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Brands, Dining Scene Brings Energy to Brentwood's Marketplace

One of the area's largest retail real estate brokers describes the trends happening in Brentwood, breaks down its three submarkets and hits the pulse of what's making it attractive for business tenants today.

The business climate is ripe in Brentwood, drawing interest from many restaurant groups and making a push for more contemporary fashion brands, according to one of the area's largest retail real estate brokers.

Rachel Rosenberg, executive vice president of RKF, spoke with Patch earlier this week about the trends and opportunities they're seeing in the Brentwood market. Based in New York City, RKF entered the Los Angeles market about five years ago representing business tenants and helping bring growth to the area.

"We’ve always been bullish on Brentwood market," Rosenberg said. "It’s a phenomenal market. We look at retail and servicing retail tenants on a national front, if not global. So for us, being bullish on a market is really understanding its value for its clients and appeal."

She noted there's "a lot of excitement and energy happening" for Brentwood business growth potential and, for RKF, it's about finding synergy with their clients and monitoring how consumers are taking to tenants in the markets.

"We’re watching sales volumes and how large, just in terms of scale and size, these tenants are going into the market," Rosenberg added. "Are they right-sized for the Brentwood market?"

Brentwood's 3 submarkets

  • 26th Street and San Vicente: Rosenberg said this area serves as the area's fashion front, highlighting that the Brentwood Country Mart has continually grown and expanded its collection of tenants, as well as making a last impact on the intersection. She added that there's a lot of retailers, some who also look at the apparel-centered Montana Avenue, that can't get into the country mart but see the success there and want to expand on its fashion front.
  • San Vicente Corridor: Calling it the service corridor for Brentwood's central business district, Rosenberg said it's become more dynamic in recent years. The corridor has its fashion, including a staple, Ron Herman, and a destination-driver, Lululemon Athletica. Rosenberg also highlighted its leading eateries, such as Fresh Brothers Pizza, Chipotle and the SanSai Japanese Grill getting a new neighboring restaurant. Fitness studios and athletic retail are also growing in this part of Brentwood, including SoulCycle, Fly Wheel and Yogaworks. Rosenberg said this means there's a definite lifestyle and way of living in Brentwood, which connects these businesses to the level of sophistication and what consumers are looking for.
  • Sunset Boulevard and Barrington Avenue: What's great is that it's maintained, says Rosenberg, not necessarily transformed, but still servicing the locals. It has a mixture of studios, restaurants and institutional restaurants that have been in the market for years. 

"It makes Brentwood an interesting a community and more colorful from a real estate play," Rosenberg said. "You have all these different niches. It does all come together and it also presents an opportunity for users to do more than one location."

Pulses and changes in the Westside

Rosenberg didn't forget to highlight Brentwood Tavern, Sugarfish and Katsuya.

"It's an unbelieveable dining scene," she said, adding that nearly 15 tenants are currently interested on being in the Brentwood marketplace. "The sales coming off the units are appealing to others, and a market that has so many local restaurant groups performing at a high level again is a testament to how strong the community is. What Brentwood offers is both a local and national presence in terms of food."

With Cheesecake Factory leaving its space, Rosenberg said it should not be considered a loss.

"I actually see it as a value they are looking to relocate," she said. "It has nothing to do with Cheesecake. It’s one of their only units in that area, and they are looking for their right size in the market. They are about half of what the typical footprint is these days. This is an opportunity for them to seek a better platform for their business, and on the other hand, this will open the doors to some better quality shops."

People are watching Scoop NYC and Intermix, another east coast fashion company, she noted, and they are creating a great case study for others.

"It’s the first market in L.A. that showcases the two," she said, "which is very interesting just by way of competition. They do carry a crossover of brands, so it’s been really fun for people in the fashion industry to watch them, to see what their merchandise mix looks like and how they’re catering right now."

Those staying in a hotel near Brentwood are met with hosts of different options for food and business centers, Rosenberg said, and it’s also a meetingplace between the Westside and East L.A. Speaking to Santa Monica's Promenade and The Grove in L.A., Rosenberg said those two destinations have the promenance and tourism that Brentwood does not have, and does not have the department stores to feed those crowds.

"So we really have to do the best to educate the brands that, maybe looking at other markets like Beverly Hills and Robertson Boulevard, and educate them as to why they should play a role in Brentwood," Rosenberg added. "So far we’ve been successfull and continue to be successful, especially with the activity we have in the market."

(A correction was made to the spelling of SanSai Japanese Grill. Patch apologizes for the error.)

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