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Posts tagged: River Park Square

Smart toy retailer Whiz Kids will relocate to new RPS spot

Spokane educational toy and game retailer Whiz Kids will move to the third level of River Park Square, next to the Nordstrom third floor entry.

The shop will take 4,000 square feet in a corner location that has never been leased up to now, said RPS spokeswoman Elizabeth Mills.

It's had a location on the second level of RPS for nearly nine years, near the Made in Washington shop at the mall's east end.

The goal is to relocate in January, allowing the shop to do holiday business in its present location, said owner Jan St. George.

River Park Square is owned by the Cowles Co., which also publishes The Spokesman-Review.

                                                                       

A quick double shot: inside the Starbucks work on West Main in downtown Spokane

Free ad for Starbucks.

We had to grab this quick shot of the work taking place inside the downtown Starbucks near the Apple Store on West Main Avenue.

I get the impression this work crew doesn't take their coffee breaks here.

The work led to the downtown coffee shop being closed all this week. Area managers for Starbucks say they hope to reopen on Monday.

This shot is from the street and shows the service counter has been switched from perpendicular to Main to parallel with the street.

Any other photos from the project?  Send them to us here at Business@spokesman.com.

 

Ben and Jerry’s downtown moves out — temporarily. Reopens in a week

The downtown Ben and Jerry's, in River Park Square, has not downsized.

It's moved temporarily into the corner spot of the third floor food court while its main service area is going through a total makeover.

The company expects to reopen in the fresh new food area around Feb. 12.

RPS is owned and operated by the Cowles Co., which also operates The Spokesman-Review.

 

Chatters vacates its River Park Square shop; no new tenant lined up

Retailer Chatters Salon & Beauty Supply has closed its shop in downtown Spokane's River Park Square.

No new tenant for the main floor shop has been announced.

The company is based in Canada and reportedly had just the Spokane store as its first U.S. location.

Bryn West, general manager of River Park Square, said the company informed RPS it wasn't willing to continue operations in Spokane.

RPS is owned by Cowles Co., which also operates The Spokesman-Review and Spokesman.com.

Sandwich Gardens closes; landlord leases space to women’s clothes shop

Last Friday was the final workday for Pat Matthews and his Sandwich Gardens restaurant in downtown Spokane.

After opening a downtown food place and then closing it in 1998, Matthews got the chance to come back and reopen in 2009, in the east side of River Park Square's second level.

Last week Matthews had no choice but close again. His landlord, the Cowles Co., told him his lease would not be renewed.

In his place, River Park Square has leased the shop to Francesca's, a women's apparel retailer. No opening date has been set.

Matthews continues operating the Sandwich Gardens Catering business. “We've had our catering business all along, for the past 25 years,” he said.

Sandwich Gardens' first downtown location was in the western half of the old River Park second level. He was there for 23 years until forced to move when River Park Square expanded.

Matthews said he'd consider finding another physical restaurant if he finds the ideal location.

Cowles Co., which operates River Park Square, also owns and operates The Spokesman-Review and spokesman.com.

 

 

New rental dining-parting venue, Fan Suite, opens on RPS third level

Downtown retail alert:  River Park Square announced Fan Suite, a rental meeting and entertainment venue, is opening on the mall's third floor.

It's taking about 1,000 square feet next to Nordstrom.

The location has three flat-screen TVs in a family living room setting, with seating for about 25, a release said.

Rentals can be arranged through any RPS food business or food court tenant, according to the media release.

Rental fees run $80 for four hours.

RPS is owned by Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review.

Former Edo owner opens two Miso Fresh Asian locations in malls

Jay Underwood has gone from Edo to Miso. Actually, his two new eateries are named Miso Fresh Asian.

Underwood opened the first Miso Fresh Asian last week at NorthTown Mall. This Friday he opens one in the food court at River Park Square. Both take the spots of the former Edos he ran in those two malls.

He describes the cuisine as Southeast Asian street vendor food. He also likes the idea of having all ingredients visible by customers. He incorporated a trait he thinks Subway has used well — giving customers a full selection and view of fresh ingredients.

Edo Japan was a franchise connected to a Canadian parent firm. Last year the parent firm decided not to renew many of its U.S. deals, Underwood said. That led him to strike out on his own, with Miso.

