Geisha House to close at Atlantic Station

Caleb J. Spivakrestaurants38 Comments

geisha house closes at atlantic station ~ what now, atlanta?

New Developer shutters
Ashton Kutcher’s restaurant in Midtown

No, Kutcher’s not being punk’d.

Geisha House at Atlantic Station will close Sunday, March 6, according to developer Mark Toro.

“We plan to close [Geisha Hosue] on Sunday for good,” Mark Toro told What Now Atlanta in an email Friday morning.

Geisha House is owned by Los Angeles-based Dolce Group, the restaurant group backed by celebrities that include Ashton Kutcher, Wilmer Valderrama, Chris Masterson, Danny Masterson, Laura Prepon, Dule Hill, Jamie Kennedy and more.

Other Dolce Group businesses include Dolce restaurant and Ten Pin Alley, both of which are also located at Atlantic Station.

Geisha was the second of these three concepts to open at Midtown’s Atlantic Station in 2007 and has been on What Now Atlanta’s DeathMarch since January 2010 (story here).

But don’t think it’s a coincidence they’re closing. New developer, Mark Toro, has been taking steps to “evolve” Atlantic Station and Geisha House’s closure is part of this plan.

Geisha House closing is “the first part of our commitment to shut down the night club operations,” said Toro.

We are collecting feedback from the community on Atlantic Station here— make sure and leave your opinion on the developments direction as Toro is actively listening and responding.

Geisha House– Atlantic Station
1380 Atlantic Dr NW # 14175
Atlanta, GA 30363

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Caleb J. SpivakGeisha House to close at Atlantic Station

38 Comments on “Geisha House to close at Atlantic Station”

  1. Valencya

    I am disappointed to hear about the Geisha House’s closing. It is one of the few venues of it’s kind in the area. I am curious see what venue will replace it and where the new turn will take Atlantic Station.

  2. Urbanist

    I’m pretty sure the new turn that Atlantic Station will take will be one of a downward spiral. Once again, a singular vision, and a large amount of resources that were used to develop a “master vision” that turned out to be an abject failure. Think about how much better Atlanta would have been if all those retail tenants found space in existing and new buildings within the existing infrastructure of the city. Or, how much more vibrant the streets of Downtown & Midtown would be if all the residents of Atlantic Station had found apartments in new & existing buildings in Downtown/Midtown; same goes for the office tenants. And for some reason, Atlanta just never learns…

  3. Johnny

    Now, only if RA Sushi will commit seppuku as well. Atlantic Station is thug, once thugged out, always thugged out. Not one decent restaurant in the entire complex.

  4. Atlanta_Ali

    Will not be missed …I know this is slightly off topic but whats with the nearly empty Atlantic Skyscraper…..what a waste of what should or could have been reasonably priced housing…Mr Toro can you do something about that? And don’t forget about my Faneuil Hall concept!! You want touristy ? that would be a great start.

  5. Old South

    Well, I’m pessimistic too. But it’s not AS’s fault. It’s Atlanta GA’s fault. With that said, I’ll tell you what would work wonders for AS– a Sweetwater brewery and restaurant. Make this their one and only location, and the food not just beer has to be outstanding. Do this and more like it, and “they” will come.

  6. Mike

    Why are people saying this is now the demise of Atlantic Station? Did you not read the article about the new management company? This is part of their plans – to get rid of these places and bring in new places that attract a better clientele… one that actually buys things and doesn’t loiter.

  7. SteveK

    Something like South City Kitchen with a seasonal menu focusing on locally grown organic food. Friendly waitstaff with an elegant/comfortable atmosphere with no *bling*. Maybe and area where they sell prepared foods, breads, desserts, etc. to go. This part of town could also use an authentic creperie and churrascaria.

  8. Deepak and Satish

    I think both the Sweetwater brewery and a place where they sell prepared foods, breads, desserts are great ideas. I work in an office tower in Atlantic Station and would welcome both those places. Every place should have a strictly enforced dress code as well, even the “public areas” as this is a private development.

  9. Urbanist

    Have you seen the size of that place…It’s huge, and doesn’t really work for a restaurant unless it’s one of those shitty themed, oversized, and overpriced places for tourists and people without taste.

  10. Mimi

    Atlanta Ali… Faneuil Hall in Boston has been dead for years honey. Boston is in the process of trying to revitalize it, actually. I always referred to Atlantic Station as Atlanta’s attempt at Faneuil Hall. they both failed. Coincidentally, Atlantic Station has the same stores and types of stores currently in Faneuil Hall.

    Bottomline, the area is boring as hell– both of them.

  11. Old South

    Paula Dean is another who comes to mind. Why? Not so much for the “creative” class, but for the multitude of out of town-ers. One doesn’t visit NY and not find out where the pizza is. Or visit Texas and not wonder where the brisket is. But I understand that AS can’t do all that alone. It must have the support of people from Atlanta and Georgia. It is on this point where I become pessimistic.

