(Vancouver, BC)  February 28, 2012 – Lea and Justin Ault of Vancouver’s Hapa Izakaya restaurant group are pleased to announce the opening of a Hapa Izakaya in the Coal Harbour neighbourhood, on Wednesday, March 7, 2012.  The transformation is already under way at 909 West Cordova (Waterfront Centre), at their former Hapa Umi restaurant location, across the street from the Vancouver Convention Centre.

Hapa Umi, opened as a higher-end, “sister” restaurant to Vancouver’s famed Hapa Izakayas, in March of 2011.

Over the past year, critics and guests alike have praised Hapa Umi for its wide range of exceptional Japanese and Japanese-inspired dishes including a large selection of Ocean WiseÔ sustainable sashimi and sushi favorites.  After listening to a great deal of guest feedback, however, the Aults felt there was an even greater, unmet demand for an izakaya-style restaurant in the Coal Harbour area.

Since Hapa prides itself on exceeding the needs and expectations of its guests, the Aults felt it was appropriate to adapt and transform the upscale Hapa Umi into a Hapa Izakaya and offer guests the experience that the Hapa brand name is known for.

The Coal Harbour menu will offer all of the Hapa favourites, from satisfying Ishi-Yaki with ground pork, tomato, chive, lettuce and egg in a hot stone bowl, to delectably light AAA Beef Tataki drizzled in sesame-chili sauce, as well as Ocean Wise seafood forward dishes inspired by kaiseki trained, executive chef Nobu Watanabe.

Hapa’s well-edited lunch menu promises the corporate crowd efficient elegance, from Edamame Ravioli and Tempura Oysters, to Polenta Fries and Short Rib Lettuce Wraps. Hapa Izakaya Coal Harbour will offer great value with most dishes priced between $8 and $12.

The 150-seat restaurant spans a large bar, lounge, and private dining room, and in warmer months, a 50-seat patio. This sleek and modern room is outfitted with textured fabrics, luminous tiles, warm walnut finishes, and sexy leather seating overlooking the vibrant harbour.

Hapa Umi will have its final dinner service on Saturday, March 3. The location will reopen as Hapa Izakaya Coal Harbour for dinner at 5pm on Wednesday, March 7, with lunch service beginning on Monday, March 12.

The Hapa team is excited about these changes and is confident that the switch over will be well received by its long-time regulars, as well as the thriving visitor and business crowds in the area.

For more information, please visit HapaIzakaya.com or follow @HapaIzakaya on Twitter. 

About Hapa Izakaya

When Lea and Justin Ault introduced Hapa in 2003 they exploded the izakaya concept in Vancouver.  Hapa Izakaya’s winning combination of a sexy room, well-priced portions of Japanese tapas, cocktails and premium sake took the city by storm; Hapa set the bar high for the host of contenders that followed. In 2010 Hapa was the first izakaya to join the Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Wise™ seafood conservation program and one of only a handful of Japanese restaurant partners in the program to date. Hapa Izakaya’s Kitsilano and Robson locations are open daily from 5:30; the Yaletown location is open from 5pm. Hapa Izakaya Coal Harbour will be open Monday-Friday from 11:30am and from 5pm on Saturdays.