Legendary bougie Union Square retail emporium Gump's, which went bankrupt and closed up its doors last fall, has popped back up as a pop-up in a much smaller space that was, coincidentally, one of the store's original homes. And it's garnering some mixed reviews for its limited, mostly holiday-related inventory.
The Gump's brand name and trademarks were purchased by the Chachas family of New York for just $650,000. The family decided to test out how a smaller Gump's might fare during the Christmas shopping season, opening a 2,000-square-foot, two-room store at 250 Post Street — in a building which had been home to Gump's from 1909 to 1994, a block away from the former 17,000-square-foot store that closed in 2018. ABC 7 went inside the pop-up store over the weekend, and found plenty of expensive Christmas trinkets but not nearly the breadth of jewelry and home goods that the former Gump's carried. There are $379 nesting porcelain Santas by Limoges!
As one Yelper, Victoria S. of San Francisco, observed, "the inventory is recognizable as what was left over from the old store," though it's not clear if the Chachas acquired some of that inventory or not.
John Chachas was on the board of the former Gump's, as the Chronicle reported in October, and he and his family have said that while they're looking to bring the store back in the Bay Area, it may not be in Union Square after this four-month (or more) pop-up.
"I’m happy we’re coming back to San Francisco but we’ll decide where to go for a permanent home after the holiday season," Chachas told the paper, alluding to SF's existing challenges. "The good news is Palo Alto and Menlo Park are really quite clean and well maintained, so there are some lovely spots in the greater Bay Area that could still work for us," he said.
As Chachas told Business of Home earlier this year, "We felt the only way to really evaluate [an SF location] was to take a swing at it for four months and see if our customers are there."
Gump's maintains a web presence as well, and the company says that it maintains the same devotion to exquisite craftsmanship as it did when it opened more than 150 years ago.