Hannah Hill/The Hoya Pinkberry, a frozen yogurt shop, is one of the many businesses opening on M Street this fall.
Hannah Hill/The Hoya
Pinkberry, a frozen yogurt shop, is one of the many businesses opening on M Street this fall.

Despite the economic downturn, times are good in the Georgetown shopping district. The area has seen the emergence of several new businesses this summer, as well as the expansion of services at a veteran neighborhood establishment.

This spring, the Georgetown Business Improvement District officially announced the opening of eight new businesses, with seven more soon to follow.

Businesses that have opened since then include at least seven new clothing stores, five new eateries and a variety of other establishments. Pinkberry, Brooks Brothers and the famed dessert spot Serendipity 3 on M Street have all opened their doors in recent months.

Over on Wisconsin Avenue, Mauricio Sepulveda and his two business partners are seeking to improve Los Cuates, an established Georgetown eatery, by expanding service to a second floor.

The Mexican restaurant, in its third year of business, has become a hotspot for locals and tourists alike.

“I have a waiting list, almost every day, for more than 45 minutes,” Sepulveda said.

Sepulveda anticipates the approval of the zoning permit in the near future and estimates that the second floor will open before November. The additional space will allow for group celebrations like birthdays or graduations.

“We bring a lot of families and students together,” Sepulveda said, adding that his restaurant has been successful even amid of the economic downturn.

“We survived the recession,” he said. “We’re going to be okay the rest of the time.”

Jim Bracco, Georgetown BID executive director, voiced optimism in a press release issued by his organization.

“The fact that 15 national brands and independent merchants have chosen to open up in Georgetown over a period of several months, with many choosing our neighborhood as one of their only U.S. locations, is indicative of the current strength of retail in Georgetown,” he said.

Down on the waterfront, David Hong and his wife are enjoying success with the recent opening of their new shop, The Best Sandwich Place.

Business thrived at the Hong’s original deli on K and 18th Street, and the couple jumped at the opportunity to start a second location in Georgetown. After opening its doors last month, The Best Sandwich Place has enjoyed immediate success.

“Business is very good,” Hong said. “There are a lot of quality people around here.”

Hong, who has been in business for 23 years, estimates that sales drop by 20 percent during a recession. He said, however, that he was not intimidated by the negative economic climate when opening his new restaurant.

Georgetown student Rianna Folds (COL ’14) said that she is happy to support new business owners in the area.

“It’s great if you can take the initiative [when starting up],” Folds said.

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