Got a sneak peek of Max’s new space at Excelsior & Grand in St. Louis Park – just across the parkway from the current store. I think it’s going to be a good move for this under appreciated luxe gift gallery, which specializes in jewelry, art and chocolate (trifecta!). The new space is wider and will allow for more display room. Max’s is scheduled to be closed for about a week and reopen in the new spot Feb. 5.
All’s well that ends well, but the truth is, this move was not owner Ellen Hertz’s idea. Excelsior & Grand is moving her to make room for CVS in the anchor spot that fronts Excelsior Boulevard, previously home to a couple of ill-fated restaurants. CVS. Sigh. On the positive side, it could bring some neighborhood traffic to this shopping district, which has struggled to fill vacancies and draw a crowd, despite the good location and bustling Trader Joe’s. Max’s has been one of the few shining stars – thanks to Hertz’s tireless promotional efforts and stellar merchandise. The biggest bummer about CVS, besides not exactly raising Excelsior & Grand’s profile as a shopping destination, is the waste of patio space. I ate at Laredo’s, not because the food was good (how do you screw up guacamole?), but because it was so lovely to sit outside on the wide stretch of sidewalk, near grass and a fountain. I hope they at least add some tables and benches – the place could use some loitering.
At least the spaces are filling. Also opening at Excelsior & Grand in February: Bubbly Paws, a self-serve dog wash and full-service dog spa form the owners of Pampered Pooch Playground and Get In Shape For Women, offering small group personal training (it’s new to Minnesota). And in March comes Oil & Vinegar, selling cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oils and balsamic vinegars. Customers will be able to make custom blends and take cooking classes.
What else would you like to see at Excelsior & Grand? Weigh in!