Maryland Economy / Maryland Small Business
Leasing booms in Baltimore’s Harbor East as pandemic fades away
By Julie Miller /
June 08, 2021
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During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, retail businesses and restaurants took an incredible hit as the world shut down in order to slow the spread of the virus. But in recent months, as businesses started to open back up and consumers increased their comfort with in-person shopping and dining, retailers and restaurateurs started to get back to business as usual.  

One area in particular that is seeing a post-COVID comeback is Baltimore’s Harbor East neighborhood. This iconic waterfront neighborhood, offering 5.5 million square feet of development, is anchored by some of Baltimore's most wondrous skyscrapers occupied by some of the state’s biggest names in business. At the ground level, Harbor East’s beautiful buildings host an array of boutique and nationally-known shops, renowned restaurants, and other attractions. This spring, several new retail and restaurant tenants joined the action in Harbor East.

In April, beauty supplier Sephora announced it was opening a store in Harbor East in late summer 2021. The store, located at 1001 Fleet Street, will occupy part of the former Whole Foods Market which recently relocated in the neighborhood. The location is Sephora’s first in Baltimore. 

The Lovesac Company, a home furnishing company, also recently announced it was opening a showroom in Harbor East, situated at 817 Aliceanna Street. The showroom will open later this year, and will be Maryland’s fifth Lovesac location. 

In March, Harbor East Management Group and Flagship Premium Cinemas announced the rebranding and future reopening of the movie theatre at 645 S. President Street. Flagship Premium Cinemas will operate, manage and program the theater, which spans 26,000 square feet and houses seven screens. Upon reopening, the theater will implement new safety and social distancing measures.

Bar ONE, a Miami-based restaurant announced its expansion to the Baltimore market earlier this year. The new restaurant at 1000 Lancaster Street will serve Afro-Caribbean and southern-inspired cuisine. Founded and owned by Atlanta-based entrepreneur Peter Thomas of BRAVO’s Real Housewives of Atlanta, Bar ONE will feature a fusion of home-style cooking from the deep American south combined with Afro-Caribbean cuisine.

In addition to Harbor East’s boom in retail and restaurants, several corporate leaders also recently committed to leases in the neighborhood. Bank of America signed a lease to occupy two floors in one of the skyline’s iconic glass towers, joining Franklin Templeton (formerly Legg Mason), Medifast, OneMain Financial and Hogan Lovells, which recently renewed its lease for another 10 years in the tower.  In late 2020, Harbor East also announced it was welcoming law firm Gordon Feinblatt to the neighborhood. Gordon Feinblatt announced it would occupy 35,000 square feet in the heart of Harbor East. 
 

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