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Caffe Bene’s Sunnyside Operation is For Sale

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Aug. 11, 2015 Staff Report

Caffe Bene’s Sunnyside operation is for sale.

The café, located at 41-31 Queens Blvd, opened in May 2014 and is on the market for $550,000 (click for listing). The rent is $7,000 per month and there is 15 years left on the lease, according to the listing.

The opening of the Sunnyside location was the beginning of the Korean coffee giant’s big push into Queens.

In the past 18 months, the company has opened two Astoria locations, one in Kew Gardens and another one is planned for Jackson Heights.

The company is known for offering Korean-styled beverages as well as pastries, croissants, sandwiches, waffles, gelato, and so forth.

The Sunnyside operation is not the only Caffe Bene in Queens for sale. The 31-30 Ditmars Blvd location in Astoria, which opened in October, was put on the market in June.

That owner of the Sunnyside operation was not available for comment.

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41 Comments

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me

overpriced merchandise small ice cream sundae over $10 ….and people with the laptops at the tables for HOURS after purchasing a coffee – no employee ever telling them to move on – CYA!!!!!

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JOReilly

This is the place that started the distress wood craze in Sunnyside. So, for that sin, I’ll just say Karma is a bitch. The shop in Kew Gardens opened a week or so ago with outdoor cafe seating opposite the courts and Borough Hall. The Kew Gardens is much more welcoming than I found the store on 41st Street. In any event, good luck to the owners!

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Anonymous visitor

With all due respect I think you have that incorrect. It was actually Salt and Fat that uses distressed wood on the exterior first.

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O'Malley

How was this article even published? There is no information aside from that it is listed for sale. Get some facts before you publish an article!!!

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O'Malley

Yes, I saw that, but is that really enough to publish an article? I don’t think so. And you have all these people commenting about franchising, high rents, etc., but the truth is we know nothing from this article except that it’s for sale. Not good journalism in my opinion. Talk to a manager, contact the corporate office, the realtor, something!

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Anonymous visitor

This is very scary @Silence. If you believe the story the owner is telling you, then that means somebody is illegally trying to sell her business without her knowledge. You may want to call the polices and the FBI because clearly someone is either trying to scam her or scam the public and sell a business they do not own. Unless of course it’s just a simple error and they listed the wrong address on that multiple listing for the business or the woman is not telling you the truth because clearly someone is either trying to scam her or scam the public and sell a business they do not own. Unless of course it’s just a simple error and they listed the wrong address on that multiple listing for the business or the owner is not telling you the truth

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Silent majority

Another empty storefront? Has anyone noticed the stores between 39th Pl and 39th st? The entire block in vacant store fronts XO lounge, Chinese restaurant, laundromat, Japanese restaurant pizzeria and a hookah lounge all vacant. Its a whole block with deals the only store at the corner. What is BID and Sunnyside shines doing about thing.

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Anonymous visitor

I think you may have missed the point of the article. They are not closing down the business they are looking to sell it to a new operator to take over the business and run it as a café bene. This is very common in the world the franchised businesses

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Anonymous visitor

I believe Keissi is right in her comment. Once they change the zoning laws in the area and opened it up for developer to tear down buildings so that they can build new high-rise apartments for our growing New York City population.

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Z!

If you read the listing itself, they’re selling the business, including its license to sell under the Caffe Bene name. So it’s not CB going under, it’s the current operator cashing out.

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Jim Doogan

So they want over half a million to bail their asses out? The build out was probably 350 the place has no name, no following, no desirable menu, and now they think some stupid sap is gonna help them walk away. Good for them. Get what you deserve. Stay the hell in Korea making tea and rice cakes and leave the pros to brew the coffee.

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Krissi

I don’t know what you are all talking about – there’s no reason to think its not doing very well. It’s packed morning noon and night. Franchisers set up shop For the purpose of selling the business all the time. Nothing new here.

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anthony blackwood

if they were not so damn rude they may have attracted more customers.went in there for a coffee and the clerk all but fired the order at me.

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Doug E

Two small coffees and two macaroon cookies set me back $10. Went back to Aubergine’s (Skillman & 50th).

