Sunday, May 12, 2019

[Commercial Real Estate News Atlanta] MEGA Bits & Bites

The Walmart at 6435 Bells Ferry Road in Woodstock will soon get a special shop-in-shop.  Build-A-Bear Workshop will open a mini-store in the existing Walmart as part the two company's partnership which began this past fall.  The new shop will carry a new collection called Condo Cubs. The cubs are super-soft smaller versions of the company's famous bears, plus cats, dogs and rabbits, among other animals. The new line, a more value oriented offering, will start at $10 each.  The store will occupy roughly 1,000 square feet at the front of the Walmart.
A Build-A-Bear Workshop in a Walmart Supercenter

A new healthy eatery called YOM (YUM + OM) recently opened the first of two planned location in Marietta.  The  restaurant, at 1809 Canton Road in Marietta, is located in Canton Crossings shopping center at the corner of Canton and Sandy Plains Roads.  The eatery features acai bowls, falafel, chicken and steak bowls, avocado toast, assorted soups and "Gorilla Goop" - banana, almond butter, almond milk and cocoa powder blended together, topped with sliced banana, granola, ​cocoa nibs and chai seeds.  A second location previously planned for YOO on the Park, a new apartment high-rise in Midtown, is apparently no longer happening. YOM is also operating a weekend pop-up at the Marietta Farmers Market.

Macy's shop-in-shop Story has opened at both the Macy's at Lenox Square in Buckhead as well as the Macy's at Perimeter Mall in Dunwoody.  Story was launched in December 2011 to provide a new model for experiential retailing.  The shops, most of which average 1,500 square feet, reinvents themselves every four to eight weeks, completely redesigning the interior of the store and its selection of merchandise corresponding to a theme. "The Story at Macy’s experience feels a lot like a real life version of scrolling through Instagram," Story founder and Macy's brand experience officer Rachel Shechtman said in a news release." The opening theme of Story at Macy's is "Color," offering a curated collection of color-coded products from brands like Mac Cosmetics, Crayola, Pinch, Lolli & Pops, Urban Agriculture and Levi's Kids.  Other offerings include the in-store debut of Primary, a previously online-only kidswear brand, as well as gourmet chocolate bars with flavors like coffee and doughnuts, from Los Angeles-based chocolatier Compartes. Color will run through June 26. 

A new fitness facility called Spenga is coming soon to Marietta and Roswell.  The Roswell location, coming to King Plaza on Woodstock Road, will be about 4,800 square feet and is slated to open later this summer.  A specific location of the facility's planned Marietta outpost has not yet been made public. 

Another fitness facility, Shred 415, is also entering the market with a franchise coming to Windward Square on Windward Parkway in Alpharetta.  The Alpharetta outpost of the Chicago-based fitness franchise will be 2,800 square feet.

A new Cook Out is planned for 610 E Highway 53 in Calhoun.  The new burger joint will replace Eastern Buffet across the street from where a relatively new Aspen Dental and Five Guys two tenant development replaced a former Pizza Hut hut, and a new RaceTrac opened in place of a portion of a former strip center.  North Carolina-based Cook Out currently operates nearly 40 locations in Georgia and is approaching ten locations in Alabama with news they will open in place of a shuttered Outback Steakhouse on Lakeshore Parkway in Birmingham.

Walgreens recently completed its re-branding and renovation of the former Rite Aid in Brookhaven's Brookhaven Plaza.  The conversion means there are now two Walgreens basically across the street from each other.  Walgreeens already operates a pharmacy with drive-thru at Colonial Drive and Peachtree Road adjacent to Cherokee Plaza.  Duplication in the area is not new: Kroger and Blockbuster Video each previously operated stores in both Brookhaven Plaza and Cherokee Plaza.

Rebecca Taylor has closed its lone Atlanta area store at Phipps Plaza in Buckhead.  The store, located on the first floor across from Tiffany & Co., opened in 2012 in a portion of the onetime Abercrombie & Fitch.

In other Phipps Plaza news, children's clothing retailer Peek has also closed.  The store, located on the first floor near Lilly Pulitzer, had gone through bankruptcy last year but was given a lifeline by its investor Nordstrom.  The line will reportedly live on within Nordstrom stores, but their nine full-line stores have closed.

Upscale women's retailer L.K. Bennett earlier this week closed its lone Atlanta area location at Phipps Plaza in  Buckhead.  The store, located on the first floor of the former Belk wing, opened in 2011 and like its neighbors Vince, Everything But Water and Davio's, occupied a space created from the former Niketown.  Linda Kristin (LK) Bennett opened her first retail store in Wimbledon Village in London in 1990 and started selling footwear. The line later expanded to clothing and accessories and is a favorite of the Duchess of Cambridge but in recent years the company has struggled and was purchased last year by Byland UK, a holding company set up by Rebecca Feng, who runs the company's Chinese franchises.  Following the sale, the company also closed 15 stores in the UK.
The newest Juicy Crab restaurant opened late last month at Cofer Crossing in Tucker.  The 4,200 square foot restaurant opened on an end-cap of the Walmart and Kroger anchored shopping center on Lawrenceville Highway.  The new Tucker location is the tenth in metro Atlanta for the locally based chain.  The space in Cofer Crossing opened as Buffalo's, and later became Papi's, a Cuban restaurant. 

