Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Bits & Bites

Open & Shut
Babiators has closed its second floor kiosk near Brooks Brothers at Lenox Square. The kiosk, which was likely a test to see if the market warranted a small boutique, opened in early April and closed last week.  The Atlanta-based brand is still sold through dozens of wholesale partners, as well as through its website, 

Zaxby's will soon start construction of its new Sandy Springs restaurant on Roswell Road, just south of Abernathy Road. The new Zaxby's will occupy a portion of land currently home to a shuttered Arby's and a car wash.  

Legacy Property Group is opening a new barbecue restaurant called Twin Smokers on Marietta Street in the Luckie Marietta District downtown.  The BBQ restaurant replaces what had been Rise, a sushi restaurant.  

The Thrift Exchange  at Williamsburg Plaza at Briarcliff and Clairmont Roads, has closed.  The strange thrift shop opened about a year ago in a portion of the one-time A&P grocery store.  

Ru Sans in midtown at Piedmont & Monroe is reportedly under new ownership and has a earned a 100% health score.  The restaurant reportedly underwent an extensive remodel and is a "new" restaurant. 

Bartaco opened the first of a total of three metro Atlanta locations.  The first bartaco opened yesterday at the Dixie Packing Co. building on Marietta Street on the Westside. Next, bartaco will open in space previously occupied by Dunkin' Donuts in north Buckhead on Roswell Road.  The was demolished to make way for a slightly larger space and patio.  Sources say the restaurant should open late this year. The third, and for now, final bartaco will open at the new 280 Elizabeth Street project in Inman Park, close to bartaco's sibling concept, Barcelona. 

The 501-room Hotel Meliá Atlanta on West Peachtree Street was sold last week.  The hotel originally opened in 1972 as what I'm told was a Stouffer's Inn, later a Sheraton.  More recently, the hotel was a Renaissance by Marriott until it was purchased by Meliá in 2010.  Meliá reportedly spent millions on renovation, but clearly was not happy with how things were going opting to sell the property rather than continue to struggle.  Today, the hotel is bookable as a Crowne Plaza only, but will become a dual-branded Crowne Plaza / Staybridge Suites next year.  The top six floors will be converted into 102 Staybridge Suites units with the remaining 360 rooms continuing under the Crowne Plaza brand.   Crowne Plaza has existing metro Atlanta locations near Hartsfield-Jackson as well as at Ravinia in Dunwoody close to IHG's North American headquarters.  Staybridge Suites was launched in Alpharetta in 1998, and today includes nearly 200 locations worldwide with four in metro Atlanta.  

MAX's Wine Dive opened yesterday at 77 12th in midtown. The midtown location marks the Houston,Texas-based chain's first location in Georgia.  

Del Taco plans to open its newest location in Georgia in Columbus.  The Columbus Del Taco, the chain's fifth in the state' will open August 6th at the corner of Manchester Expressway and Hamilton Road.  A sixth location is planned for East Cobb later this year.  

Hovan has closed its location within Lenox Square's Fashion Cafe.  Hovan closed its location within the Perimeter Mall food court last year.  Hovan currently operates just one metro Atlanta location on Johnson Ferry Road in Brookhaven.  

Atlanta-based Uncle Maddio's Pizza Joint will open its 14th Georgia location and 20th statewide in Canton later this week.  Slated to open July 5th, the new Uncle Maddio's is located at Canton Marketplace Shopping Center in Cherokee county.  This is reportedly the first of three planned Cherokee county locations being opened by franchise partners Kevin and Susan Johnston.

Kenneth Cole has closed its location on the first floor of Lenox Square.  The store was forced to close to make room for the huge new TopShop coming to Lenox Square next spring. 

Delia's Chicken Sausage Stand opened their new location on the Westside today.  The new Stand includes a former container to make the restaurant two levels, far larger than the original in East Atlanta.  Delia's Westside is located near the intersection of Marietta Street and Northside Drive.  

Tin Drum Asiacafe plans to open its newest restaurant July 15th. (The is location is technically a "relocation" of the chain's shuttered Emory Village location)  The new Tin Drum will be at The Village at Druid Hills and joins Newk's Eatery and Penn Station East Coast Subs.  A new Willy's Mexicana Grill is slated to join the dining options with a planned opening in late July.  


Aaron said...

IS Bartaco a franchise?

Anonymous said...

For the past week or two, Mama Ninfa's at Peachtree Center has had a sign up reading "Temporally closed apologize, we appreciate your business with us" (sic) and another beneath it reading "Will open as soon as possible."

I'm guessing this is another shuttering of a mediocre restaurant.

Atlantan99 said...


Although that may be possible in the future, the chain is not currently offering franchises as far as I know.

Thanks for your comments and readership.

Anonymous said...

Just read in the AJC that a place called Burger 21 is looking to expand in Atlanta and open up a place in Buckhead by 2Q14. Ok - ENOUGH WITH THE BURGERS. WE HAVE PLENTY OF BURGERS.

I blame Flip for all of this. They started it. Not including the large fast food chains here are the places I can think of that have opened or expanded in Atlanta since Flip opened on Howell Mill in 2008:

Yeah! Burger
Smash Burger
Five Napkin (closed)
Burger Fi
Shake Shack (coming soon)
H&F Burger (coming soon)
Cheeseburger Bobby's
Lucky's Burger

AJ said...

@Anonymous @ 9:36AM - This argument comes up periodically with a variety of foods: Burgers, Pizza, FroYo, Cupcakes. As I've said before - and any Economist would agree - the market will control. If the market can withstand all these burger places, it's clear that burgers are what the diner wants. If the market can't withstand it, they will close. It's the nature of business. Look at the Froyo craze. Many opened. Some have since closed. Having all these burger restaurants is not precluding other restaurants from opening. There's plenty of retail space out there for all these burger places plus every other type of food that people want to eat.

Further, let's look at your list: Cook-Out is fast food. Lucky's Burger is not a burger place but more of a bar/grill. Cheeseburger Bobby's & Smash Burger, a step below Yeah/Farm/Flip. In other words, while there are many burger restaurants, they're not all the same. By the way, you left Grub Burger Bar in Akers Mill off your list. New addition and I'm thrilled to have it near my home!

Happy 4th!

Anonymous said...

The Uncle Maddio's on Windward in Alpharetta appears to be closed or undergoing renovation.

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