HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Southern Season announced on Monday plans to close its Henrico store after less than two years in operation.
The specialty grocer opened in July 2014 as an anchor of the Libbie Mill development off Staples Mill Road in Henrico, but company officials say the 50,000 square foot store carrying more than 80,000 gourmet grocery and cooking items was "too large and too expensive to keep open."
Store officials say the restaurant is closing at the end of the day, along with the deli, cheese counter and bakery. The remainder of the store will close April 24.
"The decision to close this store was made after careful consideration of the long-term financial performance of this location. Eligible store team members are being offered the option to transfer to other Southern Season stores. Team members who choose not to transfer will be offered a separation package. "We thank our valued Richmond customers for their loyalty," said Dave Herman. "We look forward to seeing them over the next few weeks at our storewide sale and invite them to continue to shop with us online (southernseason.com) and at one of our upcoming Virginia Taste Stores."
Henrico Economic Development officials said they were disappointed by the news, but remain optimistic about the future of Libbie Mill.
"The Libbie Mill development continues to gain momentum. As the residential units come online, the development is poised to be another mixed-use success in Henrico County," wrote Henrico Economic Development Authority Executive Director Gary McLaren. "Its mid-town location along with Henrico County's competitive tax structure are attracting growing interest as an office location. The strong resurgence of Willow Lawn only adds to the attractiveness of the Libbie Mill development as it begins to develop."
A smaller pop-up store called Taste of Southern Season will open in 2017 in Charlottesville. It is one of 30 planned between now and 2018. The stores will be 4,000 to 7,000 square feet and will carry some of their best-selling items.
A smaller full grocery store is also set to open later this year in Atlanta followed by another in Raleigh in 2017 and Charlotte in 2018.
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