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If Not Starbucks ... What?

The prominently-sited retail space at the northwest corner of First and Main is vacant. What kind of business would you most like to see located there? Join a lively conversation in our comments section.

Long rumored as the future location of Napa's first downtown Starbucks, the former home of is vacant and waiting for its next tenant. 

The light-filled corner shop at 1006 First St., on the northwestern corner with Main Street, was a florist's before the Eye Works moved in a few years ago.

Now that the eyewear shop has relocated to nearby Pearl Street, a for-lease sign is up in the window at 1006 First.

What would you like to see there next? Starbucks, or something else?

Please share your visions in our comments section.

Mike Treleven April 25, 2012 at 02:40 PM
Maybe a drug store. It's hard to buy cough drops or a greeting card.
Vanissa April 25, 2012 at 03:06 PM
Yes maybe a local drug store/convience store. Since Merrills went out of business years ago there is nothing like this down town and with all the people down town now I think this type of store will do well.
Patty Peterson April 25, 2012 at 03:17 PM
I think a convenience store would be great. But I would also like to see something more in women's retail. Something that compliments Mustard Seed, Betty's Girl, Wildcat and Inti. Something that the tourists and the locals would appreciate. Something that adds to the downtown's diversity and uniqueness.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) April 25, 2012 at 03:22 PM
The problem with convenience stores is that they tend to be junky-looking; I think it's such a pretty retail environment, with all those windows, that filling it up with condoms, cough drops and shampoo would be a sad waste of the space.
Judy April 25, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Yes. A drug store/variety store. Somewhere where downtown workers can pick up pre-packaged foods and beverages for a quick lunch, locals can pick up birthday cards and cold medicine, and tourists can pick up aspirin and sunscreen.
Karen Garcia April 25, 2012 at 03:31 PM
If I had the money I'd open a a New York City-style newsstand with papers from all over the US, postcards, flowers, lots of best-selling books, tourist guides, candy/gum, a few toiletries etc. I think a shop like that would make a killing in downtown. And what a nice compliment that would be to NVRC.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) April 25, 2012 at 03:34 PM
Okay Karen, let's get you the money cause I think that would be a great idea, especially if you add in CDs by local bands. Or hey ... maybe Copperfields could spin something off?!
Mark Rieken April 25, 2012 at 04:12 PM
As I chime in with a big "NO!" on Starbucks; I must say… we already have a lovely local coffee shop (NV Coffee Roasting Co.) on the opposite corner. I too like Karen's idea - something interesting and intelligent with a flair for the Avant-garde - fun and practical for both locals and tourists of all ages.
Becci April 25, 2012 at 05:24 PM
How about a PEET'S since we onlyy have one and about 10 starbucks. We are being taken over by Mexican Restaurants and Starbucks. I mean really we have 27 Mexican restaurants in this town, don't get me wrong I love mexican foodd but really 27??????? Give us alittle versatility please.
Navi April 25, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Napa Valley Roasting Company needs to move in there
Jamie Clemons April 25, 2012 at 07:06 PM
book store? photography store( place for photographers to pick up things they would need) Music store? theres a lot of places that would be good for that place..
Kyle Gelow April 25, 2012 at 08:25 PM
Arts and craft would be nice. I miss Ben franklins and can't afford to drve to micheals
george elicker April 25, 2012 at 08:50 PM
We had 8 drug stores in town at one time. I like Karen's idea best. Be able to pick up a large variety of items. Back in the late 40's I uses to sit in front of that space on Sundays on a pile of newspapers and sell the Sun. Chron, Examiner,
Mark Bunger April 25, 2012 at 08:53 PM
I would like to see a Starbucks or Peet's Coffee go on that corner. 1st and Main would become the place to get coffee and I think it would give the NV Coffee more business since tourists will search for Starbucks then want to try the local Coffee shop.
george elicker April 25, 2012 at 08:56 PM
But def. not another Starbuck's Worst coffee in town. I liken it to scotch - - something tou have to develop a taste for.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) April 25, 2012 at 09:40 PM
Newspapers and magazines, books, convenience items, ukuleles, supplies for arts/crafts/photography, coffee, music ... Yeah, I'd shop there! What shall we name our corner emporium?
David Ryan April 25, 2012 at 09:48 PM
What about a stop and rob, er, I mean a liquor store. Can't drink wine all the time, some folks need their Thunderbird!
Art Morris April 25, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Since Napa is a tourist town, and it seems like downtown wants to cater to tourists, I say they put in an ABC convenience store like you see over in Hawaii. It could have everything tourists would need like emergency bottles of wine, crackers, and cheese, but could also have many other things found in drug stores like OTC medicines and books and magazines. Instead of Kona coffee, the shop could stock some local wines and souvenirs.
Steve Rodrigues April 25, 2012 at 10:37 PM
How about a cosmetics company like Sephora? Rememer, there already is a vonvenience store in downtown Napa that has all of the above items...and from what I understand is starting delivery service for downtown in the next couple months!
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) April 25, 2012 at 10:40 PM
Intriguing, Steve! Sephora sells glamorous-looking stuff at virtually every price point ... that could be dangerous for me.
Art Morris April 25, 2012 at 10:58 PM
I'm drawing a blank as to where a convenience store is downtown. Where is it located and what's the name?
Steve Rodrigues April 25, 2012 at 11:08 PM
Val's Liquors - Downtown is the convenience store. I happen to be the owner... Yes, we have medicine, food, hair products, tooth brushes, cheese, tobacco, wine, liquor, snacks, chips, newspapers, magazines, etc... I can tell you, if someone tried to do primarily books and newspapers they'll go out of business fast!
Becci April 25, 2012 at 11:08 PM
Actually these are all great ideas but I'd still like to see PEET'S insteadn of so many STARBUCK'S. I work at a local hotel and alot of our customers ask for PEET'S over STARBUCKS'S. Don't get me wrong I like STARBUCKS but I like PEET'S better. Then again i'm just one voice in the crowd.
Wendy McCall April 26, 2012 at 12:02 AM
An arts and crafts store would be great! A scrapbook store even better! The last thing we need downtown is another antique store. With Napa Valley Coffee company across the street, I wouldn't want another coffee shop there. let's support local companies as much as we can!!
Christine April 26, 2012 at 03:49 AM
An old fashioned drug store with a soda fountain.
Art Morris April 26, 2012 at 07:15 AM
Oh yeah, that landmark. :-) I guess I never really considered it as the classic convenience store, but then again, the last time I was in there (many moons ago) it was almost completely alcohol. I guess I should stop by and see what's new. Hope business is going well.
Art Morris April 26, 2012 at 07:17 AM
I think Peet's is gooder than Starbucks, too!
Chris Gillespie April 26, 2012 at 08:03 AM
I agree with the drug store idea. The Safeway store is the closest place to downtown. I'd like to see anything there that isn't a corporate chain.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) April 26, 2012 at 11:59 AM
Not only does Val's have all those things, but according to our readers it serves the best Italian food in Napa, too! If that's not convenient, I don't know what is. Steve, congratulations and I have just received a "window cling" proclaiming your Readers' Choice Award, which I will be bringing to you soon.
Louisa Hufstader (Editor) May 10, 2012 at 02:23 PM
Steve, is that your letter, about the veterans memorial, in today's Napa Valley Register? It's really well-written and thoughtful.

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