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Look for one more restaurant to close in the Chenal/Markham/Bowman area. Another will form up in the former Zoe’s Kitchen location.  Also another will form up back closer along Markham. 

I hope it’s not La Madeleine. I really like their food, though I don’t go there often enough.


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1 hour ago, LRretail said:

Look for one more restaurant to close in the Chenal/Markham/Bowman area. Another will form up in the former Zoe’s Kitchen location.  Also another will form up back closer along Markham. 

La Madeleine?  I could see that.  

Genghis Grill?  I could see that one going away as well.  

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I could see Genghis Grill going away for sure, La Madeliene usually seems to have a fair amount of business but then again who knows if its making enough to survive. 
 
-R

Yeah, I doubt it’s La Madeleine, but Genghis wouldn’t be surprising.


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On 2/7/2020 at 12:35 PM, Architect said:


Yeah, I doubt it’s La Madeleine, but Genghis wouldn’t be surprising.


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I would be shocked if La Madeleine closed but Genghis Grill wouldn't come as a shock at all.  A source tells me that the Genghis Grill in Birmingham closed not too long ago as well.

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5 hours ago, Architect said:


Well, crap. I really liked it, but didn’t go that often. However, it always seemed fairly busy.


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It seems like a lot of restaurants has closed in the Little Rock area the last two years. La Madeline was in a bad location and should have been in a more visible location such as the former Mimis Cafe location across from On the Border location.

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1 hour ago, ecity3138 said:

It seems like a lot of restaurants has closed in the Little Rock area the last two years. La Madeline was in a bad location and should have been in a more visible location such as the former Mimis Cafe location across from On the Border location.

I would agree with you that a lot of restaurants have closed in a short amount of time.  There's a saturation point with restaurants in Little Rock and I think we reached that point a long time ago.  It's great that we have options in town.  But we don't really support that many of them if we're honest with ourselves.  We can always say stuff like "hey that place is great but I can't remember the last time I went" or "I should go more often" but we really don't.  Just in this area, we've seen six restaurants close in the last year.  After talking to a few folks, we will see two more.  Restaurant owners in general are being hit from multiple directions.  Our new mayor has proposed that we raise sales and use taxes in Little Rock to 10%, which would make it the second highest tax rate in the country.  Outdone only by Chicago and Long Beach, CA (10.25%).  New Orleans, Montgomery, Baton Rouge, and Birmingham all share a 10% tax rate.  Combined with the 2% advertising and promotion tax means that restaurant goers would have to pay 12% tax on their food purchases.  That's just stupid.  The last part of the punch that hits restaurant owners is the increase in wages.  From $8.50 to $11.00 per hour means a 29% increase in minimum wage.  Most restaurant employees already make more than that but the wage hikes mean higher food costs and higher expenses in general passed down by vendors.  So unfortunately a lot of this means that many restaurants will close their doors in 2020 and 2021.  

I'll have to disagree with you on the location of la Madeleine.  There's a Chick-Fil-A doing $5M in sales next door to the site...and Chili's across the street.  How is it not a visible site?  In all fairness, the Mimi's site wasn't available to the developers of la Madeleine when they were opening the store and it sits up on a hillside that does not have any visibility whatsoever.   Maybe it's me but I'm not sure I get your comparison.  

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3 hours ago, LRretail said:

I would agree with you that a lot of restaurants have closed in a short amount of time.  There's a saturation point with restaurants in Little Rock and I think we reached that point a long time ago.  It's great that we have options in town.  But we don't really support that many of them if we're honest with ourselves.  We can always say stuff like "hey that place is great but I can't remember the last time I went" or "I should go more often" but we really don't.  Just in this area, we've seen six restaurants close in the last year.  After talking to a few folks, we will see two more.  Restaurant owners in general are being hit from multiple directions.  Our new mayor has proposed that we raise sales and use taxes in Little Rock to 10%, which would make it the second highest tax rate in the country.  Outdone only by Chicago and Long Beach, CA (10.25%).  New Orleans, Montgomery, Baton Rouge, and Birmingham all share a 10% tax rate.  Combined with the 2% advertising and promotion tax means that restaurant goers would have to pay 12% tax on their food purchases.  That's just stupid.  The last part of the punch that hits restaurant owners is the increase in wages.  From $8.50 to $11.00 per hour means a 29% increase in minimum wage.  Most restaurant employees already make more than that but the wage hikes mean higher food costs and higher expenses in general passed down by vendors.  So unfortunately a lot of this means that many restaurants will close their doors in 2020 and 2021.  

I'll have to disagree with you on the location of la Madeleine.  There's a Chick-Fil-A doing $5M in sales next door to the site...and Chili's across the street.  How is it not a visible site?  In all fairness, the Mimi's site wasn't available to the developers of la Madeleine when they were opening the store and it sits up on a hillside that does not have any visibility whatsoever.   Maybe it's me but I'm not sure I get your comparison.  

