Ghirardelli Chocolate Company Reopens Renovated Original Chocolate & Ice Cream Shop

by Katie Lee

Photos courtesy of Albert Law

San Leandro, Calif. — Ghirardelli Chocolate Company will reopen its flagship store, the Original Ghirardelli Chocolate & Ice Cream Shop, at Ghirardelli Square in San Francisco, on July 13, 2023. After a 6-month renovation of the historic building, the store celebrates Ghirardelli’s history and craftmanship as a U.S. chocolate pioneer and the company’s legacy in San Francisco dating back to the 1850s. The new design features North America’s largest flowing chocolate wall, the original, 19-foot “G” from the historic marque Ghirardelli sign, a replica San Francisco cable car that doubles as a seating area, antique chocolate making equipment on display and much more.

“We can’t wait for the public to experience our redesigned iconic flagship store at Ghirardelli Square. This shop is located where in the 1960s we first served what is now our World Famous Hot Fudge Sundae,” says Joel Burrows, Ghirardelli’s president and CEO. “After being 171 years in business in San Francisco, we are proud of our deep roots in the city. We remain committed to helping Bay Area visitors and locals alike create sweet memories with their families and friends for many more chocolate-loving generations to come.”

Introduced in 1966, the Original Chocolate and Ice Cream Shop was Ghirardelli’s first location that focused on sundaes. When it reopens, the menu will feature 15 different sundaes, including Ghirardelli’s World-Famous Hot Fudge Sundae. Additionally, the renovated store format will showcase other fountain and bakery favorites like milkshakes, hot chocolate, brownies, cookies and chocolate covered strawberries.

Among other elements of the elevated retail experience, visitors will get to enjoy a redesigned Pick n’ Mix space where they can customize souvenirs featuring their favorite Ghirardelli chocolate squares. The new space also embraces Ghirardelli’s rich San Francisco history with a tiled mural of the San Francisco skyline on the second floor, as well as vintage Ghirardelli advertisements in the warmly vibrant Sun Room.

Guests will be able to see the original, 19-foot Ghirardelli “G” up close. The Ghirardelli marquee sign, an icon that many travelers and locals identify with San Francisco, turns 100 this year. Aside from being rewired and outfitted with efficient, low-wattage bulbs, the sign components look just as they did in 1923, when illuminated displays were much more novel. Today’s sign is equipped with a Color Kinetics LED system that enables each letter to independently display a variety of colors.

The Original Ghirardelli Chocolate & Ice Cream Shop redesign is the second part of a multi-phased renovation project for the brand at Ghirardelli Square. Last year, the company unveiled a completely reimagined Chocolate Experience Store, Ghirardelli’s other flagship retail space at Ghirardelli Square. The store concepts and design of the multi-phase renovation project have been led by Bay Area firm Eight Inc.

Founded in San Francisco in 1852 and now part Lindt & Sprüngli, the global leader in premium chocolate, Ghirardelli is one of the few large-scale U.S. chocolate companies that controls the entire manufacturing process, from cocoa bean sourcing and production to finished product. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Ghirardelli Chocolate Company

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