Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Bits & Bites

After 21 months, Emory Village restaurant Ink & Elm announced last night via their facebook page that they are closing.  The restaurant plans to serve until Saturday, but could close sooner, depending on food supplies.  The upscale tavern and restaurant was first announced in September 2012, and opened after about a year of renovations. (The space was previously Emory Village Flowers & Gifts and Park Bench.)  The space, designed by local firm ai3, was perhaps too trendy and upscale for the neighborhood.   Emory University is a stone's throw away, but I doubt they were adding much to the bottom line. Having just spoken with property owner Stuart Meddin earlier this week, I'd say that the closure was apparently a surprise to all.  In an adjacent space, a previously announced third location of Lucky's Burgers & Brew is progressing and should be open late this summer.  

A new Habitat for Humanity ReStore has opened in Roswell Shopping Center in Roswell.  The new 26,453-square-foot  store is the thirty-seventh location in Georgia. Roswell Shopping Center is located at 11060 Alpharetta Highway, at the southwest corner of the intersection of Alpharetta Highway and Sun Valley Drive.  

Nicole Miller plans to relocate next month from the second floor of Lenox Square to the first floor of Phipps Plaza. The new store is about the same size as the current store and will reportedly carry the same merchandise.  The current store previously moved from the first floor of the Neiman Marcus-anchored Luxury Wing to the upper floor of the same wing. The new store will be adjacent to Nordstrom and will occupy the former Rangoni Firenze shoe store.       a1080C

Also in Buckhead, Herve Leger will be relocating to Phipps Plaza from Lenox Square.  It's believed that the previously announced Escada boutique will take the place of Herve Leger, rather than the old Kate Spade as I'd previously thought.  Herve Leger will first occupy the former Versace store near Saks Fifth Avenue, but will later relocate to an as yet undisclosed permanent home.  (Versace recently relocated to a the former Juicy Couture space closer to Nordstrom.)

Drew Van Leuven & friends reportedly hope to have their new restaurant Tavern Pointe open by early July in the former LPC (La Pietra Cucina) on Peachtree Street.  

A new Ollie's Bargain Outlet is slated to celebrate its grand opening on June 10th at Wisteria Village in Snellville. The off-price general merchandise retailer has expanded their presence locally in recent years having also opened new locations in Duluth, Newnan and Stockbridge. 

Goodwill of North Georgia will open its newest thrift store & donation center June 25th at 3898 Atlanta Highway in Bogart, near Athens.  

Redefined Home Boutique plans to open a second store later this summer.  The furniture, lighting and home goods retailer, currently with a location on Howell Mill Road on the westside, will open a new location in TOWN Brookhaven in early August.  The new store will be about the same size as the existing location and will open at the corner Town Boulevard and Brookhaven Avenue, opposite Smash Kitchen & Bar.  

According to my friends at The Douglasville Menu, Milton-based Provino's Italian Restaurant plans to close its Douglasville location near Arbor Place Mall no later than June 21st. The chain of casual Italian eateries began in Atlanta in 1977, and today includes eight Georgia locations (seven after the closure) and a single location in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  The owners also operate Scalini's Italian Restaurant on Cobb Parkway, not far from SunTrust Park. Provino's previously operated a location on Satellite Boulevard in Duluth, but it has since closed.  A well placed source indicated that additional Provino's closures be in the works.  

Atlanta-based Willy's Mexicana Grill will be closing a number of their original locations over the coming weeks to renovate them and reopen them with their updated look. Debuted last year, the new Willy's interiors feature vibrant colors, mosaic tile and new flooring.   The Willy's on Roswell Road in north Buckhead plans to reopen today tomorrow while the Willy's at West Paces Ferry is slated to close in early June for about a week. Willy's locations in Vinings, Peachtree Center, Hapeville, Norcross, Midtown and Perimeter have already undergone their respective remodels.  The new Willy's look was first introduced last year at the Willy's in Cherokee Plaza in Brookhaven and later, a slightly tweaked version, at the new Willy's at North Druid Hills and Briarcliff Roads.  Roswell Road in north Buckhead was Willy's first location in 1995, today, twenty years later, the group has 25.  The most recent Willy's opened in Peachtree City.  JC Garcia, President of Willy's, tells me more locations are planned...

