By JOHN T. WARD
In this edition of Retail Churn:
• News about Brooklyn-based boho furniture retailer West Elm‘s new store…
• and signs of movement at the yet-to-open Chipotle Mexican Grill…
all here in beautiful Red Bank, New Jersey.
After seven years without a tenant, 67 Broad Street has been leased to the bee, with a planned opening next spring. Below, signage went up on the Chipotle restaurant being built in the City Centre strip mall. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
• West Elm plans to open for business on Thursday, October 22, anchoring the new West Side Lofts residential project at West Front Street and Bridge Avenue, a company spokeswoman confirmed to redbankgreen Monday.
The store, which carries Fair Trade Certified products, plans to feature works by seven “local” fabricators, including Brian Farrell Art & Design, a Freehold-based producer of “handmade tea towels with both an urban and organic influence,” and Mavis Studio of Asbury Park, where architecture and design graduate Stephanie Bergeron makes “original objects and planters” in her home studio, according to West Elm press materials.
To mark the opening, West Elm partnered with Dirtsa Studio‘s Rebecca Rodriguez, who designed a limited-edition tote bag that will be given to the first 300 shoppers with a $50 minimum purchase.
The 11,000-square-foot stores is expected to employ 25 to 30 people, the company said in an announcement
There’s no word yet on when the other anchor store at West Side Lofts — Triumph Brewing Company — will open. Meanwhile, all but five of the 91 residential units at the project had been leased as of late last week, we’re told.
• The bee, a womens’ clothing retailer launched 19 years ago in Bay Head by Kim Kiss, has signed a lease at 67 Broad Street (right), a two-story space that hasn’t had a tenant since Marisa, another dress shop, moved out in 2008.
Romanowski makes no bones about why he bought it: to protect Poor Cat, which is next door, by attracting shoppers who’d go for its offbeat custom jewelry. “I didn’t want another restaurant,” he told Churn Monday. “I wanted retail, I wanted cool, and I got it.”
Kiss tells Churn her business, which had stores in Long Branch and Bay Head before they were knocked out by Hurricane Sandy, still has stores in Sea Girt and Point Pleasant. She said she’s been a longtime shopper at Poor Cat, and noticed the vacancy next door.
“Our stores are like a perfect fit,” she said.
The bee carries Diane Von Furstenberg, Trina Turk and Milly, among other moderately-priced brands, she said.
A mid-March opening is planned, and the second-floor space, with its gorgeous arched window, will be utilized for trunk shows and theme displays, such as prom dresses and beach wear, she said.
• Chipotle Mexican Grill put up its signage on the space its building out at City Centre, between West Front and Water Streets, in the slot last occupied by Manhattan Bagel. There’s still no word on when it’ll open, though.