ReStore will open with a bang on Earth Day in Basalt | AspenTimes.com

ReStore will open with a bang on Earth Day in Basalt

Scott Gilbert, president of Habitat For Humanity Roaring Fork, shows off the scores of couches and cushions that are among the furniture that will be sold when the ReStore opens Wednesday in Basalt.

The Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Basalt plans to open with a bang and a bit of opulence Wednesday.

The new downtown store is receiving more than 1,000 pieces of furniture from the Timbers Club Bachelor Gulch, which used to be a Ritz-Carlton. ReStore's 18,400-square-foot space used to be the home of Clark's Market. Now, after extensive renovation, the cavernous space is filling with end tables, square and round dining-room tables, hundreds of cloth and leather chairs, leather upholstered chairs, leather bar stools, couches, sofa beds, carpets, rugs, paintings and various sizes of armoires.

Habitat for Humanity Roaring Fork President Scott Gilbert brims with confidence that the business will draw customers into downtown Basalt and help spark the vitality the town seeks. A ReStore between Carbondale and Glenwood Springs already does a booming business. A new one in Basalt will draw from customers further upvalley, Gilbert claimed.

"The weird thing is, our stuff is so good we can sell it upvalley," Gilbert said. That will draw new customers into Basalt, he said.

The Roaring Fork Valley ReStores are building a reputation for top-notch merchandise because of the furniture they receive when high-end tourist accommodations remodel and refurnish. They also get donations from wealthy second-home owners when their tastes change.

"We have 2,000 people in our database. We're going to email them about our opening next week," Gilbert said. He and his staff intentionally picked Earth Day for the opening because ReStore's forte is repurposing merchandise.

Habitat for Humanity rents the Basalt space from businessman Frank Taverna. Gilbert said ReStore will remain there as long as possible. Taverna has the property on the market, so there is a bit of an unknown factor on longevity.

Taverna undertook some rehabilitation of the space. Habitat spent $31,000 on a concrete floor and $19,000 for the highest-efficiency florescent lighting, minus an $8,000 grant from Community Office for Resource Efficiency and Holy Cross Electric.

Habitat for Humanity Roaring Fork added three employees to work at the Basalt store.

Gilbert said the Basalt business community has embraced the store. He received contributions from 25 businesses for a private opening party prior to the grand opening. ReStore is paying back the favor by offering a discount to people who visit those stores and restaurants and can verify it on a special passport.

Robin Waters, president and CEO of the Basalt Chamber of Commerce, said she thinks ReStore will drive business to downtown Basalt. Shoppers who are attracted to ReStore might stay for lunch or dinner and hit other stores since they are in town.

"We know that when people of all ages and all income levels come to Basalt, they love it, they stay and walk around, and they'll come back," Waters said.

She said the ReStore's opening in downtown is part of a bigger pattern that's developed in the past few months. Roughly a dozen shops, restaurants, service providers and a gallery have signed leases or opened, she said.

ReStore will be open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. More information can be found at http://www.HabitatRoaring Fork.org or by calling 970-945-7733.

scondon@aspentimes.com