Lingerie and lattes? This could be a first for the county.
In what’s sure to perk up the coffee scene, Trevor Lohr and business partner Juan Martinez plan Monday to officially open Double Cups, a shop at 241 S. Egret Bay Blvd. in League City where baristas serve coffee beverages in bikinis or lacy little numbers.
Lohr, who until a year ago was living in Oklahoma where he owns some bar businesses, said he was inspired by the wild success of such coffee houses in Washington state, where hundreds of women — in shops with such names as Peek-A-Brew, Java Jigglers, Twin Perks and Hot Chick a Latte — serve coffee from roadside huts while wearing, well, not a lot.
In these parts, it isn’t unusual to order hot wings and beer with a side of cleavage at any one of the many so-called breastaurants, including Hooters or Twin Peaks. But this is new ground for the county.
At least one woman on social media has questioned whether Lohr and Martinez are exploiting women with the bikini barista business concept.
But Lohr doesn’t see it that way at all.
“If anything, it’s empowering women to feel beautiful in their own skin,” he said.
And Lohr points out that for women who work in restaurants where scant clothing is the dress code there’s a danger of being touched by men.
At Double Cups, women serve coffee through drive-thru and walk-up windows, and customers don’t enter the shop, so there’s no danger of unwanted contact, Lohr said.
“A lot of women in this type of industry tell me they don’t feel safe — the managers or owners don’t care about boundaries,” Lohr said. Some managers at those restaurants encourage women to accommodate customers for tips, but that won’t be the case at Double Cups, Lohr said.
House call: Some readers are fishing for answers about the status of the much-awaited Pier 19 restaurant planned by the owners of the popular Katie’s Seafood Market.
For those in need of a refresher, Katie’s Seafood House will take over the building formerly occupied by Joe’s Crab Shack. The Port of Galveston owns the property and last year entered into a lease agreement with Buddy Guindon and family, who run the popular fresh seafood market also on Pier 19.
Buddy Guindon last week couldn’t be reached for comment. But Rodger Rees, director of the Port of Galveston, said the Guindon family plans to invest more than $150,000 to transform the building. Look for a fall opening of Katie’s Seafood House, Rees said.
Lifting the veil: The wedding industry is booming on the island and more businesses are expanding to accommodate that growth. Kathy Rea, owner of KG Weddings & Events, recently announced a new addition to her wedding planning repertoire. She and her husband, Chris Rea, unveiled Majestic Linens and Décor, a specialty linen and décor provider in Galveston. The couple acquired Majestic Linens and Décor — under the name Majestic Linens — from Jeff and Vivian Collins, who are retiring.
Majestic Linens and Décor, in business for 18 years, offers rentals of linens, napkins, table accompaniments, chairs and chair treatments, including sashes and covers, and décor pieces including uplighting, chandeliers, candelabras, boxwood hedge, French antique panels and more.
“We are thrilled to play a bigger role in the expanding island wedding industry,” Kathy Rea said. “Chris and I are excited to bring our expertise to this important part of weddings and celebrations.”
Majestic Linens and Décor offers appointment-based selections at its office, 3527 Broadway in Galveston. But not for long. The Reas are renovating the Majestic Linens and Décor warehouse, 2511 43rd St. in Galveston, into a showroom. Stay tuned.
Downtown doings: Island merchants continue to make moves.
The latest is Blu Boutique, a fashion, homeware and accessory shop, which is moving from Postoffice Street, where it opened a year ago, to The Strand.
Blu Boutique will remain open at 2118 Postoffice St. until May 19 and will reopen at its new space, 2425 Strand, on May 25, owner Michelle Robach said.
Blu Boutique has enjoyed much success since opening on Postoffice St., Robach said. But she liked buying a building rather than leasing and wanted a larger space, she said.
The new building will give Blu Boutique 2,800 square feet, versus 1,200 square feet, she said. And the shop on The Strand will feature a beer, wine and Champagne bar, she said.
Her daughter Emma will continue managing the shop. The Robach family moved to the island from Austin. Michelle and her husband, Patrick, own property on the island, including short-term rentals.
Michelle Robach looks forwarding to owning the building, she said.
“I can make it as blue as a I want,” she said.
Tom’s Galveston Real Estate Broker Tom Schwenk represented Robach in the real estate transaction.
Look next week for more downtown island buzz.
On the burner: Some readers were bummed when Zio’s Italian Kitchen closed its 820 Bay Area Blvd. restaurant in Webster. But there’s some appetizing news. Houston-based retail brokerage firm Baker Katz has acquired the Zio’s site with plans to develop two buildings that will house eateries Bellagreen (the rebranded Ruggles Green), Snooze, Hopdoddy Burger Bar, MOD Pizza and a juice bar. Now that the site has been cleared, crews soon will begin construction of a 15,000-square-foot building to house the restaurants, the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership reports.