Restaurant will be key piece of puzzle for improving shopping center

Mediterranean restaurant Ilios Noche announced this week it will open at south Charlotte’s Quail Corners, becoming a key piece of the redesign happening at the popular neighborhood shopping center.

Developers are spending some $6 million on improving the aging shopping center, a process that started in 2010 but was bogged down by concerns from local residents over the scope of changes to the center and plans to add a fast-food        restaurant with a drive-thru. Work started in full force earlier this year after Charlotte City Council and planners approved designs and zoning changes, and developers have worked with residents to put together a list of what people want to see at the center. Many residents – even those who protested the center’s expansion – said they were in favor of updating Quail Corners and adding some new options.

One of those requests was a sit-down restaurant. Enter Ilios Noche, which will have two locations when the restaurant opens in the second quarter of 2013, around summer.

“In the focus groups we conducted with neighbors, the No. 1 request was a healthy, family-friendly casual yet upscale restaurant, ideally Mediterranean cuisine,” said Susan McGuire, principal of developer CNL Crosland, in a news release. “We found the best-in-class owner/operator and we’re excited to welcome Stratos Lambos and his talented restaurant group to Quail Corners. …We look forward to his continued success at Quail Corners.”

Ilios Noche will be a dominate piece of the center at 4,750 square feet. That will include 1,100 square feet for outdoor dining and a private event room that will seat up to 50 people, according to a news release from Quail Corners. The restaurant’s other location is in Rea Village, at the intersection of Providence and Ardrey Kell roads. That location had to expand in March to accommodate its growing customer base.

“We have always been in search of another more central location in Charlotte, but knew it had to be something special for Ilios Noche,” said Stratos Lambos, president of Xenia Hospitality, in the release. “Quail Corners seemed to be the right fit.”
Also happening at Quail Corners, storefront work should be done in December. Parking lot work is done other than a bit of resurfacing which should be done next month, and construction will start soon for the 9,000-square-foot, open-air plaza being added at the center.

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