Coffee shop/creamery Spill the Beans will open in downtown Spartanburg

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Abram and Heather Curtis stand in front of the flagship location of their Spill the Beans coffee house-creamery concept in downtown Greenville.

Downtown Spartanburg will soon have more than one coffee shop for the first time in about four years.

Abram and Heather Curtis said Wednesday, Sept. 20, they will open a Spartanburg location of their popular Main Street Greenville coffee house-creamery Spill the Beans.

The couple said they have signed a lease on 2,500 square feet of space on the ground floor of the historic Aug W. Smith Building at 174 E. Main St. near Denny’s Plaza. The store is expected to open by the spring of 2018.

“This kind of just fell in our lap,” said Abram Curtis, a native of Michigan whose parents, Lynda and the late Roger Curtis, founded Spill the Beans in 2002. “We had been looking around at communities around us from Atlanta to Charlotte, N.C., and even up to Asheville, N.C. We just felt like Spartanburg was a great fit.”

Spill the Beans is the first business to announce its intention to move into the Aug W. Smith Building, but it likely won’t be the last.

An artist’s rendering of the future Aug W. Smith building in downtown Spartanburg. Photo courtesy of McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture.

Greenville-based developer Blue Wall Real Estate is pouring about $10.5 million into a renovation of the building to transform it into a mixed-use facility with 45 apartments upstairs and retail-restaurant space on the first floor.

Bogue Wallin, principal of Blue Wall, could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

The project is one of three multi-million dollar developments under construction in downtown.

The others are the $20 million AC Hotel and the $29 million renovation of the historic Montgomery Building, which aims to bring about 70 apartments and office and retail space to downtown.

“We looked at the Montgomery Building and were blown away,” said Heather Curtis, a native of Charlottesville, Va., who moved to Greenville in 2005. “At the last minute, our realtor [Shannon Caldwell with NAI Earle Furman in Greenville] told us she wanted us to see one more space. “

Abram Curtis said the couple felt like both properties would be a good destination for their business. There was just something about the Aug. W. Smith Building.

“We knew we wanted to be downtown on Main Street,” he said. “We didn’t want to go into a strip mall. Aug W. Smith reminded me of our location [in downtown Greenville]. It had the same feel.”

He added, “We believe there’s a lot of potential in the space that we chose.”

Curtis purchased the business from his parents in 2006. Shortly thereafter, he relocated the shop from its original location on South Main Street to its current spot.

When he was growing up, his parents served as missionaries in various places across the world, including Japan and Africa. They settled in Greenville, and Abram, who was in college in Wisconsin, followed them down. He finished his final two years at Bob Jones University.

A few years ago, Curtis opened up Spill the Beans as the venue for Origins, a new church.

He met Heather at the church. The couple married in 2013.

“We really try to cultivate a family dynamic,” Abram said. “We structure things a little differently and work with our staff to give them hours that meet their needs.”

The couple said the Spartanburg store will be a little more than half the size of their flagship location.

The new store will be similar to its Greenville counterpart, but unique in its own way, they said. It will be relaxed, with comfy furniture positioned to allow their customers to enjoy views of activity along Spartanburg’s East Main Street.

The owners said their Greenville location operates from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 1:30 to 10 p.m. on Sunday. They hope to keep the same hours in Spartanburg.

The couple said the Greenville store has 15 to 25 employees depending on the season. They said the same could be true for the Spartanburg store.

Abram and Heather Curtis said the menu will be very similar to their original location.

The menu includes a wide selection of regular and specialty coffee drinks, and a range of gourmet, custom-blended ice cream and yogurt served in a bowl, homemade waffle cone, or cake cone.

Customers can also choose from an assortment of teas, hot chocolates, Italian sodas, smoothies, milkshakes, ice cream floats, and ice cream cakes.

Spill the Beans’ coffee supplier is Dillanos Coffee Roasters out of Sumner, Wash. Its ice cream and yogurt are from the Mayfield Creamery in Duncan and Greenville.

Caldwell represented the Curtises in the transaction, while Andrew Babb with NAI Earle Furman’s Spartanburg office represented Blue Wall.

“This is a huge step for that end of downtown,” Babb said.

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