Underwood gives the menu's culinary credit to Chef Curtis Smith. The stores were designed by Paint Room Studios, owned by Dawn Kiki and Catherine Boles. 

They incorporated recycled glass countertops, and selected tile that resembles wood and cork. Each store has a striking glass mosaic that wraps the stove hood.

And no, the cooks there don't use woks. In keeping with an agreement with mall managers, Miso can't use a “wok,” because another eatery established itself as the sole “wok-based” business inside the mall

Underwood said the solution was to use stir-fry pans. “In fact, that's the name for what we use, 'stir-fry pans,' ” he said.

River Park Square is owned by the Cowles Co., which also owns and publishes The Spokesman-Review and Spokesman.com.

April 5 will be the opening date for Sephora’s new downtown store

A while back we mentioned national health and beauty product retailer Sephora would move into River Park Square, in downtown Spokane. It's taking about half the space vacated two years ago when Abercrombie & Fitch moved out.

We learned today the opening day is April 5.

The company already has in-store locations at NorthTown Mall and Spokane Valley Mall. This will be the company's first full stand-alone location in Spokane.

RPS is owned by Cowles Co. The Spokesman-Review is owned by Cowles Co. Spokesman.com receives no special information from RPS. The newspaper has no connection with River Park Square and treats it as just another retail mall.

Holiday kiosk in River Park Square features EWU items and keepsakes

Starting this week and running through Jan. 1, Eastern Washington University Foundation is running a kiosk in River Park Square to sell Eagles items.

The third floor kiosk features  sweatshirts, sweatpants, youth T-shirts, infant items, license plate frames, and other items.
 
“Our alumni and fans have asked us for more accessibility to EWU gear,” said Mike Westfall, executive director of the EWU Foundation.
 
The kiosk will operate Monday through Saturday.

Cowles Co., which operates The Spokesman-Review, also owns and manages River Park Square.

North Face store in RPS will open Sept. 30

The new North Face Store, which took over the River Park Square space held by Talbot's, will open on Friday Sept. 30.

The outdoor gear retailer has been working on its interior for the past two months. If there's going to be any sort of grand opening with special attractions, we'll put something here later to call attention to that.

Disclaimer: River Park Square is owned by the Cowles Co., which also owns and operates The Spokesman-Review.

Vivo moving into third floor space in River Park Square mall

Still no word on who might take the 8,000 square feet of space last used by Abercrombie & Fitch in River Park Square, in downtown Spokane.

But Vivo, a Coeur d'Alene-based retailer of clothes and other household wares will take a spot up on the third floor, River Park Square announced on Monday.

Vivo has stores in CDA, Spokane Valley and North Spokane (at NorthTown Mall).

About Nov. 1, Vivo will move into the space between Claire's and the AT&T store. Vivo is owned by Dale and Shawnda Rainey of Post Falls.

River Park Square is owned and operated by the Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review newspaper.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory to move into River Park Square

The spot in River Park Square last used by Godiva Chocolatier will be taken over by another chocolate franchise.

Rachelle and Aaron Blackmer, who run one Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory store on Sullivan Road in the Valley, will open their second area franchise inside River Park Square on or about May 20. Godiva closed down in January.

The couple has been in the Valley for more than two years. They'll fill the spot under the escalator on the main floor. They expect to have five employees, said Rachelle Blackmer.

About 60 percent of the items they sell they make themselves; the rest is provided by Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory's main office.

Big sellers are the 30 or so different flavor caramel apples. The No. 2 top seller is dipped strawberries.

Fudge and other confections will also be sold.

RPS is owned by the Cowles Co. The Spokesman-Review is an affiliate of Cowles Co.

Ben Bridge jewelers to move into River Park Square this summer

Ben Bridge Jeweler, the well-known retailer of rings, gems and pendants, will open a store in River Park Square this summer.

RPS is managed by the Cowles Co., which also owns and operates The Spokesman-Review.

A release Thursday noted Ben Bridge will move into the first-level space occupied by The Walking Company, the footwear retailer.

Walking Company will take over the second-level location last used by Sunglass Hut. Sunglass Hut has already moved into a new second-level kiosk due west of the escalators.

Demolition work is underway on the Sunglass Hut shop just off the escalator.

Ben Bridge, founded about 100 years ago, operates locations across the country. It has one other Spokane store in NorthTown Mall.

