The signs are up and work is continuing on the AC Hotels by Marriott at St. Johns Town Center. The Daily Record first reported in February 2020 the chain was looking at the shopping center. Now the hotel website says it will open in January. Meanwhile, construction walls are in place for retailers Abercrombie & Fitch, Lululemon and Garage.
Those are some of the projects in progress or recently opened at the shopping center and its neighbors along Town Center Parkway in the shopping heart of Jacksonville. Here’s an update on some of the projects the Daily Record has been following in the area:
Shake Shack, which calls itself a “modern day ‘roadside’ burger stand,” intends to open next year in the space that M Shack has occupied for a decade at St. Johns Town Center. M Shack remains open at 10281 Midtown Parkway, No. 101. Its lease expires March 1, 2024.
Construction walls are up for Lovesac in the Nordstrom Alley. The beanbag and sofa maker is moving across the alley from its space at 4828 River CityDrive, No. 101. A Lovesac employee said it is to make space for the adjoining Louis Vuitton store, which would expand.
AC Hotels by Marriott
Vertical construction continues on the 118-room AC Hotels by Marriott at 5323 Big Island Drive near RH in St. Johns Town Center. The four-story, 71,700-square-foot project includes 1,400 square feet of meeting space and an outdoor pool. According to the hotel website, it will open in January.
Abercrombie & Fitch
Abercrombie & Fitch is returning to St. Johns Town Center in the space vacated by Soft Surroundings. The store will occupy Space L09A at 4790 River City Drive. Construction walls at the space say it is coming in fall 2023. “Abercrombie & Fitch focuses on providing high-quality merchandise that complements the casual classic American lifestyle,” says the directory website.
Alo Yoga is open in the space vacated when White House Black Market moved near Nordstrom in St. Johns Town Center. The store at 4813 River City Drive, No. 119, is between Psycho Bunny and Vineyard Vines. Alo Yoga, created in 2007, stands for “air, land, ocean” and is based in Beverly Hills, California. It is a fashion brand that sells activewear.
Playa Bowls is coming to 2,012 square feet of space at 4720 Town Crossing Drive, No. 125, between The Escape Game and Zulu Surf Co. in St. Johns Town Center. The concept specializes in açaí, pitaya, coconut bowls and smoothies. Mark Williams and Richard Hardman are the franchisees.
Chanel appears to be working toward opening a Fragrance and Beauty Boutique in St. Johns Town Center at 4790 River City Drive, No. 149. Plans in review show the space is near MAC Cosmetics. Steve Madden now is in No. 149. A Steven Madden associate answering the store phone said only that it wasn’t moving or closing.
Mayors Jewelers moved to a temporary location while it prepares to renovate its 4,067-square-foot store at 4834 River City Drive, No. 119. It temporarily is at 4813 River City Drive, No. 137, the 2,467-square-foot former Acumen space between Gucci and Madewell.
Lululemon is renovating the corner space where designer Michael Kors closed and Chico’s operated before relocating. The space is at 4791 River City Drive, No. 143, in St. Johns Town Center. The construction walls say it will open in winter 2023. The women’s athletic apparel company continues to operate in its current store at 4812 River City Drive, Suite 113.
LaserAway is open at 668 Town Crossing Drive, Suite 119, in St. Johns Town Center. It is between Blo | Blow Dry Bar and Polish The Nail Bar. LaserAway offers hair removal, CoolSculpting, tattoo removal and other services. LaserAway says it is the nation’s leader in aesthetic dermatology with more than 125 locations.
The construction walls are up at Garage, a women’s fashion retailer that says its mission is “to create accessible fashion that inspires style-conscious individuals to feel good in their skin.” It is building a store in the 2,990-square-foot space at 4790 River City Drive, No. 137, between Pink and MAC Cosmetics in St. Johns Town Center. Garage markets tops, pants, sweats, skirts, leggings, dresses, jumpsuits, denim and more.
Kingdom Sushi is open in the former Bread & Board space in St. John’s Town Center North. The restaurant is at 4413 Town Center Parkway, next to Publix Super Markets. The kingdomsushi.com menu shows a la carte, all-you-can-eat and online ordering options. The 2,800-square-foot space includes a patio.
GEN Korean BBQ House
GEN Korean BBQ House, a cook-it-yourself concept, is coming to The Markets at Town Center. The Cerritos, California-based company is opening at 4880 Big Island Drive, No. 6. There are 33 GEN Korean BBQ restaurants open and six coming soon in eight states, with 20 in California.
Total Wine Spirits Beer & More expanded its space in St. John’s Town Center North by taking an adjacent space vacated by The Loop Pizza Grill. The 4,075-square-foot expansion created a 26,132-square-foot store for Total Wine.
Jacksonville Coffee Co.
Jacksonville Coffee Co. is building-out space at 4412 Town Center Parkway, No. 221, in St. John’s Town Center North. Store owner Jose Parada intends to open a coffee shop and a showroom for espresso equipment. It will be in a former Starbucks near Publix Super Markets and next to Peterbrooke Chocolatier.
Veterinary Emergency Group
Veterinary Emergency Group is taking over the closed restaurant in St. John’s Town Center North for conversion into a 24-hour emergency animal hospital. It plans to renovate the 4,700-square-foot building at 4507 Town Center Parkway. The building most recently was 145°F Seafood Boil and before that Applebee’s. The total building area is 5,444 square feet.
Ashco Town Center II
Jacksonville-based Ashco Inc. intends to start construction on a second development at the closed Wendy’s it bought in February in Town Center. Ashco said it will demolish the former fast-foot restaurant and build a 16,000-square-foot Town Center II at 4907 Big Island Drive for completion in spring 2024.
Cigars International plans a store, bar and lounge in The Strand at Town Center. The proposed retail building would have a 2,140-square-foot outdoor seating area as well. The site is on vacant land next to Diamonds Direct. The area has been walled off with construction fences. The Strand is anchored by Hobby Lobby, Best Buy and PGA Tour Superstore.
Talkin’ Tacos plans its second Jacksonville area restaurant at 4853 Big Island Drive, No. 9, in Ashco’s Town Center Plaza. The South Florida-based fast-casual Mexican restaurant opened its first franchise location Aug. 4 in Jacksonville Beach. The building also is the home of Mayday Ice Cream, DOS Coffee & Wine, Amara Med Spa and Modani Furniture.
5th Element Indian Restaurant
5th Element Indian Restaurant in Baymeadows bought a closed, 5,010-square-foot Town Center property at 10208 Buckhead Branch Drive for $2.4 million and plans to move there. The site previously had been the Original Pancake House, Ovinte and Kamiya 86.
What has opened since the last Town Center update in December 2022:
Gucci: The luxury retailer opened at 4813 River City Drive, No. 143.
Ballard Designs: Moved from St. Johns Town Center to The Markets of Town Center. It renovated the former Blackfinn Ameripub at 10275 Buckhead Branch Drive, No. 101.
Sugar Factory American Brasserie: Opened at 4910 Big Island Drive in The Markets at Town Center.
Modani Furniture: Opened at 4853 Big Island Drive in the building with Amara Med Spa.
J. Crew Factory: Opened at 4866 Big Island Drive, No. 9, in The Markets at Town Center.
Insa: The cannabis products company opened in the former Black Creek Outfitters building at 10051 Skinner Lake Drive near Bono’s and Wawa.