Bart Blatstein


AC Moore Opens, Eagles Wed, Bart Blatstein House and NFL Draft Stage So Far

Good Sunday to you. This week is exciting, no only because AC Moore is opening on Tuesday with lots of good sales already, but it’s going to be summer with temperatures in the 70s and even 80 – woohoo!! Here’s a bit of Philly Gossip for you…

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Congrats to Philadelphia Eagles QB Zach Ertz and his new bride Julie Johnston (American soccer player and FIFA Women’s World Cup champion)

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Next up for a Philadelphia Eagles wedding is Jordan Hicks and his fiance Ivana Karyhn.
Then it’s Laura Buscher and Connor Barwin nuptials on NFL Draft Weekend.
Current football players don’t have a lot to do with the draft, I’ve been told, but as for some of the Eagles players I know that
former Eagles player Todd Herremans, current roster Brent Celek,  Malcolmn Jenkins , Rodney McLeod, Jr., and the Eagles Franchise are all having gigs around town.

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Earlier this week I wrote about the popped up out of no where Seventh Heaven Fresh Rolled Ice Cream, I said it looked close to
opening, and I was right it opened on Friday at Noon. I ran by on the frigid day and there wasn’t a line. That may not be the case this week with temps finally soaring. Seventh replaced ToBox Shoe Store, and did a great job building it out.

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It looks like Crisp Kitchen is nearly ready to open at 19th and Market. I checked out their menu from their Temple University eatery and it looks delicious with stir fry, salads and yogurt and teas.
I am sad it replaced my favor smoothie place Amazon Juice, which also had salads and sandwiches; and they also took over the former location of the very popular Oh So Good salad bar. Remember them. They were always getting high marks from locals.

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And then there’s Smart Street Healthy Kitchen & Juice Bar, opening at 38 S. 19th St. formerly Kaufman’s Deli and a branch of Famous 4th Street Deli, which you know served GIGANTIC sandwiches, with equally large prices. The ghost of eating passed with Crisp and Smart Street.

Smart Street Healthy Kitchen & Juice Bar – a rebranding ofJuice Healthy Kitchen in Midtown Manhattan – is coming to 38 S. 19th St.  Joey Taormina promises healthful food – wraps/panini, salads, and entrees with all of the food made in-house and most items grilled or baked. He said Smart Street will source produce and proteins from local farms in season and will seek quality all-natural, GMO-free, and organic items when possible. The menu looks delicious. EatSmartStreet

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Speaking of cold, Alex Holley, Mina Say What and I had a great time at the Phillies opening on Friday. Check out Metro Philly .com on Monday for photos
of the fun, and the fashion. Those Phillies fans are no slouches in the fashion department.

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Congrats to former CBS3’s Syma Zaremba and Andy Zaremba on the birth of their son Roman. Syma is now reporting the news in Detroit.


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The stage for the NFL Draft 2017 is coming along, and Billy Penn will not be getting cleaned in April. The date has been pushed back to May. Yeah for photographs of City Hall seen all over the world.

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It looks like Bart Blatstein’s dream house is nearly complete. It looks great and really blends in with the neighborhood.



A few days ago I set Twitter a fire with this rumor. Since then two blog sites has said their sources say it’s not true. I’m sticking by my rumor that it is. I think my track record is fairly aaccurate.  In the past I’ve rumored that Walgreen’s was going into the old Border’s,

and as much as the internet world and the City denied it was happening, it opened August 2013.

Then there’s the Nordstrom Racked Rumor I put out in April 2013

Same thing for Nordstrom Racked going into Daffy’s http://www.phillymag.com/property/2013/06/20/nordstrom-rack-responds-to-daffys-rumors/

Philly’s Hottest Rumor Comes True – Which was confirmed in October 2013

“It’s now no longer the stuff of Philly Chit Chat items: Center City will be getting a Nordstrom outlet.
The news broke yesterday afternoon that Nordstrom Rack, the chain’s
off-price division, will be taking the first three floors of the former
Bonwit Teller store at 1700 Chestnut Street, most recently home to
now-defunct off-price retailer Daffy’s.
The store, slated to open in the fall of 2014, will have 96,000 square feet of space, according to a report on Racked Philly. Fameco Real Estate, recently acquired by CBRE, handled the transaction.
Will this development be enough to satisfy the “Nordstrom fetishists”?
Time will tell, but truth to tell, we doubt it. We’ll bet they’re
holding out for more news about that Bloomingdale’s in the Gallery HughE Dillon first injected into the rumor stream back in May.”

In September 2013, I tweeted that Comcast was going to build anther tower at 18th & Arch. That NBC Philadelphia and the Four Season’s would move there. Both NBC and The Four Season’s denied this was happening, and wrote me asking me where I got my info.

In January,  the Inquirer published a huge article on the move, including much more detail, but that sure enough NBC Philadelphia and the Four Season’s would move there.

(I’m only as good as my sources, and I really want to thank them for entrusting me with these huge stories.)

Recently (Dec 2012) I proposed that Pearl Properties was going to build a tower, and a restaurant at the corner of 19th and Chestnut after I rumored that they were buying up half the block, and closing the Qdoba. (I put two and two together when I noticed Pearl Properties bought the old Little Pete’s building, plus already owned the property between the Boyd Theater and Little Pete’s, and noticed the Dollar Store was closed. Then I searched the property records and discovered the end two buildings were under contract.)

