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Published: Wednesday, 4/16/2014 - Updated: 4 months ago

Focaccia’s Market gets ‘great response’ after bringing convenience-store retail downtown

BY JON CHAVEZ
BLADE BUSINESS WRITER
Rachael and Gary Resnick ring up customers at their new Focaccia’s Market in the Fifth Third Center at One SeaGate con­course. Focaccia’s hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. The market features a Starbucks coffee stand. Rachael and Gary Resnick ring up customers at their new Focaccia’s Market in the Fifth Third Center at One SeaGate con­course. Focaccia’s hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. The market features a Starbucks coffee stand.
THE BLADE/ANDY MORRISON Enlarge | Buy This Photo

It’s still a work in progress, but the owners of the new Focaccia’s Market in the Fifth Third Center at One SeaGate concourse are enjoying the response to their business, which marks a return of convenience-store retailing to the downtown location after nearly a seven-year absence.

The market, which features sundries, a Starbucks coffee stand, and as of this week, sandwiches, salads, soup, desserts, and other items from Focaccia’s Deli in the nearby HCR ManorCare building, has made a solid debut, said co-owner Rachael Resnick.

“I wasn’t sure how that was going to go, but there’s a great response. And then, with Focaccia’s in here, it just changed the whole dynamic. They’re flooding in for lunches, for sandwiches,” Mrs. Resnick said.

Announced in December, the store opened March 19 adjacent to Lasalle Cleaners and in space formerly occupied by an apothecary that closed seven years ago.

The market is a partnership between Mrs. Resnick and her husband, Gary, who own Lasalle Cleaners, and Ed Beczynski, owner of Focaccia’s Deli and the Blarney Irish Pub downtown. Mrs. Resnick is running the store.

The three signed a long-term lease with the building’s owners, One SeaGate Partners LLC, an affiliate of AmTrust Realty Corp., of New York.

Michael Walker shops for items at the new Focaccia’s Market. Michael Walker shops for items at the new Focaccia’s Market.
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“I’m committed to this. I’ve been in the building 19 years with Lasalle Cleaners,” Mr. Resnick said. “I’m there to make the building a better building and to provide a service to the downtown.”

The market was to open originally on March 1, but was delayed by the winter weather. And then the arrival of food from Focaccia’s was delayed for three weeks to comply with a law that requires prepared foods to have labels printed by the state of Ohio.

But workers in the building and those passing through the concourse have greeted the new business enthusiastically, Mrs. Resnick said.

“It’s a convenience to the building, and the people love it. They come down during the day on their breaks, you know, they get their coffee or their pick-me-up or their afternoon snacks to get them through the day.

“So it’s obviously something that the building needed,” she said.

The business is still in the experimental stage. Some of the items that don’t sell will be removed and others added, Mrs. Resnick said.

“We are adding the cold coffees for Starbucks. We’ve had quite a few people ask that they’d like to have the cold or iced coffees so we’re going to do that in the near future,” she said.

Focaccia’s owners plan to eventually sell lottery tickets. Focaccia’s owners plan to eventually sell lottery tickets.
THE BLADE/ANDY MORRISON Enlarge | Buy This Photo

The store soon will sell lottery tickets, and after that, fresh flowers, the owners said.

Focaccia’s Market opens at 7 a.m. and closes at 6 p.m. Initially, Mrs. Resnick wondered if the hours might need to be reduced. But surprisingly, they suit customers’ needs perfectly.

“I think it’s going pretty well because you’ve got people coming in at the last minute to take home something to drink and … you do get people in here at 7 a.m. for a cup of coffee,” she said.

“I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but I’m pleasantly surprised by everything,” Mrs. Resnick said.

Contact Jon Chavez at: jchavez@theblade.com or 419-724-6128.



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