  12. Big Doan

    Bravo to the Sweetwater restaurant/brewery idea. My pals from the North who visit and immediately gorge themselves with all variations of Sweetwater would flock there. Last I heard, it was the second fastest growing small brewery in the South, behind Abita. Exposing the brand to thousands and thousands of tourists per year would only exacerbate that expansion.

  13. Tres

    Now, you know what, I’m all for a Lady and Sons opening up here in Atlanta, and I think that the Geisha House location would be perfect for it. I wonder if Mark Toro could talk to Paula Deen’s people. The only drawback to that idea is that I would hope that L&S wouldn’t become too “chainy” in the process. Now, if it became a small chain with only one location in select cities, a-la Bubba Gump, then that’d be ok, but as long as it doesn’t get so big that it loses its authenticity. You can say what you want about how “commercial” Paula Deen’s become. That restaurant down in Savannah serves up some legit home cooking.

  14. Urbanist

    Old South….a LOT of people visit NY and don’t look for pizza. Those type of people are what you refer to as smart travelers. The people that do visit NY and search out pizza are what you call stereotypical american tourists…the same kind that go to paris and look for croissants. I like to think that Atlanta NEEDS unique concepts in it’s restaurants and nightlife – as opposed to the standard brewery, pub, or chain restaurant, but it’s pretty clear that the majority of people that have any interest in that kind of thing don’t live in this city.

  15. CB

    Oh piss off, Urbanist… the land AS sits on was an industrial wasteland and I for one am extremely happy they built something on it and really improved that area.

    The closing of Geisha house is tremendous news, and if they can get rid of the other two Dolce establishments, I guarantee all the issues people complain about regarding AS will be minimized or eliminated entirely. Actual restaurants, whether they be local or chains that aren’t thinly disguised nightclubs will go a long way in making this a better area for dining. The shopping is already pretty good, though surely everyone has their ideas on which stores should go there.

  16. Old South

    Well, my point was just that there are a lot of people who would want a good and authentic southern cooking experience when in actually visiting the South. Those of us locals who still actually eat cornbread would appreciate it too :-)

  17. Jim Jones

    Let’s call a spade a spade… while half of you beat around the bush the issue with Atlantic Station is their demographic in the evenings. It is primarily African American youth that simply “cruise” around and “hang out” in the district and spend no money. Who is to blame for this… the city of Atlanta. It’s like a house full of rats. When you bulldoze the house the rats find another place. In this case when the city shut down the Buckhead Bar scene and then the Midtown Bar scene the rats had to find another place to go… Atlantic Station. Since the first few operators of Atlantic Station did nothing to control or get rid of the rats it become overrun.

    Personally, I think The Dolce Group should be applauded for originally coming to Atlantic Station. They saw the vision of what could be and instead of easing into a development they opened three concepts while the development was still growing. No local business operator will commit to the outrageous rent rates of Atlantic Station. No national concept would either (remember when Atlanta had it’s recent “snow” situation and Atlantic Station was a dead zone because no one could enter or exit the parking deck. Why do you think LegoLand and all these other high profile businesses are going elsewhere. The only that can save Atlantic Station would be if the state allowed gambling/casinos and they could transform the district (as well as The Underground) to more of an entertainment district.

    To think Geisha House, Ten Pin Alley, and Dolce single handily caused the demise of Atlantic Station is insane. Have you been to The Lobby at Twelve? How many time has a fight/prostitution ring/crime occurred there? Have you been to Fox Sports Grill… it’s next to go.

    It amazes me that previous posts suggest bookstores (but Borders is closing and everyone has a Nook/Kindle/iPad), upscale market (Publix is next store), spa (haven’t two already failed), kid friendly concepts (Fios360 anyone)?

    Atlanta has a better chance of winning the world series, super bowl, stanley cup, or NBA championship before Atlantic Station is fixed.

    As an example, of the unprofessionalism and overall attitude of Atlantic Station’s new “holier than thou” management they mention/refer to this website–a gossip blogging website that often reports inaccurate information (Boccado anyone) as a place to find more information. It’s common knowledge that Mark Toro and the operator of this website are buddies… if Atlantic Station really cared about their development they would reference and work with more reputable news media like the AJC and television stations.

    If I were The Dolce Group, I’d walk away from the other two concepts. No reason to continue to pump money into a broken development with leadership that thinks simply by pouring a bottomless glass of kool aid to the community will turn around the development.


