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Revamped Farmington Mall seeks new businesses

Farmington Mall boasts curb appeal with new exterior updates and is ready to lease commercial space to potential new business owners in renovated interior spaces. A new restaurant Rebel Chef plans to open doors in the fall. Kara Hildreth / contributor

Farmington Mall shops curb appeal and is busy marketing renovated commercial space to lease in the newly-renovated strip mall.

"I want it to be vibrant and successful and I hope people will come through and help us make it a vibrant property — a gem of Farmington," said Rafik Moore, managing partner of Caspian Group that purchased the Farmington Mall in March.

"We welcome any business owners and we want them to be successful," Rafik said. "We revitalize properties and that is how we give back to the community," he added.

Located at the busy intersection of Highway 3 and County Road 50 on the southeast side of town, the auto strip mall has thousands of square feet available to lease now.

A new restaurant called Rebel Chef plans to open its doors next to the Farmington Mall. The restaurant is located next to the Amcon gas station. Caspian Group also owns this property.

"The Rebel Chef will be owned by an executive chef from Los Angeles, and we are excited about it as it is making great progress and we are hoping it will open in late October or early November," Moore said.

The Rebel Chef will serve up American fusion cuisine and the menu entrees will bring in traditional American food infused with culinary and cultural influences from his California cooking, Moore said.

The mall owner hopes the new restaurant will entice more foot traffic and businesses to locate at the mall.

Envisioning Farmington Mall could become home to a potential coffee shop, deli, day care, children's birthday party venue or even a fitness studio, Rafik said he welcomes all kinds of small businesses.

Caspian Group took property ownership in March 2017 and Moore said the company decided to invest heavily in exterior renovations and interior upgrades. The property received a new roof, a blacktop parking lot, red paint exterior to complement a modern façade that all add curb appeal to the old, outdated and rundown strip mall.

New lighted signage was added to near the frontage road.

Currently, the Farmington Mall houses a tanning salon, a dance studio, a pool hall and a few other businesses, but there is thousands of square feet open for lease.

In April a Dollar Tree was slated to open. Moore said the deal is still in the works.

"We are preparing a unit for the store and are working on deals, and we are trying to figure out the numbers right now," he said. "We would love to hear from the public about what they want to see and we always listen to people, and we want them to have an influence on where we go with it and we want to listen to people's opinions and work to follow through on them."

"People are saying they want more local businesses and more food or coffee shops," he added.

Many prospective tenants that have shown interest in the past few months have not shown to possess the needed capital to open and run a small business.

"It is a challenge, honestly, because many do not have the capital to bring in for a business or to run a shop," Moore said.

Farmington Mall owners would like to see a coffee shop or a Ma and Pop style restaurant open.

"We are letting people know the city is growing and trying to get more tenants into the strip mall, like a start-up or business owners who want to relocate from another location or want to relocate from another area into Farmington," said Justin Fuller, a leasing agent for Farmington Mall.

Moore said "Many say they are super excited we are working on the strip mall and bringing it back to life because it looked abandoned and they are happy someone came it to change it around."