RZ’s Has Grand Opening
Chartwells will be offering students coupons, half-price deals and free T-shirts this week as part of the official grand opening of the Union Au Bon Pain and Freshens.
Although it has been open for business before fall break, Chartwells officials decided to use this event as a way of promoting the additions and celebrating the reopening of RZ’s, said Kim Johnson, marketing director for Chartwells.
“Everyone has been really excited about it,” Johnson said.
The store has been extremely well received by students so far, Johnson said.
During fall break, there were students who came to Freshens and ate frozen yogurt on the patio, Johnson said.
“I have also seen faculty and staff stop by Au Bon Pain and get a sandwich or soup to take home,” she said.
Although there were many other coffee options available on campus while RZ’s was closed for renovations, students said they especially missed the atmosphere this particular venue had provided.
“I missed RZ’s because it was just so big and open, compared to Starbucks,” said Page Summers, sophomore English major.
Junior Courtney Parlin said RZ’s was her spot last year to study and hang out between classes. She said she was thrilled when it finally reopened and was definitely in favor of the new additions.
“I love it,” Parlin said. “I love that it’s bigger and that now RZ’s offers more than just coffee; now people can buy smoothies, crepes and sandwiches as well.”
With the expansion of the location, there are now two areas available for seating. The extra seating is nice because there is more space to hang out, and it is less crowded and not as loud, Summers said.
It is still a great place to come and study between classes, Parlin said. She likes to go to the Freshens side to study because that side still has the original RZ’s furniture, Parlin said.
Students said the opening of Au Bon Pain and Freshens are a nice addition to the university because they also offer healthy lunch options outside the cafeterias.
A vegetarian selection at Au Bon Pain is a plus, said Keleigh Hibbard, junior biology major.
“I saw a lot of people filing into the café after class and when I saw the three or four different vegetarian sandwiches on the menu, I decided to try it,” Hibbard said.
The reopening of RZ’s has not had an effect on the business of the Union Market, Johnson said. The Union Market is still a very popular option for students to eat lunch, and RZ’s seems to be a popular spot for students to relax in the mornings and afternoons between classes, Johnson said.