Flix Brewhouse signs on for Carmel theater-microbrewery

August 22, 2013
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Texas-based Flix Brewhouse plans to open a combination movie theater-microbrewery next year in Carmel’s beleaguered Merchants’ Square shopping center.

Landlord Ramco-Gershenson Properties Trust announced the lease deal for the former Hobby Lobby space Wednesday. (Kudos to my colleague Scott Olson, who reported in May that Flix was eyeing the Indianapolis market.)

Flix features first-run films, seat-side dining and an on-site microbrewery—an amenity it says sets it apart from any other movie theater in the world. Its dining rooms have stadium seating with movable table tops, plus high-definition digital projection and sound.

Plans call for eight screens and 12 Flix-brewed beers (plus an array of other local suds) in Carmel. Wine also is available. The lobby/bar will be open to the public, no movie tickets required.

CEO Allan Reagan said the dining menu will be tailored to the Carmel area.

The original Flix in Round Rock, Texas, is the only location now, but the company plans to open in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2014.

Construction in Carmel is expected to begin this year, as the 37,000-square-foot former Hobby Lobby store undergoes a makeover. The Indiana theater is slated to open next fall.

"Flix Brewhouse will bring a level of entertainment currently not offered in the area and will further solidify the importance of Merchants' Square in the marketplace," said Dennis Gershenson, president and CEO of the shopping center owner, in a news release.

In the release, Ramco-Gershenson touted recent tenant additions including Teddy’s Burger Joint, Goldfish Swim Academy and Salon Lofts.

Merchants’ Square—built in 1970 as a Target-anchored, enclosed mall redeveloped into an open-air center in the mid-1990s—has been riddled with vacancies in recent years.

Mayor Jim Brainard praised the impending arrival, saying Flix will “add to the vibrancy taking place there as various restaurants and retail options locate in that commercial area” near heavily traveled 116th Street and Keystone Parkway.

“The central placement and easy access … makes this a perfect location for this venue that is sure to attract a wider audience from area communities," Brainard said in a prepared statement.

  • Out of the Box
    Now that's thinkin' out of the box! Way to go Ramco! Sounds like a fabulous user and I'll be one of the first to visit when they are open. Exactly what this area of Carmel needed - a movie theater! There used to be one before the center was renovated by The Linder Company back in the 90's and I've always thought that would be a great addition to the area. Congrats and THANK YOU for thinking out of the box!

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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.