Over the course of many years we have found a pattern when it comes to Seattle retail restaurant locations. Historically, once a restaurant has been open and operated for a period of time as a restaurant, that same location will be favored by another operator. The reasons are many, but most simply the cost of taking a new shell retail space to a finished restaurant could easily be as high as $200 per square foot.
The costs of the mechanical, electrical, handicap lavatories and health standards, when weighed against the cost of buying an operating business as well as the tax structure for buying an operating business make this an attractive alternative. We are currently dealing with several operators and we have carefully lead them to this conclusion as the risk, versus the reward can be substantial.