The Culver’s occupying the former Villa Bleu and Mr. Beefy’s site opened to the public Monday in Fox River Grove.
Owner Barry Himmelfarb said that, so far, business has been “great” and the restaurant has been busy. The eatery opened at 10 a.m. Monday.
“The community has been coming out and supporting us, and we appreciate that,” Himmelfarb said. “They’ve been very patient with us; they complimented us on the building, the beautiful patio. It’s wonderful.”
As of lunchtime Friday, about 3,263 customers had been served at the new Culver’s location at 514 Route 14.
Before opening, Himmelfarb said new employees were trained in the restaurant and the new building was readied for traffic. He said he hired about 35 people to work in the new restaurant.
Himmelfarb also owns Culver’s locations in Woodstock, Hoffman Estates and Schaumburg.
“We’re proud they came,” Village President Robert Nunamaker said during his remarks at the Fox River Grove Business Roundtable on Thursday. “It took maneuvering to do.”
He said this is the kind of commercial development that could attract residents to the village.
Village trustees originally approved Himmelfarb’s plans for the Culver’s in December 2018.
The deal between Mr. Beefy’s owner Dan Skoubis and Himmelfarb closed July 26, 2019. Along with Mr. Beefy’s, Himmelfarb also bought Villa Bleu Tavern and Restaurant and a vacant, four-unit apartment building and dental office in the area of 512-516 Route 14. The property he purchased is 1.29 acres altogether.
As previously reported by the Northwest Herald, the properties Himmelfarb bought are in a tax increment financing district, meaning that tax increments that flow from the property would funnel into the TIF district funds.
The village was able to work out a redevelopment agreement with Himmelfarb to help him offset the cost of the land. He will be reimbursed $545,000 from existing TIF dollars.
Village Administrator Derek Soderholm previously said that the land would not have been redeveloped had the agreement not been made. The TIF district is intended to bring the cost of the land down to something reasonable in the marketplace for redevelopment to occur, Soderholm said.