Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Bits & Bytes

Flippin' Pizza plans to open their first Atlanta area location next week in Roswell.  The pizza franchise will open in a 2,400 square foot space in the Kroger anchored Coleman Village shopping center on Marietta Highway. Operators Manita Amin and Tulaib Faizy are opening the new restaurant and reportedly have plans for as many as four more metro locations in the coming years.  Flippin' Pizza was launched in southern California in 2007, and features "New York style" pizzas served in 18" pies or by the slice.  The pizzas are made with "filtered NY-style water."  The restaurant will celebrate their grand opening next Thursday April 27 with free slices, sodas, raffles and other giveaways from 3:30-7:30pm.  According to the Flippin' Pizza website, pizzas at the Roswell location will start at abut $16.50 for a basic cheese pizza and go up to about $21 for premium pies. Flippin' Pies also offers 10" gluten free pizzas which start at about $9.50.  Individual slices cost about three bucks. 

A new concept called Bytes Restaurant is coming soon to Spring Street next to Tiff's Treats.  The new restaurant will join the cookie delivery business in the street level retail of Square on Fifth, a new high-rise apartment building near 5th and Spring Streets in Midtown.  The restaurant is being opened by Christian Ruffin and his wife Nacasha.  The Ruffins also own "do at The View" on West Marietta Street as well as One Stop Productions, a local production company. Bytes, like do, will use iPads to streamline ordering.  At do, iPads are used for both ordering and valet, while other technical restaurant elements allow the owners to change the restaurant's decor at the touch of a button.  Permits with the City of Atlanta were filed back in October, but only recently has work visibly commenced in earnest.  Signage at the restaurant promotes Bytes as "Midtown's First iPad Driven Restaurant." Sources say Ruffin hopes to open later this summer/early fall.  

Tower Beer, Wine & Spirits plans to expand its existing Piedmont Road store.  Perhaps perfectly timed for what is surely a slower period at the business in wake of the I-85 bridge collapse, Tower plans to add about 1,500 square feet to the existing building.  A building permit filed with the City of Atlanta indicates the expansion, referred to as "a storage addition," is expected to cost $189,000.     

Last month, struggling department store JCPenney announced plans to close 138 stores, including five in Georgia.  This week, the retailer revealed that tremendous customer response to the closures has led them to delay the liquidation sales.  Originally, JCPenney had planned to begin liquidation sales for most of the affected stores this past Monday, April 17, with the stores closing for good about two months later. Instead, it now plans to start liquidation sales on May 22. The stores are now expected to close July 31.  The Georgia JCPenney stores destined for closure are in Dublin Mall in Dublin, Macon Mall in Macon, Milledgeville Mall in Milledgeville, Gateway Plaza in Thomasville, and Tifton Mall in Tifton. 

Goodwill of North Georgia will celebrate the grand opening of their new Tucker store on Thursday May 11th. The new Goodwill thrift store and donation center opens in a portion of the former Ingles grocery store at the corner of Hugh Howell Road and Lawrenceville Highway at Tucker Station.  

Fellini's Pizza on Peachtree Road is expected to reopen this coming Friday after completing a minor renovation similar to what its westside location recently went through.  

Sephora plans to celebrate the grand opening of its new Buckhead Exchange store this coming Friday, April 21.  

QuikTrip plans to "scrape & rebuild" its existing gas station and convenience store at the corner of Oakbrook Parkway and Indian Trail Road in Norcross.  The new "Gen 3" store will include a larger convenience store, 5,300 square feet versus the current 3,000 square feet, and should open later this year.  

QuikTrip is also relocating their existing location on Buford Highway at North Cliff Valley Way and Buford Highway in Brookhaven.  QT plans to relocate to a larger parcel across the street, currently home to the abandoned Cream Ultra Lounge.  Site work is currently underway with the former club's demolition imminent.  Sources say if all goes well, the new location could open by the end of the year.  

Olive Garden plans to construct a new, nearly 7,000 square foot restaurant in Macon in an out-parcel of The Shoppes at River Crossing, an outdoor lifestyle center owned by GGP. The new restaurant will replace the former Sticky Fingers Smokehouse, which closed in spring 2015.  

