Sunday, August 24, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Meanwhile, across Highway 101, Pacheco Plaza is set to commence its redevelopment. The center's owners have received full planning permits to revive the tired mall, which is losing its anchor Safeway to the Hamilton development. No news yet on whether a replacement has been signed up, although the Pacheco Playhouse has been warned that it may be evicted in order to make way for a drugstore.
This reimagined shopping destination will offer simple yet dramatic, lightfilled spaces, an indoor-outdoor design to take advantage of the region's spectacular days, and a new connection with this oneofakind local landscape. The result will feel like creative reuse of a reclaimed warehouse or a rediscovered industrial building think "Marin loft" but rethought as a vibrant new shopping environment.
One new problem (or opportunity) for the developer to deal with is the uncertain future of Mervyn's, which filed for bankruptcy protection last month. If Mervyn's were to go, who would we want to replace them?
Village, said the company has no immediate plans for expansion, "but it's important for us to have that flexibility in knowing what we could do down the road."
Macerich, owners of The Village, are known to be looking at expansion options, including an expansion of Nordstrom.
Friday, June 20, 2008
“The Costco project in its entirety will most likely be done by the end of August or early September, so that’s looking pretty promising,” said Kathy DeOchoa, general manager of Vintage Oaks. “We’re really excited to have it close to completed. It’s going to give people a great reason to come and stay, and shop in Novato, as well as in the shopping center, so we’re really excited to see them expand.”
The City will need every cent, given the current slowdown in consumer spending and the rocketing foreclosure rate in Novato.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
The city is currently celebrating its 100th year and a series of improvements are planned for the downtown area. As the photos below show, there's a diverse mix of buildings in the town, reflecting both its early history as a small working town and more recent past as the center of an afluent neighborhood.
There's 50+ retail stores in the downtown area. Cafes & eateries are the most prominent category; home furnishings and womenswear boutiques are also well-represented, with the rest being a mix of local services.
Starting at the south end of the town, the Lark Creek Shops is a small strip of stores located beside the beautiful Lark Creek Inn and the redwoods of the Madrone Canyon. The buildings are in poor condition but there are some popular local businesses here, including the Lingerie Shoppe and Yankee Pier.Next there's one of the city's newer additions: the very popular Picco restaurant and wine bar.
At the intersection of King and Magnolia is the historic City Hall building, north of which starts the main part of the downtown shopping strip.
Emporio Rulli is the cafe with the awesome pastries and cakes. There's also a wine bar and one of the few places with outside tables. Fabrizio is a highly-rated Italian restaurant. Left Bank is also always busy with its french-influenced menu. The town's watering hole is The Silver Peso, complete with shuffleboard.There are more eateries at the northern end of the town, including Burritoville, the Ward Street Cafe, sushi at the King of The Roll and Fukusuke and pizza at Cafe Lucano.The town has several signature boutiques, including Nicolette, Gala and Canvas
Thursday, May 22, 2008
But guys, before you all rush out to get measured up for the latest Brioni or Pal Zileri, be warned that not everyone can carry off this kinda look.
For a visual clue, here's a shot of RR's Sundance store in Lone Tree, CO:
If Sundance doesn't satisfy the insatiable Marin appetite for throw rugs, do not fear, more will be available when Shabby Chic opens in the adjacent unit.
Shabby Chic founder, Rachel Ashwell, provides this insight about what to expect:
"For me, the secret to living well is to surround myself with beautiful things that are practical and deliciously comfortable. My designs are inspired by flea market finds and the appeal of sensible living. Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic is the marriage of my English heritage with the fresh and eclectic qualities of my California lifestyle."Ladies and Gentlemen, get your wallets out.
The development would be another great step in the revitalization of the downtown area, and might include outside dining areas.
According to the North Bay Business Journal, a City Design Review Board public workshop on the proposal could come as soon as next month.
Read the full story here.
Monday, May 5, 2008
The delay has fueled rumors that Whole Foods leased the space to keep Trader Joe's out of Mill Valley. An existing Whole Foods outlet does a bustling business about two miles away at 414 Miller Ave. in Mill Valley. Kathy Severson, executive officer for the city's Chamber of Commerce, said she couldn't comment on such speculation, but "I do know that the Miller Avenue Whole Foods is considered a very high-volume store for its size."
A C&B spokesperson gushes:
"The customers have a sense of taste, style and trends, which is what Crate
& Barrel is all about," Everhart said. "Our furnishings, tabletop and
accessories reflect the lifestyle that is associated with Marin residents."
Read the full story in the IJ here.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Jeanne Fitzgerald, who has operated the Boardwalk at 1550 Tiburon Blvd. since 1985, said Jim Allen, president of the Belvedere Land Co., phoned her in February to tell her of the decision. "They didn't negotiate with me at all," Fitzgerald said. "I asked them why not, and he said he wasn't talking to anyone but Woodlands."
Also heading out is the Bayside Garden Center, while other tenants are being told that leases will not be renewed beyond 2010. All of which suggests a major overhaul of the center is on the cards.
Read the full story here, including some biting remarks in the comments section.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
At "A" street is Courthouse Square, where two large office buildings are set back from the road behind a grassy square. Next to the square is San Rafael Town Center, which includes a 5-storey apartment and office development that was built around two years ago. It also has restaurants on the street level set around an outdoor area called the City Plaza. This area seems to be the busiest part of the strip, although there are still a few vacant stores on either side of the street. Further west the vibe changes. There are restaurants, some with outside seating, a few boutiques, antiques and home furnishing stores. It’s almost genteel. Many shoppers on Fourth Street are local residents and workers. Others visitors come from elsewhere in Marin to shop at specific well-known stores, such as Scandinavian Designs or the Bike Shop. I’m guessing that there are quite a few browsers as well. If you haven’t been there for a while, I would recommend a visit. There are many independent stores that you won’t find elsewhere in Marin. I didn’t have enough time on my visit to go in all the stores, so I’ll be heading back soon. This time I’ll schedule my visit around lunchtime to sample a meal at one of the restaurants.