One of Colorado Springs’ upscale shoe stores now carries more styles and selections. “We took an area that used to be dressing rooms – we were using it for storage,” said Saboz owner Linda Bridger. “We remodeled and more than doubled our shoe display area.”
Workers and residents in downtown and south Colorado Springs now have another option for dry cleaning their clothes – Pressed4Time, a franchise owned and operated by former Sky Sox pitcher Scott Randall. Randall bought the franchise in October, and said business has been successful, but there is room for growth. “I have plenty of routes still available,” he said. “I hope to really grow the business. Everyone who uses it loves it – it really saves time.”
A family friendly fitness chain with locations across the country is set to open its second location in Colorado Springs this summer. Fitness 19 is building a 7,200-square-foot gym at Union Town Center. The other Fitness 19 location is on Stetson Hills Boulevard.
Maggie Mae’s restaurant, a mainstay of Colorado Springs, has a new owner – but the same management team. Chuck Graybill, who has managed the diner for nine years, bought the building that houses the restaurant. “Our lease was up,” he said. “We were going to buy another property, but had some trouble. So, for a lot of reasons, we just made an offer on this building.”
Consumers will spend less in 2006, thanks to a slower housing market and rising energy costs, according to a study from the National Retail Federation. The nation’s largest retail trade association predicts that industry sales, excluding automobiles, gas stations and restaurants, will increase 4.7 percent from last year.
Local retailers rang up a very merry holiday season, outperforming national trends, thanks in large part to gift cards and last-minute shoppers. At The Citadel Mall, sales were up 2.5 percent compared to last year during the final week of Christmas shopping, said Diane Loschen, marketing manager for the mall.
The Pikes Peak Independent Business Alliance needs volunteers to contact members and plan events to promote local businesses. “We had a few setbacks in the last part of 2005,” said Andy Gipe, president of the PPIBA. “But we do have the Web site up, and the online director is working. We just need manpower at this point. We’re trying to get back in touch with members and get things started again.”
The newest Lowe’s store is preparing to open on Jan. 13, with more than 116,000 square feet of retail space. The store, located at the intersection of Union and Powers boulevards, is the second Lowe’s to open in Colorado Springs. Lowe’s is one of the anchors at the First and Main Center on Powers. “We’re opening an average of one new store every three days,” said Lowe’s spokeswoman Karen Cobb. “We’re currently in the fastest expansion in Lowe’s 60-year history.”
Last minute shoppers do not have to despair. Several Internet sites are still offering shipping – sometimes at no additional charge – for gifts purchased as late as 4 p.m. Dec. 23. Luxury stores, such as Brookstone, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, diamond.com and RedEnvelope.com, all offer shipping as late as Dec. 23, said Brad Wilson, a professional shopper and founder of bradsdeals.com.
Rock Bottom Restaurants Inc., the company that owns Old Chicago, opened its first Rock Bottom restaurant and brewery in Colorado Springs this week. Located at Powers and South Carefree in the Main Street shopping plaza, the restaurant joins three Old Chicago restaurants in Colorado Springs, but is the first of the company’s brewery concepts to enter the market.
Jean-Marie Designs now has three times more space – the floral company moved to a new location at 25 E. Cheyenne Road. “We were downtown for 18 years,” owner Jean-Marie Handal said. “We were in a small space, an opportunity came open to buy the new building. It was a great real estate investment.”