It’s Official: HopCat Royal Oak Location to Open in Early 2017


On Friday, Sept. 23, BarFly Ventures LLC officially announced plans to open its sixth Michigan HopCat location with a unique three-story design in downtown Royal Oak.

The restaurant and craft beer bar, 208 W 5th St., will feature 130 taps on its first floor and another 30 taps featuring its Local 30 selections at a second floor bar. Opening is currently slated for late in the first quarter of 2017, pending approval of a liquor license transfer and other permitting.

“Royal Oak is a city with a lot of soul – from cool shops, restaurants and nightlife, to its great neighborhoods,” said Mark Sellers, founder of HopCat and CEO of BarFly Ventures. “I don’t like cookie-cutter places, so those who have visited HopCat-Detroit or another location will find a different vibe in Royal Oak.”

The three-story space will have a room for private events and a rooftop beer garden.

“We’re already working hard to design the region’s best beer garden on the rooftop,” Sellers said. “We think the beer garden will be one of the most unique places in Metro Detroit to hang out and enjoy some drinks with friends.”

BarFly Ventures and landlord Innovo Development Group LLC plan to invest about $3.5 million into improving the 11,700 square foot space.

Woody’s and Onyx, which currently occupy the space, will close in early October. Employees of Woody’s an Onyx will be given the first opportunity to apply for jobs at the new HopCat.

“I want to thank our loyal employees and guests for making Woody’s and Onyx part of their lives,” said Tony Kasab, owner of the restaurant and bar. “We had a great run, but I know HopCat will bring a new vitality to the building and downtown. I am glad HopCat will provide our employees with the first opportunity to apply for new jobs at HopCat –Royal Oak.”

Hiring for the management team is underway. Those interested may email a resume to jobs@hopcat.com. Hiring of more than 130 hourly employees will begin early next year.

The Royal Oak location will be the 13th HopCat, which first opened in Grand Rapids in 2008.

HopCat’s full menu, available until closing every night, includes its signature Crack Fries, named among the 10 Best French Fries in the nation by Food Network Magazine.

Follow HopCat – Royal Oak’s progress on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@HopCatRoyalOak).

More from Jon Corrigan
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