Dio Coffee’s monopoly on chain coffee shops is still secure
If you tried to put the words Zhengzhou and Starbucks together in a Google search window over the past couple of months you would come up with the following short notices from eChinacities.com
Zhengzhou Expected to Open its First Starbucks in November
Jul 07, 2011 eChinacities.com
According to reports, Starbucks has decided to open its first chain store in Zhengzhou. If everything goes to plan, Zhengzhou locals will be able to enjoy coffee from the world’s largest coffeehouse chain this November.
Buzz as Zhengzhou Anticipates Opening of Starbucks
Sep 19, 2011 eChinacities.com
The news that Starbucks will open its chain store at Zhongyuan Wanda Plaza has attracted much attention from the public. According to reports, the coffee shop, which is expected to open on October 28th, will be the first store of the Exit 1 of Zhongyuan Wanda Plaza and will cover an area of 216 sq m.
However nothing since then has been posted in English about the coffee giant’s entry into the Zhengzhou market. Curious about the status of the rumoured Starbucks coffee shops I went round to two of the locations touted to have Starbucks opening soon.
The first location I went to was 360 Square on the Southeast corner of Nong Ye Lu and Hua Yuan Lu (Agricultural Rd. and Garden Rd.). This mall is already well known for its western design, international shopping, and cinema. So the addition of a Starbucks makes a lot of sense as it has long been a popular place for foreigners to get a taste of shopping from home.
The new Starbucks location will be just outside the main entrance onto the square bordering Hua Yuan Lu under the large TV screen featuring the latest adverts from the stores within. The layout and size of this location is currently unknown as they have a large commercial tarpaulin covering the front of their space, however it appears that the space will be at least 500sq.ft. Its location at the primary entrance will ensure high foot traffic.
Transportation in and out of the area is really convenient with buses running north and south along Hua Yuan Lu all the way to Er Qi square and the BRT bus stop just down the road on Nong Ye Lu.
The second store I visited was the location described as opening on the 28th of October at the main entrance to Zhongyuan Wanda Plaza. As is often the case with rumours the actual location is still not ready for business but a peek through the windows gives hope to a speedy opening. The interior of the store is almost finished with workers slowly putting the finishing touches on the interior design and after that all that is needed is the adding of furniture and appliances to the front area.
Transportation in and out of Zhongyuan Wanda square is a little trickier; only the 126路 runs directly to the plaza. Routes B13, 12, 44, 60, 102, 103, 112, and 916 stop at Tongbai Bei Lu and Zhongyuan Lu from there it is a 5 – 10 minute walk west along Zhongyuan Lu to the shopping area. Watch out for most of the busses running along Zhongyuan Lu from the city centre however as the road is littered with construction areas for the new Zhengzhou subway system that is causing traffic jams all over the city.
The exact date of the opening of these locations is unknown. However, from the general state of the Starbucks at Zhongyuan Wanda Square I would estimate the opening of Starbucks in Zhengzhou to be within the month of November or at the latest the beginning of December. So stay tuned for more information on the entry of the world's biggest coffee superpower into the Zhengzhou scene.