Mary Carter Decorating Center to Grow, Relocate

By Amos Maki

A venerable Memphis cake decorating and supply store is moving to a new location on Summer Avenue.

Mary Carter Decorating Center signed a 4,800-square-foot lease in Cloverleaf Shopping Center at 733 N. White Station Road.

The father-and-son team of Jim and Chris Faherty have operated the family business out of their current, 2,500-square-foot location at 3205 Summer Ave. for 55 years.

“We needed more of everything,” Jim Faherty said. “With our busy season coming up, we are ready to have more room for retail, more room for training. We will keep our existing location open through the end of the year for training classes, and then everything will be at the new location.”

Mary Carter offers lines of fondant, tips, cake boxes and boards, cookie cutters and pre-made buttercream frosting.

“With more room, we will be able to start expanding our offerings to include Elite Fondant, Fondex and lines of edible flowers and decorations that we just haven’t had room for,” Chris Faherty said. “We will have a glass case to display everything and have plenty of room for our customers to shop.”

A large classroom is planned for the new space, and the Fahertys plan to expand their cake decorating class offerings and offer a new program for children.

Mary Carter also operates bakingstuff.com, which has mainly functioned as an online catalog for in-town customers and has been a “small margin” of business due to building constraints. The Fahertys hope to grow that side of their business after the expansion takes place and expand their online inventory.

“We haven’t really even marketed it yet,” Jim Faherty said.

The new location is next to the Cash Saver Cost Plus store at Cloverleaf and should provide a significant boost to the company’s business.

“We think it will be a great fit being right next door to the grocery store and will provide a one-stop shopping experience for our customers,” Chris Faherty said. “The new location will probably double our customer base. Moving down Summer Avenue, I am so excited to be able to maintain service to our current customers, but also to cultivate relationships with new folks. That’s what keeps me motivated.”

The lease brings the 94,000-square-foot Cloverleaf Center to 98 percent occupancy. Aaron Petree represented landlord Loeb Properties in the transaction.

The former site of Raiford’s Hollywood Disco is for lease.

The 2,672-square-foot nightclub at 115 Vance Ave. is up for rent for around $3,900 a month.

Located near the South Main Historic Arts District and Beale Street Entertainment District, the club features a dance floor, bar, dancing poles, DJ booth and VIP section.

Raiford’s was well-known for selling quarts of beer, for its authentic atmosphere and for keeping the party going well into the early morning hours. Owner Robert Raiford often manned the DJ booth, spinning old-school soul and dance tunes.

Raiford shut the club down in 2007 and, with daughter Paula, opened Paula & Raiford's Disco at 14 S. Second St.

Wilson McCloy and Pat Surratt of Crye-Leike Commercial are the listing agents for the property. For more information, call 758-5670.

Adams and Reese LLP has signed a 10-year lease with Highwoods Properties to relocate its Memphis office to the seventh floor of the Crescent Center in East Memphis.

“We look forward to our move to one of the city’s most prestigious and recognizable buildings,” said Jeffrey C. Smith, the Memphis office’s partner in charge.

The nine-story Crescent Center, at Poplar Avenue and Ridgeway Road in the heart of East Memphis, features 337,000 square feet and has long been considered one of the city’s top office buildings.

Adams and Reese entered Memphis in 2006.

“Our firm is deeply committed to Memphis, and although we were unable to negotiate an acceptable deal for Class A space Downtown, it was important to us to remain inside the city limits,” Smith said.

Adams and Reese will become one of the Crescent Center’s largest corporate tenants.

“We are very pleased to have the prestigious Adams and Reese firm joining our list of premier customers,” said Steve Guinn of Highwoods.

The Crescent Center includes the Crescent Club, a private dining club on the top floor. Two more restaurants, The Capital Grille and Seasons 52, are under construction now.

Kemp Conrad, principal of Cushman & Wakefield/Commercial Advisors, represented Adams and Reese in the transaction, while Guinn and Tony Argiro represented Highwoods.

Adams and Reese plans to make the move to the Crescent Center from Brinkley Plaza, 80 Monroe Ave. Downtown, by the end of the year.