Santa Monica Lookout
|Dunkin Donuts Starts California Campaign with Santa Monica Shop|
By Jonathan Friedman
September 2, 2014 -- East Coast transplants frequently complain about the absence of Dunkin' Donuts in California. That frustration will come to an end Tuesday morning when the Canton, Massachusetts-based chain opens the state's first franchise in more than a decade at 1132 Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica.
This is the first of several California locations planned for the chain, which specializes in donuts, coffee, pastries and sandwiches.
A press release issued earlier this summer says up to 200 Dunkin' Donuts will open in the coming years, and the plan is to have more than 1,000 shops in the state at some point.
Dunkin' Donuts had a small presence in California until the late 1990s and there was a failed comeback attempt in Sacramento in 2002, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"We've been asked to bring Dunkin' Donuts back to Los Angeles for many years, and we're proud to announce that the first full expression restaurant is opening in Santa Monica ahead of schedule," said Paul Twohig, president of Dunkin' Donuts US and Canada, in a recent press release.
He continued, "We are excited to open our doors in Santa Monica on Sept. 2, and we're certain Dunkin' Donuts will quickly become an integral part of Angelenos' daily routine.”
Dunkin' Donuts will not be without competition in a city that features nearly 20 Starbucks locations, including one a couple blocks down on Wilshire. The new business will also be located a two-minute walk from a Krispy Kreme. Local shop DK's Donuts is also not far away.
Despite the stiff competition, Dunkin' Donuts officials are exuding confidence.
"There is incredible passion for Dunkin' Donuts in California, and we are thrilled to bring the brand to Santa Monica," said franchisee Gary Haar in a prepared statement. "Our robust menu ... has something for everyone … we hope to become a popular destination."
Opening day will include some interesting features. The first person in line when Dunkin' Donuts opens at 5 a.m. will receive free coffee for a year. The first 100 customers will receive a tote bag with “special items." Also, "City dignitaries and Dunkin' Donuts executives" are expected to take part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
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