New owners plan to re-open Middle Kingdom Chinese restaurant 'as soon as possible'
Blimpy Burger is in jeopardy, but another popular restaurant in downtown Ann Arbor will be reopening its doors.
Ann Arbor Main Street Real Estate, LLC closed a deal Tuesday to purchase not only the building at 332 S. Main St. but the business it housed as well.
Local Chinese food enthusiasts will recognize the address as the recently closed Middle Kingdom restaurant. The new owners currently plan to reopen the business under the same name in the near future.
Lizzy Alfs | AnnArbor.com
“There are some renovations that need to take place and we want to make sure everything is squared away with the health department, but the goal is to go as quickly as possible.”
Schlecte said by purchasing the business “lock, stock, and barrel,” the new owners have rights to the name, as well as the records, recipes, and menus used by the restaurant.
“There were conversations currently ongoing with the chef to remain there as well,” he said.
“When the Middle Kingdom re-opens the food will be as good as it ever was. It had an excellent reputation before it closed which was one of the reasons the owners opted to buy the business and not just the building.”
Mike Giraud of Swisher Commercial Real Estate was the agent for the building, which had a listed price of $1.3 million. As of Friday, the sale price was not yet available on the city's tax assessor site. Schlecte declined to disclose terms of purchase for the Middle Kingdom business.
Asuman Erturk manages Ann Arbor Main Street Real Estate, LLC as well as 330 S Main Investment, LLC which closed a deal on October 23 for the former Chocolate House building next door to the Middle Kingdom.
That building had been vacant since the Chocolate House closed in December, 2011.
Schlecte said the two corporations are related but are separate entities and do not necessarily have the same owners.
“Erturk has not decided yet what she wants to do with the building at 330 S. Main,” he said.
“It will probably be some form of restaurant or possibly a French pastry shop, a patisserie, it could also end up as some other retail establishment, that plan has not been set yet.”