Vermont Business Magazine Phoenix Books Essex announced Monday that the store will move to a larger space in late July. The new location is at 2 Carmichael Street in Essex, just around the corner from the bookstore’s current home at Essex Outlets. Phoenix Books was founded in Essex in 2007 by Michael DeSanto and Renee Reiner, and has since added locations in Burlington, Rutland, and Chester, Vermont, plus a sister store in Woodstock. DeSanto reaffirmed the store’s commitment to Essex, and said that the new lease is for 10 years or more.
”We love this community, and our customers have been strong supporters of Phoenix Books,” said DeSanto.
DeSanto adds that, since the business has expanded (and he does not rule out the possibility of adding additional stores in the future), the Essex location needs more office, shipping and receiving and storage spaces, which the larger location will provide. The additional space will also allow Phoenix Books Essex to increase inventory, expand bargain book offerings, explore the possibility of selling used books and better serve the community through partnerships with schools, offsite events and other local organizations.
The new space also has other advantages, including high visibility from Route 15, which boasts 15,000 cars per day driving past the location. “Every car that goes by will see our signage and know there is an indie bookstore right here,” said Renee Reiner. She notes that Carmichael Street is home to a number of locally owned businesses. “We think the local flavor of the pet shop and the restaurants are a good fit for us, and the new spot is just a short walk from our current location.”
Construction has already started under CedarLedge Builders with design by Joshua Nase. Reiner is supervising the construction and buildout on the space, which she says will include “a play area for children as well as lots of comfortable chairs for adults to review their book selections.”
There will not be a café in the new location. DeSanto acknowledges that some customers will miss this amenity, but notes that the new space is adjacent to a Dunkin Donuts, and steps away from My Little Cupcake, Mimmo’s, Cody’s, and Joyce’s Noodle House, giving customers several choices for refreshments before or after their visit to Phoenix Books.
The store’s current lease at Essex Outlets doesn’t run out until the end of September, which will allow for a quick and efficient move. “We expect to close for less than a week during the actual move,” notes General Manager Colleen Shipman. “And we have exciting plans in the works for a celebration of Phoenix’s ten-year anniversary in the new space this September.”
“Every so often,” says DeSanto, “a bookstore, or any business, must reinvent itself by rising up from the ashes of its older self to emerge as a newer, more modern and improved version of the original. So Phoenix will do over the summer of 2017.”
About Phoenix Books:
Phoenix Books was established in 2007 on the principles of social responsibility, community, and sustainability, and is a proud member of Local First Vermont and Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. Phoenix Books Essex, Phoenix Books Burlington, Phoenix Books Rutland and Phoenix Books Misty Valley are Vermont-owned, independent bookstores. Whenever possible, Phoenix Books sources eco-friendly products from Fair Trade/Green Certified companies. Seven Days readers voted Phoenix Books the "Best Bookstore" for the newspaper's 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 Daysie Awards, and Rutland Herald readers voted Phoenix Books the 'Best Local Bookstore' for the newspaper's 2016 Best of the Best awards.
Source: Essex, Vermont – June 2, 2017: Phoenix Books