Thursday, May 23, 2013

Brunswick Rolling Out New Bowling Concept in Atlanta

Lake Forest, Illinois-based Brunswick Corporation will open its first two Brunswick's later this year in Marietta and Norcross.

Brunswick's, and its inhouse restaurant Tavern '45, will open in place of existing Brunswick Zone bowling alleys on Delk Road (Marietta) and Spalding Drive (Norcross). 

The Marietta location is scheduled to open in mid-June followed by the Norcross location in mid-July. 

The name Tavern '45 comes from the fact that the Brunswick Corporation dates from 1845.

Each of the 40,000 square foot locations received complete interior remodels as well as updated equipment.  The Norcross location will also feature a "lofted bar area situated in the middle of the lanes, offering a unique perspective of the action, as well as an outdoor patio."

Both locations will be open Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Hoping to appeal to an adult audience, Brunswick’s will be strictly 21 and over after 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, unless accompanied by someone over 25 years old.
Tavern '45's menu was created in partnership with Agoura Hills, California-based Trifecta Managment Group.  TMG has created or partnered on menus for more than 25 other restaurants around the country including the new menu at the House of Blues’ Crossroads restaurant.

The menu at Tavern '45 will feature American pub fare with some ethnic small plates for sharing such as
Vietnamese pork belly tacos,  as well as a number of classic entree options.  Entrees will include a variety of paninis and burgers as well as grilled wild salmon with herb butter and mango salsa.

A full bar with plenty of local craft beers and cocktails will also be available to guests. 

Atlanta is already home to a number of similar concepts including one from AMF called 300.  300 opened in the mid 2000s in what had been a standard AMF bowling alley on Savoy Drive in Chamblee. 

Dave and Buster's operates another bowling alley and restaurant concept, along with their gaming area, at Sugarloaf Mills in Lawrenceville.  This location opened as Jillian's but following their bankruptcy filing in 2004, the location was purchased and later rebranded as Dave & Buster's. 

Ten Pin Alley, a concept from LA-based Dolce Group, offered a similar but more club type atmosphere at their Atlantic Station location.  Ten Pin was the first of its kind for the chain and had a strict age restriction.  It, along with Dolce and Geisha House, closed in Atlantic Station in late 2011 after being among the center's original tenants.

Lucky Strike Lanes is one of the more well known high end bowling alleys and has a total of 20 locations across the country and one in Canada.  Lucky Strike had once expressed an interest in entering the Atlanta market but has thus far not done so. 

Places like CinĂ©Bistro, Fork & Screen, Studio Movie Grill and Movie Tavern, all offer meals and movies, and each have taken a standard entertainment, movies, and paired it with another, dining, to create a newer, more distinctive option. 

This same practice is now being applied to bowling, by the likes of Brunswick's and others.  What do you think of this merging of concepts?  Will this concept survive and thrive or is the market for "gourmet bowling" too small a niche?  Please share your thoughts below. 


Lee at said...

Do they have plans to renovate their Roswell location off Holcomb Bridge Road? If they're gonna do Marietta and Norcross then why not complete the trifecta?

Atlantan99 said...

Hi Lee,

I know the location you are speaking of and have bowled there myself. It was not mentioned as a location slated for conversion or makeover but perhaps the first two are tests and if successful, that too could receive the remodel and change.

Thanks for the comment and for reading the site.

Greg S said...

I live right around the corner from the Marietta location, and had been wondering exactly what they were doing. I'm excited to see how this new concept is rolls out.

Rugs said...

I bowled at the Norcross location last week. They are nowhere close to being finished.

Unknown said...

From a business point of view I understand why Brunswick is moving in this direction. However, when you sink this kind of money into upgrades, the prices for bowling must rise for them to get a return on their money. A lot of folks will not be able to afford to bowl at these rates. It will attract a new type of customer, and that may make the concept work. As a competitve bowler, this concept does not appeala to me, but I believe I am in the minority.

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