A new Golden Corral I first reported on last summer is finally making progress in Gainesville.  Folks closed their popular restaurant on Browns Bridge Road in Gainesville last May with reports surfacing even before it closed that Golden Corral intended to open a new restaurant on the site.  A new, approximately 10,000 square foot Golden Corral restaurant should begin construction soon with the potential to open before the end of the year.  

Cherry Blow Dry Bar plans to open what will be its third metro Atlanta location later this year in Brookhaven.  The new salon will open in the recently completed second phase of Brookleigh Marketplace on Durden Drive, just off Johnson Ferry Road.  Cherry Blow Dry Bar will occupy a 1,531 square foot space opposite Marlow's Tavern.  The first Cherry Blow Dry Bar opened last year in the redeveloped Buckhead Exchange at the corner of Grandview Drive and Peachtree Road in Buckhead.  A second location is coming soon to the street level of the new Alta Midtown apartment building at 915 West Peachtree Street.  

On the heels of next Wednesday's planned opening of Sprouts Farmers Market at Tucker Meridian in Tucker, a number of other tenants have now announced their openings. Footwear retailer DSW plans open on Friday, April 28 followed by Dick’s Sporting Goods on May 17.  Hobby Lobby also plans to open in May but has yet to confirm a date.  Ross Dress for Less plans to open June 19.  The openings of the restaurants including Newk's Eatery, Jimmy John's and Coffee & Bagels should occur later this spring/summer.   

A new Planet Smoothie is planned for The Reserve at LaVista Walk apartment building on LaVista Road near Cheshire Bridge Road.  Franchisee TuRhonda S. Freeman filed plans with the City of Atlanta earlier this week to convert the former Eye Choice Optical to the smoothie shop. The permit indicates an estimated $80,000 will be spent to build out the 828 square foot space.  Freeman, an existing Planet Smoothie franchisee, took over the Peachtree Center location downtown in 2013, and reportedly has plans to open additional units.  Freeman hopes to have the Planet Smoothie in The Reserve open in June, but that is likely wishful thinking. The smoothie shop will open next to The Salad Express, an endcap restaurant space that has changed names a number of times in recent years.  Planet Smoothie's opening also marks the return of the Atlanta born brand to the area since its mid 2000s closure in Loehmann's Plaza (now Brighten Park).  According to the Planet Smoothie website, additional locations are "coming soon" to Athens, Fairburn, Dacula and Kennesaw.  


Anonymous said...

"... Tremendous customer response to the [JCPenney] closures has led them to delay the liquidation sales." What does this mean? Was there an uptick in regular traffic such that the company wanted to squeeze more money out of stores while they could? If so, how does the company know when that traffic will die down so their new liquidation date is a good one? And if they know that, why didn't they know traffic would increase?

Anonymous said...

What is filtered NY-style water?

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 6:29: Great question. My guess is it is similar to the Brooklyn Water Bagel Company concept where they claim to recreate the water from NY, which is why (they claim) so many good foods are made there. I tried their bagels once and they had a really funky taste to them that I didn't like at all.

Anonymous said...

$16.50 for a cheese pizza? I can get that at several places around the area with the premium buffalo mozzarella and san marzano tomatoes. This will be a no.

Anonymous said...

Somebody poops in it and throws in a dead body first. Then filter it and voila! NY style water.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 4:55pm just an FYI. NYC does not get its water from the surrounding rivers. It gets it from upstate NY via the Aqueduct System from the Catskills.

Coolio said...

Anon @ 3:08 PM 4/24/17: You may be correct, but Anon's answer @ 4:55 PM 4/21/17 is more fun!

396 said...

"Midtown's First iPad Driven Restaurant." This literally made me burst out laughing at work. That's the best distinction they could come up with? Oh brother.

I remember a place near Compound that was planned around the same concept years ago. I don't know if it ever even opened.

Speaking of places that never opened, remember Haus, which was supposed to open in Brookwood last summer? Whatever happened to that? I didn't appear to have much of a chance of long-term success so maybe they decided to quit while they were ahead.

Coolio said...

Hey 396... I remember Haus. I bet the community made an uproar about it opening and like you said, they quit while they were ahead. They knew good and well it was a nightclub, NOT a bar.

I used to visit that Instagram account periodically to see if there was ever any progress but I didn't see any.

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