Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Bits & Bites .

Sam Abdullah of Buckhead Pizza Company plans to open a new concept, Pizza Crosta, later this month in Sandy Springs. Pizza Crosta will open in the former Evos on the lower level of The Prado shopping center on Roswell Road. The restaurant will feature counter service where guests can personalize their pizzas.  The pizzas will be 10 inches and sell for between eight and ten bucks.  The concept seems similar to local offerings like Your Pie.  

Fast casual eatery Newk's Eatery is planning a new location at Perimeter Expo in Dunwoody.  The new, nearly 4,000 square foot restaurant will open in the former Pearle Vision, adjacent to the former Off Broadway Shoes store.  A lease was signed months ago, but as of this week the space appeared untouched.  Newk's currently has five locations in Georgia:midtown, Druid Hills, Lawrenceville, Newnan and Brookhaven. 

Steak 'n Shake is coming to Dahlonega.  The new Steak 'n Shake restaurant will be located on a currently wooded hill on Morrison Moore Parkway.  Plans call for the restaurant to start construction in the coming weeks and to open by the end of August.  

Dtox juice bar plans to relocate their Roswell Road location from its current hidden, hard to access site, to Buckhead Court.  Buckhead Court is further north on Roswell Road in a center previously home to an Outback Steakhouse.  Dtox also operates locations on Piedmont Avenue near Ansley Mall and on West Paces Ferry Road, adjacent to Flywheel.  

Von Maur's Mall of Georgia location is currently slated to open next fall.  The 165,000 square foot former Nordstrom is being completely renovated to become the new department store.  Davenport, Iowa-based Von Maur entered the metro Atlanta market in late 2011 with a location at North Point Mall in Alpharetta.  In North Point, the store occupies a space built as a Lord & Taylor that later became a Belk.  At Perimeter Mall in Dunwoody, Von Maur occupies the one-time Davison's that later operated as a Bloomingdale's.  

Charlotte, North Carolina-based Belk has put itself up for sale with no clear interested party. The independent department store was established in 1888, and today operates nearly 300 stores in 16 states.  Many insiders and retail observers have made valid points as to why Macy's would not want to take on additional stores, as in many cases they overlap and would be closed.  Perhaps Von Maur or Dillard's will submit offers.  

A new Panda Express is coming to Valdosta.  The new Asian eatery will open in an outparcel of Valdosta Mall Corners shopping center. The center is anchored by a Hobby Lobby (former Walmart) and is  also home to a Steak 'n Shake, among other tenants.  

Cook-Out recently opened its new location (former Backyard Burger) on Haynes Bridge Road in Alpharetta. Additional new Cook-Out locations are opening soon in Athens (second location), Carrollton, Oakwood and Warner Robins.  

The planned Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar and Grill has closed before opening at Savannah Mall in Savannah. Originally announced to be coming to the mall in 2013, the restaurant was plagued by delays reportedly related to the cost of renovating the space.  The restaurant was reportedly involved in a bitter legal dispute that came to a head last week.   The Chatham County Sheriff’s Office posted a notice of eviction on the restaurant's space informing CRGE Savannah LLC and Boomtown Entertainment LLC they were to remove themselves from the premises.   

Maya Steaks & Seafood is now serving lunch on Roswell Road in Sandy Springs. 

A new 24-hour Chevron gas station and convenience store has opened on Northside Drive and Northside Circle in northwest Atlanta.  

The owners of Chamblee's Southbound restaurant plan to open a new Tex-Mex restaurant next month.  Mike Plummer and Amanda Averill of Southbound plan to open "Rosa’s Tex-Mex Revival" in the former Chamblee Bistro. Chamblee Bistro, which closed late last month, was located at the corner of Peachtree Road and Broad Street, less than a half mile from Southbound.  If all goes well, the owners hope to have Rosa open in time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo.  

The Loews Atlanta Hotel Midtown has changed its restaurant and concept. Now known and "Saltwood Charcuterie & Bar," the new restaurant also features fresh juices for ten bucks a pop as well as local cheeses, a refreshed cocktail menu and lots more.  

