Get your recycled cotton totes ready, downtowners: Whole Foods Market today announced an opening date for the chain’s first-ever DTLA location. Its glassy doors will open on November 4.
The store update is a long time in the making. Although Ralphs, Smart & Final, and Wal-Mart have all joined a number of smaller specialty markets in the area in recent years, Whole Foods eyed downtown for close to a decade before settling in 2013 on a mixed-use development at the intersection of 8th Street and Grand Avenue for its flagship outlet.
Perhaps to make up for lost time (but more likely to maximize profits) the organic grocery chain is going big. Regional Vice President Erica Dubreuil tells us the store’s space measures about 41,000 square feet and will feature a restaurant/bar with meal service; an expanded specialty foods department with an extra large selection of beer, wine, and cheese; a grocery delivery option for those who rent an apartment above the store; and the chain’s “best ever” coffee bar.
Perhaps the market’s biggest draw, however, is what Dubreuil describes as “plenty of parking”—a whopping 170 spots within the development’s lot will be reserved for Whole Foods shoppers. “People who aren’t walking from an office building on 7th Street can drive over to get stuff,” says Dubreuil.
She’s watched the neighborhood transform with interest while Whole Foods searched for its future downtown home. “We’ve seen the complete development of areas that weren’t developed before, residential properties going in, and a lot of conversions of these beautiful old buildings along the Broadway corridor—all that vibrancy,” she says. “We’re really excited to get in.”