Southern Brooklyn

Brooklyn’s First “Subway Cafe” Franchise Coming To Manhattan Beach

A rendering of Manhattan Beach’s Subway Cafe interior.

Manhattan Beach will be the site of the borough’s first publicly-accessible Subway Cafe, a new upscale concept that blends together a sandwich shop and a coffee bar.

Subway’s local franchisee signed a lease for 1613 Oriental Boulevard, the former site of Quick Break Deli just outside the gates of Kingsborough Community College (2001 Oriental Boulevard).

A rendering of Manhattan Beach’s Subway Cafe interior.

The 2,000-square-foot Subway Cafe will feature cozy couches placed before a decorative fireplace, free wi-fi, and a new line of espresso beverages and baked goods. There may also be outdoor seating.

“The cafe concept looks better than Starbucks, especially the way it will look in Manhattan Beach,” boasted Daryl Meyers, Brooklyn development agent for Subway. “It’s not like a Starbucks, but it’s similar in what it offers – cappuccino, latte. It’s actually Starbucks-branded coffee; it’s Seattle’s Best, which is owned by Starbucks.”

Subway began testing out the cafe concept in 2008, and slowly expanded to just 15 locations nationwide by 2011. The Manhattan Beach location will be the third publicly-accessible one in New York City, with one in Queens and another in Midtown Manhattan. There’s another location in Brooklyn that opened up around Labor Day weekend, but it’s on the Long Island University campus and only accessible to students and faculty, Meyers said.

All of those locations, though, will pale next to the size and investment Meyers’ team and the franchisee are putting into the Manhattan Beach location, though.

“This one is going to be much better,” Meyers said. “[In addition to the traditional Subway offerings,] we’re going to have dedicated staff for just the cafe, and the owner is dedicated to doing it properly … It has updated decor. Really, pretty nice.”

The 10-year lease for the space was brokered by Arsen Atbashyan, the CEO of Commercial Acquisitions Realty Services, and includes two five-year options. The franchise sought the space for the cafe because the proximity to the school, the beach and nursing home provides a strong customer base for a cafe atmosphere, Meyers said.

“It’s right across the street from Kingsborough Community College; there’s a high school right there. There’s a nursing home and the people in the healthcare industry tend to be some of our best customers. And it’s right on Manhattan Beach, so all summer long, all those beach customers,” Meyers said.

Subway Cafe is tentatively slated to open February 22.

Clarification (3:25 p.m.): Atbashyan adds that agent Shlomi Albagdadi also helped put together the deal.

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  1. Sounds fantastic. It’s not clear, is this a place that sells Subway Sandwiches, or is it something different. All the better if it is.
    Not to be a worrywart, but I wonder about the potential problem of mobs of college kids just hanging out there all day, so that an old fart like me can’t get a seat (and hang out all day)

  2. This isn’t the first time the fast food chains have tried to put their low grade food into a high grade location. I ate once at a McDonald’s in the Financial District that has better than average (for McDonald’s) accommodations, along with a pianist playing live music.

    It was nice, but I remember thinking to myself that it was the same old shit food. Like lipstick on a pig.

    I wish them luck, but I wouldn’t bet on them to succeed if they charge you extra for the almost-a-footlong than any of the other Subway locations around.

  3. I don’t know what it is about those subway sandwiches – they’re so unsatisfying. I’d rather go to a good deli and get a Boarshead hero and a sour pickle for lunch.

  4. As far as fast food goes Subway offers the best bang for you buck. For five dollars you have a nice size sandwich with meat, cheese, bread, and plenty of vegetables so it;’s a well balanced meal compared to some of the other fast food places.

  5. Sounds like a good idea, but Subway seriously needs to put some more effort into making their sandwiches. It is one of the most inconsistent restaurant chains I’ve ever had the experience of eating at. Some chains really make their sandwiches great (extra meat, good supply of fresh vegetables, proper toasting on the bread); at other places they dump a drop of meat, only have lettuce, and burn your bread in the toaster. No fun.

  6. Except people from KBCC will be going there to eat primarily… This place will be good for MB residents on the weekends and, or when Kingsborough is on semester break

  7. i miss Blimpies. I agree, something about Subway just isn’t quite there, though I eat it for a cheap meal. Boarshead? You’re a rich bagel. I bought boarshead for my mom, she put a hit out on me.

  8. Im not happy about the idea, Manhattan beach has been one of the last places in southern brooklyn that remained untouched by big business and with the opening of this subway, whats next? panda express to take over the chinese place and a papa johns where the pizzeria is? Also it will just be another place for kids from goldstein to cut class…


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