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Ramblewood is proposing to build a 6474 square foot building on the corner of 44th and Spartan Industrial Dr. Will have a drive-through as well. Always wondered if they would do anything with that office space there.

Edited by WMrapids

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2 hours ago, WMrapids said:

Ramblewood is proposing to build a 6474 on the corner of 44th and Spartan Industrial Dr. Will have a drive-through as well. Always wondered if they would do anything with that office space there.

I was under the impression the office portions of Ramblewood were sold off to CWD, or another developer.  Are they still owned by the same company that owns the Ramblewood complex?

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2 hours ago, WMrapids said:

Ramblewood is proposing to build a 6474 on the corner of 44th and Spartan Industrial Dr. Will have a drive-through as well. Always wondered if they would do anything with that office space there.

What’s a 6474?!

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2 hours ago, GVSUChris said:

Ha! Same question here.

I googled it.  Lego sets were the most common result.  I doubt that it's a budding made out of Lego's, though.  =)  Curious...

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https://mibiz.com/sections/real-estate-development/crowne-plaza-hotel-owner-files-for-chapter-11-bankruptcy

Looks like the Crown Plaza is in receivership and at risk of losing it's Intercontinental affiliation.  Crown Plaza is an upper-mid brand owned by Intercontinental, and competes in the same category /tier as brands like Double Tree.  This hotel hasn't been updated in decades, it rooms still have that late 90's "fake opulence" chic that look like Liberace's decorator took a dump in them.   It appears to have been a cash cow for it's current ownership in California.   It's pretty obvious the ownership doesn't have the clout to bring the property up to standard.  This is a case of mismanagement and lack of proper investment.  The location is as relevant now as when the hotel was built.  Hopefully a local developer can pick it up for a steal and overhaul the property, this would be a great spot for a flagship brand. 

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22 hours ago, MJLO said:

I was under the impression the office portions of Ramblewood were sold off to CWD, or another developer.  Are they still owned by the same company that owns the Ramblewood complex?

Not sure. It’s owned by a Ramblewood Office LLC, I believe. Hinman does still list the offices as part of their portfolio, though.

https://hinmancompany.com/portfolio/ramblewood-offices/

https://hinmancompany.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Ramblewood-brochure-1.pdf

 

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On 9/23/2019 at 6:03 PM, MJLO said:

https://mibiz.com/sections/real-estate-development/crowne-plaza-hotel-owner-files-for-chapter-11-bankruptcy

Looks like the Crown Plaza is in receivership and at risk of losing it's Intercontinental affiliation.  Crown Plaza is an upper-mid brand owned by Intercontinental, and competes in the same category /tier as brands like Double Tree.  This hotel hasn't been updated in decades, it rooms still have that late 90's "fake opulence" chic that look like Liberace's decorator took a dump in them.   It appears to have been a cash cow for it's current ownership in California.   It's pretty obvious the ownership doesn't have the clout to bring the property up to standard.  This is a case of mismanagement and lack of proper investment.  The location is as relevant now as when the hotel was built.  Hopefully a local developer can pick it up for a steal and overhaul the property, this would be a great spot for a flagship brand. 

Interesting! I live in the Centennial Park area behind it. I've noticed over the past 1-2 months a couple of construction dumpsters behind it, I was under the impression it was being renovated? In light of this though I'm not so sure. Either way- my hope is that a new developer does come in. The location is great indeed! I'm thinking it would be cheaper to knock it down and start over. That may be wishful thinking on my part though because I hate that building. It looks more like a school or nursing home than a mid-tier hotel.

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On 10/11/2019 at 3:45 PM, GRDadof3 said:

The new Von Maur at Woodland is open now apparently. 

Today was the official grand opening, but the store was open as early as Monday or Tuesday. The stores in the expanded part of the mall have been opening one by one throughout the week.

Here's a pretty comprehensive article about what Woodland has gained since Sears closed: New retailers opening up at Woodland Mall part of $100M makeover

Right now the new wing is only about 50% full, but I noticed new "coming soon" signs for Sephora and White House Black Market that weren't there on Tuesday. Lots of new stores open today in the older parts of the mall, mostly mom-and-pop places selling art, knick-knacks, or "made in Michigan" stuff. Probably some of them will be seasonal. The existing wings only had 3 vacancies that I noticed: the old Bath & Body Works spot (being used by The Cheesecake Factory for hiring/training), the space between Vans and Apple, and the former Charlotte Russe (appears that work is being done on it).

Note that Forever 21 has filed for bankruptcy and the gigantic Woodland location (and the Tanger location) are on the list of potential closures, but there's a lot of conflicting information as to how likely this is.

