New business opens during shoulder season - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

New bar opens during shoulder season

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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The month of November isn't the time of year when people normally see new businesses open up in the Grand Strand, but there is a new restaurant coming to South Kings Highway.

R&R Bar and Grille, at 2011 S Kings Highway, just opened its doors for the first time this week. Like many other businesses, the owners of the new establishment say they're having to rely solely on locals right now for business.

Numbers from the Small Business Administration say only about 50 percent of businesses survive the first five years. In the Grand Strand, since there's a tourist season, it's all about timing. Opening a business during the winter months can be tough to do, but some look at the off season as an advantage to have consistent customers. The owners of R&R Bar and Grille are hoping to appeal to customers who can come around -- year round.

"Anytime you open a new business there is a degree of worry," said Bill Mattress, who owns the grille. "We hope anyway we've done everything we can to make a comfortable place for people of all ages and I guess we'll just have to see."

Nora Battle with the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce says getting customers now can be a tough fight. But it's not entirely uncommon for the chamber to see businesses open their doors for the first time during the "shoulder" season. There can be a big advantage, namely it gives owners a chance to work out the kinks of their business. At the same time, those businesses have to deal with an uphill battle, and that's a slower crowd.

The chamber says there are ways to still keep people coming in.

"There are things they can do whether it's special deals, discounts, or holding special events. Anything to generate excitement among the locals that already live here can certainly benefit them in off season," suggests Battle.

But businesses shouldn't have to only depend on locals, as Battle says the Chamber has started its holiday promotions. The campaign is expected to bring in more people and customers to the area.

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