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Article updated: 1/15/2013 11:20 PM

Bartlett discusses video gambling cafes

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Shortly after approving a liquor license for a new video gambling cafe called Stella's, the Bartlett village board heard a proposal Tuesday for a similar establishment called Betty's Bistro.

Stella's, which will be operated by Loredo Hospitality, could open at 1015 W. Stearns Road as early as April.

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The board granted the business a license that allows for the sale of alcohol between 8 a.m. and 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and between 8 a.m. and 2 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

The restaurant will serve only beer and wine, along with light food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It will also likely include five gambling stations, which is the maximum allowed by the state.

Then, during the committee of the whole meeting, Bruce Davis of Blackhawk Restaurant Group LLC answered questions about the group's proposal to obtain a liquor license to open Betty's Bistro at 1075 W. Army Trail Road. The business would be located less than three miles south of Stella's, in a space vacated by Bartlett Liquor.

Davis said the restaurant would offer a variety of specialty beverages, along with beer and wine, and light meals like breakfast foods, soups, salads and desserts. It would include a dining area with 10 seats as well as a five gambling stations.

The demographics Betty's Bistro would aim to appeal to, Davis said, are ages 55 and older, about 55 percent female, with an income of $80,000 or higher.

"We don't want to be a bar or a tavern," he said. "We'd like to be well-lit, safe, secure, comfortable. ... We're more of a restaurant, more of a place for refuge, more relaxing."

Davis said the group is hoping to open other Betty's Bistro locations in Oakbrook Terrace, Morton Grove and Hoffman Estates. A Stella's has already been approved in Hoffman Estates.

Trustee Dennis Nolan said he would like to discuss the possibility of more establishments like Stella's and Betty's Bistro opening in the village.

"At some point, I think that this board, from a policy standpoint, will need to look at how many of these types of establishments are fitting within the village's zoning and within the village's policy and our mission statement and those types of things," he said.

Village Attorney Bryan Mraz said he would have to research what type of power the village has in limiting the number of video gambling restaurants through zoning and ordinances.

Village Administrator Valerie Salmons noted at the end of the discussion that the village has received "additional interest" from people who want to open establishments with concepts similar to Stella's and Betty's Bistro in the village.

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