Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Bits & Bites [Atlanta Commercial Real Estate News]

Su's Chinese Cuisine at Ansley Square was shut down last week by The Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness Environmental Health Services.  The restaurant, located around the corner from Ansley Mall on Piedmont Avenue, has a track record of seesaw health scores: they fail miserably, then improve, then fail again the next time. This past August 10th, they scored 57, then two weeks later on August 26th, they scored 93. A sign posted on the restaurant's front door reads: "We're closed for remodeling. Sorry for the inconvenience."  

ToNeTo Atlanta readers indicate that this is at least the third time the restaurant has been forced to close due to health code violations.  A Yelp.com user who left the restaurant a one star review on April 13th indicates the restaurant's "sanitation score" was a 36. Overall, Su's has a three star rating on Yelp.  While the restaurant remains closed to patrons, local sources indicate the restaurant removed the notice in their window from the health department and continues to make deliveries, seemingly making use of the kitchen, seemingly circumventing the closure.

Sweet Charlie's, a new Thai-style rolled ice cream franchise which recently opened its first Atlanta area location in Buckhead, has another location in the works.  The next location, slated for McDonough, is not being opened by the Buckhead franchisee.

Online retailer eBay recently informed sellers it will be shutting down its half.com subsidiary August 31.  Half.com, like the early days of Amazon.com, was a marketplace for CDs, DVDs, books, video games and other media.  The move to close the business comes just over six months after the online retailer significantly hiked fees associated with selling on the platform, a move many saw as an indication that the end was near.  Half.com was started in 1999 by entrepreneurs Josh Kopelman and Sunny Balijepalli.  In 2000, eBay purchased the company for roughly $350 million, and integrating its flagship features (feedback ratings, user management system etc. ) into half.com.  In 2004, eBay announced it would close Half.com but ended up changing its mind and keeping it open.  This latest announcement, which came to sellers in an email late last week, is likely the result of eBay realizing they can't win against Amazon in the media marketplace.      

New to market eatery Babalu Tapas & Tacos plans to open this coming Monday, June 26 at the ALTA Midtown apartment complex.  Babalu, located at the corner of  West Peachtree Street and Peachtree Plaza, offers a menu of assorted tapas and tacos, as well as a full bar.  The are already comparisons being made between Babalu, named after the signature song of the fictional television character Ricky Ricardo, played by Desi Arnaz, in the television comedy series I Love Lucy, and Bartaco, which has three Atlanta area locations.  It's worth noting that while the menus are similar, Babalu was actually launched in Jackson, Mississippi in 2010,  the same year, but miles away from, Bartaco's launch in Port Chester, New York. Babalu, part of Jackson-based Eat Here Brands, has opened an office in Roswell which I see as laying the groundwork for further metro and regional expansion. When asked about the restaurant's expansion efforts, a company spokesperson said  “We are planning Atlanta expansion and are actively looking at sites.”  

The Wendy's on Spring Road near Cobb Parkway has been demolished and will soon be rebuilt in the brand's latest design.  

Barkers Red Hots closed yesterday, ahead of their planned closure this coming Friday.  The restaurant posted to their facebook page yesterday saying "Due to the overwhelming demand we have run through our inventory faster than expected." 

Red Lobster restaurants on Candler Road in Decatur and on Highway 78 West in Snellville are both expected to undergo interior and exterior renovations in the coming weeks.  

Chicken Salad Chick plans to open its first intown location next week in Buckhead.  The restaurant, located in the Roswell-Wieuca shopping center on Roswell Road, is slated to open next Tuesday, June 26 at 10:30AM.  

Blue Coast Burrito, based in the Nashville suburb of Brentwood, Tennessee,  is expanding to Georgia with a franchised location in the Berkeley Park retail center on Northside Drive, just off I-75.  The west coast-style quick-serve burrito joint will open in 2,308 square foot space, previously home to Rising Roll Gourmet.  Rising Roll, a locally based sandwich shop, closed early last year and relocated to the Wells Fargo Tower in Atlantic Station soon after.  An estimated $145,000 will be spent to convert/build-out the space according to a building permit on file with the City of Atlanta.  Launched in 2003, Blue Coast currently has its largest presence in Tennessee (17 locations existing/upcoming), but also has single units in Alabama and Arkansas.  Blue Coast, like other burrito eateries, offers assorted build your own burritos, tacos and salads.  One thing that separates Blue Coast is that they offer their signature “Baja Style” fish as an offering in both tacos and burritos.  The Atlanta franchise is being opened by Kathi Proctor, previously a training consultant at Chick-fil-A, and her husband Michael Proctor, who according to his LinkedIn profile, is a Senior Analyst Order Management System at The Home Depot.  Given Kathi comes from a Chick-fil-A background, one would hope the restaurant has better luck in Atlanta than Chattanooga based Mojo Burrito had.  Mojo, which closed in late 2014 after less a year in business, suffered not only from limited brand awareness, but also from a "nervous nellie" owner/manager.  Plans call for Blue Coast Atlanta to open in the fall.

A new Dairy Queen Grill & Chill eatery is planned for 900 North US 29 in Athens near the new Kroger Marketplace store.  The approximately 2,600 square foot freestanding restaurant should begin construction soon.    

A new Nothing Bundt Cakes is coming to former Radio Shack on Scenic Highway in Snellville. The 2,400 square foot space will be completely renovated to house the new bakery and should open later this fall.     

Weddington Way, a growing e-commerce company specializing in the wedding industry, plans to open just its fourth shop-in-shop physical location in Atlanta.  The store, located within the Banana Republic at Lenox Square, is slated to open this Saturday, June 24.  "The Weddington Way showroom brings to life this personalized online approach with a physical location, allowing brides and their bridesmaids hands-on access to Weddington Way’s expansive collection of on-trend, high-quality bridesmaid dresses (all under $200!) and seamless shopping experience." Weddington Way was founded in 2012 by Stanford MBA graduate Ilana Stern with the goal of  "connecting bridal parties digitally, and making the bridesmaids dress shopping experience simple, fun and collaborative."  The Atlanta opening marks the fourth Weddington Way shop-in-shop to open in a Banana Republic with other locations in San Francisco, Dallas, and Chicago, and future openings slated for New York, Los Angeles and Seattle by late July 2017.  Gap Inc., parent company of Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Athleta, purchased Weddington Way this past December for an undisclosed amount.  

Tiff's Treats plans to open its next Atlanta area location Saturday July 29th in the Sprouts Farmers Market-anchored Decatur Crossing shopping center.  The new location, the 5th in Georgia and 31st overall for the Austin Texas-based company, follows the opening earlier this month near Cumberland Mall.  I can now announce that a planned Buckhead location at which I hinted last month, has been confirmed.   The Buckhead Tiff's location will be in the ground floor retail of the new 350 unit Hanover Buckhead Village apartment complex adjacent to The Buckhead Theatre.  Sources say plans call for the Buckhead location to open "early 2018."  

Chick-fil-A will celebrate the opening of a new location in Gainesville on July 27th.  The new restaurant, the second company run store in Gainesville, is located at 1917 NE Jesse Jewell Parkway, close to the recently opened Kroger Marketplace. 

1 comment:

Jim said...

Thanks for doing a public service of letting people know about the lack of cleanliness of this shady place!