Friday, September 19, 2014

Salsarita's opening new store prototype Sept. 29

Charlotte-based Salsarita's is opening a new restaurant in Indian Land on Sept. 29, with a new floor plan and design that's meant to be the prototype for all new Salsarita's.

Company owner Phil Friedman says customers will notice a more muted color palette, better lighting and a new curved service line setup for ordering food. The 80-seat fast-casual Mexican restaurant restaurant is in the Cross Creek Shopping Center at Doby’s Bridge Rd. & Hwy. 521, in front of Publix.

"We took a lot of time re-investigating the prototype," said Friedman. "It's another chapter."

He said the design process for the new store took longer than expected, as the company focused on details such as which light bulbs make fresh food on the line look best.  

"The prototype was a little harder than I thought it would be," said Friedman. "Once you get into it, it's more than you think. It's like buying a new house."

Director of marketing Yanira Castro said the new restaurant design is meant to pay homage to Salsarita's green and purple colors, but in a more muted, modern way. The restaurant also has an awning, meant to be recognizable from afar, like Panera. 

Salsarita's currently has more than 70 restaurants in 17 states. Now, Friedman, who bought the company in 2011, wants to expand Salsarita's out from Charlotte focusing on markets in a three-hour radius of the city. The company is searching for franchisees and hopes to reach a growth rate of 30 to 40 new units a year, Friedman said.

"This year we're really starting to attract and sign the people we want who can develop markets," he said. Eventually, he said Salsarita's could be a strong regional chain with up to 500 locations. A grand opening for the Indian Land store is set for Oct. 3, with giveaways including a pair of Panthers tickets.
Salsarita's new logo (above)

Salsarita's old logo