Downtown To Have A Facelift

They’re all headed downtown—an Ole Mole Mexican eatery, a Warren & Williams body and skincare spa, a Gofer ice-cream parlor, and a seafood place.

These businesses are to be the new tenants at a soon-to-be-built building at 1020 Boston Post Road, to be developed by Stamford developers Baywater Properties and Frank Mercede & Sons.

The three-story building, which will have a floor area of 28,000 square-feet, will house an assortment of retail, restaurants, offices, and apartments.

The first floor, with a space of 10,100 square-feet, is reserved for retail and restaurants. Of that, about 8,500 square-feet has already been leased. “1,600 square-feet is left for renting,” said Frank Mercede, president of Frank Mercede & Sons.

Baywater Properties, which is presently headquartered at 78 Harvard Avenue, in Stamford, will relocate to Darien and occupy a portion of the second floor.

The remainder of the 10,000-square-feet area will rented out to offices. “There’s about 8,000 square-feet [of space] that’s still available,” said Mercede.

He added that there’re some “serious office candidates,” who’re currently vying for a slot. A row of six luxury apartments—two of which will be leased at below-market rents—will take up the third floor.

“One of them has been committed to a town employee, but we haven’t yet begun to market the rest. We plan to do that in the next nine months or so,” he said.

“We’ve obsessed over the tenant mix for 1020 Boston Post Road for several years and have worked as hard as we could to address the needs and wants of the community, from the attraction of two new high quality restaurants to the inclusion of affordable housing,”  said David Genovese, chief executive officer of Baywater Properties in a statement.

Since my father and I both live in town, we want the property to be not only beautifully designed and built, but also to be a significant contributor to the quality of life in Darien,” he added.

Commenting on how this would impact the town’s effort at revitalizing its downtown, Mercede said, “I think this will be a catalyst since this is a key project, in terms of what it offers: apartments at a great location, nice office space, the much-needed restaurants. Also, it links the municipal lots with the public thoroughfares.”

The structure is being designed by Mark Finlay Architects, an award-winning architecture firm, based in Southport, Connecticut, Pearl Management Group, owners of several well-known fine dining establishments such as Elm Street Oyster House in Greenwich, will open a 4,000-square-feet restaurant, which will offer an al-fresco dining experience.

Williams & Warren will move from its present address at 1066 Boston Post Road to a bigger, 2,000-square-feet outlet on 1020 Boston Post Road. Gofer Ice Cream, which opened in town in 2004, will return to the Darien market with a store nearly twice its original size.

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