Monday, October 15, 2012

Buckhead's 'bout to get a 'lil Bustier

Atlanta-based Hooters is looking to bring the battle of the breastaurant to Buckhead.

Hooters is in discussions to take about half of the current The Container Store space at Peachtree and Piedmont Roads at Buckhead Square 1 in the heart of Buckhead.  The Container Store is moving to their new, two-level store in the former Borders Books & Music next month about a mile north at Buckhead Triangle.  Their current space is roughly 23,000 square feet, of which Hooters plans to take approximately about half.  Potomac, Marland-based Total Wine had previously been in discussions to take over the entire space but those talks fell apart long ago. 

The Container Store is scheduled to close their current space November 4th, and reopen in the new store  November 10.  Atlanta-based Selig Enterprises owns both their current and future shopping centers and lists the prospective Hooters space as available December 12th.  If all goes well, this timeline would seem to suggest that Hooters could open in late spring, given the lengthy process of turning an older retail space into a full service restaurant. 

I say if all goes well as Selig did face community backlash when V-103 morning show co-host Frank Ski proposed a lounge called  "Kolor Bar & Lounge" to be located on the rear of Buckhead Square 2.  The proposed "lounge" was seen as by many as no more than a nightclub and the proposal was repeatedly rejected by the neighborhood zoning committee.  Frank Ski eventually gave up the fight and last year opened Frank Ski's, a restaurant and lounge, in south Buckhead. 

Addison, Texas-based Twin Peaks via its Atlanta franchise partner La Cima Restaurants, LLC opened the first of many planned southeast  locations in Buckhead earlier this year at Tower Place.  The two-level Buckhead Twin Peaks functions as the southeast flagship for the restaurant chain.  Many of La Cima's top brass are former Hooters executives including Joseph Hummel, Chief Operating Officer, who was Executive Vice President of Operations and Purchasing for Hooters of America LLC for eight years.  Additionally, Coby Brooks, son of longtime Hooters owner Bob Brooks, later joined Hummel at La Cima.

A federal lawsuit filed by Hooters against Hummel and La Cima last year was settled out-of-court earlier this year with both calling the settlement a win for their respective companies.  Coby Brooks, now President & CEO of La Cima, had a rather humorous quote following the case's closure.

 "La Cima's partners have over 117 years of combined Hooters restaurant experience. We don't need their documents -- we wrote them."

For its part, Hooters launched a new marketing campaign in early August in an attempt to boost the number of female patrons.  The company is also introducing 30 new burger, salad and chicken wing menu items.  A new advertising campaign was also launched with two finger puppet owls, one "angel owl", the other "devil owl."  The finger puppet pairs are featured in print, digital and video advertising including a rather well placed billboard on the south side of Piedmont Road, just before Twin Peaks.

Clearly, there is still bad blood between the two businesses and this is just the latest but surely not the last turf war we will see fought between the breastaurants.

Are two breastaurants too much for Buckhead?  Will Hooters succeed in courting more female customers?   Will Hooters lose its appeal if it becomes too tame and family friendly?  What do you think?  Please share your thoughts in the comment section below. 

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Both paces probably will do well with a lunchtime crowd of businessmen, but I am not seeing any reason why women would go to Hooters just because they serve salads. The restaurant is still noisy and TV saturated, not to mention the skeezy servers in pantyhose. (as a dude, I happen to like all that stuff BTW) Bottom line, Hooters has little to attract women, unless they happen to like greasy bar food.

Seriously, their wings are not that good.

Anonymous said...

I consider Hooters to be a lower-class breastaurant. I hope they do not open in Buckhead, especially at that prime location.

TheJohnPt said...

So Hooters is going for round 2 in Buckhead? Hopefully they'll plan to stick around this time.

Anonymous said...

Dumbest tv advertising I have ever seen. Adios.