Seeing a distinct difference in customers at its new Downtown Summerlin location, but still serving some regular clientele from its original location in downtown Las Vegas, Makers & Finders Coffee is steadily adapting to its second location.
Opening at the end of December, Makers & Finders’ new digs came on line at an ideal time in the area, owner Josh Molina said.
“It was a perfect time to open in Downtown Summerlin with a few other new businesses opening around the same time,” Molina said. “It’s helped drive business and we’ve been steadily busy ever since.”
The new location attracts a different crowd than its first location on Main Street in downtown. The Summerlin shop features a more suburban clientele, those who live an active lifestyle and who tend to stay longer as opposed to the business types at the downtown location, Molina said.
“We see people riding their bikes and jogging here; there’s tons of families here, especially on the weekends,” Molina said. “It definitely feels like we’re in a mall with all the traffic we’re getting. We’re still trying to learn our market, but overall the experience has been great.”
Despite the change, Molina does see come crossover customers, who frequent the Main Street location on weekdays and stop by the Summerlin location on the weekends.
“People who work in the law district or courts come in in their suits and whatnot downtown, and we see them here (in Summerlin) wearing flip-flops and T-shirts,” he said. “There’s definitely a connection and some people have become regulars at both locations.”
The menus are similar with the food centered around the Latin food such as empanadas and bandeja paisa. To give the new location a bit of its own identity, a few new drink options are offered in Summerlin, including six types of champagne.
“We wanted it to feel very much like you’re getting the same product, having some mirroring from Main Street,” Molina said. “We made some tweaks, I like to call it version 2.0. It’s a refined, sleek, more upscale menu of what we had before.”
Makers Summerlin also has a do-it-yourself mimosa bar, allowing customers to create their own concoction, with a variety of ingredients provided.
As far as layout, the most noticeable difference is the open kitchen at the Summerlin location. At the Main Street spot, the kitchen is located behind the seating area, behind a wall. Molina wanted to merge the drink and food areas together in Summerlin to offer a different vibe.
“Baristas are working right next to chefs, they’re sharing some fridge space,” he said. “It’s really cool. We’re a big believer in the next wave of coffee. It’s not just coffee, it’s coffee and food. Having food is important.”
The Summerlin location plans to add site-specific chef specials and live entertainment in the coming months.
Main Street construction
Major road construction has been taking place for the past several months on Main Street, converting it into a one-way street.
The work has eliminated six street-side parking spots that were in front of the location, which has deterred some customers from visiting, Molina said.
“It’s been very intense, very in-your-face construction,” he said. “They’re changing storm drains that are 30 to 40 feet underground. We saw some changes to our traffic, but people are still coming in. It’s great to see how loyal our customers are.”
With the new, larger sidewalk poured and paving on the street scheduled to begin in coming weeks, the parking spots will soon return, creating easier access.
Makers & Finders has purchased space in Chinatown to begin roasting its own coffee beans.
“We’re going to take a break from expansion this year and let the two locations marinate for a bit,” Molina said. “In the meantime we’re going to get this roasting program off the ground — roasting for both locations, our customers and some subscriptions.”
Product should begin to show up in both Makers locations sometime in the summer, Molina said.
He didn’t rule out once again expanding in 2019 but said that will come about after getting the roasting process off and running.
“After we figure out the program, maybe next year we’ll see,” he said. “We might entertain a third location.”