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Two Coffee Chains Could Call Same Intersection Home

A popular Montrose intersection may soon be home to two commercial coffee chains which has left some residents wondering how much is too much java.

You can never have too much coffee. Or can you?

Starbucks has proposed to takeover the 1,840-square-foot facility on the southeast corner of Honolulu Avenue and Ocean View Boulevard, according to a Los Angeles Times report. The space is directly across the street from another corporate coffee chain, the .

Young Rhee, owner of on Hononolu Avenue, was perplexed by the proposed coffee house addition.

“There is a Coffee Bean right there,” said Rhee. “I don’t know why they need to add another chain.”

Rhee, who’s owned her own local coffee shop for the past 33 years, was confident that Starbucks would not affect her small business.

 “We have plenty of loyal customers here,” said Rhee. “There are differences in our coffees. Sometimes, people will buy their coffee from a chain, bring it here and buy something to eat here.” 

Jeff Schnaufer, a freelance writer from San Fernando who travels to Montrose just to write at its Coffee Bean, felt the introduction of another chain could jeopardize the image of the independent business community.

“Montrose doesn’t have a lot of chains and that is one of the reasons why I come here from the valley,” Schnaufer said. “I think the addition of a Starbucks would be a mistake but it would still be welcome in the community.”

Patch contacted Coffee Bean in Montrose, but calls were not immediately returned.

A few storefronts away from the possible Starbucks on Ocean View Boulevard, Steve Dassian, manager of Oven Fresh Bakery and Café, said he was unfazed by the proposed plans.

“If Starbucks wants to come, they are going to come no mater what,” said Dassian. “I don’t think it will affect my business per say, but it will affect business at Coffee Bean.” 

In order for plans to move forward, Starbucks must secure a conditional use permit to transform the facility from a retail space to fast food because it requires more than eight seats.  Starbucks has also requested 15 fewer parking spaces than required by city code.

“Parking around here has always been an issue,” said Lucy Dimino, manager of . “I don’t think it’s fair for the city to give extra consideration to one business just because it’s a Starbucks.”

While the proposed plans may not affect the business at Rocky Cola Café, Montrose resident Lucy Dimino said the Starbucks addition went against business ethics.

“As a business, I don’t think it’s very considerate or takes a high-amount of integrity to put a similar business across the street,” Dimino said. “If another 50s diner opened across the street from us, I would be very upset.” 

One person who won't be getting his caffeine fix from Starbucks is Jeff Schnaufer.

"When you walk out of Starbucks you smell like you've been inside a coffee grinder," Shnaufer said. 

