Chicago: Goodbye Crate & Barrel… Welcome biggest Starbucks in the world

Crate and Barrel 2Change is good, I know, but Crate & Barrel, the flag ship store, 3 stories high with all glass windows has been on Michigan Ave for 28 years. I still remember the excitement when the store first opened. All the “oohs and aahs.” Just a few years ago, we learned that Macy’s was buying Marshall Field & Co., now Crate & Barrel is gone. Please, allow me a few sniffles.

This picture will go down in the retail history books. I wanted to get the last photo of Crate & Barrel with their signage. Chuckling though, because somehow, the way I took this picture it looks like the second “leaning tower of Pisa!”

As most of you know, the papers say retail is dying, not 100%, but enough to have different store closings. This is sad, but we have to go with the times. When I look at this photo, I can absolutely see a Starbucks there. It’s a beautiful store with it’s open windows, elegant escalators and the location on Michigan Ave can’t be beat. This is prime real estate. The biggest Starbucks in the world. WOW – in Chicago!

I didn’t realize this, but Howard Schultz, executive chairman of Starbucks, said that 30 years ago Chicago was where they opened their “first” Starbucks outside of Seattle. This is sentimental, of course. So, 30 years later, Schultz is going “really big” with Starbucks Reserve Roastery, which will be a four story, 43,000 sq ft interactive coffee shop. They will roast, brew and package coffee there.

Is Amazon next? Chicago is still on Amazon’s top 20 list for a second headquarters. So, maybe, just maybe, we will have TWO heavy hitters from Seattle moving into Chicago!

Stay tuned, book your flights is all I can say! Tourists will be coming!

12 thoughts on “Chicago: Goodbye Crate & Barrel… Welcome biggest Starbucks in the world

  1. What a shame. Crate & Barrel is a “browse” kind of store so I don’t see the experience being as satisfying on-line. But the numbers don’t lie – there must be a significant shift going on in customer preference. Also, I can’t imagine a Starbucks filling that entire space. Make a note to blog (and photo) once the doors are open for coffee. Putting the before and after photos side-by-side will be interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good idea with a follow up Blog. Well, this is going to be a “roasting” location and I bet they will have food, sell stuff, etc. I can see them taking up the space, sort of like a library with hang outs on all the floors. Stay tuned!

      Oh, and like you said, this location was a “browse” kind of store, so I think when you are paying high rent and the dollars aren’t coming in, you have to move on. Sad, but before you know it, we will have a new neighborhood hangout!


  2. Generally, I’m a one coffee a day gal, and that one is made in my kitchen, but once in a while, I like a splurge, and Starbucks is an easy find, & a guilty pleasure.

    That said, a couple of years ago, I was given an interesting challenge. Upon arrival at our house sit in London, we were given some great tips: free things to see, places we could walk to, always carry 10p for public toilets, that sort of thing. These were offered with a challenge: don’t go to a single Starbucks (apparently, they don’t pay their fare share in taxes in the UK).

    In my perfect world, we’d have no chains of any sort, and that beautiful location would be home to a funky independent coffee shop (with no holiday cup debate).

    Liked by 2 people

      1. My friends (who’ve been to Europe) and I often wonder why we don’t have these sorts of places here in the States. The atmosphere is just so much more… I can’t describe it… But the chain shops just seem like such a cookie-cutter and totally lacking atmosphere.

        Liked by 1 person

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