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Starbucks Chooses Mag Mile Site For Reserve Roastery

Chicago Retail
Starbucks Reserve Roastery, 646 North Michigan Ave.

Chicago is a city that takes coffee seriously, and Starbucks is hoping it can snag some market share from the local chains with the announcement that it is opening a Reserve Roastery on the Mag Mile.

The nation's largest coffeehouse chain signed a four-story, 43K SF lease at Michigan Avenue and Erie Street and is targeting a 2019 opening, which is currently home to Crate & Barrel. It will be the third Reserve Roastery in the U.S. Starbucks opened a 15K SF Reserve Roastery in Seattle in 2014 and a 20K SF shop in New York City the next year.

Starbucks executive chairman Howard Schultz cited location and history in choosing the Mag Mile for the roastery. Starbucks opened its first store outside of Seattle in Chicago 30 years ago at 111 West Jackson, which he called a true test for the company in its rise to being an international corporation.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel touted the announcement as an investment in the city. The Starbucks Reserve program specializes in small lot coffees from around the world that the company makes available for a limited time. The Mag Mile roastery will be a fully sensorial coffee environment dedicated to roasting, brewing and packaging these coffees, as well as offering multiple brewing methods, mixology and specialty Reserve beverages.

CBRE's Robert Wislow, Camille Julmy and Todd Siegel repped the landlord, Crate & Barrel founder Gordon Segal, in the lease transaction. Starbucks is in the midst of an aggressive expansion, with plans to open 12,000 new stores through 2021.