From Home Furnishing Business
City Furniture Expands Cutler Bay Presence
City Furniture has opened the first part of the 90,000-square-foot superstore that will nearly triple its presence in Cutler Bay’s high-profile home furnishings retail district.
The first portion of that Miami, Fla.-area superstore is a new 56,000-square-foot, “green” showroom at 18750 S. Dixie Highway. Construction will begin before year-end of an adjacent Ashley Furniture Homestore.
“Cutler Bay has always been a high-growth strategic market for us,” said City Furniture President Keith Koenig, whose firm opened a 33,600-square-foot City Furniture showroom 20 years ago on a site immediately south of its newest showroom.
That aging store closed as the new store opened Sept. 30, and in the coming weeks crews from Stiles Construction Co. will launch renovations of the former store to create an Ashley Furniture Homestore showroom, with a walk-through connecting the stores. City Furniture is adding a total of 35 new sales, support and operations jobs relating to the two Cutler Bay stores.
When the Ashley Furniture Homestore showroom opens in spring, it will mark the completion of City Furniture’s five-store South Florida expansion and renovation program. As the licensee for Ashley Furniture Homestore in southeast and southwest Florida, City Furniture has paired the brands at many locations. The company’s 24-store network stretches from Cutler Bay through Stuart, and its first two Central Florida stores will open this fall in The Villages.
“Our Cutler Bay location serves a remarkably diverse clientele--from Keys residents seeking a laid-back island style, and local families who may favor more traditional furniture, to urban millenials who want sleek, contemporary design,” Koenig said. “Expanding our footprint with both the City Furniture and Ashley Furniture HomeStore brands at this location is the key to bringing our customers an exceptional range of choices, with great values at varied price points.”
With expanses of glass capturing abundant natural light, the new City Furniture showroom is a state-of-the-art backdrop for different furniture styles. A dramatic stone wall rises through the two-story atrium, and shoppers have wide-angle views of the store from the floating stairway, glass elevator and the second-floor glass overlooks that ring the atrium. Displays feature fully accessorized coastal, Old World, transitional and modern furniture environments, including upscale Bernhardt furniture that’s being added companywide, a large Mattress Gallery, plus a Kids and Teens furniture department.
City Furniture’s team was working on South Florida expansion well before the economy plunged in 2008, Koenig said, but it took years to purchase land parcels adjacent to existing stores.
“A major presence in Cutler Bay clearly made sense, regardless of economic cycles,” Koenig said. “We tried for years to buy the parcel just north of our store and lost out in bidding wars. Then, ironically, when other real estate prices dropped during the economic downturn, this parcel’s value stayed strong. We finally purchased the land in 2011.”
The new Cutler Bay showroom is the fifth store City Furniture, one of the national industry’s environmental leaders, has built or renovated to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Koenig’s team worked with Stiles to include energy- and water-saving features from parking lot to roof, such as high-efficiency climate control systems, sensor-controlled LED lighting throughout, heat-deflecting roof coating and low-flow plumbing fixtures.