  18. Urbanist

    CB…the land was industrial wasteland, and a bunch of dumb asses got together and decided to pour a tremendous amount of money into it to redevelop it. I doing so, they pulled money, tenants, and other resources away from other areas. Do you know how positive the benefit to the city of Atlanta would have been if all those dollars had been spent developing housing, retail, and office on the other side of 75/85? They had PLENTY of space in Downtown/Midtown to undertake all that development and actually do good for the city. Instead, they wanted to go to an industrial wasteland, and create an island of development that is disconnected form the rest of the city. They haven’t improved the area at all. it was once a vacant piece of land, and now it’s a failing development that harbors crime, loitering, and has wasted millions among millions of dollars. Is that your idea of a successful development?

  19. TheReader

    While I’m loathe to do it, I (partly) agree with Jim Jones and his spiel. Although I will emphatically reject and disapprove of his “rats” analogy to describe younger minority kids. As lucid as your entire comment was, I’m sure you could have found a better analogy.

    To the matter at hand:

    Urbanist- “Do you know how positive the benefit to the city of Atlanta would have been if all those dollars had been spent developing housing, retail, and office on the other side of 75/85? They had PLENTY of space in Downtown/Midtown to undertake all that development and actually do good for the city. Instead, they wanted to go to an industrial wasteland, and create an island of development that is disconnected form the rest of the city.”

    This fairly succinctly explains one of the major failings of the AS development. Why invest (waste) so much money into disconnected part of the city when major development could have been done to the preexisting structures that are more central to ATL nightlife, entertainment, and leisure.

    As for everyone who was pussyfooting around the issue and not coming right out and saying that they had a problem with young minorities taking up too much space without positively contributing to the area, all I can say is that when you try to be super PC and evasive, it comes off very superficial and ignorant. Ciao

  20. frankly

    Atlantic Station is no more “disconnected” from the city than “Westside urban village” or any other place that a lot of intowners frequent.

    Jim Jones you are just as much a rat as any of those youth describe. Rude and obnoxious are two traits you have in common.

    People can talk all day long about this place but I was JUST there. It was FULL of a very diverse crowd of people. It didn’t seem “failed” to me at all.

  21. Urbanist

    frankly, the bank has owned most of the projects in AS, and now that leases are rolling over, tenants are blowing out of there as quickly as they can. Given this, please define successful development for all of us.

  22. JasonH

    Jim Jones: “Let’s call a spade a spade…”

    Are you seriously starting off a racial rant with a racial slur? Nice. That doesn’t undermine your credibility at all…

    Also, you ask why there isn’t any use of the AJC or television, but there has already been one news feature on a local channel and an article in the AJC.

    You really seem like you want to see AS fail.

  23. frankly

    The financial troubles of the developer, AIG, had ZERO to do with Atlantic Station and those tenants are being forced out by the new owner.

  24. New Atlanta

    Force the blacks out past the airport they ruin everything nice in this city. Look at buckhead and Lenox. I looks like a scene from a hip hop video. Rid the thugs = success. There cheap and human life means nothing to them that’s why 90% of the shooting are amongst blacks. Helloooo.

  25. One Of The Blacks

    New Atlanta – sorry, but ATL is a black city with a black mayor, affluent black residents and will always be! We actually ran bigots like you out past 285 to Alpharetta. Enjoy your commute tomorrow!

  26. Karen

    I’m told Sweetwater is not allowed to operate a retail/restaurant space. The only reason one is located in the airport is because Sweetwater actually leased the rights to an out of state vendor, allowing them to sell Sweetwater product there. Too bad, huh? Would be a great addition to the city’s offerings anywhere.

  27. Sushi Sadness

    I can’t believe Geisha House is closed! This was the first place I ever had sushi and I loved it. The atmosphere was great and the service was as well. Big mistake guys!

  28. N'dygo

    Most of the comments on this story are some of the reasons why Atlantic Station & other places don’t work. When something don’t work, blame it on demographics and color. Mainly Black people, Instead of looking at it honestly. Most of it doesn’t work, like I have stated before, because businesses fell for the ookie doke. They thought they were getting in on something and thinking about the money they would make instead of finding out what people really, really wanted and needed for the proper growth of the city. Some of you need to wake up. Black people love a non-violent evening out with their families & loved ones like anyone else and have that right to go out, dressed how they want to be dressed and not be judged as something less than human. Oh, one more thing, instead of those celebrities trying to cash in, maybe they should have made some appearances to help the businesses out like Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone & Arnold did when Planet Hollywood was on Peachtree. (not that I don’t like a few of them myself, just saying)

  29. Mad Doggg

    Really rats and thugs. Atlantic stations problem is beyond racial issues. Parking costs too much for one. Second residents did not move there as much as forecasted. Weekends are busy but during the week it’s a ghost town. Part of the businesses problem. Hard to make money only on the weekends. I think they should have a pet store for all the rats!!!! Lmfao or better yet make the area like underground Atlanta…

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