Elizabeth Nazarian September 15, 2011 at 07:14 PM
If you take a look at McDonald's around the state, notice how many Burger Kings are located near them. I believe it's free advertising for Burger King and gives patrons a choice. That being said, I hope Starbucks does the right thing and stays away!!!
Nicole Charky (Editor) September 15, 2011 at 11:55 PM
Thanks for commenting Elizabeth! What do you think people should do to either prevent Starbucks from coming or welcome them with open arms?
Stephanie Charles September 16, 2011 at 03:59 AM
I LOVE Starbucks...woohoo! It is about darn time!
Chris Barnes September 16, 2011 at 06:02 AM
So much negativism toward Starbucks. I love Starbucks and have been waiting for the day I no longer have to go to Coffee Bean. I hope they come. Although I will say, I thought they would be better off down on the other end near the new Trader Joe's. It would add a lot more foot traffic for the businesses on that end.
Elizabeth Nazarian September 16, 2011 at 02:39 PM
If the residents don't want a Starbucks at that particular location, perhaps they should petition the City Council. The residents could contact Starbucks directly and ask that they not put a store there; they could contact the Starbucks already in the vicinity and ask that they join them in preventing another Starbucks at that particular location. Lastly, if Starbucks does locate at the particular spot, then the residents don't have to patronage their store. With a lack of business, it may not stay.
Elizabeth Nazarian September 16, 2011 at 02:39 PM
If the residents don't want a Starbucks at that particular location, perhaps they should petition the City Council. The residents could contact Starbucks directly and ask that they not put a store there; they could contact the Starbucks already in the vicinity and ask that they join them in preventing another Starbucks at that particular location. Lastly, if Starbucks does locate at the particular spot, then the residents don't have to patronage their store. With a lack of business, it may not stay.
mwallis September 16, 2011 at 03:22 PM
If it's what residents want that's one thing, but wouldn't it be better to put something else in that space, something more utilitarian that montrose residents actually NEED?
Shannon Fallis-Kane September 16, 2011 at 03:56 PM
There is a Starbucks in the Ralphs shopping center at Rosemont and Foothill, another one further down Foothill at Pennsylvania, another on Foothill at Lauderdale Ave. and another on Verdugo near the UA theater. How many more Starbucks do we need in the Montrose La Crescenta area??? Sounds like over kill to me.
Elizabeth Nazarian September 16, 2011 at 03:58 PM
I'm planning on taking a friend to the existing store to make some ceramics. Hopefully, the existing store - Color Me Mine - will stay and all of this will be moot!!!
Connie September 16, 2011 at 05:05 PM
No Starbucks! There's a Starbucks less than a mile away! Come on let's not let the big chains and greedy, nonlocal property owners take over our town. They have already forced out small businesses with ridiculously high rents. They couldn't care less about Montrose or it's citizens. Just the cash. I for one will be contacting Starbucks to let them know not everyone wants then here, will sign a petition against it and if it does happen will definitely BOYCOTT. This is something we do not need and I hate seeing these national chains come in and take away from the charm of Montrose.
Jade Houston September 17, 2011 at 02:44 AM
I am totally againist Starbucks coming to Montrose!Monstrose will start to be like every other strip mall and why does Glendale want to take business away from CoffeeBean?They should not let this happen.I have a business in Montrose and I have people come from a long distance and they love it because,it is different from any other community.They love the charm of the gift stores and some of the resturants that have been here for many years.We do not need another coffee house!Starbucks stay away!!!!
Denise September 20, 2011 at 10:32 PM
I agree with the fact that there should NOT be too many 'chain'/'corporate' type businesses in Montrose. We all know that the attraction to Montrose is the "small-town" atmosphere. Why would anyone want to destroy that!!??? If people dont like Coffee Bean, there are several other options in the mall. There is the cute delicious 'Java Brew' at the other end of the mall, & the City Hall Cafe, etc, etc that have tables & good coffee's. PLEASE-lets have something productive come in. Why is 'Color Me Mine' leaving? Denise
Chris Willman September 23, 2011 at 05:52 AM
I have a selfish interest for welcoming a Starbucks there: Their outlets all sell the New York Times, and now that the newsstand is gone, I need some place to pick it up on my way to City Hall.
Meagan Denos September 24, 2011 at 02:15 PM
Hehe, "per say!"
Elizabeth Nazarian September 24, 2011 at 08:11 PM
Does anyone know if Starbucks are owned by the corporation or if franchises are available? (That's a serious question, for those who anticipate that it's sarcastic.) I ask because we're talking about Montrose's small-town feel, and if a Mom and Pop operation would own the Starbucks, it might make a difference. There's nothing wrong with wanting to get the New York Times from Starbucks - I don't think that's selfish!!! Also, I don't know why, and I'd like to know, if it's a sure thing that Color Me Mine is leaving, so if anyone knows, please advise!!! Thanks!!!
Donna P. September 24, 2011 at 08:26 PM
Ethics seem to have gone by the wayside. Sure, it may be legal, but the practicality and logic of it don't seem to matter.
Denise September 26, 2011 at 11:58 PM
Delete Denise 4:54pm on Tuesday, September 20, 2011 Agreed....Coffee Bean is a chain, however, 'one' is enough & can be productive. Anyway, Coffee Bean beats Starbucks hands down. Starbucks has a 'chemical' taste. The west end of Montrose has an adorable coffee place....'Java Brew'. Take a stroll and patronize a 'mom 'n' pop' shop. We must always support locals first!!! And for the "emotional" view point, yes, lets keep Montrose quaint & not permit more large businesses. I'm sure there is something more desireable for that location. denise
Bruce Weide October 07, 2011 at 07:31 PM
PLEASE SEE MY BLOG - Patch Blog: A Better Idea Than Starbucks vs. Coffee Bean I AM READY TO ORGANIZE LIVE THEATER IN MONTROSE! http://montrose.patch.com/blog_posts/patch-blog-a-better-idea-than-starbucks-vs-coffee-bean

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