Monday, June 4, 2007

Another Downtown Starbucks

Posted by Greg Hambrick on Mon, Jun 4, 2007 at 9:47 AM

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Last November, we reported that Starbucks' plan for world domination included expansion in Charleston, where you already can barely make it two blocks without spotting one. The company is now trying to cut that to a block, according to Caroline Fossi at the P&C.

The Seattle-based java giant has signed a lease to open shop in the Francis Marion Hotel at the corner of King and Calhoun, across from Marion Square. It will take over space taht has house a string of coffee places including Port City Java and Charlestowne Cafe and Coffeehouse.

While it may seem strange to some that you'd open a Starbucks next to a Starbucks, the company tossed aside those silly perceptions in November.

While spokeswoman Shannon Pariaug wouldn't commit to any further Starbucks expansion plans in the market (reiterating that they "go where they're needed," apparently like some mocha latte X-Men), the next Starbucks could show up a few blocks from your old reliable frappuccino feeding hole.

The concept is that people don't want to walk too far for coffee, and when they get there, they don't want to wait in a line. So the answer is to make the experience as convenient as possible. Even if that means a Starbucks across the street from a Starbucks, says Launi Skinner, senior vice president in charge of Starbucks' store development.

"Going to the other side of the street can be a barrier," Skinner tells the Associated Press.

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