Columbia locavores will soon have a new favorite downtown destination. Hendrix, a chef-inspired restaurant with rooftop seating, will open in the upper levels of 1649 Main Street this fall. The new restaurant’s moniker pays homage the building’s historic tenant E.T. Hendrix, who operated a grocery and meat market there from 1906 to 1926. The building is perhaps best remembered as the former home of Hennessey’s restaurant and lounge. Hendrix will reinvigorate a long-beloved downtown space, providing a creative and locally-sourced menu in an historic atmosphere.
Garvin Design Group president and developer Scott Garvin is glad to see the building occupied by a pioneering tenant. “We have had lots of interest in the building since it became available to lease,” Garvin said, “but have been holding out for just the right people. The corner of Blanding and Main Street is crucial to the continued development of downtown. We wanted a tenant that would use the building in a way that was both new and exciting but would also complement existing uses on the 1600 block and the building’s historic character.” Garvin expects that Hendrix’s opening in the upper levels of the building will encourage prospective tenants to commit to the building’s first and garden levels. Colliers International broker Scottie Smith also has great expectations for future tenants. “This building has great character with lots of potential. We’re eager to get businesses in the lower levels that are complementary to this exciting new tenant,” she said.
One thing that sets 1649 Main Street apart from other downtown buildings is its use of outdoor space. Removal of certain sections of the Blanding Street sidewalk has exposed a portion of the building’s historic basement and created a terrace for the garden level. The roof will be reworked to accommodate tables and a bar for Hendrix patrons, which will provide a unique outdoor dining experience on Main Street.
Work on the building began in 2017 and upfits will continue through the summer to suit Hendrix’s needs. Former Hennessey’s patrons will be glad to find their familiar space reimagined to suit both anniversary dinners and after work drinks – Hendrix promises a dining experience on par with Pearlz and Motor Supply in the Vista. Set to open later this year, Hendrix will offer dinner, Saturday and Sunday brunch, and bar hours just in time for the 2018 football season.