Restaurant - Greenhouse - Event Space
Countless threads weave together to form the fabric of our lives. At Arcana, we bring many of these together in one place and create the first immersive urban greenhouse in San Francisco. Our wish is that you follow the threads of your passions and join us for the magical experiences at Arcana: healthy nourishments, houseplants, entertainment with local performances and art. They all weave together to give us strength, health and community.
“I feel blessed having grown up in an urban setting surrounded by arts and culture while also spending lots of time on our family farm. Genuine food, fresh air, fresh fruits from the trees, being deeply connected with nature – was a privilege for a city child like me. What I experienced in that first chapter of my life I have always dreamt of sharing with others. That is why I have created an urban greenhouse, Arcana.” - Naz Khorram, Founder
I am a queer artist activist, a trained metalsmith and a graphic designer who has fallen in love with serving people with good food, a green thumb and curated events, performances and art. After being sentenced and released as a political prisoner in 2009, I fled my country and moved to San Francisco as an Iranian asylum seeker for education and a better life in freedom. During my education at Academy of Arts University with a big hole in my pocket, I started out as a food-runner, quickly became a prep cook and worked myself through the tough restaurant industry of San Francisco. I served and bartended for many years before I moved up to being a manager in an immersive theater and later at a historic ballroom with fundraisers, weddings and corporate events. These years have been filled with learning experiences, great friends and memories that shaped and inspired me in creating Arcana.
My very first job in the Bay Area was at a flower shop, the best job of my life! My affection for living greens mirrors the comfort and peace I would seek and find only in nature. Thousands of miles away from our farm in Iran I now somehow felt that connection again. I worked with a variety of flowers and specialized in living plants and terrariums. In the farmer’s soul, there is a special appreciation for growing plants and finding nourishment. In the past few years I have experimented with indoor grow houses which is now reflected at Arcana.
Looking Back At The History
Arcana’s home at 2512 Mission Street is full of history. During our remodel, we found wallpapers behind walls with painted diamonds and jewelries and some Kay Jewelers’ playing cards with their logo on it. After doing research we now know that our building was constructed in 1923 and probably hosted a jeweller right next to the famous Kay Jeweler a couple of doors down from us. For someone like me who studied jewelry design and metal arts, how serendipitous!
In more recent history, the building hosted a shoe store called Bonita Trading Co. that was run by the kind couple, Kai & Etta Yeung. They operated it for nearly three decades before retiring in 2019. Initially we bought the shoe inventory with the building and started a liquidation sale in the fall before we closed down for remodel. Read “Shoe Shop Story” below to know more. We made sure the neighbors benefited from the liquidation sale before we donated about 7,000 pairs of shoes to Dolores Street Community Services, St. Anthony and EAH Housing.
Shoe Shop Story
Connecting The Dots
Arcana in the News
JULY 14, 2021 - How did Arcana make it to space? Okay... we didn't really make it to space, but space exploration made it to Arcana! Watch Ahmad Awais tell his story of how his open source contribution ended up on Mars
MAY 13, 2021 – Secret San Francisco: This Stunning New Plant Store Is A “Shared Living Room” For The Community
FEB 5, 2021 – Mission Local: Arcana: new art space, urban greenhouse, and restaurant call for local artists
2512 Mission Street, San Francisco, California 94110