More merchants set to fill up Downtown Allentown Market

City Center Investment Corp. named four more merchants that will fill up space in the $3.5 million Downtown Allentown Market set to open in September.

The Downtown Allentown Market is set to open in September. (Submitted) –

The indoor market will be in a 12,000-square-foot space below the Strata West apartments along the ArtsWalk, a pedestrian walkway connecting the Allentown Renaissance Hotel and PPL Center on Seventh Street with the Allentown Art Museum.

Once it opens, the market will have nine booths for local and regional food merchants.

The latest batch of merchants includes two who have other locations, one startup and one craft distillery that launched in Lansdale.

The merchants are Doughnut Love, Licensed 2 Grill @ The Market, Tavola, and Boardroom Spirits.

Susan Ott started Doughnut Love in 2017 with a spot at the Easton Farmers Market. The business will continue to operate at that location each Saturday once the venue in the Allentown market opens, Ott said.

As a new business, she likes the idea of having the additional space in the Allentown market.

“It’s a great way to have a brick and mortar location without the stress of renting your own space,” Ott said. “There’s a lot that goes into putting together your own bakery and restaurant.”

Baking has always been a part of her life since she was young, said Ott, of Bethlehem.

Her business will offer a variety of doughnuts, baked goods, coffee and espresso when it opens.

One of the new merchants, Tavola, is a startup Artisan pizza and signature pasta concept that uses locally sourced ingredients.

Anthony Diem, the owner, said he believes the economic revitalization of downtown Allentown would be a great fit for his project.

Aside from pizza and pasta, Diem said he would offer some dessert options as well. In addition, he will allow patrons to customize their orders.

“We want to be able to be flexible in our customer options,” Diem said.

Diem, who lives in Macungie, said he was originally from Lancaster County. He has been in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years, working as a sandwich maker, pizza cook, and with a restaurant group that opened a fine dining Italian restaurant in Lancaster County.

He believes the other merchants in the market have the same spirit of wanting to provide a good experience and atmosphere for customers.

License to Grill @ The Market will bring a Southern diner concept that will offer breakfast, lunch and dinner. Diane and Robert Johnson, who operate a brick and mortar location in Emmaus, will operate the Allentown venue.

In addition, Boardroom Spirits is a family-owned craft distillery producing spirits such as vodka, gin, rum, brandy and specialty spirits that started in Lansdale. When it opens a spot in the market, it will also sell Pennsylvania craft beers and wines and will keep its Lansdale site open.

Natalia Stezenko, retail leasing and activation manager for City Center, said she had sought out these four merchants and believes the market will offer something for everyone when it opens.

She has one more space available and is still accepting applications for tenants, she added.

Last month, City Center announced the first four tenants, which were a sushi/poke bowl concept, a Middle Eastern/Mediterranean concept, a fresh Korean bowl concept, and a startup offering homemade premium ice cream.


Brian Pedersen
Contact the Editorial Department at editorial@lvb.com

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