Verizon’s Spokane area stores to start selling iPhone 4 at 7 a.m. Thursday

Verizon launches its sales blitz of the iPhone 4 with stores here opening bright and early Thursday.

We know the River Park Square Verizon location will open two hours early, at 7 a.m., to meet the first wave of buyers. Doors to the atrium will open at 4 a.m. to let shoppers get the line started.

All other River Park Square stores will open at 10 a.m.

Other Verizon stores in the region are likely following suit.

An assistant manager at the downtown store said the staff is gathering in RPS at 4:30 a.m. to prepare.

RPS is owned and operated by the Cowles Co., which also operates The Spokesman-Review.

Godiva’s out, but who’s going to grab that kiosk space in River Park Square?

Mall rats can start guessing which new retailer will move into the kiosk in River Park Square vacated by Godiva Chocolate.

Bob Smith, the guy who manages the RPS, told us talks have nearly concluded with a retailer expected to take over that spot, on the main floor of the downtown Spokane mall.

Godiva closed down on Monday after operating in that spot for 10 years. Most RPS leases run 10 years.

Smith, who works for Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review, said the new tenant fits a category currently “underrepresented” by other retailers in RPS.

What could that be?  Probably not food. Clothing?  Only if one thinks niche apparel.

Smith said the decision to refresh the kiosk operators follows a regular review of customer wants and wishes. Customers are apparently telling the management they don't want chocolate as much as something else they want.

Smith added that total sales at the kiosks is another factor for review. RPS collects a portion of monthly or quarterly sales as part of the lease agreement.

Once we know who's going in, we'll announce it.

Godiva Chocalatier kiosk in downtown Spokane shuts down

The River Park Square Godiva Chocolatier kiosk shut down Monday, Jan. 24, with no formal statement on the reason.

A River Park Square mall spokesperson confirmed the closure but had nothing else to add. Another mall tenant, clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch, shut its doors last week.

The kiosk has been there at least since 2000. 

Cowles Co., which also operates The Spokesman-Review and spokesman.com, owns and manages River Park Square.

Downtown’s first kaiten (belt) sushi restaurant opens on Friday

Sushi Maru, a kaiten-style sushi restaurant, opens its doors on Friday in the former spot of Sawtooth Grill in River Park Square. Kaiten restaurants use conveyor belts with foods on plates that pass by diners’ tables. Diners pull off the items they want.

Sushi Maru is run by Paul Choi, a Bellevue owner of a number of kaiten restaurants in western Washington.  Choi has stocked Sushi Maru with an extensive sake bar in the restaurant lounge. It will seat 145, counting lounge and dining area.

Plates are equipped with microchips that keep track of how long they sit on the conveyor belt. After an hour, food items not selected get pulled off, to insure that customers get fresh choices.

Hours are 11 a.m. to close Monday through Saturday, noon to close on Sunday. Disclaimer: River Park Square is owned by Cowles Co., which also owns The Spokesman-Review.

The front design of the new Spokane Apple retail store

We wonder when workers downtown at the new Apple store will install the stainless steel plate and laminated Apple logo to the front of the two-story building.

Until you see it, here are a few drawings from the city’s building permits that show the basic plan and roughly what it looks like. The front wall of the building will be about 34 feet high, to the roofline, and about 41 feet wide along the sidewalk. The doorway will be roughly 7 feet in height.

In a soon-to-be-posted second Apple retail update, we’ll post a short video of the work taking place there, at 710 W. Main in downtown Spokane.

Officially, Apple Inc. still hasn’t announced this is an Apple store.

 

Apple retail store, downtown Spokane, phase one

The company doing the construction work at the former Eddie Bauer building, in downtown Spokane, recently painted a plywood sheet black to block views of renovations inside the retail office space, at 710 W. Main.

We knew for months that this is the Apple retail store going into River Park Square. Today a workman was adding a stenciled Apple logo to the black wall. We got this image. This is just a temporary wall but it’s the only “official” indication the store is going in. Sometime in the fall the store logo will be added to the facade.

We asked Apple headquarters for comment and received a note saying no announcement yet has been made. Which is Apple’s way of saying, “It doesn’t count until we say it does.”

The opening will be in the fall but an exact date isn’t set yet.

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