King’s Family Sale & Resale furniture store to close after 60 years, but the date isn’t set

WICHITA — Sixty years after opening his King’s Family Sale & Resale furniture shop at Harry and Hillside, Tony King is preparing to close it.

Whether that’s in three weeks or sometime in the new year, he hasn’t decided.

King is selling his land at the southwest corner of the intersection to CVS, which is putting a pharmacy there.

Don Ablah and his son, Christian, of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

It looks like King may be leaning toward staying open until CVS starts construction.

“The answer’s probably yes — if I can last that long,” says the 92-year-old, laughing.

As a third generation builder, King says he probably shouldn’t have ventured into furniture sales.

“I probably never should have gotten into a retail store,” he says. “Not my specialty.”

He says he opened it “to give my wife a job.”

Pat King had been a teacher.

“I made her into a furniture sales lady,” Tony King says. “I had to learn the business the hard way.”

At the time they opened the store, it was in the corner of the strip center at the intersection.

They briefly closed the store when Pat King became ill about a decade ago. When Tony King reopened it about a year later, it was in the building behind the former store, where it’s been since.

Habitat For Humanity ReStore is now in the corner space but is moving out within the month to its new home in the Plaza West shopping center at Central and West.

“I may be back in the corner again,” King says.

He says he can’t lease the Habitat space to anyone else for the short time it’ll be vacant, which is part of the reason he’s considering moving in.

“I don’t particularly want to. I think we do all right right here.”

So why bother?

“Well, we’ve got a lot to sell.”

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District Advisory Board votes in favor of extra parking for the Hill Bar and Grill

WICHITA — The issue of whether developers can get extra parking for a bar and grill in the former Barrier’s space is heading to City Council.

A District Advisory Board considered the issue Monday with a packed audience in attendance. Many of the 70 or so people who were there are opposed to the 2 a.m. closing time brothers Brad and Brent Steven want for their new Hill Bar and Grill.

The board voted 8 to 1 in favor of allowing building owners Christian Ablah and W.G. Farha to raze a duplex near the building for more parking.

City Council likely will consider the issue early in the new year.

Mike’s Wine Dive owners to open the Hill Bar and Grill in the former Barrier’s space

Brothers Brent (left) and Brad Steven in front of the former Barrier’s building at Douglas and Oliver, which they’re going to transform into the Hill Bar and Grill.

WICHITA — As some residents of Crown Heights are organizing a group to protest a bar and grill going in the former Barrier’s space at Douglas and Oliver, the restaurateurs hoping to open it are ready to share details.

Mike’s Wine Dive owners Brent and Brad Steven plan to open the Hill Bar and Grill — named for the hill in College Hill — in 5,100 square feet of the building in March.

Mike’s is in the center at the northwest corner of the intersection. The Hill will be on the northeast corner.

Though Brad Steven says the Hill will be a great place to catch a game, he says, “It’s not going to be a sports bar.”

“Our focus will be a wide selection of craft beers as well as American food,” he says. “Basically, we’re going to be specializing in beers the way we specialize in wine at Mike’s.”

There will be 25 beers on tap and craft beers from around the world.

Brent Steven describes it as “kind of like an ale house.”

He says the idea is “a place that’s totally different than Mike’s.”

Where Mike’s is more fine dining, he says, he and his brother envision the Hill as “more of a hangout spot.”

“It will appeal to a wider audience than Mike’s does.”

There will be seating for about 150 customers.

There will be an outside patio facing Douglas that is within the front of the building and will serve as an area for smoking. There will be another patio that wraps around the east side of the building.

There will be another 2,400 square feet left in the building for another business.

The Hill’s hours aren’t set yet, but the Stevens are thinking 3 p.m. to 2 a.m. most days and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. on the weekends.

The hours are a key issue for some residents.

“You can go on the news and see all the time what happens in Old Town at 2 a.m.,” says Melinda Foley, who is president of the Crown Heights Neighborhood Association.

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Developer confirms CVS coming to Central and Oliver

UPDATED — Developer Christian Ablah now confirms what planning documents showed this summer:

A CVS store is coming to the northeast corner of Central and Oliver. Ablah and his father, Don, of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

CVS representatives have yet to confirm that the Rhode Island-based chain of pharmacies is entering the market, but construction already has begun on one of the stores at the southwest corner of 13th and Maize Road.

A CVS also is coming to the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

The same planning documents that show replatting for the store at Central and Oliver also show that one is in the works at the southwest corner of Harry and Hillside.

The former Rossiter liquor store will be torn down to make room for the CVS at Central and Oliver, which will also be on property where a bingo parlor used to be. Ablah says that corner, which he says is one of the main ones in College Hill, has been popular through the years with businesses such as the Tower Theater.

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CVS to open at 21st and Amidon

WICHITA — For a company that so far is not discussing its entry into the market, CVS is awfully busy.

Since February, Have You Heard? has been tracking the activity of the Rhode Island-based chain of pharmacies in Wichita.

The latest deal to be finalized is for a store at the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

In July, the company was working on replatting property for possible stores at the southwest corner of Harry and Hillside and the northeast corner of Central and Oliver, according to documents filed with the planning department.

