New stores and names popping up on Larchmont Boulevard

| May 30, 2024 | 0 Comments

SWEET LADY JANE’S triple berry cake stands with other tempting confections in SLJ’s newly open Boulevard location.

BARBERS ON LARCHMONT’S co-owner Cesar Perez sits in one of his four barber chairs prior to opening.

JESS RONA with one of her clients.

Sweet Lady Jane (SLJ) is officially open on the Boulevard and new employee, Jeansy Orellana, told us: “It’s been pretty busy so far! Everyone seems excited we are open.” The bakery’s famous triple berry cake is one of the first confections visitors to the store will see upon entering the quaint location at 203 N. Larchmont Blvd.

Another newly open Boulevard addition is a branch of the Oakberry Açai smoothie chain. Açai berries contain antioxidants, and it seems fitting that the shop is taking the slot at 122 N. Larchmont once filled by Jamba Juice, another store that sold smoothies.

Australian cosmetics brand Aēsop is now open at 128 N. Larchmont Blvd. It fills in the last retail bay of the new Larchmont Mercantile project in the former Lipson Building.

Muraya Sushi, one the Boulevard’s two longtime sushi restaurants (at 125 N. Larchmont Blvd.), has transformed into Pho La Vache. Early May saw the rebranding of this, the Boulevard’s only Vietnamese restaurant. “I’ve been wanting to bring something different, Asian and trendy to the Boulevard for a long time,” said owner Jane Kwak. When we spoke, she told us pho is one of her favorite foods, and customers had often asked if Muraya served rice noodles.

Kwak seized the moment and has expanded Larchmont’s offerings to include pho (bone marrow beef broth, rice noodles, cilantro, basil, lime, sprouts and thinly sliced meat). Another popular Vietnamese offering, banh mi, is also on the menu, along with much more. Muraya lovers will be pleased to know that a favorite dish from the sushi restaurant will still be available. “We kept the crispy rice with spicy tuna because it was popular,” said a smiling Kwak.

A classic barbershop is coming back to the Boulevard! Barbers on Larchmont was slated to open at the end of May, upstairs at the mini-mall at 417 3/4 N. Larchmont. Owners Cesar Vasquez and Cesar Perez worked with Perez’s uncle Jorge Hilario at the original Larchmont Barber Shop from 2013 through 2020, and Perez is excited to say, “We’re back in Larchmont where we belong!”

The original Larchmont Barber Shop, most recently in the former Lipson Building, opened in the 1920s. In 2013, owner Jerry Cottone sold the shop to Hilario, who stayed in business on the Boulevard until new owners bought the building and closed all 14 shops for remodeling in 2020. Hilario moved Larchmont Barber Shop to 401 1/2 S. Fairfax Ave., where he is still in business.

And now, three of Hilario’s Boulevard-era employees again will be working on Larchmont.

When we spoke with Cesar Perez, who also owns West Barber Shop at 4506 W. Pico Blvd., he was excited to be opening the new business. His son is running his other shop, so Perez told us he’ll mainly be at the Larchmont shop. Located on the second level above Larchmont Hair & Nails, Barbers on Larchmont has four chairs, and people will be able to stop by for a cut seven days a week. For more information, call 323-378-6550.

According to Marlon Cortez, manager of the new Tu Madre (expanded from the take-out taco eatery formerly in Sweet Lady Jane’s Larchmont location), the new sit-down restaurant at the intersection of Larchmont and Melrose at 660 N. Larchmont is waiting on permits to open. Cortez said, “As far as I know, we have everything ready.”

Cortez anticipates a soft opening followed by a grand opening that will include music and balloons for a festive atmosphere. Visitors can expect to find classic Tu Madre fare including its three best sellers: the chicken al pastor taco, the ahi tuna taco and a bowl consisting of chicken, kale, rice and beans.

Ryan Gurman, real estate agent for the building that Tu Madre now inhabits, told us that the whole building has now been leased. Although he couldn’t yet share which businesses will take over the slots on either side of Jess Rona Grooming at 656 N. Larchmont, the Chronicle hopes to update readers with that information next month.

There’s good news for pet owners who have been wanting to get on Jess Rona’s client list. With a recently expanded staff, the sought-after, cage-free groomer is accepting new clients for the first time in four years.

We now have a fifth Larchmont ice cream outlet to enjoy. Awan, also in the Tu Madre building, at 5630 Melrose Ave. (in the former Coffee Coffee spot) is serving vegan and gluten-free ice cream with flavors inspired by Indonesia. Next door, Dayglow Coffee, which collaborates with Awan in a similarly co-located West Hollywood storefront, is opening soon.

Larchmont Jewelers’ opening date has been pushed back because a piece of the interior will not be installed until early June. The new opening is predicted to be mid-June, according to Director of Marketing Caren Ho.

There is no word yet as to when Phil Rosenthal and Nancy Silverton will commence construction at Max and Helen’s, their proposed new deli in the space long occupied by Le Petit Greek (now operating as Greek Eats at 8236 W. Third St.).

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Category: Real Estate

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