow what beautiful pictures I could imagine..since i'm a wedding photographer! If only i could afford just a wedding also :)

                            2. You haven't said how large a place you need. Many of those mentioned in this thread seat less than 300.

                              13 Replies
                              1. re: Melanie Wong

                                Only Asian Pearl in Fremont can seat 300 the other two would be less than 200. If more then 250 I think none of the ones in Millbare will do. Only one in the Peninsula would be ABC in Foster City and the food is just OK.

                                Fu Lam Moon in Mountain View will seat 250 if they give all of it.

                                South Sea Seafood does 150 only.

                                If you go over 300 only San Francisco Chinatown and Great San Jose will seat that many.

                                Cost and food are things you have to think on.

                                -----
                                Asian Pearl
                                3288 Pierce St, Richmond, CA 94804

                                Fu Lam Moon Restaurant
                                40460 Albrae St, Fremont, CA 94538

                                1. re: yimster

                                  Zen Peninsula can seat 36-38 tables, depending on whether they want a dance "floor" or not.

                                  1. re: Cindy

                                    Zen Pen does a huge business this way - when you're down there on a weekend morning, the projectors and podium are still out from the weddings. 36-38 seems right, which is comfortably over 300.

                                    1. re: bbulkow

                                      http://www.zenpeninsula.com/redegg1.htm

                                      If you can start your reception @ 2:30 or 3:00PM in the afternoon, ZP has an unbeatable deal on 10 course banquets for tables of 10. I had both of my sons' 1 year bdays there in the past 3 years, and the $198 menu is good quality and quantity. Even if you start later, I'd daresay that ZP will still be tough to beat price-wise.

                                      1. re: Eugene Park

                                        The official wedding banquets seem to range from $468 to $698 per table at ZP. At "pricey" Yank Sing, the range is $550-$898. Koi Palace's banquet menu is $568-$778.

                                        1. re: nocharge

                                          Wow No charge! I I just got the price so far for Yank Sing and you aren't kidding. I think i'm gonna try for the other choices. Thanks!

                                          -----
                                          Yank Sing
                                          49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                        2. re: Eugene Park

                                          I'm down for that my korean brother! Thanks for the special deal info! My wallet is pretty happy right now thinking about that. Thanks Alot! :)

                                        3. re: bbulkow

                                          Thanks Cindy and Bbulkow! That's alot of tables! We definately need a dance floor :)

                                        4. re: Cindy

                                          That's plenty Cindy! Thanks! :)

                                        5. re: yimster

                                          The old Fook Yuen space that South Sea Seafood Village took over had a private banquet room upstairs so capacity should be larger than 150, if it's still in use. No elevator for the seniors though.

                                          -----
                                          South Sea Seafood Village
                                          195 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA 94030

                                          1. re: Melanie Wong

                                            Oh nice! I'll make sure to ask them Melanie! It's ok...its better to work off the meal since it's a million courses hahahaah! I care about my guest's health too :)

                                          2. re: yimster

                                            Thanks very much Yimster! I just saw Fu Lam Mum...looks nice! It sucks that South Sea only allows 150...that's like only my side of the family ugh! Trust me...i'm thinking too much about the costs right now. Thanks for pointing that out to me. VERY helpful! :)

                                          3. re: Melanie Wong

                                            Well the guest list is not yet finished, but approx. 250-300? I'm trying to cut it down to 200-250 at MOST. When i go check out the different venues, I'll ask that first. Thanks for letting me know!