Over the past few months, several new businesses have opened in Old Town Greenwood.
One adds a new option to a growing list of cafes in the heart of the city, while another offers a showroom for watches.
Locals extend their footprint with a coffee
A new cafe opened for the first time on July 13, providing residents and visitors with a unique cafe vibe.
Cafe Euclid, 357 Euclid Avenue, is the latest venture from Laura and Paul Jacquin, owners of Vino Villa. Business has been good since the cafe opened, said Paul Jacquin.
“The neighborhood has welcomed the business very well,” said Jacquin. “Being new, a lot of people are still discovering us.”
The discovery of the new café is facilitated by its location. The cafe is located immediately behind Vino Villa on an adjacent property, inside a converted house.
The idea of establishing some sort of business on the property dates back to around 2014 when the owners of Vino Villa purchased the land.
“We didn’t really know what we were going to do with the property at that point,” Jacquin said. “But given its proximity to the other business, we thought it would be a good logical purchase, so we bought the property.”
For a time, Jacquin’s son and his wife lived on the property. Eventually, Jacquin and his wife, Laura, were able to get the 0.25-acre property rezoned from residential to commercial, he said.
After his son and his wife left the property, a lot of ideas were thrown around. Eventually the idea for a cafe came up, Jacquin said.
Inside the shop, artwork hangs on the walls, along with words in different languages related to relaxation and balance, such as Eunoia, which is Greek, and Ukiyo, which is Japanese. As soon as customers walk in, they are greeted by a large mural of a man wearing a turban, which was painted by the boyfriend of one of their employees, Jacquin said.
Jacquin invited his family and friends to help design the building, he said.
The cafe offers both coffee and food. For coffee, Cafe Euclid has partnered with Frothy Monkey, a Tennessee coffee roaster. Jacquin and his wife, Laura, enjoyed the group’s coffee whenever they visited the area, he said.
“When we finally figured out we were going to do a coffee, we started talking to the people there at the Frothy Monkey and they said ‘Yeah, we’ll be happy to help with the design and the equipment and the product. »
In terms of food, the menu is quite simple, he says.
“It’s mostly bagel sandwiches. There are about six different sandwiches on the menu,” Jacquin said. “The bagels are also locally sourced. We get them from Scholars (Inn) Bakehouse in Bloomington.
There are already a few cafes in the old town, but each cafe and store has its own vibe that makes it appealing to people. Time will tell for Cafe Euclid, Jacquin said.
“Our goal, I think, is for it to just be a casual place where people come to hang out and socialize with friends and family and over a cup of coffee and maybe have a business meeting or two. “, did he declare.
Jacquin’s favorite part of the new venture is the ability to interact with people, which also applies to Vino Villa. Giving people a place to hang out, socialize and also work is great, he said.
“It’s great fun to see a lot of locals here in the old town come and walk the sidewalk or push a stroller or ride their bikes and just have a nice, cool place to hang out and relax,” a- he declared.
A watch company adds a physical presence
About 3 or 4 blocks south, a new showroom above Revery offers an online watch company the opportunity for people to see the watches in person.
The Visitor Watch Co., 205 S. Madison Avenue, Suite 205, has been around for nearly a decade, but mostly online. Phil Rodenbeck, a native of northern Indiana, founded the micro-brand wristwatch company in 2013 and moved to Greenwood in 2016.
The micro-brand company is similar to the idea of a micro-brewery and is one of the only such watch companies in the state, he said.
Rodenbeck does everything from sketches to technical drawings to figuring out which companies will manufacture the components, as manufacturing is outsourced. He also performs quality control on each watch before it’s released and handles the company’s website, photography and shipping, he said.
One of the biggest challenges Rodenbeck faced with his business was the lack of space for people to view the watches in person before making an expensive purchase, he said. So when he saw a sign in a window above Revery saying the space was for rent late last year, he knew he had to move there.
“Revery has been our favorite restaurant in Greenwood since we’ve lived here,” Rodenbeck said. “I knew this building and it’s an original Greenwood building that has this authentic aesthetic and everything.”
Rodenbeck signed the lease for the space in December and began moving into it in March. A soft opening of the business took place in July.
The building seemed to suit its brand perfectly, and its location was also perfect. He wanted to be at the heart of the community, he says.
Madison’s development also factored into the decision.
“It seemed like a good time to come here as they are really investing in downtown, and hopefully the future is bright for downtown with a bunch of new people coming in,” Rodenbeck said.
The watches in the showroom are designed by Rodenbeck himself. Watches featured in the showroom include the Duneshore, a large dress watch inspired by the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. It was the first watch he ever made.
“It’s the watch I wanted to make,” Rodenbeck said. “The impulse to start my brand was like, ‘Well, I want to have this as a creative outlet.'”
The watches designed and sold by Rodenbeck are mechanical watches which, instead of using batteries, use mechanical parts to keep track of time. This method of timing dates back almost 400 years, he said.
“It’s like 120 odd pieces of metal that are all put together with high enough precision that you can create a time signature accurate to seconds every day. And to me, that’s still amazing,” he said. “Even though this technology has been around for a long time, I’m still amazed by it.”
In addition to being a workspace and showroom for Rodenbeck, the space is also designed to be a meeting place for watch enthusiasts, and he hopes to eventually use the space for community events, did he declare.
At this time, Rodenbeck hopes to spread the word that the showroom exists. The majority of his commercial sales come from outside Indiana, with 40% being international, he said.
“I want more people to know it’s here,” Rodenbeck said.
The showroom is currently by appointment only and Rodenbeck asks those interested in viewing the watches to make an appointment online at visitorwatchco.com/showroom.