The small grab-and-go breakfast and lunch eatery opened last week in the Haywood Park atrium with many familiar products, including Starbucks coffee and West End Bakery snacks.
The Starbucks Siren, encircled by the words “we proudly serve,” surveys the atrium from her perch below the café's sign. She smiles out from the coffee cups, bottled Frappucinos and table tents. She's in her element; Starbucks logos far outnumber Haywood Park Café branding.
Until now, Starbucks has had a limited presence downtown. The snack bar in the Aloft hotel sells its coffee. “Even though it is a national brand, we feel that a lot of people do respect the Starbucks brand,” says Jenny Herman, marketing director for FIRC group, which owns Haywood Park and manages the café. “[It] is a distinguishing feature for us to offer the Starbucks coffee in a downtown location.”
Officially, the café is an authorized purveyor of Starbucks beverages, and it has a licensing agreement with the chain to use the Siren logo. “We are a locally owned company — just the beverages that we provide are Starbucks beverages,” she says. “We are not branding ourselves as Starbucks.”
The café will balance the chain coffee with local offerings, she explains. Sandwiches and stromboli come from The Panini Factory. Cinnamon rolls, cookies, brownies, lemon bars and other baked treats come from West End Bakery. When Isa's Bistro, another FIRC-affiliated restaurant, opens next-door, it could provide fare for the small eatery.
The café offers Wi-Fi, and while there's no seating inside, the picnic tables in the atrium serve that purpose.
Haywood Park Café, 46 Haywood St., is open daily from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, visit haywoodparkcafe.com.
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