Stuart Weitzman has reopened at Lenox Square.  The boutique retailer known largely for its fashionable women's footwear closed its Lenox Square location in early February and at the time said it would reopen in late March.  


AJ said...

I'll never understand hotel restaurant mentality. I understand that prices are higher in hotel restaurants, but that's generally because your guests want convenience and maybe in other cities like NYC, Chi, SF, etc. it's accepted. But $10 for fresh juice? I just don't see Atlantans going for that. Loew's is in the heart of midtown. If they offer a good product at a reasonable price, they'd get more business. Having a restaurant is essentially a sunk cost - the space is built and you really have to have some sort of restaurant. Why not expand your customer base? I'm not in the hospitality business so maybe I'm missing something, but it just seems good business to have competitive prices based on your surroundings, not based on being in a luxury hotel. How much would Arden's Garden (2 blocks away) charge for the same juice?

Anonymous said...

Good-More variety in the area with the new Newk's

Bad-Weird location. just don't see a food place in that center. There are plenty of other near by spots. the former Ghengis Grill spot up the road for one. Maybe they are trying to claim the spot in anticipation of future business from new office buildings (State Farm for one) going up in the area.

Anonymous said...

As a NC native the "sale" of Belk is monumental news. The Belk family owns and runs this over 100 year old company.

Around 15 years ago they took on the task of getting rid of the hyphenated names (like Hudson Belk in Raleigh, NC and Leggett in Virginia) to become a single corporation. Those other local families originally helped them expand into communities and they all had a stake in the company. Thats how they grew and built this southern retailing icon.

Would hope that the buyer would want to bring it back to par with the likes of older, customer service oriented department stores. Never was excited with the direction they took the company, even though that successfully got them where they are today.

Like them or not, Belk is a retailing institution. This process and outcome will be interesting to watch.

Anonymous said...

Signage went up a couple of weeks ago at the Forum in Peachtree Corners that a Newk's is opening there as well as a KSO Kinnucan's. The Newk's will be in the building where the Trader Joe's is located (former The Children's Place space) and KSO is opening in the former Ann Taylor/Justice spaces. Soft Surroundings also just opened in part of the former Coldwater Creek space.

Ham said...

It will be interesting to see if Belk’s can find a buyer who will continue operating all the current locations. They have several locations operating in suburban strip malls as well as locations in traditional malls like Phipps. They also have large locations that serve as the anchor tenant in lifestyle centers like Shelter Cove Towne Center on Hilton Head Island. I wonder if some of the more upscale locations could be sold separately to someone like Von Maur and the other locations sold as a whole to someone who continues to operate them under the Belk’s name. Obviously anything is possible, but I hope it doesn’t end up with a lot of empty stores.

Anonymous said...

I would hate to see Belk's change into a Macy's, Van Maur or Dillard's, and I think it would kill the value any buyer gets.

They have a unique niche. Broad price range, mostly moderate, and broad options - clothes for a grandma or a teenager and anything in between. It's not all either trendy 20-something clothes or higher priced designer options. Customer service is great, stores are simple to get in and out and navigate since most are not in malls. More of a small town department store feel mirroring their roots. Change it much and I'm guessing they lose 90% of their shoppers, just like JC Penney's failed experiment.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 4:07

Belk is not a unique niche. Their attempt to be all things to all potential customers cannot be easy in today's turbulent brick & mortar retail environment. The Belk experience runs the gamout from their flagship store of Southpark in Charlotte to a deteriorating strip center in location in Rockingham, NC.

Agree with poster Ham that they'll be lucky if they can sell off "like" stores to different parties.

Belk today attempts to be everything from Neiman Marcus to Kohl's. Bets are the Belk grandchildren can clearly see the writing on the wall and the future of retailing as we knew it.

ImAndy said...

My bet is a merger with an equals like Bon-Ton. Bon-Ton also has a history of letting their acquisitions keep their nameplate like Pirie Scott, Elder-Beerman, Herberger's, and Younkers.

They also purchased 5 Parisians from Belk about 6 or 7 years ago.

Anonymous said...

I hope whatever happens, Lord and Taylor returns to Atlanta. Von Maur is a poor man's Lord and Taylor, and L&T is returning to the south as evidenced by opening in Florida.

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