Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Huntington Crossing: Oto Oto

In case you missed it, KGEM featured several of the businesses at Huntington Crossing in their February video. The timing of the video came about three months before the official opening of Oto Oto Izakaya Japonaise, a Japanese restaurant that specializes in Asian fusion and serves things like beef tongue, sushi and bacon wrapped zucchini.

As you'll learn in the video, the company that owns Oto Oto -- the Ramla Corporation -- has another 156 restaurants worldwide. But Oto Oto in Monrovia is Ramla's first restaurant in the United States.

The video also reveals the history of the Huntington Crossing Shopping Center, and the role Redevelopment played in bringing this busy shopping center to fruition.

Monrovia City Beat - Feb '11 - Huntington Crossing from KGEM-TV on Vimeo.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

New Year, New Restaurants

                                                                Photo by Aaron Smith
Since January, several new restaurants have cropped up in Old Town Monrovia.

Pho Lemon, a Vietnamese restaurant with noodle soup, sandwiches, and spring rolls, opened its doors at 113 E. Lemon Avenue back in January.
Then, Old Town Bistro, which specializes in Italian and French cafe style food like crepes and paninis, opened at 520 S. Myrtle Avenue in the Spring.

Around the same time, Big Shrimps Fish Grill opened at 123 E. Colorado Avenue. Big Shrimp is a casual dining restaurant that features grilled fish, tacos, salads and seafood burritos.

And more recently, Sena on Myrtle opened its doors.

These restaurants add to the diverse repertoire of eateries in Old Town, such as Rudy's Mexican Restaurant, London GastropubChang Thai Bistro and T. Phillips.

Getting hungry yet?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Water District Opens Doors in Monrovia

One of the valley's largest water suppliers has relocated to Monrovia. The Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District, whose headquarters was in El Monte, moved to 602  E. Huntington Drive, Suite B.

They opened their doors in their new location on July 11. Their new phone number is 626-443-2297.

The Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District supplies water to more than 22 cities, including Monrovia.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sena on Myrtle opens its doors

                                                                   Photo by Aaron Smith
The newest Old Town restaurant -- which features Sangria, a cozy bar and tapas-style dishes -- opened its doors last Saturday.

Sena on Myrtle, a Spanish-influenced restaurant at 409 S. Myrtle Avenue, has a full bar and a restaurant serving up items such as beer battered fish tacos, braised short rib tacos, seared filet mignon tacos, ceviche, and the "Sea Stack," which is a combination of ahi tuna, white fish and shrimp ceviche, avocado and cucumber.

A distinguishing aspect to this restaurant is the back patio they have with cushiony chairs and a fire pit.

The owner of Sena also operates Nikki C's in Pasadena.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Success in a Bottle: Meet the Wine of the Month Club

A small retail store with an international following has called Monrovia home for nearly 20 years. The Wine of the Month Club is run by Paul Kalemkiarian, Jr., who took over the business from his father in 1990. 

The company started off as a side business when Paul's father bought a pharmacy that had a liquor store attached. Forty years later, the Wine of the Month Club has thousands of patrons, and has been able to withstand competition from the Internet by depending on loyal customers, research, and Paul's palate.

Paul -- who in the video answers the most common question, 'What do you do with the wine you don't like?' -- takes us through his store, his studio and his tasting room.

Take a look at the Business Spotlight that appeared on KGEM:

Spotlight - Wine of the Month Club from KGEM-TV on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

WorleyParsons to Relocate Southern California Headquarters to Monrovia

MONROVIA – One of Monrovia’s top employers just got bigger. WorleyParsons, a leading international professional services provider to the resources and energy sectors, announced that it will be consolidating five office spaces – four in Monrovia, and one in Arcadia – to a centralized location in Old Town Monrovia.

WorleyParsons will reopen its Southern California headquarters into the 48,000 square foot office building at 111 W. Lemon Avenue in October. The move will add an additional 100 jobs to Monrovia.

“We are thrilled that WorleyParsons is expanding its footprint in Monrovia,” Monrovia Mayor Mary Ann Lutz said.

Monrovia Redevelopment Agency officials worked quickly to secure a site for WorleyParsons when company executives in March expressed the possibility of relocating outside the City due to office space constraints. Recognizing the importance of the firm – which is among the top ten employers in the City – Agency officials devised an incentive package to ensure that this top employer would keep jobs in Monrovia.

Among the benefits to having such a large employer in town includes an increase in tax revenues, as well as having added foot traffic in Old Town.

“The Monrovia Redevelopment Agency is dedicated to helping our local businesses thrive,” said Sr. Redevelopment Project Manager Darlene Sanchez, who oversees the Redevelopment Agency. “Our ability to retain and grow this critical employer is a testament to the type of pro-business culture that exists in our City.”

Over the past 40 years, the Monrovia Redevelopment Agency – which is tasked with creating economic growth by helping businesses grow and redeveloping blighted properties – has created or saved more than 3,250 jobs. Among the list of employers the Redevelopment Agency has attracted or helped grow include Home Depot, Living Spaces, Trader Joe’s Headquarters, City of Hope and over two dozen technology based firms located in Monrovia’s High Tech Corridor on Huntington Drive.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Meet Sierra Auto..and Its Panda

Meet Peter Hoffman, president and owner of Sierra Auto in Monrovia. Peter tells us about how the business was founded, why he likes doing business in Monrovia, and why the panda has remained nameless after all these years. 
Monrovia City BeatClick here to watch the business spotlight on City Beat, a Monrovia-sponsored program that airs on KGEM.