The long vacant Blockbuster Video at Shamrock Plaza near North DeKalb Mall will not soon be home to a cool restaurant as many neighbors had hoped.  Instead, about half of the vacant storefront will become a new America's Best Contacts & Eyeglasses retail store.  In a corresponding move, the eyewear retailer is closing its location across the street in North DeKalb Mall.  

Allison Hill, formerly co-founder, President & CEO of The Local Pizzaiolo, has joined Atlanta-based private equity firm Roark Capital Group.  In the newly created role, "Allison serves as the Head of Diversity & Social Responsibility, developing and leading Roark’s initiatives related to diversity and inclusion and philanthropic giving and community service."  The Local Pizzaolo, once with four locations planned or open in metro Atlanta, is now down to just one, at Toco Hills, which had previously been marketed for sale.  At Roark, Allison joins her husband Geoff A. Hill, one of the firm's Managing Directors.

Tin Drum Asian Kitchen reopened its North Druid Hills restaurant last week after a break-in and renovation plus a new owner/operator led to a months long re-opening delay.  A new Tin Drum location is expected to open later this year in Pooler near Savannah.

Kale Me Crazy has opened its newest Atlanta area franchise.  The new location opened just off Atlanta Road in Smyrna West Village in Smyrna.   The new location is the 15th overall in metro Atlanta for the locally based franchise that has now expanded nationwide with locations in North Carolina, Florida, Texas, Colorado, Mississippi and Alabama. 

A new restaurant called Tamago Ramen plans to open in the former Barberitos in The Peach shopping center on Peachtree Road in Buckhead.  The 2,300 square foot space was home to the Athens-based burrito joint until its abrupt closure late last year.

Men's custom clothing retailer Knot Standard is entering the Atlanta market with a showroom at Buckhead Exchange in Buckhead.  The new store will occupy a 2,100 square foot space between Tootsies and the Kohler store in the center at the corner of Grandview Avenue and Peachtree Road.  Knot Standard, like other upstart men's suiting businesses Alton Lane (East Andrews Drive) and Indochino (Shops Around Lenox), offers custom men's suiting, related apparel and accessories for similar prices to those of "off the rack" offerings of similar quality.  According to the Knot Standard website, they have a partnership with Atlanta United FC and are currently operating out of a temporary showroom at the WeWork in Terminus while their store is being completed.  The New York-based business currently has showrooms in Austin, New York, Bloomingdale's New York, Washington D.C., Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco. 
A new restaurant called Lucca is opening soon in the former Cabo Cantina in the bottom of the Eclipse condo building on Pharr Road in Buckhead.

Archer Paper Goods has opened in place of the former La Fete at Lenox Square.  The gift shop, from the same owners as The Merchant and of the short-lived Daily Dose at the front of the mall, is located just outside Bloomingdale's on the main mall level.  Dan Collier, who owns all the aforementioned concepts, operates an existing Archer Paper Goods at The Battery Atlanta at SunTrust Park. 

A new location of Pita Mediterranean Street Food is planned for Dacula Village in Dacula.  The new quick serve Mediterranean eatery will open in suite 3C, a 1,400 square foot space in the Publix Super Market-anchored center at 720 Dacula Road.

Chick-fil-A recently reopened in a new, larger space at Colony Square.  The new Chick-fil-A, now operated by Reggie Taylor, former operator at Terminus in Buckhead, is 3,535 square feet, compared to the old space which was 2,967 square feet.  The restaurant has also relocated within the project.  It was formerly located along Peachtree Street and is now located along 14th Street near "The Grove."  

Anthropologie has reopened at Lenox Square in Buckhead.  The store slightly downsized and relocated to allow for the upcoming new two story flagship location of Apple.

Castellucci Hospitality Group plans to open The Iberian Pig Monday May 13 at Hanover Buckhead Village in Buckhead.  The new restaurant, which is the grown-up edition of the original eatery by the same name that the group opened ten years ago in downtown Decatur, will feature Spanish tapas in a trendy yet relaxed atmosphere.  The restaurant joins existing eateries Tiff's Treats and Cafe Posh in the street level of the residential project at the corner of Roswell Road and Irby Avenue. 

Americana Furniture on Lawrenceville Highway in Tucker is closing after 54 years in business.  

