We are excited to announce that we are now the proud owners of a commercial property in East Austin! On Tuesday, April 16th we closed on a property that neighbors Fleet Coffee on Webberville Road, across the street from The Cavalier. We love this location, and anticipate moving from E. Cesar Chavez sometime in 2020. We have been looking at properties for a few years now, making a few different offers along the way, and we couldn’t be happier with the final result of our pursuit.
It was never a matter of where we would buy a property; our hearts were always set on East Austin. We consider the Eastside the home of Veracruz All Natural, and even though we have been able to grow and expand across different Austin neighborhoods to the North and South, we always maintained a vision of owning our own property in the Eastside and having complete creative control of that space.
Our roots in East Austin go back to 2008, a time when the neighborhood was a lot different and food trucks were a lot fewer and far between. We first opened in front of a convenience store named El Aguacate, which is now a Quickie Pickie. Housing and rent were both a lot more affordable, creating a community in the Eastside perfect for an eclectic mix of people, including minorities, artists, restaurants, and local small businesses to name a few. Our family of employees is also rooted in the Hispanic culture of East Austin, and we are blessed to have that core of employees still with us today more than 10 years later.
Today, in 2019, East Austin is both the same place and a completely different place, if that makes any sense. It is not in any way our goal to bemoan East Austin’s growth. What scares us is the thought of East Austin, and even Austin in general, losing its identity, or it’s soul. Therefore, our goal as business owners is to hopefully do our part in not only maintaining Austin’s unique identity and soul, but retaining our own.
Our first instinct was to look for commercial real estate along E. Cesar Chavez, E. 6th, and E. 7th, as those are places where we have located our food trucks before. We learned a couple of things; there were plenty of opportunities to lease, a lot of those opportunities were very nice, brand new or under construction commercial spaces, however we struggled with feeling comfortable with how those new commercial spaces represented East Austin, and us. Options to buy consisted of very expensive small properties, or properties that were only available as a part of a purchase of multiple lots. Maintaining affordable food prices is very important to us, and we worried about how we might be able to do that given the prices we were seeing.
After a lot of research, property hunting, and multiple offers, it became obvious that these locations in East Austin were not going to work out. We then shifted our focus to looking at a spot that we felt could retain the East Austin identity we knew and was friendly to local business, and we set our sights on Webberville Rd. We already knew the neighborhood well. Fleet Coffee is one of our very favorite coffee shops in Austin, and we have spent plenty of time at both Gourmands and The Cavalier. There is a cool energy to the street, quaint and very accessible, and very local!
Looking into the future we are so excited about the new possibilities afforded to us as commercial property owners. It was always our goal to be our own bosses, and then it became our goal to be our own property owners. We have already started to think about what to do with our new space, and we want to hear from you as well. Specifically, we want to hear your ideas about what you would like us to change or add, as well as things that you want to make sure that we don’t change. One thing is for certain; Veracruz All Natural will continue to be a family owned and run business, representing our beliefs in quality authentic Mexican food and our love of our favorite city in the USA, Austin, Texas.