May 23rd, 2007 5:33 pm | by KELLY CLARKE News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP

Gracie's owner ousted, but the burger stays!


What a difference a day makes. Last night, Greg Schillinger was the owner of Gracie's Restaurant and the beloved Driftwood Room, the lobby dining room and bar of the Hollywood-themed Hotel deLuxe.

But in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, papers terminating his lease for the restaurant space showed up on the doorstep of his home in Forest Heights. Provenance Hotels/Aspen Group, which owns Portland's Hotel Lucia in addition to deLuxe, tossed the restaurant owner out on his keister, keeping the hotel restaurant and bar for themselves.

Schillinger says that he was "behind on rent," for the space, which he would only term as “really expensive” for Portland. He was in the process of renegotiating the lease for the restaurant and bar operation with Provenance Hotels/Aspen Group, during the past month.

“I don't wanna be a sour lemons guy,” says Schillinger, who also owns Portland's Paddy's Bar and Grill. “I had a meeting set with [Provenance Group president] Gordon Sondland for Friday at 2:30 pm. I guess that's not happening.”

Aspen/Provenance publicist Dina Nishioka confirmed that Schillinger no longer owns Gracie's and the Driftwood Room but declined to provide any details regarding the shake up. One question she would answer was whether the Driftwood would be open for drinks and its newly famed $22 burger tonight: “Yes, both of those business will stay open,” says Nishioka. “The executive chef [Scott Shampine] is still remaining as well as the entire staff. The only person out is Greg.”

Gracie's was known as the beloved Mallory Hotel Dining Room for decades before the Portland-based Provenance/Aspen bought the Mallory Hotel and rebranded it as deLuxe last year. Although original reviews of chef Dylyn Coolidge's grub were underwhelming when the restaurant opened in May 2006 locals loved the new smoke-free Driftwood Room. The dining room got a boost in January when lauded chef Scott Shampine ditched his post at the Pearl District's Olea to helm the hotel restaurant operation.

WW will update this post as more info becomes available. In the meantime, don't forget to pay your room bill, Hotel deLuxe patrons. The management means business.

Photo: Chef Scott Shampine and his $22 burger.
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