Updated: April 2013 the CCPR has posted information on the new Pearl Properties condo they are building on the 1900 block of Chestnut Street. http://www.philadelphiaspeaks.com/forum/center-city/39928-pearl-properties-new-high-rise-19th-chestnut.html

One of the arguments against thinking a Wegman’s could be built in the City is that Wegman’s hasn’t venutred into an urban area. I found this last night and tweeted it to my 2 guys (who are worth reading every day. Two guys who just like me set out to write content that all of us are interested in.) A Wegman’s is being built in downtown Boston & So they r moving into Urban areas now.

Both of these drawings come from the Passyunk Post.

I’m just sticking by the rumor I floated out on the twitter world that yes, Wegman’s is rumored to be going into the Washington Avenue project. And with the much debated “Why are they building a parking garage with 1,000 spaces?” This would be why, a first class, hugely popular grocery store is coming to “Center City.” Currently my bet with the Passyunk Post guy is this thing will happen is something about eating an ice cream sandwich. Now how about if this great thing doesn’t happen I’ll donate $500 to my favorite charity, and I’ll take part in the dunking thing during Beer Week 2015 or 2016 whichever date they announce something other than a WEGMAN’s going into that space. I think my track record speaks pretty high, but deals do fall through. I probably shouldn’t have floated this one or the Bloomingdale’s one out so early. I guess it wasn’t close to the announcements, I never want to screw anything up, but my sources made it seem imminent.




The iconic Philadelphia Inquirer Building stands vacant now, but if Bart Blatstein has his way he’s going to build a casino resort that will be worthy of such an iconic building

and create another century of stories to tell. The proposed $700 million luxury resort and casino on North Broad Street, Philadelphia. ; 50,000 combined square-feet of meeting and event space; and two indoor parking garages.  The Casino at The Provence comprises less than 20% of the complex’s total scope.  

Today architect Paul Steelman, who is based in Las Vegas, Nevada
and Macau and is notable for designing casinos and entertainment venues around the world, as well as embracing environmental elements and incorporating them into a structure.

The newsroom floor would be the new casino floor. The windows will remain to let natural light in, smoking would be regulated according to state law,

 the room will be exciting with a 120,000 square-foot, high-quality casino featuring 3,300 electronic gaming machines (slots and automated table games),

The main entrance to the casino will be from the 15th Street Side, as the expressway will empty out at it’s door step.

 The casino and resort entrances will be on the south and west sides of the building (Callowhill and 15th Streets), but you don’t have to go through the casino to get to the 120,000 square-foot, family-oriented rooftop village, an French influenced square

plus a 75,000 square-foot concert hall; eight restaurants; a private swim club with two pools; a 9,000 square-foot nightclub;  60,000 square feet of upscale shops; a 20,000 square-foot Spa & Fitness Center; (the tower will be removed and the communal square will be built out on a flat surface)

 The family-oriented rooftop village will include many of the charming elements that you would find in France, and in Philadelphia. 

City Hall’s architectural style is French 2nd Empire, and we honor the ChampsElysees avenue in Paris with our own Ben Franklin Parkway.

  The entrance and exit ramps for Rt676 would be reconfigured and a gorgeous seasonal park would be created. Each new season would be reflective in plantings and decorations. Christmas time would celebrate the old John Wanamaker’s tradition with festive lights.


 The hallmarks of the 1.25 million square-foot Provence resort and casino complex include a 125-room hotel housed in the landmark tower of the former Inquirer building, which will have an entrance on Broad Street.  Blatstein plans to keep the facade the same which fits into the historic North Broad Street architectural style. He plans to assist in maintaining the historic street-scape all the way up to Temple University.

  The 125 room hotel will keep many of the historic elements that the Inquirer building housed, like these beautiful cast iron staircases

 A few of the press people who were on the tour today
In Walter Annenberg’s original office,

the terrace doors. This will now be one of the opulent suites in the hotel.  
The hotel will also have a coffee shop, which they are kicking around calling “Ink”, and a bar called “Scandal.”

The former State Building in the background, which is now owned and operated by Tower Investments as an apartment complex and is called The Tower Place apartments .

The Blatstein organization’s biggest stress of the day was that this was a great fit for Philadelphia, especially North Broad. The focus was on the resort part of the complex, with only about 20% of the space being the casino, it’s a place you can take the family shopping, relaxing, sit by the pool, see a show. It’s a destination and adds value to the City. This week all the casino’s present their plans for their casino’s and I look forward to hearing what the others have to offer.

Tower Investments, Inc.
(“Tower”), led by Principal Bart Blatstein, is a leading developer of
retail, entertainment, mixed use, residential and commercial properties
in the Philadelphia area. Since 1978, the company has distinguished
itself as an innovator and pioneer, finding significant opportunities in
areas overlooked and underserved by more traditional firms. Based in
Philadelphia, Tower is a privately held development company with
expertise in all aspects of planning, design, construction, financing
and leasing. Tower is known for its aggressive and creative urban
investments in major projects.    Tower has developed millions of square
feet of retail, commercial, entertainment and residential space. Among
the firm’s other projects are Avenue North on Broad Street in North
Philadelphia and entertainment, commercial and residential developments
in Manayunk.  Tower also pioneered waterfront development in
Philadelphia, along with pioneering the revitalization of Northern
Liberties and North Broad Street.  Tower is committed to creating
mixed-use urban enterprises that enhance the cityscape, improve the
City’s tax base and create employment and business opportunities.  More
information is available @ http://www.towerdev.com.