Downtown businesses working together for success

LAS VEGAS -- Doughnuts, dining, juice bar, tattoo parlor, and more are all under one roof.

It might seem strange, but it is working for a handful of downtown businesses all invested in each other's success.

The businesses are all housed in the John E. Carson Hotel and they are being hailed as a Downtown Project success story.

From the outside, the building still looks like the old John E. Carson Hotel but inside is a whole other story.

Managers at Carson Kitchen say their success is due in part to the cooperation with the other tenants in the building. They even incorporated their neighbor's doughnuts into the menu.

Carson Kitchen has only been open a month and already has a following. At noon, the place is packed with a loyal lunch crowd.

"The business that we're getting is better than expected. We're doing the business we planned for on two floors just on one floor," director of operations Chuck Scimeca said.

The restaurant employs 50 people and is only one piece of the puzzle.

"It is an absolute treat. The doughnut place next door O Face is easily the best in town," Geoff Carter said.

O Face Doughnuts shares the same building along with a tattoo parlor, floral shop, and juice bar.

Two other entrepreneurs will move in soon. The businesses seem to have nothing in common except the creativity flowing through the walls.

"We do a pizza doughnut. We do a breakfast sausage and chili cream sauce doughnut. So you can get very creative with a doughnut," Sonny Ahuja, with O Face Doughnuts, said.

Owners say the spaces are smaller, meaning lower rent, overhead, and costs all around. However, the key to success has been cooperation many of them have even loaned equipment to each other.

"We all really try to elevate each other, and we all want to see each other succeed. I think that is the most important," Ahuja said.

Customers say it is another tasty example of the revitalization of downtown.

"I think it is happening. I think it has been waiting to happen and I think it has to happen," diner Carter said.

There a number of big developments happening downtown including a grocery store coming to the neighborhood soon.

"The Market is a really important lynch pin for the neighborhood, something the people who live downtown have been hoping for, for a longtime. It's going to be an urban market where you can walk in and grab a few things," Kim Schaefer, with the Downtown Project, said.


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