The creative force behind the Del Paso Design District is Andrea Lepore, founder and principal of Lepore Development. Lepore created the vision and concept for the district and is driving the branding and development strategy.
A local area product and graduate of UC Davis, Lepore developed, designed, project managed, and is the creative director for the $2M HOT ITALIAN concept opened in February, 2009 and co-operates the successful pizza and panini bar, which became the first LEED Certified (Silver) restaurant in the Sacramento region and first restaurant in California selected as a “Bicycle Friendly Business” by the League of American Bicyclists.
Under Lepore’s creative direction, in a difficult economic environment, HOT ITALIAN boasts sales increasing at a rate of 15% annually and rave reviews from the community and critics for the restaurant’s quality, original events, and brand strength, turning a dilapidated building and corner into a thriving community hub. Based on the success of the flagship location, HOT ITALIAN opened the brand’s second location in Emeryville’s Public Market in the Spring of 2012.
Lepore served on the “For Art’s Sake” Leadership Team for Film Festivals during the initiative's first year in 2011 and now leads the "Buy Local" group. After bringing the international Bicycle Film Festival to Sacramento for the first time in it’s 10-year history, creating the Modern Italian Film Festival, and launching the HOT LUNCH Concert Series in Fremont Park, HOT ITALIAN was nominated by the Arts & Business Council for Business Support of the Arts Award for two consecutive years, and took home the locally prestigious award in 2011.
With over 16 years of prominent marketing, public relations, and brand development experience creating successful campaigns for professional athletes, Lepore spent a decade with the Sacramento Kings and Monarchs organization and was awarded the 2004 “Innovator of the Year” by the National Association of Women Business Owners. As founder of the nations first cause-related sports marketing firm for six years, Lepore assisted the then-new burrito chain, Chipotle, expand throughout Northern California.
Lepore Development, whose involvement and interest in the historical Grand Theatre in the Del Paso Design District began in 2006, and is providing the concept creation, operations team, design and creative direction, branding and marketing strategy, project management, and fund-raising to the $3M GFH project and will serve as the managing member of the Grand Film House, LLC entity once it is legally formed in California.
HOT ITALIAN is an original, design-driven brand blending pizza with art, music, style, and sport. Lepore Development turned a dilapidated building and corner into a thriving community hub and successful, inspirational business in a difficult, depressed economic environment. HOT ITALIAN become the first in the region and only the third restaurant in California to achieve LEED Certification (Silver, September, 2010) and was named a “Bicycle Friendly Business” (the first restaurant in California) by the League of American Bicyclists in March, 2011. The 6,070 square foot building was a neglected, vacant property for over three years on a high-profile corner at the gateway to California’s Capital. Based on the success of the flagship location, HOT ITALIAN opened the brand’s second location in Emeryville’s Public Market in the Spring of 2012.
Lepore drives HOT ITALIAN’s mission to make money while making a difference through the brand’s initiatives partner- ing with local art and music organizations and through social media, niche marketing, and original events, such as HOT LUNCH Concert Series and the Modern Italian Film Festival. Lepore co-brands HOT ITALIAN with like-minded, design-driven retail companies like FIAT, Vespa, PUBLIC Bikes (founder of Design Within Reach), and Rickshaw Bagworks (founder of Timbuk2).
After bringing the international Bicycle Film Festival to Sacramento for the first time in it’s 10-year history, creating the Moderno Italiano Festival, and launching the HOT LUNCH Concert Series in Fremont Park, HOT ITALIAN was nominated by the Arts & Business Council for Business Support of the Arts Award for two consecutive years, and took home the locally prestigious award in 2011.
The creative force behind the Del Paso Design District is Andrea Lepore, founder and principal of Lepore Development. Lepore created the vision and concept for the district and is driving the branding and development strategy. In California's Capital City, a dynamic, new Design District is in progress. Innovative entrepreneurs have created a development plan supported by the creative class to re-build a district destination neighborhood like not other in the region. The neighborhood originally surrounding a stretch of Highway 40 flourished in the Art Deco era with design and architecture from the 1920s through the 1940s, and including the post-war modern era. The development of the suburbs and a new freeway killed the vibrant neighborhood. By fostering a dense, diverse and walkable environment and furthering the unique character and assets of the area, the Del Paso Design District is a new community for design, digital (graphics, web, signage, and architecture) and light manufacturing businesses, part of an exciting mix of creative enterprises.
The Ray Hotel
Legendary late designer and Sacramento native Ray Eames, is the inspiration and namesake of The Ray Hotel project. The Greens Hotel (originally the Arden Motel) is getting a make-over and rebranded as The Ray. Although her work at Eames Office is well-known for innovations to modern architecture, furniture, films, toys, photography and exhibition design, Ray remains largely overlooked in history or frequently mistaken for her husband and business partner Charles' brother. Ray's place in history as one of the 20th century’s most influential but largely unknown artists who broke barriers for women in multiple creative fields and inspire visitors to explore their own creativity through a new display of artifacts from her prolific career as well as new furniture and fixtures designed by Eames Office and produced to this day (and relevant as displayed in every design magazine every month) by Herman Miller. Other Eames-inspired elements and events will capture the spirit of Ray, embody her vast talents in fabrics and fashion, art, film, photography, and furniture and accessory design, and signify the first place in her hometown to bear her name.
Grand Film House
Grand Film House (GFH), built in the historic Grand Theater on Del Paso Boulevard, will be unlike any other establishment in the Sacramento region. The concept involves an independently owned and operated movie theater serving a full menu, including drinks, while customers watch current movies. Also offering an exciting mix of festivals, special screenings, classics, sing-a-longs, and past popular movies with wide appeal, this concept has the potential to serve as the catalyst for the Del Paso Boulevard redevelopment efforts by the City of Sacramento.
The original Grand Theater opened in 1943 and closed in 1960. This post-war era was considered the “Birth of the Cool” and was inspired in part by the parallels between modernist architecture and the West Coast hard-edge paintings. The painting, architecture, furniture design, metalwork, textiles, graphic arts, film, and music that launched mid-century modernism in California, will all be embodied in the design of the GFH.
© Lepore Development, LLC