If you could chose your neighbour...

Here is a theoretical question I would like to get some feedback on, and then (maybe) put to real use in a real life situation.

Lets say you are a cafe owner on the ground floor of a 2 storey building bordering a very, very busy boutique shopping centre. The shopping centre is very well establised. Lets say you could chose any business at all to occupy the 150sqm mezannine space above your cafe.

What type of business would you want occupying that space and why?
 

caffe biscotto

New member
Jan 18, 2008
704
0
MASS.
A book store or library.

Sounds boring, but if it overlooks the cafe (mezzanine/balcony?),
it would add to the ambience of the cafe and you'd more than likely
get their customers to your tables. :wink:
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
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Des Moines, Iowa
I agree with caffe biscotto. A small book store that allowed people to test read books in your cafe! :grin:

The other thing might be a flower shop. Have them add the flowers to your store and maybe even have a small cart in front of your store with flowers to purchase.
 

ElPugDiablo

New member
Jul 16, 2004
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Hartford and New Haven, CT
What if the shopping center already have bookstore? I'd look for businesses that will compliment the upscale shopping center, but something the shopping center does not offer.

I'd go for a Victoria's Secret type of of place, gals will drag their boy friends/husbnads in there, while they try on those thongs, guys can be eating and drinking at your shop.
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
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Des Moines, Iowa
LOL you must not have a better half. Last time I was in that place I had to sit outside the changing room to approve or suggest something that might look better. The worst part was I wasn't alone. There were 2 other guys doing the same thing! :oops:
 

John P

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Jan 5, 2007
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Salt Lake City
I would want a really good paper goods store such as XpedX. They are phenomenally busy, and you have a good source for shipping materials and bags and can possibly work out some trade.
 

ElPugDiablo

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Jul 16, 2004
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Hartford and New Haven, CT
Alun_evans said:
There indeed may already be a bookstore in this theoretical site! I like the Victoria's Secret concept- but may not fly in this locale!! Keep posting!
Damn the prudish local population. How about a really really good bakery pastry shop that will compliment your coffee? You can work out a deal with them so that they sell the baked stuff to take home, but some of the items are available in your coffeehouse downstair. One of the thing in many top flight US coffeehouses is that they have killer coffee and sometime even great tea, but pastry and food items are usually substandard. Doing coffee right is a full time job, but customers want something with coffee, so finding a good pastry chef is a way to use the space advantageously.

Similarly, you can be the cafe component of a larger eating establishment. You can have find dining upstair and cafe downstair.
 

caffe biscotto

New member
Jan 18, 2008
704
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MASS.
A chocolatier would be a nice compliment as well.

John P, if only I had a paper company upstairs. We go through almost as much paper and cardboard as we do in actual product.

Pastry shop or chocolatier, definitely, but those could be worked into the cafe, granted enough space.

Hey, CCafe, wouldn't a flower shop suffer from the overpowering aromas of the coffee? Hmmm.... I don't know, just asking. :D
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
1,557
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Des Moines, Iowa
I actually have seen a flower shop and coffee shop under the same roof.

You can walk from one right in to the other. The building is just big enough for the 2 business. From my understanding its a winning marriage.
 

Coffeeexpert

New member
Jun 29, 2008
99
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USA
Cellular phone service provider. You will get massive traffic going up and down the stairs, smelling your coffee.
 

nick

New member
Aug 23, 2007
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Toledo Ohio
I am next door to a Subway, which I believe works to my advantage. I personally don't care for their watered down version of a sub, but do like the traffic it brings right by my door. Plus, they do not offer coffee, or dessert, other than the frozen dough cookies so I definitely get my share of customers who stop in after buying subs to get a drink or a dessert type item. I also offer three types of salads, so there is the occasional customer who orders a salad from my store to go along with their subs.

I think that Subway would be about your only high traffic/fast food restaurant which might actually complement in some way.
 

Crazy4Coffee

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Jan 27, 2007
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nick said:
I am next door to a Subway, which I believe works to my advantage. I personally don't care for their watered down version of a sub, but do like the traffic it brings right by my door. Plus, they do not offer coffee, or dessert, other than the frozen dough cookies so I definitely get my share of customers who stop in after buying subs to get a drink or a dessert type item. I also offer three types of salads, so there is the occasional customer who orders a salad from my store to go along with their subs.

I think that Subway would be about your only high traffic/fast food restaurant which might actually complement in some way.

Being next door to a Subway may not be an advantage in the not to distant future - http://adage.com/article?article_id=129585

However, if their Coffee/Espresso is as good as their subs there won't be a thing to worry about!

On the other hand, if Quiznos starts doing espresso...
 
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