The buzz


The owners of popular Armatage eatery Café Maude at 54th Street and Penn Avenue plan to open a room for large groups this spring in the former Marlys Beauty Salon space across the street.

Restaurant owners Kyle Radcliffe and Kevin Sheehy decided to open the new spot, which will be called the Armatage Room, in response to requests for large group dinners from companies such as Best Buy and Cargill.

A minimum of 15 people will be required to make a reservation in the new room and it will be able to seat as many as 32–40 at four tables, Radcliffe said. Diners will be able to choose from a five-, six- or seven-course menu, and the cost could range from $30 to $50 a head.

The Armatage Room will have a kitchen fitted with a six-top burner, an oven and other appliances, Radcliffe said, but some of the meal preparation will be done at Café Maude.

The restaurant opened last summer and serves up brunch, lunch, and dinner entrées including gourmet omelets, paninis, soups, and wood-grilled meat dishes. Radcliffe said a new lunch menu would be introduced soon, adding more sandwiches, less “hotel breakfast food” and Café Maude’s own version of the Juicy Lucy burger.

He said the Armatage Room should be complete and in use by mid-May. Reservations were not being accepted yet, but Radcliffe said the restaurant planned to start booking soon. Diners interested in making a reservation or learning more about the room should call Café Maude at 822-5411.

The restaurant is open for lunch from 11 a.m.–2 p.m. Monday–Friday, brunch from 9 a.m.–2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and for dinner from 5 p.m.–10 p.m. Monday–Thursday, 5 p.m.–midnight Friday and Saturday, and 5 p.m.–9 p.m. Sunday.

Café Maude features live music on Friday and Saturday nights.


Vern Carver & Beard Art Galleries is relocating to Uptown after an 11-year run in the LaSalle Plaza skyway.

The gallery will move to a site at 2817 Hennepin Ave. next door to the Dean Gallery, a location also owned by the Beard Art
Galleries. The Vern Carver gallery has bounced around Downtown sites since the late 1950s, relocating for a variety of reasons. The gallery will reopen on Hennepin on March 3.


Travel goods retailer URBAN Traveler will complete more than two decades of business in Calhoun Square this spring and move just down the street to the former Mozaic sales center at 1426 W. Lake St.

URBAN Traveler, which also has a store in Roseville, was among several tenants in the Hennepin Avenue and Lake Street shopping center that were told to leave by spring to make way for reconstruction.

Owner Willy VanDooijeweert said he’s “proud, happy and excited” about the new space, which local development firm The Ackerberg Group offered him. VanDooijeweert said he had several other proposals on the table, but nothing as appealing as the Lake Street space, which is about 30 percent larger than the Calhoun Square store, has huge windows and is located in the heart of Uptown.

Interior construction is underway and VanDooijeweert plans to have the new URBAN Traveler open for business April 1.

URBAN Traveler’s offerings — a variety of luggage, travel-friendly clothing and other items — will stay the same. VanDooijeweert is boastful about his store’s inventory.

“The only thing I don’t have are the airline tickets,” he said. “If I don’t have it, either it doesn’t exist or do you don’t need it.”

UURBAN Traveler is having a moving sale at its Calhoun Square location. For more information on the business, visit or