The owners of Rock 'N' Taco plan to open a new location in Roswell according to our friends at Scoop OTP.  The new location, planned for the longtime home of Pastis in Historic Downtown Roswell, could open late this year.  Pastis closed early this year after 20 years in business.  Rock 'N' Taco currently has one location in Buckhead, which opened in 2013, and briefly had a location in Sandy Springs.  The Sandy Springs restaurant opened in 2016 at 8540 Roswell Road and closed about a year later.  The space they occupied is now home to "B Social Supper Club." Rock 'N' Taco bills themselves as a “taqueria, bar, and late night lounge.” 

Fidelity Bank last week closed three branches ahead of the official legal closing of their planned merger with Ameris Bank.  The branches that closed were those on Peachtree Road (Peachtree Medical), Clairmont Road (original Decatur) and Perimeter Center East (Perimeter Center.)  In the wake of SunTrust's relocation to Charlotte, the combined Fidelity/Ameris is expected to be the largest bank headquartered in Atlanta, with deposits in excess of $17 billion.  
Oliva Restaurants, owned by restaurateur and chef Tal Postelnik Baum, announced earlier this week the opening of its second restaurant concept in Atlanta. Following their award-winning Italian market and wine bar Bellina Alimentari in Ponce City Market, Aziza will provide a fresh take on traditional Israeli cuisine. The nearly 4,000 square foot restaurant will open in Westside Provisions District in late June.   "Meaning ‘happiness’ in Arabic, the restaurant will feature a menu designed around the Israeli tradition of sharing and bring together patrons for a meal that utilizes all of their senses,"  according to a release announcing the opening.  In addition to the restaurant, there will be outdoor seating and a neighboring falafel stand, named Falafel Nation, with to-go items including hummus bowls, falafel, pitas, and other vegetarian street food.  Baum plans to continue her expansion in Atlanta with the opening of a third restaurant, Rina, later this fall. The Israeli street food concept will open along the Eastside BeltLine trail in the Ford Factory Lofts, across from Ponce City Market near the 725 Ponce development where Kroger will soon reopen.

Publix continues to bolster its real estate holdings having recently acquired another site in Georgia. SRS’ Investment Properties Group brokered the sale of an investment property ground leased by Publix Super Market located on Wilmington Island at 155 Johnny Mercer Blvd in Savannah. The single tenant 43,783 square foot property sits on 5.23 acres. Publix Super Markets has occupied the space since 1993.  The seller, Sasser Family Enterprises, L.P., sold the property on April 3, 2019 to Publix Super Markets, Inc.

At Home will soon open in the the former Hobby Lobby (originally a Kmart) on Atlanta Highway in Athens.

MELA Ethiopian Kitchen plans to open in the former Janet's Filipino Kitchen, while Apple Asian House (which had opened in place of Mint 2) has abruptly closed.  Both restaurants were located in the same center on Clairmont Road near Emory that has seen more than its fair share of restaurant openings and closings.  

Cheba Hut “Toasted” Subs, a Denver-based franchise hawking marijuana-themed sandwiches, is targeting metro Atlanta for an aggressive east coast expansion.  Franchisees and friends Justin Beatty and Josh Burdick are reportedly scouting locations in Midtown, West Midtown, Reynoldstown, Summerhill, Edgewood, O4W, Georgia Tech, and around Georgia State.  The first lease, which was reportedly recently signed, is for an undisclosed location along Edgewood Avenue which could open as soon as this coming fall.  The concept has been compared to Atlanta pizza chain Mellow Mushroom - the Mellow Mushroom of sandwiches - some have said.  Personally, their plan for eight locations in metro Atlanta seems overly ambitious - perhaps they were high when then they signed the franchise agreement - and we doubt all will actually open.  That said, the franchise website for Cheba Hut, when reporting on the planned openings says "Their plans are to have all three locations, of our best sub franchise, up and running by 2030!"  We surmise that someone at corporate may be a bit high, too, as what we guess they meant to say was 2020, not 2030.


Anonymous said...

Small correction. The combined Ameris/Fidelity Banks will likely be headquartered in Jacksonville, FL.

Atlantan99 said...


I was at Fidelity Bank's annual meeting last week and at that meeting, James Miller, Chairman of Fidelity Bank, indicated that the combined bank would be headquartered in metro Atlanta.

Thanks for your readership and comments.


Anonymous said...

Many readers may be interested to note that YOM is primarily plant-based in it's offerings. The owner said he wanted to provide a few meat options for customers who dine out with vegans or vegetarians.

So if you're looking for healthy plant-based options at the Quik Trip Kitchen right across the street and coming up empty, you can get fresh and innovative bowls, burritos and sandwiches from YOM instead.

Plus they offer little bags of Hippeas, so there's that, too.

Anonymous said...

@ 10:53 AM aka YOM employee - Thanks SO much! LOL

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