As anyone who has ever tried to combine a sit-down meal with a Tanger Outlets shopping trip, North Charleston Coliseum performance or Charleston Area Convention Center meeting can attest, the International Boulevard neighborhood is largely dominated by fast food restaurants. But the arrival of a popular pizzeria could signal the start of an area shift toward more elaborate dining experiences.
"We saw a need for more full-service restaurants with flexible dining and bar spaces," explains Johnny Hudgins, owner of Mellow Mushroom. The restaurant this week announced plans to open a Centre Pointe store in the first half of 2015.
"With all the activities and events in the area, and with Boeing's growing presence, we think now is the time to bring Mellow Mushroom's signature pizzas and craft beer to North Charleston," Hudgins continues.
Mellow Mushroom now has locations in Avondale; Charleston, Mount Pleasant and Summerville. When the Summerville store opened last November, it set a corporate record for busiest opening week.
While the look of the Centre Pointe store, sited across from the Nike and Saks Fifth Avenue outlets, is still being developed, Hudgins says the final design will likely incorporate a good amount of greenery. "With the airport and Boeing and busy streets, we are hoping we can be a kind of counterpoint: A calming sanctuary from the bustle of the center," he says.
At 6,000 square feet, the restaurant should have room for about 200 diners.
In addition to serving hotel guests who don't stay in downtown Charleston, Hudgins says the restaurant will "provide people who work in the area with a premier happy hour destination, and concert and event attendees with a great place to meet before the shows."
For more information about Mellow Mushroom, visit mellow mushroom.com.