Santa Maria Sun / News
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 13, Issue 26
A BevMo! store is coming to Santa Maria
BY JEREMY THOMAS
Concord-based beverage superstore BevMo! is planning to open its first location in Santa Maria, according to documents filed with the city.
On Sept. 4, the Santa Maria City Council was set to decide on whether to approve two liquor licenses for the proposed 10,000-square-foot BevMo! store at 1309 S. Bradley Road, in the Costco shopping center next to Trader Joe’s.
In addition to alcohol sales, BevMo! is planning to include a 100-square-foot section inside the store for weekly beer and wine tastings, which will be operated by winemakers, vendors, and store staff. The company anticipates hiring 15 to 20 employees, according to a statement included with the application.
“The store will have a positive influence on the local economy by providing jobs and retail tax revenue to the City of Santa Maria, as well as competitive pricing to the consumer,” BevMo! licensing specialist Liz Zaninovich wrote to city planners.
The store’s hours of operation would be 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. BevMo!, corporate literature states, is the largest specialty retailer of wine in California, offering more than 3,000 wines, 1,200 “specialty spirits,” and 600 types of beers. BevMo! stores forbid anyone under age 21 from entering without an adult present, and don’t sell any tobacco products, malt liquor, lottery tickets, or adult magazines.
Prior to the council meeting, councilmember Jack Boysen said he was still waiting to hear public comments, but had not received any negative input from city residents regarding the proposal.
“They are a very well-run organization, and quite honestly if every outlet that sells alcoholic beverages ran the same way as BevMo!, we wouldn’t have nearly the problems with sales to minors and people that are under the influence,” Boysen said. “They have some very strict rules.”
Boysen added the store would draw in visitors from outside Santa Maria, resulting in an “incremental effect” on the local economy.
The company was founded in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1994 as Beverages and More, and renamed BevMo! in 2001. BevMo! currently has more than 90 stores throughout California—including San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara—with several other locations in Arizona and Washington.
A small group of Santa Barbara residents and business owners appealed the company’s State Street store in 2010, arguing the increased traffic and parking would have a negative impact on surrounding neighborhoods. The Santa Barbara City Council unanimously rejected the appeal.
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