A new café, selling imported Italian desserts, delicacies and coffees, should open by March on Marion Street.
Shaker and Associates - a real estate investment and management firm in Oak Park - recently reached a lease agreement with three entrepreneurs from Berwyn and Chicago for the property. Named Lido's Caffé, the owners expect to completely overhaul the vintage building, adding new flooring, lighting and seating, Anthony Shaker of Shaker and Associates said. He believes they will also incorporate outdoor seating, making use of Marion's wide sidewalks.
"It's going to be extremely nice; the build out plans are beautiful," Shaker said.
Shaker said he doesn't want the three owners' names made public until they apply for a retail rehab grant through the village. He noted that they have previous experience in the restaurant business.
The deal took about four months to reach, with no involvement from Downtown Oak Park and the village, Shaker said. A key element of the discussions was the reopening of Marion.
"These people like the way [the street] looks," Shaker said. They think [the café] will be successful, and think the use will be of great benefit to the community.
Lido's Caffé will be located at 122 Marion St., between Scratch 'n Sniff and the Carriage Flower Shop. It was formerly occupied by Abrahamson's Furriers, which was open for 54 years in Oak Park. The fur store closed in April of 2006 after its owner retired, and has been unoccupied since. Shaker and Associates purchased the building later that year.
"I think it's going to give the area a shot in the arm," Shaker said.
Read more in the January 9 Wednesday Journal