Coffeehouse adds a venue

After 13 years of business in Burbank's Magnolia Park District, gourmet coffeehouse Romancing the Bean will open a second spot in town to offer coffee lovers a new place to enjoy a cup of java.

The new 2,200-square-foot coffeehouse is at 150 S. San Fernando Blvd. ? underneath a 140-unit condominium building in the Burbank Village, said owner Kerry Krull, 45.

"It's going to be better here at the Burbank Village," Krull said. "We can rely on repeat business."

Krull hopes the store will be ready for business on Friday.

Krull opened her coffeehouse in 1993 in the 500-square-foot space across the street from Warner Bros. Studios.

But because of inadequate parking and the advent of chain coffee houses, the store closed and relocated to the Magnolia Park area, Krull said.

"People are looking for an upscale, homey place ? opposite of the corporate place," Krull said. "If you walk into either [store], they both look completely different. You feel like you walked into someplace in Europe or San Francisco. It doesn't feel like the valley."

Both coffeehouses offer more than just coffee.

Customers can try variety of teas, gourmet salads, sandwiches, desserts, European chocolates and cupcakes.

The new location will also have free wireless Internet.

"All of our regulars come here everyday and it's more laid back and feels like home," said Emily Jackson, store manager of the Magnolia Park coffeehouse. "Kerry really cares about the people and knows what she is doing." Burbank resident Lee Whittaker has been a regular patron of the Magnolia Park coffeehouse for about three years.

Whittaker has his breakfast almost daily at Romancing the Bean.

"It's been a home for me," Whittaker said of the coffeehouse. "I know all the people that come out of there. You walk in and they know your name."

Krull, who will have a staff of 20 employees for the new coffeehouse, plans on staying open late in the evening to provide live music.

"The Bean is an all-grown-up store," Krull said. "It has graduated with each store and grown and fine tuned into a bigger establishment."

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