GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Grand Rapids’ Alger Heights neighborhood is about to get a café.
On Thursday, the Grand Rapids Planning Commission approved alcohol service for Sip Coffee & Cocktails.
The owners of Urban Jonny’s Salon are opening the hybrid coffee shop and cocktail lounge inside the unused portion of their 1,800 square-foot building located at the corner of Alger Street and Eastern Avenue SE.
“It’s kind of the welcoming building of Alger Heights and so I’m just really, really ecstatic to give it some life in a new way,” co-owner Jonathan Farman said.
The owners said they’ve been trying to determine what to do with the space since they opened their salon a couple of years ago. Farman said he’s always wanted to open “a place where everyone feels welcome,” and a coffee shop has always been on his mind. Because Frantz drinks alcoholic drinks, the concept morphed to include a bar.
Farman and Frantz’s plans include expanding their salon and adding a new door and opening to the building. This spring, they plan to repaint the outside walls, add window box planters and install new signs to make the building “more inviting and noticeable.”
The upgrades also include patio seating along two sides of the building, which will be winterized so customers can comfortably enjoy drinks outside during any season.
In addition to coffee drinks, cocktails and mocktails, Sip will serve up bagels and “the coffee shop carbs that you can usually find” in the morning, co-owner Jonathan Farman said. The evening menu will focus on charcuterie, with meats and cheeses freshly sliced in house.
Sip is also expected to occasionally host musical performances indoors. The business will employ six to eight people.
Frantz and Farman say they’re not the only ones who are pumped about the project.
“We have just received so much excitement from every person that walks in the door. Our stylists are asked daily what news, what updates they have. So I think it’s been made clear to us that this is something that the community is really excited about and I’m happy that we have the opportunity to be able to do that for them,” Farman said.
“First of all, it’s filling a vacant space but also just adding to the vibrancy of this really blooming neighborhood with a beautiful library, restaurants, enough parking,” planning commission member Susan Shannon said. “This is a creative use… what a wonderful merge of two ways to offer the community space to get together for the full day.”
Frantz and Farman hope to open Sip around late February, according to documents submitted to the planning commission. Sip’s starting business hours will be 7 a.m. to midnight on weekdays, and 8 a.m. to midnight on Saturday and Sunday. The outdoor patio would be open until 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.