People looking for healthy cuisine in a casual dining setting will find a new option later this year as Tropical Smoothie Cafe plans to open a restaurant in Pine Bluff.
Tropical Development of Arkansas director of operations Jason Alley heads the development team that owns the franchising rights to the restaurants. The development team has been scouting Pine Bluff for six to eight months for a location and has chosen a commercial building at 502 Mallard Loop Suite E.
“We see an opportunity for success with the proximity to Jefferson Regional Medical Center,” Alley said. “We are looking to expand into southern Arkansas.
“We are excited to be in Pine Bluff and hopefully, the community will come out and support us,” he said. “We offer a little bit of everything for everyone.”
The commercial property used to house a Quiznos restaurant and sits across the street from Walmart. In order to accommodate Tropical Smoothie, renovations are underway through Jon Callahan Construction.
Jon Callahan said his contractors are installing seating for a casual dining experience, doing plumbing and electrical work and repainting wood.
In addition to having a restaurant with places for patrons to eat, Tropical Smoothie operates a catering service to businesses, Alley said. The current plans are to remodel the existing structure, install equipment and open doors to customers by mid-October, he said.
The company will hire 15 to 20 employees in Pine Bluff, Alley said. Once this eatery becomes established, it may pave the way for Tropical Smoothie to open another one in Pine Bluff or in neighboring White Hall, Alley said.
The decor of at this Tropical Smoothie will incorporate a muted theme reminiscent of a Cape Cod beach house, Alley said. This is in contrast to bright color themes of the company’s other restaurants.
The menu features 30 types of smoothies, flat breads, toasted wraps, tacos, sandwiches, salads and noodles. The average meal ranges from $6 to $10 per person, he said.
“We have a lot of variety,” Alley said. “We have enough menu options to satisfy customers.”
After the renovation work is complete, Tropical Smoothie will announce plans for a grand opening ceremony.
Smiles Inc. owns the commercial building at 502 Mallard Loop. Smiles President Roger Dadlani welcomes the projected arrival of Tropical Smoothie Cafe in Pine Bluff.
“This is very good news for Pine Bluff,” Dadlani said. “I think people in Pine Bluff will look forward to more variety of foods. We deserve to have as many food options as possible.”