New Developments and changes around Traverse City

Real Estate Agent with Century 21 Northland

Cider House Coming & More

November 4, 2015
Cider House Coming & More

Downtown Traverse City will soon welcome a new cider house and retail boutique, while a stagnant commercial and residential park on Birmley Road is being revived and a new assisted living facility is breaking ground near Munson Medical Center. The Ticker has the latest on these projects, plus other TC businesses on the move.

New Downtown Merchants
Eurostop Café has closed its doors at the corner of Front and Park streets. Owner Marieta Barbu Braun – who could not be reached for comment – posted on the company's Facebook page that she planned “to explore new horizons,” and thanked customers for their patronage the past seven years.

Taking over the space is Northern Natural Cider House Sales Manager Jen Mackey, who is leaving the company and starting her own tap room called Taproot Cider House. 

Northern Natural, which is planning to focus on production and tastings at its Kaleva location, will close its Front Street taproom November 15 (a farewell party is scheduled for Nov. 14). Neighboring retailer Traverse City Guitar Company is expected to expand into the former Northern Natural space.

At the new Taproot Cider House, Mackey plans to have 20 hard ciders on tap. A full Class C liquor license means Mackey can also serve specialty cocktails, beer and mead. She also plans to offer in-house craft sodas and a full menu featuring everything from $3-7 appetizers to salads, sandwiches and entrees. “We’ll have outdoor seating with alcohol next summer,” says Mackey, "and we're doing a full restoration on the interior," including a stage in back for live entertainment. Planned hours are 11am-11pm on weekdays and 11am-12am on weekends. Taproot Cider House is slated for a mid-December opening.

One block west, Muriel’s clothing boutique owners Bob and Muriel Joldersma have retired after 21 years in business. The company closed its doors at at 238 Front Street October 17. The space won’t stay vacant for long, however: Pierre and Anne Pujos – owners of Pavlova Salon & Day Spa and The Exchange – plan to open a new boutique in the building on March 15, 2016.

“We will be selling clothing, accessories and home products…but it’s going to be something very different than (our) other stores,” says Pierre. “Different styles, different price points, a different shopping experience. We are going to do some remodeling and transformation of the space. It’s going to be a big change.”

Ashland Park
Once envisioned as a massive mixed-use “hamlet” with housing, retail and commercial units, Ashland Park – at the corner of Birmley and Garfield roads – has sat mostly vacant since the early 2000s. Now Peachtree River Investments is hoping to revive the neighborhood’s mixed-use vision after purchasing the property.

“What we’re focusing on to start is the commercial end of the development,” says Vice President Ben Brower. The company’s vision: to convert the site’s 30 acres of commercially zoned property – including 13,000 square-feet of move-in ready space  – into a medical campus serving the south side of town.

“If you live in Kingsley, or on the east or south side (of Traverse City), there’s no way to get to medical services without driving across town,” explains Brower. “Our dream is to turn this property into a south-side complex…with doctors, a children’s health clinic, optometrists, and other services along those lines.”

Peachtree River Investments’ parent company – oil and gas firm Jordan Exploration, of which Brower is also vice president – has other area real estate holdings and saw the development as an opportunity to keep staff employed during the oil industry downturn, says Brower. The company is already at work beautifying the property: upgrading the landscaping, installing new park signage and repaving the parking lots. In spring 2016, Peachtree hopes to break ground on the residential side of the park, which is approved for 64 duplex units and 71 single-family units.

French Manor South
A new 19,200 square-foot assisted living facility broke ground this week at 415 South Elmwood Street across from Munson Medical Center.

French Manor South will be the newest addition to senior care providers Kelly and Rusty Ackerman’s group of French Manor Facilities. The facility – planned to feature 30 assisted-living apartments – replaces a 4,000 square-foot medical office building under demolition at the site. Burdco Incorporated is overseeing development of the property.

AmericInn Traverse City
AmericInn Traverse City has a new owner and general manager. Ted Lunt and Ed Graft have sold the hotel at 1614 US-31 to Grand Rapids real estate investor Tom Borisch, whose family owns several marinas, sporting good stores and restaurants in northern Michigan. "My plans are to leave (AmericInn) just the way it is," says Borisch. "With how successful it's been and how well it runs...I don't plan to change anything if I don't have to."

Long-time general manager Nick Trahair, who's been with the company for 15 years, is stepping down. "Tom is going to be great for the property and staff and guests," Trahair says. "This was a good opportunity to pursue something new and different." Assistant general manager Brooke Hayes is taking over as GM of the property.

Jinetes Mexican Bar and Grill - next to Buffalo Wild Wings on South Airport Road - has closed its doors. Todd Wyett of Versa Development, which owns the building, says Versa approved a proposal from Jinetes to sell the restaurant to Agave Mexican Grill. A representative from Agave confirmed the deal and says the company is now open in the space, offering the same "menu, happy hour specials and drinks" as the Garfield Road location.

Picture above, clockwise from top left: Ashland Park, French Manor South, the former Muriel's space, Taproot Cider House's Jen Mackey in front of her new space


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Jon Becker - Century 21 Northland

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