In August, CVS completed a deal for a store at the southwest corner of 13th and Maize Road.

Classic Real Estate’s Christian Ablah and his father, Don, represented CVS in the latest deal and for the store that’s coming to 13th and Maize Road.

Construction should start on the store at 21st and Amidon by the first of the year, and it should open by summer. The CVS at 13th and Maize Road is on a similar schedule but may open first.

Kwik Shop to open at Stonebridge

UPDATED — A new Kwik Shop is coming to the Stonebridge development at the southeast corner of 37th Street North and Maize Road.

“Our customers have spoken, basically,” says Clay Brasher, Kwik Shop’s director of real estate. “That’s the main reason.”

Kwik Shop, which is operated by Kroger, has more than 125 stores in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska. There are 19 Kwik Shops in Wichita. Kroger-owned Dillons has a number of fuel centers at its stores as well.

“We can use the larger presence,” Brasher says.

Menards anchors the 37-acre Stonebridge development, and Sonic also opened there a few weeks ago. Kwik Shop is the third business to be announced there.

“We feel like it’s going to help us spur even more activity,” says Randy Furstenberg, CFO of Vantage Point Properties, the Stonebridge developer.

“Them going there gives us some momentum that will help us.”

Brasher says he’s not sure how big the Kwik Shop will be yet.

“We’re actually still developing our plans on the size and everything it will include inside the store.”

There won’t be a pharmacy as some Kwik Shops now have, but there will be grocery items.

“It’ll have a large offering of food products in it,” Brasher says.

Construction on the store will start this year and should be completed by spring.

“So it’ll be a pretty quick deal for them,” Furstenberg says.

Vantage Point’s Marty Moody handled the deal with Grant Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons, Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate and Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate.

 

 

 

Famous Footwear to open in former Highlands Gastropub space on Rock Road

WICHITA — A new business is going in the former Highlands Gastropub and Cardroom space at 3731 N. Rock Road, but this time it’s not a restaurant.

Famous Footwear is taking the 7,500 square feet.

No one with the company returned calls for comment, but remodeling is under way, and it looks like the store should be open in a few months.

Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. and Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

After Highlands Gastropub closed in late 2009, Colorado-based BenchWarmers Tavern & Grill signed a 10-year lease for the space but didn’t end up coming.

Before the gastropub opened in the building, Serengeti Grill was briefly there, and Black Canyon Grille had a longer existence there before that.

In addition to the new Famous Footwear, the existing ones at Towne East Square and Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock Road will remain open. There also are two Famous Footwears on the west side.

 

CVS to open at 13th and Maize Road

WICHITA — CVS still isn’t talking about its entry into the Wichita market, but it has signed a deal for a store at the southwest corner of 13th and Maize Road.

In an e-mail, CVS director of public relations Mike DeAngelis said, “We have no comment at this time regarding possible store locations in Wichita.”

Nor has the Rhode Island-based chain of pharmacies commented about other sites that Have You Heard? has reported are possibilities.

That includes the southwest corner of Harry and Hillside, the northeast corner of Central and Oliver and the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

Classic Real Estate’s Christian Ablah and his father, Don, represented CVS in the 13th and Maize Road deal.

J.P. Weigand & Sons and NAI John T. Arnold Associates represented the property owners.

Construction should start soon. Look for the store to be open within six months.

Southeast corner of Central and Oliver ready for development, including a restaurant

WICHITA — It’s been a long time coming, but developer Christian Ablah has acquired an entire city block on the south side of Central near Oliver and is preparing the property for development.

“I’m just basically preparing this for future development,” says Ablah, a broker with his family’s Classic Real Estate.

“I’m just trying to clean up the area,” he says. “The project’s taken a lot longer than I thought it ever would.”

Ablah is close to a deal with a restaurant that would go in the former Dillons store on the southeast corner of the intersection.

There’s talk that it could be a certain Mexican restaurant looking to expand.

“I can’t do the guessing game, but I can tell you it is a sit-down restaurant,” Ablah says.

Part of his demolition of nearby duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes is to make room for parking for the restaurant.

“All the demolition will be complete in a couple of weeks,” Ablah says.

He says any new development will complement what Nathan Toubia is doing with his Bocconcini Italian Eatery next to the former Dillons.

Ablah hopes to close on the restaurant deal in a couple of weeks, but he’s working on other leases as well.

“There’s a lot of demand right now for office — large office space — as well as retail,” Ablah says.

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Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance to open in former David’s Bridal space at Eastgate Plaza

WICHITA — There’s another new lease at Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock, which makes the center 95 percent full.

Illinois-based discount beauty retailer and salon Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance is taking the former David’s Bridal space.

The bridal store moved from its 10,400-square-foot space to a new 6,400-square-foot space within the center next to Plato’s Closet.

Ulta started in 1990. The idea behind the store is a combination of a large beauty warehouse with specialty store attributes.

Ulta has more than 500 brands and about 21,000 products.

Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. and Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate handled the deal.

Look for an early summer opening.