Tatnuck Booksellers & Sons, founded by Larry Abramoff in 1975, now has a lot more shelves to fill.
On Monday, Abramoff
will open a new store in more than 30,000 square feet of space in Westborough, Massachusetts.Unlike its mother store in nearby Worcester, which Abramoff
describes as "part three-ring circus, part boutique, part literary 'mall-ternative,'" the new store will feature "wide aisles, a beautiful layout, great signage, and improved technology at the front end."
The Worcester store, located in a 100-year-old spring-making factory and occupying about 50 percent less space than the new store, boasts an eclectic inventory, highly regarded customer service, a full-service restaurant, and committed community involvement.Tatnuck
also runs the campus bookstores at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and Clark University
, and Abramoff
operates Chandler House Press
, a small publisher of local-interest and nonfiction specialty titles.
Although staying within the new store's budget required a lot of resourceful finagling, Abramoff
is extremely pleased with the result."We turned the tired old supermarket space into an incredibly beautiful bookstore.We brought in five major bamboo trees, a fountain, a carved Indian.I want people to walk in and say 'Wow.'"Abramoff
selected the site, in part, because the landlord was very accommodating."His
[the landlord's] family started the supermarket originally in that shopping center," he
explained."They have maintained ownership of the shopping center, and our landlord is on site every single day.I really like the guy and he's
always ready to help."Abramoff told BTW that the store's tag line, "independent thinking -- community minded," is part of the new store's promotion on billboards dotting many of the major highways around the Westborough location.
The store will be stocked with 150,000 titles including a very large children's section and selection of computer books, a gift shop, and a cafe, which will open in a few months.About 60 new jobs will be created in the Westborough store, and some administrative staff may eventually be moved there from Worcester to free up space.
has been one of the nation's largest independent bookstores and a model of passionate selling and creative marketing, Abramoff
has seen its customer base slip away for a number of reasons."We want to bring back some of the clientele we once served at the Worcester store," said Abramoff
, explaining the loss due, in part, to customer frustration with a terrible traffic situation resulting from I-290 construction."The road system has deteriorated dramatically, and we have lost customers," he
said."You might say we're moving the mountain closer to Mohammed."The Westborough location will draw customers and staff from a wider range than Worcester, including areas closer to Boston.
"It's just kind of the right spot at the right time," Abramoff
said in an article in the Boston Globe