I do agree that the recent proposal of 10 percent sales tax increase and the rise of labor cost are the main contributor to restaurant closures rather than lack of business or the market itself. Restaurants and retailers have to find ways to cut down on labor costs by either raising menu prices, cutting down on number of hours an employee works, laying off employees, or closing the business entirely which eliminates jobs causing unemployment rates to go up. This definitely hurts local restaurateur who are unable to keep up with the labor cost. This affecting restaurants, whether chain or local restaurants, nationwide rather than just Little Rock especially in places like Seattle, WA and California where many restaurants has closed down due to increase in labor costs.

 

Chick Fi La and Chili’s both have easy access to and from the site whereas La Madeleine does not have easy access from a major intersection. I have always had a hard time accessing La Madeleine site from W. Markham which could lead to the major factor of them closing. They would have done better locating at Park Avenue center facing University Ave or at the Gateway Town Center. Their sales would definitely be up and business would still be in operation had they done a more research on the site plan and access to a major intersection.

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20 hours ago, ecity3138 said:

Chick Fi La and Chili’s both have easy access to and from the site whereas La Madeleine does not have easy access from a major intersection. I have always had a hard time accessing La Madeleine site from W. Markham which could lead to the major factor of them closing. They would have done better locating at Park Avenue center facing University Ave or at the Gateway Town Center. Their sales would definitely be up and business would still be in operation had they done a more research on the site plan and access to a major intersection.

Perhaps Chili's might have a better time being on the other side of the street but Chick-Fil-A and that whole mess with the gas station next to it is just some real kind of mess.  I think perhaps you were talking about your perception of accessibility versus visibility in your previous post.  We will have to agree to disagree about whether access had to do with closure as much as support for the concept.  In speaking with the owners the la Madeleine brand is going through many internal changes itself that ultimately drove them to close the location.  Actions by the franchisor in simply not providing support or doing what they said they were going to do forced the closure.  It also forced the timing of the closure which was sudden and unplanned but primarily caused by corporate individuals at la Madeleine.  I would expect to see an announcement by the owners of better things to come with their property.  

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Yeah it closed a little while back, had not been there for a good while, usually got mixed results on the service and the quality.. when it was good it was really good but the price was kinda up there.. Yeah I saw the sign in front of the old La Madeline showing it was going in. 

-R

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  • 1 month later...

P.F. Chang’s Facebook page posted today, “We will be closing our doors today at 5 pm. No takeout or delivery option available as of 5 pm. Please stay healthy and we hope to see you back in the store soon!” Google says “permanently closed.” ??? Hopefully it reopens, but I can see this whole COVID-19 epidemic leaving lots and lots of carnage, and not just in this market.


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Makes sense, Pei Wei is also closed for the time being.
 
-R

Ah, that’s a good sign. Since Google Maps shows it as “permanently closed” I just searched a bit in the region and didn’t see any other Chang’s that were closed. I guess this is a direct response to the mayors decree.


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3 hours ago, Architect said:


Ah, that’s a good sign. Since Google Maps shows it as “permanently closed” I just searched a bit in the region and didn’t see any other Chang’s that were closed. I guess this is a direct response to the mayors decree.


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I think that is all it is. Eventually they will reopen.

 

-R

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3 minutes ago, SangreRaVen said:

 

I think that is all it is. Eventually they will reopen.

 

-R

I guess that's one way to control costs, short of the lease...but even that may be given grace by the landlords (as some have already shown to do).

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What's strange is that on P.F. Chang's website, all locations that I looked at showed regular hours.  Even in places where restaurants have been ordered closed, regular hours are posted.  The listing for Little Rock shows closed on every day of the week.  The only other place I could find was in Las Vegas.  A location there is located inside Planet Hollywood Casino which is temporarily closed.  

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18 minutes ago, Arkanzin said:

What's strange is that on P.F. Chang's website, all locations that I looked at showed regular hours.  Even in places where restaurants have been ordered closed, regular hours are posted.  The listing for Little Rock shows closed on every day of the week.  The only other place I could find was in Las Vegas.  A location there is located inside Planet Hollywood Casino which is temporarily closed.  

Yet it still lists the location on their website.  If it was truly "closed" it wouldn't be there at all.  Little Rock was one of the fist cities (I believe) to CLOSE all restaurants.  I presume this was a specific response to that mandate.  Their own FB page encouraged people to come back when they re-opened.  Pei Wei did the same thing, but their website confirms that they've done this NATION-WIDE at all locations.  I suspect P.F. Chang's will follow?

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On 3/20/2020 at 7:33 AM, Architect said:


Ah, that’s a good sign. Since Google Maps shows it as “permanently closed” I just searched a bit in the region and didn’t see any other Chang’s that were closed. I guess this is a direct response to the mayors decree.


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Probably they are just the only ones that went in and changed the settings on Google Business.  They did say "Hope to see in the store soon", so looks like they plan to open back up.

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