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It’s great to see the owners of Woodland Mall continue to pump money into the development. It’s beneficial for Grand Rapids to continue to offer more options so people aren’t traveling to Chicago or Detroit for certain products or stores. However, even traveling long distances to stores has largely become  obsolete with the complete takeover by Amazon and the online retail industry. I still believe no matter how much money money is invested, malls and local areas will continue to struggle in attracting and retaining profitable retailers.  I’m in heavy favor of a large tax of out of state online retailers who continue to put a burden on the local retail economy. But that’s a topic for another day. 

Edited by EastCoaster93

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Retail is changing, but so are online sales. I actually think you'll see a lot of the large online players start to fill the gaps. Companies like Warby Parker, Away Luggage, Untuckit, Casper, etc. are all moving from DTC (direct to consumer) to opening retail outlets. Warby currently rivals Apple in $ / sq. foot. What a lot of online only companies figured out is that "cutting out the middleman" and remaining completely online is unsustainable from a cost per acquisition standpoint.

I think you'll see a lot more "experience" style retail, where the retail store is a showroom for online. 

Plus, if this weekend was any indication (I was out by Woodland, Centerpointe and Breton Village), people still like to shop. It was so busy.

Joe

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My wife and I went to Von Maur on Saturday. I was surprised to find that the store is only one story. When you walk in, it is extremely open. You can see all walls and corners with no obstructions. A big change from the usual department store that has escalators in the center of them. The brand quality of what's sold there is definitely a step up from Macy's, which basically tops out at Polo Ralph Lauren. Just in the men's section, I noticed they sell Brooks Brothers, Vineyard Vines, Southern Tide, Lacoste, and Peter Millar just to name a few. I'll definitely put the store to use.

One thing we noticed in the mall and the area around it was the absurd level of traffic. 28th was backed up well over a mile in both directions. The mall itself was so packed that walking at any kind of decent clip required star running back-like moves. Woodland is most definitely doing well for itself. 

Edited by GRLaker
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On 9/13/2019 at 9:35 AM, mpchicago said:

The replacement for the Twister Rooster, Morning Belle, is set to open on 9.26.     I think they are trying this concept considering Anna's House success in this arena.

https://www.grmag.com/food-drink/morning-belle-schedules-opening/

 

Anna's House suing Meritage over their new concept....:P

https://mibiz.com/sections/small-business/lawsuit-alleges-meritage-took-anna-s-house-concept-after-deal-talks-stalled

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1 hour ago, GRLaker said:

Here's to hoping every breakfast/brunch restaurant in America sues Anna's House for stealing their concept.

Everyone knows that Anna's House invented the concept of breakfast restaurants in 2003. ;)

From reading the article, I don't even understand what Meritage would have gleaned from Anna's house. "Bacon is popular". "Serve lots of coffee". ;) They said that they took their Marketing concepts. I don't REALLY see anything new or unusual that Anna's House has done in that department. Should be interesting to see how it all pans out. 

I tried going once, and they still had some kinks to work out (so chaotic, didn't stay). They "stole" the pay at cash register concept. Bob Evan's, or even Brandy Wine should step in and sue too. Maybe even Mel's Diner could sue them. Oh wait, that was a TV show. LOL

Joe

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I wonder if the whole Anna's House political contribution thing actually hurt their bottom line.  I wouldn't really think it would have made much of a difference, sure some people will stop eating there, but some people will start patronizing more often.

If Anna's House shared proprietary information, that's kind of on them isn't it?  I don't think recipes are protected by law.  "Stealing" menu items is frowned upon in the culinary world, but it happens all the time.

I went to Anna's a couple times, it was 'meh' at best.  Morning Belle has a liquor license which will appeal to some.  Either way Wolfgang's is still king! 

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48 minutes ago, Floyd_Z said:

I wonder if the whole Anna's House political contribution thing actually hurt their bottom line.  I wouldn't really think it would have made much of a difference, sure some people will stop eating there, but some people will start patronizing more often.

If Anna's House shared proprietary information, that's kind of on them isn't it?  I don't think recipes are protected by law.  "Stealing" menu items is frowned upon in the culinary world, but it happens all the time.

I went to Anna's a couple times, it was 'meh' at best.  Morning Belle has a liquor license which will appeal to some.  Either way Wolfgang's is still king! 

That's not how this works....that's not how any of this works...

Per the bolded: Not if they were doing so as part of a prospective business deal.   If they were courting purchasing Anna's or rights to build Anna's then the early steps would be to go in and evaluate the business model ect.  This type of lawsuit isn't uncommon for these types of things.  I promise this isn't some kind of "bad cash flow " or way to try and raise some quick funds thing.  There's all kinds of secrecy clauses and NDA's that go into those agreements before negotiations start. 

