After a devastating fire that resulted in a total loss of the future location of beloved Santa Clara restaurant China Delight on Stevens Creek Boulevard, Santa Clarans began wondering if they would ever have the opportunity to see owner Lisa Chung and dine at the restaurant again. But, as luck would have it, just months after the fire, Chung was provided with an opportunity she couldn’t refuse and jumped at the chance to take over the closing 456 Chinese Restaurant on Pruneridge Avenue.
Just minutes from the shuttered China Delight location on Homestead Road near the Santa Clara City Library, Chung heard through friends and customers that the 456 Chinese Restaurant owner, Bonnie Chen, was ready to retire despite having seven years remaining on her lease. Chung’s business was shuttered for nearly a year as she had sold her Bollinger Road location and was preparing to open at the former By-th’-Bucket property that was destroyed by a fire. So it made sense for her to move into the 456 Chinese Restaurant space.
Chung said that with a little help from her family she was able to come up with the funding necessary to take over the closing restaurant. Within a month, China Delight, which opened Nov. 1, was back to serving Santa Clarans some of their favorite dishes.
“I’m lucky,” she said. “I got my brother-in-law to help me with money and that’s why we were able to get this location and open quickly. The only thing I don’t like is the parking spots. There isn’t enough parking.”
The kitchen, however, was already properly equipped and Chung said she only made minor cosmetic changes, like putting in new kitchen tiles, before opening with the same kitchen staff that worked behind-the-scenes at the previous location.
“I did some remodeling,” she said. “I just cleaned up and remodeled the kitchen. We have the same cooks and same staff.”
China Delight’s menu remains exactly the same as it was at both the Homestead Road and Bollinger Road locations. Chung said she is delighted to finally be back within the Santa Clara community, seeing her customers and serving the food they’ve come to love.
“I’m so happy to see all my regular customers and everyone after so long,” said Chung. “I was at Homestead since 1992 and I was so unhappy when we lost the lease. I thought Bollinger would be quicker because we were able to take over, but it was a little bit far for a lot of my customers.
“I’m just so happy,” she continued. “I’m glad to stay in the Santa Clara neighborhood and have the support of the neighborhood.”
China Delight is at 2362 Pruneridge Avenue (at Saratoga Avenue) in Santa Clara and Chung said signs will be up as soon as she receives approval from the City. The restaurant is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. until 9 p.m., although Chung said that early next year she will likely close one day a week to spend time with her husband. For more information call (408) 985-8456.