In Churn, four downtown businesses are planning expansions.

Sweetest Sin owner Angela Courtney is doubling the size of her lingerie boutique on White Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

small retail churnWith their eyes on growth, four established Red Bank businesses are seizing opportunities to expand their presence downtown, redbankgreenit is Retail has learned.

Among them are three retailers who have found ways to survive online shopping, the coronavirus pandemic and other challenges that have crushed so many in their industry.

Chris Midose in the ground floor space of 18 Broad Street, future home of Earth Spirit New Age Shop. Below, Cabana 19 is opening a second store at the east end of the building it occupies on White Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

• After 13 years at 11 White Street, Angie Courtney is moving her lingerie boutique, Sweetest Sin Boutique, right next to 7 White, a space recently vacated by Chelsea Morning hair salon.

The move will provide more display space for bras, camisoles and other garments, and provide space for four oversized dressing rooms, Courtney told Churn last week.

With double the floor space and large windows, the space is “bright and airy,” said Courtney, owner of the building which has the Semolina restaurant and the Red Bank Chocolate Shoppe as tenants.

Courtney has established herself as a downtown business leader, with deep involvement in the Red Bank Business Alliance and as a commercial property owner.

After acquiring her building three years ago, she purchased the building across the street last year from longtime owners Vance and Margaret Valente in conjunction with their decision to retire and close their handcrafted Quicksilver jewelry store. In the process, she became the owner of a Rook cafe, Hair & Co. and Cabana 19 (a store which is also expanding – see below).

“I love it here,” she said. “Red Bank has been good to me, and I want to keep growing.”

Sweetest Sin’s new home is scheduled to open next month. Another retailer will take over the freed up space, Courtney said.

In the meantime, Chelsea Morning stylists have moved to Bliss Hair Studio on Swimming River Road in Lincroft.

• Earth Spirit New Age Center, Monmouth Street’s sparkling mecca for lovers of crystals, tarot cards, candles and more, will move to 18 Broad Street next month, owner Chris Midose told Churn.

The 3,000-square-foot walk-through space features 14-foot-tall tin-clad ceilings in a building that dates to 1883. Midose said he was impressed when he first visited, but dared not not initially think he could afford it. . But his life and business partner, Rob Carroll, convinced him they could give it a shot, and a long-term deal was struck with building owner Ralph Notaro, he said. declared.

Earth Spirit is experiencing an unexpected rejuvenation, Midose said. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, he worried about the future of his business, but all of a sudden the market for crystals “exploded on Tik Tok,” he said.

“Now we still have the same older customers, but there’s just been a surge of young people,” he said. “It’s been going strong for two years, and I don’t see any ebb” on the horizon, he says.

Last year was the best selling for the business, Midose said, and the move to a more prominent Broad Street storefront should increase momentum as diners and shoppers discover the store.

The lease covers a basement that nearly doubles the square footage, allowing Earth Spirit to expand its online business.

Midose opened the business with his mother, Jocelyn, in 1991 at 16 West Front Street, and moved to 25 Monmouth in 2005. He became the sole owner in 2018.

The Broad Street space was last occupied by Haute Maven, but for over 130 years it housed a string of shoe shops, culminating in If the Shoe Fits, which closed in 2014.

• Across the street from Sweetest Sin, in a building owned by Courtney, Cabana 19 owner Kris Winters plans to open a “little sister” shop called Locker 19, she told Churn.

Located on the east end of the building, the store will retain the “beach feel” of the existing store, located on the west end, while offering gifts and accessories. Winters said she wanted to feature for much of her decade in business, but didn’t have room for it.

“We’ll be giving away teen gifts, baby gifts, wedding gifts, housewarming gifts, and birthday gifts,” she said via email. “We will have a section for animal and sports lovers (tennis, golf, pickleball). We’re significantly expanding our personalization section so you can take a gift and have it wrapped and ready to go.

Winters told Churn she hopes to open Locker 19 the first week of May.

The space was occupied from 1972 until June 2021 by Quicksilver artisan jewelry by Vance and Margaret Valente, which closed upon retirement last June. A company called Peek-a-Boo Shoes obtained permits to operate in space, but did not open.

This is the second time Winters has expanded his business. She walked through a wall to double her boutique’s original footprint in 2014, just 16 months after Cabana 19 opened.

• Patrick Jeffrey, seen last August outside Elli’s Backyard, plans to expand the eight-month-old restaurant into vacant space next door at 43A Broad Street.

The space, recently occupied by AR Workshop, will be used to create a “speakeasy” atmosphere, Jeffrey tells Churn.

“It’s essentially a hidden restaurant within a restaurant,” he said in an email, and will feature “a ‘hidden’ door, secret menu items, and a different, more intimate atmosphere.”

It will also allow him to host private weekend parties without having to close his restaurant to other customers, as is currently the case, Jeffrey said.

An opening is planned for this summer, he said.

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Shawanda H. Saldana