3/12/2013 03:58:00 PM

Midtown Village Madness: Two New Spots and a Lolita Liquor License

If you run several venues, one sure way to keep a good handle on your empire is to keep it close to home. How close? How about five restaurants and two boutique retail shops all within 1200 feet of each other? That’s what Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran are about to have in Midtown Village, once they open the two new spots planned for Locust Street.

The Insider broke the news yesterday that the pair have signed on to take over the ground level restaurant spaces below the Independent Hotel - previously home to Mike Stollenwerk’s Fish and for a short bit, Rhino Bar. Safran confirmed to Eater today that they plan to come up with two separate concepts for the new locations.

As if that’s not enough, the 13th Street duo is also working on a couple of other exciting changes. Lolita, the couple’s inaugural restaurant and one of the pioneer BYOs in Philadelphia, is getting a liquor license. It will still be BYO until a brief renovation to add a bar is completed this July. Plus, there’s ongoing construction of a catering kitchen slash seminar space in the building right above Barbuzzo.

The Turney-Safran venues we haven’t yet mentioned are Jamonera, Grocery and Verde, the back of which also doubles as the kitchen for Marcie Blaine Chocolates. Maintaining the high level of quality and charm at all these spots will take some doing, but hey - they’re all on the same block! We've got faith.

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