Whether Meritage actually pirated proprietary brand information from Anna's or not will be hashed out in court.  It could be that they decided they had the resources to build a brunch concept without paying royalties to Anna's, and there is sour grapes from the lack of deal.  Foodie brunch concepts like that aren't all that different you can find similarities pretty easy.  Though it wouldn't surprise me at all if Meritage more or less copy and pasted what they saw from Anna's house.  They've had ambitions to have their own proprietary chain going back a few years prior to Twisted Rooster, everything they do has ended up being some what forgettable thus far, why not plagiarize ?

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31 minutes ago, MJLO said:

That's not how this works....that's not how any of this works...

Per the bolded: Not if they were doing so as part of a prospective business deal.   If they were courting purchasing Anna's or rights to build Anna's then the early steps would be to go in and evaluate the business model ect.  This type of lawsuit isn't uncommon for these types of things.  I promise this isn't some kind of "bad cash flow " or way to try and raise some quick funds thing.  There's all kinds of secrecy clauses and NDA's that go into those agreements before negotiations start. 

Whether Meritage actually pirated proprietary brand information from Anna's or not will be hashed out in court.  It could be that they decided they had the resources to build a brunch concept without paying royalties to Anna's, and there is sour grapes from the lack of deal.  Foodie brunch concepts like that aren't all that different you can find similarities pretty easy.  Though it wouldn't surprise me at all if Meritage more or less copy and pasted what they saw from Anna's house.  They've had ambitions to have their own proprietary chain going back a few years prior to Twisted Rooster, everything they do has ended up being some what forgettable thus far, why not plagiarize ?

Why is this discussion in two threads.... 

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16 hours ago, MJLO said:

That's not how this works....that's not how any of this works...

Per the bolded: Not if they were doing so as part of a prospective business deal.   If they were courting purchasing Anna's or rights to build Anna's then the early steps would be to go in and evaluate the business model ect.  This type of lawsuit isn't uncommon for these types of things.  I promise this isn't some kind of "bad cash flow " or way to try and raise some quick funds thing.  There's all kinds of secrecy clauses and NDA's that go into those agreements before negotiations start. 

Whether Meritage actually pirated proprietary brand information from Anna's or not will be hashed out in court.  It could be that they decided they had the resources to build a brunch concept without paying royalties to Anna's, and there is sour grapes from the lack of deal.  Foodie brunch concepts like that aren't all that different you can find similarities pretty easy.  Though it wouldn't surprise me at all if Meritage more or less copy and pasted what they saw from Anna's house.  They've had ambitions to have their own proprietary chain going back a few years prior to Twisted Rooster, everything they do has ended up being some what forgettable thus far, why not plagiarize ?

This is exactly my read on it as well.  It would not be hard for anybody to emulate the decor and menu at Anna's House--they just have to eat there one time to understand the concept.  The allegations go deeper than that. Whether they are true or not, or more importantly, whether they can be proven or not, remains to be seen.  

I would add, that Silver & Van Essen is a very highly regarded boutique commercial litigation shop.  I do not believe they would be inclined to take and pursue this case without some documentary evidence to support the claim.  Judge Yates is also a very good judge and handles the Kent County business docket exclusively.  He can be trusted to make sound rulings throughout.  

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7 hours ago, discgrab21 said:

This is exactly my read on it as well.  It would not be hard for anybody to emulate the decor and menu at Anna's House--they just have to eat there one time to understand the concept.  The allegations go deeper than that. Whether they are true or not, or more importantly, whether they can be proven or not, remains to be seen.  

I would add, that Silver & Van Essen is a very highly regarded boutique commercial litigation shop.  I do not believe they would be inclined to take and pursue this case without some documentary evidence to support the claim.  Judge Yates is also a very good judge and handles the Kent County business docket exclusively.  He can be trusted to make sound rulings throughout.  

Yeah right, all they see is that Meritage has potentially deep pockets, most likely for a big settlement. They didn't take it because they think the case has merit. 

If proprietary information was taken illegally, Anna's House would have blabbed that all over the media. Instead, they're just claiming their concept was copied. 

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Made it out to Woodland today, the new wing makes the mall feel so much bigger. Super pleased with how fluid it feels with the rest of the mall, minus a few obvious minute details it doesn’t feel any different than the rest of the mall. What really struck me is how much open area there is where the play area used to be, I’m super curious to see what they end up doing with that space. 

Also, Black Rock did not disappoint, super cool vibe in there, a lot different then a traditional mall chain restaurant.

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