Monday, July 8, 2013

Happy Chinese Restaurant moving to new downtown location

Jay and Lily Li inside the downtown location where they hope to move their Happy Chinese Restaurant this fall. The space is at 504 Shoup Avenue, across B Street from Idaho Mountain Trading Co.
Jay and Lily Li came to Idaho Falls from Rexburg in 2003 to take over Happy Chinese Restaurant, on Park Avenue.

When it came time to find a new location that would give them more kitchen space, they didn't want to leave downtown. But it wasn't until last year, when the space formerly occupied by the Grand Victorian Wedding Chapel became available, that they put their moving plans in motion.

"People know we're downtown, so we want to stay downtown," she said.

For those of you who go way back, the property at 504 Shoup Avenue used to be the Montgomery Ward building.

In the new location, which they hope to open in November after a top-to-bottom makeover, they will have 5,000 square feet, nearly twice what they've had at their longtime location. The space will be about evenly split between the restaurant area seating 135 and the kitchen, Lily Li said.

"We will have better updated equipment for cooking," she said.