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the other SS

$7k/mo is a lot of coffee and cake to sell, although they are not to be confused with starbucks. This place is more like a bakery/cafe, whereas starbucks is a hangout place for cheap ass sunnyside folk who is too cheap to get their own internet at home so they have to smooch off starbucks, spend all day sitting on the same spot. Can you ever honestly say “let’s go to starbucks and sit and sip our coffee and eat our muffin” Whoever plants their ass on one of those seats do not get up like ever.

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Mara

Totally agree in winter i saw a girl sitting with computer and heater next to her. Unbelievable.

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Kramden's Delicious Marshall

Didn’t they know how much the rent was BEFORE they decided to open the place?

Something doesn’t add up here.

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a.bidge

Will be a shame to see it go. If commercial rent doesn’t decrease, Sunnyside will be filled with empty store fronts.

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Sunnyside Calling

I’d be delighted to see this disappear. The last thing Sunnyside needs are bloody chains.

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Sunnyside Local

Let’s try that again. I should have proofread:

$7,000 a month rent. Add on the overhead of employee salary, electric, heat, wifi, insurance, stock and advertising. Huh, that’s a lot of coffee and noshes to sell before you meet your overhead and start turning a profit. Me thinks the business is for sale due to the fact that the owner can’t turn a profit because of the astronomical rent. So yet again a small business closes if the current owner can’t find another sucker to buy into the hype of the neighborhood. But, we’re a Business Improvement District so I’m sure those folks have a national chain store or a bank already locked up to take over the space. More likely, we’ll have yet another fallow storefront and an eyesore.

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VelvetKnight

Cafe Bene IS a chain store. Almost 1000 locations in Korea, and are rapidly growing in the U.S. The article isn’t totally clear on this point, but it sounds to me like the company itself opened the store and is now trying to sell it as a franchise once it’s up and running.

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Barney

They launched a bunch of stores around the same time in the city and here. Lots of eye candy food wise but the coffee is pretty bad, weak, and expensive. The customer service in both stores I visited was poor as well…teens distracted kabitzing or on their phones. Poor brand research and lainch execution. I dont see them lasting as a franchise operation in the city for more than a year except for corporate stores.

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Sunnyside Local

$7,000 a month rent. Add on the overhead of employee salary, electric, heat, wifi, insurance, stock and advertising. Huh, that’s a lot of coffee and noshes to sell before you meet your overhead and start turning a profit. Me thinks the business is for sale due to the fact that the owner can’t turn a profit because of the astronomical rent. So yet again a small business if the current owner can’t find another sucker to buy into the hype of the neighborhood. But, we’re a Business Improvement District so I’m sure those folks have a national chain store or a bank already locked up to take over the space if the current business closes. Or, we’ll have yet another fallow storefront and an eyesore.

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Kelly

I went in shortly after it opened for a muffin and a coffee. The clerk told me there was a $5 minimum for my credit card, so I put down the coffee and the muffin and said “I’ll go to Starbucks.”

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Willy Wonka

What you did not have 5 bucks! Geez use cash people I have credit cards and I hardly ever use them.

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Astoria Resident

Merchants pay fees on credit cards. Try walking around with some pocket change and drop the ‘tude.

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Kelly

I’m not an idiot or anything. I’m aware that merchants pay fees on credit cards, and it’s certainly not news that society is moving away from using cash. I’m sorry if anything I wrote made it seem like I have an attitude. Typically large multi-national chains like Caffe Bene don’t have credit card minimums.

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O'Malley

Credit card fees are a cost of doing business in 2015. Well run businesses incorporate that in their pricing structure.

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Anonymous visitor

I own a small business and nearly all my sales are credit card. I DO NOT require a minimum. Yes there is a fee to process cards and with AmEx at 3.5% it’s not cheap but it’s a cost of doing business just like rent and office supplies. People who don’t run a business don’t understand the costs and risks with cash. Counting cash takes time, A certain percent of cash often disappears at the hands of dishonest employees, most banks actually charge businesses for cash deposits, and of course don’t forget the risk of robbery.

Roasting Plant actually is a coffee shop in Manhattan that encourages customers to pay with cards not cash.

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