As previously announced, Bill Hallman has closed his location at the Shops Around Lenox in Buckhead.  Hallman plans to reopen later this year in Inman Quarter (IQ) in Inman Park.  Hallman's closure comes on the heels of the news that popular athletic retailer DEKA is closing its location in the center as well.  Women's boutique bevello closed its location at the trendy Buckhead center in March. My guess is that American Apparel will be the next to go.  

The Marietta location of Frontera Mex-Mex Grill was heavily damaged during an early morning fire yesterday morning.  Early indications are that the fire originated in the hood of the fryer.  The freestanding restaurant was located on Powers Ferry Road near Windy Hill Road.   Amazingly, the Marietta location is already gone from the Frontera website suggesting that it may not reopen.  According to the Frontera website, ownership is "working diligently" to move their Marietta staff to their other locations, of which there are twelve.    

Following my December 2014 post, EZ One Price Cleaners is officially taking over the (former) Quiznos on Cheshire Bridge Road.  The business, also known as  "$1.99 Dry Cleaners," first opened on Roswell Road in north Buckhead in 2013 and later added a second location in Sandy Springs last year, also on Roswell Road.  If you are willing to risk having your clothes damaged / remain unclean, the shop is great.  At the end of the day, it's a deal and you get what you pay for.  They will likely ultimately do well but their business practices leave a lot to be desired.  

A freestanding McDonald's restaurant on Roswell Road in Marietta has closed.  From the looks of it, the restaurant restaurant is at least 35 years old and had not completed recent renovations and upgrades.  


Anonymous said...

In addition to the McDonald's on Roswell Road closing the Chuck E Cheese in East Cobb has closed.

Anonymous said...

Looked like Bill Hallman was already open in Inman Quarter this past weekend.

Eric Smith said...

Thanks again Eli for your diligent work and reporting.

Glad to see that vacant space in Town Brookhaven now occupied. It has never been leased since the development opened several years ago. Gradually the open retail spaces are being taken although I am not sure if those to the far rear of the complex (near the new apartments) will ever have occupants.

Amy said...

bill hallman's lease was up and they did not want to renew - Bevello needed much smaller space, Deka who knows(is he keeping NYC open?) and the parking is a nightmare over there. Other stores apparently suffering some as well.

Anonymous said...

My takeaway from this article is that if anything is trendy in Atlanta, it will close.

Anonymous said...

I've never had any issues parking in the Shops Around Lenox. Now it's difficult to get to because of traffic for sure, but unless you're expecting to park directly in front of your desired store every time, you should find parking with no problem. People in this city just don't want to walk more than 5 feet.

Anonymous said...

The closings at Shops Around Lenox are interesting. I wonder if they are unique to the retailers that are closing or are indicative of larger problems with the center.

That center changed hands for a pretty penny so I would be curious to see the underwriting assumptions on some of these tenants. If American Apparel goes that could potentially be devastating. That's a big space that might take a while to backfill on top of the other spaces. If you are a "luxury" retailer and you have the Shops Around Lenox or the new shiny Buckhead Atlanta, which do you choose? There's also the massive space that Staples vacated across from Phipps, although that's a different tenant(s) profile than the other centers I mentioned.

Anonymous said...

I've heard a rumor that the owner of the little strip center attached to Smith's Olde Bar has died and the heirs have given notice to at least one of the businesses to vacate in 90 days. Any chance this is true? Would that impact Smith's?

Anonymous said...

Sad to see a Hipster Business Name Generator alumni go out of business. I can only assume that's how they came up with that name.