Rosemont's entertainment district is nearly built out -- featuring bars and restaurants, a movie theater, bowling alley, comedy club, and recently opened indoor sky diving facility.
Come this summer, add one more venue to the list: the Sugar Factory, an upscale candy store/bar/restaurant suited for kids and adults alike.
The restaurant has a planned August opening inside the 7,200-square-foot space left vacant in October 2013 when My Big Fat Greek Restaurant shut its doors after less than a year in business.
The Rosemont village board approved zoning variances earlier this month for signage and an outdoor dining area.
The Sugar Factory is the first such restaurant in the Chicago-area for the Las Vegas-based chain, which has restaurant and candy store locations in Las Vegas, New York City, Los Angeles and Bahrain. The first candy store opened in 2009 at the Mirage Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
Founder/owner Charissa Davidovici, who grew up near the Chain O' Lakes, decided her concept would fit well in Rosemont's burgeoning entertainment district, visited by both locals and tourists landing at nearby O'Hare Airport.
"Rosemont has grown so much. It's changed so much," said Davidovici, who remembers attending her first concert in Rosemont. "To see the difference, to see how much it's changed and see the energy there, that's what we look for where we want to have a Sugar Factory."
Davidovici's man on the street in Rosemont is Kevin Killerman, a Chicago area bar owner, who is investing in the local Sugar Factory location.
Following the opening of Sugar Factory's "American Brasserie" restaurant in Rosemont's MB Financial Park, company officials have plans to open another location in Chicago.
The new restaurant will feature an extensive dessert menu -- everything from King Kong sundaes and milkshakes to crepes and waffles -- as well as traditional American fare such as hamburgers, pizza, steak and seafood.
There will be a variety of both nonalcoholic and alcoholic drinks, including Sugar Factory's goblet cocktail, a 36-oz. mix of different types of flavors and booze, topped off with dry ice.
The venue will also have a Chocolate Lounge where visitors can sample treats dipped in fondue.
An adjoining store will offer more than 300 types of candy available for purchase, from chocolates to gummy bears.
"We're not your average candy store where you're just going to get Snickers," Davidovici said.
The store will also sell the brand's signature Couture Pop, a grown-up version of a lollipop that has been spotted in the hands of celebrities like Kim Kardashian.
The lollipop has a "crystallized" handle of rhinestones, and comes with an interchangeable flavorhead for eight different flavors.
"It's something as blingy as possible," Davidovici said. "It's how the Sugar Factory started."
Davidovici said like other Sugar Factory grand openings, there will be celebrities present when the Rosemont location opens, but she didn't reveal who exactly.
Sugar Factory markets its brand to a purposely diverse audience; children and families frequent the locations in the daytime, while the venues are host to adults on dates and bachelorette parties at night, Davidovici said.
"Sugar Factory is a mix of demographics," she said. "We're such a brand that just appeals to everybody."