In a sign that the economy is getting back on its feet, Village Square has welcomed seven new businesses to the renovated shopping center.
Sumits Yoga and Pisces Reef Fish Emporium are already open. Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana and Avery’s Coffee plan to open in late September. In the buildout stage are Blow-N-Go Hairbar, Orange Theory Fitness and Xelement Music & Dance.
Some of those businesses are expanding from other parts of town. Settebello is one example, already established at 140 S. Green Valley Parkway in Henderson. Others, such as Pisces Reef Fish Emporium and Avery’s Coffee, are new.
The seven new additions join 13 other businesses that opened their doors at the 250,000-square-foot center at 9400 W. Sahara Ave. in the last 18 months.
Xelement Music & Dance
Xelement Music & Dance has set an ambitious agenda for itself. Besides two dance studios, the corner slot, just under 5,000 square feet, hosts three soundproof music rooms and a recording studio. It will offer music and dance lessons for a competition dance company and a musical theater department in what owner/operator Lea Blink-Archer called a friendly and personable environment.
After dancing professionally in Las Vegas — her bio includes dancing at MGM Grand and the Rio — she moved to the Washington, D.C., area and signed on as a dance teacher at a studio called Joy of Motion. Blink-Archer located a business partner and opened Impact, a performing arts center. Through that experience, she said she knew she wanted to open her own studio and teach but that it had to be in Las Vegas. She moved back to Las Vegas in January.
“In D.C, I wanted a place where people felt safe dropping off their kids,” she said. “That was a key element when I came back here, looked for a space. … I love Village Square because, as a mom, I know there are other things nearby that I can do while my kids are taking lessons.”
Xelement Music & Dance plans to officially open to the public Sept. 21. A week of free dance classes is set to be offered Sept. 16-21 for anyone who wants to try the studio. For more information, call 702-337-6005.
Sherman Ray and his wife, Linda, have big plans for their business, Avery’s Coffee. Its focus will be on gourmet coffees paired with a small bakery section.
Avery’s plans to open with about seven tables. A common area is outside for those who want to sit outdoors.
Sherman Ray said the fact that there are Starbucks locations blanketing the city is not a concern.
“People who go to Starbucks will always go to Starbucks,” he said. “We bless those people. … they brought attention to coffee. But if I could put it in terms of PC and Mac people, we’re looking for Mac people. Mac people were once PC people, but they will never go back because they found (what they like) in Mac.”
Coffee-tasting events to educate patrons and introduce them to new flavors will be part of the store’s strategy. Ray, a former member of The Platters, said he has plans for events, such as social media night, as Avery’s is “all about community.” As patronage grows, he said the future might include coffee tours — taking faithful coffee drinkers on “trips of origin,” including places such as Costa Rica or Jamaica — to immerse them in the international coffee experience.
Pisces Reef Fish Emporium
Pisces Reef Fish Emporium is in a building that faces west. Owner Linda Lavezzi comes from the Denver area, where she started a furniture company but got bored once she hit retirement. So she decided to follow her hobby, tropical fish.
“Once I decided to do that (open a fish store), I decided it had to be the best in town,” Lavezzi said. “Our primary concern is the care of the fish, then it’s the customer. Some (other stores) feed their livestock fish flakes. Ours get the best, a mixture of spirulina, oyster and shrimp and blood worms.”
She admits to being a semi-novice on the specifics of each species but said that’s why she hired seasoned aquarists who know all about them. The hard part, she joked, was teaching them to run the cash register.
The 2,300-square-foot space is chock-full of tanks — more than 7,500 gallons of fresh and saltwater habitats — with everything from stingrays to sharks trolling around the coral.
“Some people come in and say, ‘I want six of these,’ ” Lavezzi said. “Well, no you don’t. Because with that many, you’re going to have a disaster on your hands.”
Improving Village Square
During this time, Village Square has been undergoing renovations that include realigning the parking lot, adding new contemporary facades, updating paint and lights and renovating landscaping. Motorists will likely have noticed the new digital signs at the corner of Sahara Avenue and Fort Apache Road. New furniture spruces up the common areas.
“We are extremely pleased with the success of our redevelopment efforts and our ability to attract some of the best local businesses in Las Vegas,” said Scott Chernoff, principal of Westport Capital Partners LLC, the real estate investment firm that purchased Village Square in 2011. “Village Square’s transformation continues to provide a vibrant shopping and entertainment experience for the community.”
Beer festival coming in November
From 3 to 7 p.m. Nov. 2, Village Square plans to host a beer festival, Brew Local!, in partnership with the Chicago Brewing Co., 2201 S. Fort Apache Road. The festival will showcase Nevada craft brewers, and a portion of the proceeds will support the Firefighters of Southern Nevada Burn Foundation. Additional participating Village Square restaurants and businesses are set to include 808 Tapas, Settebello, Rocket Fizz, Cold Stone Creamery and Alligator Soup.
General admission is $30. VIP tickets are available with eary entry at 2 p.m. Tickets are set to go on sale Sept. 24. For more information, visit govillagesquare.com.
Contact Summerlin/Summerlin South View reporter Jan Hogan at email@example.com or 702-387-2949.