MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A new eatery is opening in the Market Common after the Tommy Bahama's restaurant closed its doors nearly 16 months ago. Tupelo Honey Café is under construction and will be located in the same building as the former restaurant and bar.
Construction site managers and restaurant managers say that they are making good progress inside and are still planning on opening their doors in late February. The construction work started in November 2014. Rob Davis, the superintendent with Story Construction, says since this is mainly remodeling work and not a complete demolition, the work has been easier and everything has stayed on track. Davis says right now, the big projects are finishing the kitchen, the electrical work, and flooring in the dining area. Once that is done, all the details and finishing touches will fall into place.
The restaurant will have 250 seats between two main eating areas and a full bar with 24 taps. Elizabeth Sims, the vice president of marketing communications with the café, says there will be beer and cocktails on tap. And a signature Myrtle Beach drink is even being invented just for this location. Sims says there will be some very unique firsts for this Myrtle Beach location. They're making some dramatic changes to their traditional menu. They'll still have their southern roots and staples, but they're introducing some new sharable plates, lighters options, and higher-end entrees.
Tupelo Honey Café can look to other businesses that have recently opened and are seeing success, like Co-Sushi, Charming Charlie, BarreWorx, and much more.
Heather Mould is one of the managers for Charming Charlie, a women's clothing and jewelry store that opened up in July 2014. Mould says that the management staff for the Market Common is very supportive of each business and helps promote them. She says that environment has given the shops and restaurants a lot of confidence and stability. "They do such great events," says Mould. "They always make sure that whatever event is going on, they include everybody. Tell them if they have coupons, anything you want to give away for our raffles and stuff. So they really try to build business outside of the Market Common to try and get people back over here."
Tupelo Honey Café plans to hire around 100 employees, and they really want to make sure they're hiring locals. They're looking for everyone from bartenders, to dish washers, hosts, line chefs, sous chefs, servers, and more. They need a large staff because they have a high volume restaurant serving food seven days a week for brunch, lunch and dinner. So if you have restaurant experience, they want you to fill out one of their applications online (https://tupelohoneycafe.com/careers). They're sifting through those online applications right now, then they'll set up face-to-face interviews in late January.
Other businesses in the Market Common are of the same mindset. If the area is supporting their business, they want to be sure to support the area and hire locally. Mould says that the business owners and managers will look out for each other and their employees. "All the different retail stores, we definitely help each other out, too," says Mould. "We go talk to each other, 'How's business? Do you have people who want second jobs?' Or if we're hiring people we'll say these stores are opening if you need a second job, because some times you just can't give the hours."
Tupelo Honey Café is based out of Asheville, North Carolina. They have locations in five states. Myrtle Beach will be their first beach location. Mark your calendars, Sims says that their target opening date for right now is February 23.