RUMOR MILL: JOAN SHEPP TO CHESTNUT STREET, maybe Dress Barn? Cigar Bar opens on Walnut St

I received a tip the other day that Joan Shepp is this close to signing a deal for her new space. You may recall last winter PhillyMag broke the story that Joan and company were vacating their Walnut Street store because of rising rents.


Since that time Joan has told me that she couldn’t bare leaving Walnut St, and would be finding a new home somewhere between Broad and 20th Streets. “It needs to have the same large windows,” like the fabulous ones she’s had for 15 years.

I’m thinking the old Puma Store at 1505 Walnut St. But a local realtor told me the rent would be comparable to her current location, which is at least $100sq foot
In the running maybe, vacant store next to Born Yesterday, across from the Rittenhouse Square at 1901 Walnut St. I’m not so sure as it would need a complete build out. 
Currently it’s the most expensive real estate that is used for bike storage in the City. 


  My money is on Dress Barn location. Sure it’s not on Walnut St, but it’s on the very hot 1700 block of Chestnut Street (Di Bruno Bros, South Moon Under, Knit Wit, Camper shoes) and it’s still considered “Rittenhouse Row”, so even though you’re not on Walnut St, you can say you’re on Rittenhouse Row.
Plus it’s next door to the future “rumored” Nordstrom Rack (of course I started that rumor, but I have at least 4 sources that tell me it’s a done deal, and it’ll be opened by next spring) and it’s across from the Shops of Liberty Place

I know, you’re thinking to yourself but Dress Barn is open, I just saw them film “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” last Thursday in front of the store. I know, but
my tipster told me it had closed and when I went by yesterday I saw it with my own eyes.
It’s perfect. Large windows, 2 floors, and with an escalator. I love it. And if this isn’t the place, Joan, go get it. I know it’s not Walnut Street, but you created Walnut Street, you were the trailblazer. If Knit Wit can move to the 1700 block of Chestnut Street, you can too, and you can make it that much better. Chestnut Street rents are nothing to sneeze at either, in this area they run from $45 sq ft to $65 sq ft on average.
 New on Walnut St
 Club Addeso Cigar Bar. There’s food, a DJ and nice lounge chairs.
 right across from Holt Cigar’s, where the Ashton Cigar Bar has been threatening to open for about a year now.