Sunday, December 30, 2012

IHOP Shutters its Buckhead Restaurant

Despite closing on Christmas Eve, IHOP Buckhead still decorated for Christmas

Franchisee Joe Scripture has closed his longstanding Buckhead IHOP restaurant.

The Buckhead IHOP restaurant stands at the corner of Peachtree Road and Sardis Way in the heart of Buckhead and has been a landmark for visitors and residents alike. A sign posted on the restaurant thanks patrons for "19 wonderful years" and directs diners to the IHOP in Chamblee. The restaurant's iconic "A Frame" structure dates back to the chain's early years of the mid 60s and is no longer used today.  Newer IHOPs that have opened in the metro are in Chamblee and Midtown sport a more modern, open dining room, offering a more spacious interior.

Glendale, California-based IHOP is owned by DineEquity, a company created following IHOP's 2007 acquisition of Applebee's Bar & Grill.  Over the past few years, IHOP has relaxed its franchise structure and now allows for franchisees to pick their own locations.  This change has allowed for Scripture and his partners to continue their metro expansion plans through which they currently operate numerous locations in Cobb, Fulton and as well as the City of Atlanta.

Sources tell me that nearby Bank of America owns the IHOP land, and had for the past few months been offering IHOP a month to month lease.  With the offer on the table to continue for another year-long lease but likely nothing concrete thereafter, Scripture opted to close up shop and dedicate his time and resources to his other locations. 

Scripture is an award winning franchisee with IHOP and his 24 hour Buckhead location was a sales leader in his franchise group.

It will be interesting to what happens to the parcel, considering Ben Carter paid $16.5 million, or $498 per square foot, for the former HiFi Buys site at 3135 Peachtree Road, basically across the street from IHOP.  Of course Ben Carter paid this astronomical amount back in 2007, at the height of the market, and at a time when he was paying well above market value for a number of parcels in preparation for his since scaled back and renamed Buckhead project.  Originally  "Buckhead Avenues", later called "The Streets of Buckhead, "  the project was purchased in mid 2011 by San Diego-based OliverMcMillan which has since renamed it "Buckhead Atlanta."  With little visible work having been done on the mega project, OliverMicMillan currently says a scaled down version of the original project will be completed towards the end of 2013 or early 2014.

I'm told Bank of America may be in talks to sell the IHOP parcel to a developer for an apartment or condo complex but that nothing is set in stone.  Camden Property Trust is hard at work redeveloping the former The Paces apartments on East Andrews, while nearby apartments at 92 West Paces Road near completion.  Also, The Elle of Buckhead is currently leasing and 550 Pharr Road is being converted from office condos to apartments. 

One thing is for sure, IHOP will not be reopening and you will have to go to one of Buckhead's four Waffle House restaurants for cheap, casual breakfast any time of day. 

When will Buckhead have enough condos and apartments?  What would you like to see happen to the former IHOP?  Where is your favorite place for breakfast in Buckhead.?  Please share your thoughts in the comment sections below. 


mindspringyahoo said...

I'm kind of baffled. Why is he closing it if it's a sales leader? Or is it far from being a profit leader (due to rent)?

Atlantan99 said...

IHOP Buckhead did well and was one of the most successful in the metro but given the likelihood that in about a years time they would have to close, the owners opted to go ahead and call it quits. I'm sure the lease factored in to their decision given they could probably do more development otp and invest in newer projects.

Hope this helps.

Thanks for reading and happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

It kills me that they're just gonna set up more apartments around the space. I understand Buckhead is a desirable area but CMON! Places like Dante's doesn't need to be wrecked just so property companies can charge people $2K/month for a closet sized apartment. I'm so over it.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure Buckhead can sustain another new apartment development given the current pipeline. I'm also tired of apartments just being plopped down wherever with no sense of place. If more apartments are to be built in Buckhead it needs to be on that giant plot of land at E. Paces Ferry and Roxboro.

Anonymous said...

Why would anyone want to live there without an IHOP?

atl2arctic said...

Bank of America does not own the property, nor do they own the bank property. The 1.5 acre tract is a NNN Ground lease.

atl2arctic said...

Bank of America does not own the IHOP. Nor does BnA own their own bank building. The 1.5 acre property is a NNN Ground Lease with Bank of America as the primary tenant and then having subleasing rights to the IHOP building.

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