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Breaking New Ground: Capriotti's Success in Hawaii


In franchising, few stories resonate with the harmonious blend of passion, confidence, and success as that of Chase and Soo Heu, Capriotti's first franchise partners in Hawaii. This venture, by the husband and wife duo, marked Capriotti's entry into a new market and set a precedent with record-breaking sales numbers in the first week of opening, showcasing the potential for well-loved mainland brands in the unique and vibrant Hawaiian market.

Chase's culinary adventure began with a deep dive into Italian cuisine, managing and cooking in Italian restaurants. His career expanded across various cuisines and roles, from steakhouses and coffee shops in Las Vegas to prestigious roles at major casinos like the Rio and Caesars Palace. The pinnacle of his restaurant management career came when he worked alongside Michelin chefs and Iron Chef Morimoto, opening flagship restaurants in Hawaii. This experience honed his skills and solidified his passion for the food industry.

The Venture into Franchising

The decision to venture into franchise ownership came as a moment of clarity for Chase and his wife, Soo, who also boasts an impressive resume in the food and beverage industry. With a passion for expanding their presence in the restaurant industry, they explored owning their own business, leading them to Capriotti's, a brand they both admired and had personal connections with from their time in Las Vegas.

Chase and Soo weighed the pros and cons of starting their own business versus becoming a franchise partner. They ultimately chose Capriotti's for its high-quality ingredients, family-oriented values, and strong brand reputation throughout the states. “There is nothing else out there like Capriotti’s,” says Chase. “When you eat the food, you can taste the high-quality ingredients that set it apart and make it unlike any other fast-casual restaurant. That’s why we brought it to Hawaii - Hawaii was missing something special.”

Record-Breaking Sales in Hawaii

The opening of Hawaii's first Capriotti's was a landmark event, met with enthusiasm from excited first-time customers. During the first week, Chase and Soo’s Capriotti’s witnessed record-breaking sales. The record sales in its inaugural week indicated the community's acceptance and the untapped potential for Capriotti’s to expand throughout Hawaii. “The foot traffic was not to be believed; we opened our doors on day one, and it was non-stop from morning to night,” said Chase.

Chase and Soo’s success can be attributed to several key factors. First, their meticulous preparation and deep understanding of the local market allowed them to adapt Capriotti's offerings to suit local tastes while maintaining the brand's core values. Second, their commitment to quality and customer service quickly helped build a loyal customer base. And finally, their active engagement with the community and their efforts to integrate Capriotti's into the fabric of Hawaiian life played a crucial role in their success.

“We weave in the Hawaiian culture in our restaurant, we play authentic music, and sometimes employees wear and pass out leis,” said Chase. “We are all about building a positive culture - making the experience for both employees and customers inviting and positive.”

Success in an Untapped Market

Chase and Soo Heu's Capriotti's franchise is more than a business; it's a restaurant that demonstrates the power of combining a proven business and franchise model with local market understanding and a passion for food. It is a promising example for aspiring franchise partners, showcasing that breaking into a new market can be successful and set new records with the right approach.

As Chase and Soo continue to build on their initial success, their story serves as a beacon for entrepreneurs looking to navigate the challenges of franchise ownership in new markets through a trusted and reputable brand. With their trailblazing entry into Hawaii, they've expanded Capriotti's footprint and enriched the local food scene, proving that success is inevitable with the right mix of ingredients.



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