Last spring Pam Leonard went to an auction for a prime piece of Suttons Bay commercial real estate, and came home the owner – a little bit surprised and with no plans for what she wanted to do with it. This spring, if all goes according to plan, that building will re-open as the Suttons Bay Marketplace.
The former home of The Silvertree Deli, at the corner of St. Joseph (M-22) and Madison Avenue in the heart of the village, was sold to her business partner Steve Kozelko for $252,000, and included a package liquor license and beer and wine retail license. In 2002, the same building sold for $800,000.
The premise of the Suttons Bay Marketplace, Leonard says, is “a bunch of businesses under one roof.”
That roof is just shy of 13,000 square feet, but a proposed addition out (and over) the parking lot in the rear of the building will add approximately 2,000 more square feet.
The planned businesses include: a tasting room for French Valley Vineyards, a pizzeria, an authentic soda shop with a lunch counter, a deli and meat counter – offering entrees including housemade barbeque and “made to order” brisket – a bakery and a retail area. The marketplace will also have a vegetable cart with local produce and fresh flowers.
“You’ll be able to get eggs and milk, as well as specialty items,” she says.
Leonard and Kozelko ‘s other commercial ventures include The Vineyard Inn and Corky’s restaurant just north of the village and event venues Crooked Creek Ranch and French Valley Vineyards in Lake Leelanau.
Leonard, who is also a real estate broker and has her builder’s license, and Kozelko have undertaken many development projects over the years. This latest project, she says, isn’t anything new for the pair.
“In many ways it’s just an extension of what we already do,” Leonard adds.
Interior demolition started last fall. The interior will have the look and feel of a streetscape, complete with street lamps and park benches – and during the warm weather months, the accordion-style doors will open up to the street itself, explains Leonard. She says plans call for the exterior to maintain the structure’s historical integrity and fit in with its neighbors.
Leonard says “with support of the Village and the county’s building department” she hopes to have all of the permitting in place to open in June.
And that’s just the downstairs. The next redevelopment phase is a proposed 14-suite boutique hotel on the second level, complete with event space and rooftop deck, targeted for a June 2014 opening.
“We think this is the highest and best use of the property,” Leonard adds. “A cool place for locals and a destination for tourists.”