Panera Bread opens in Mundelein
A new Panera Bread bakery-cafe recently opened in Mundelein.
The new 4,156 square-foot restaurant, located at 1575 South Lake Street at the north east corner of Route 60 and Route 45, replaces the building that formerly housed Pizza Hut for years.
The new eatery features the latest Panera design with drive-through and outdoor patio seating.
"We are very pleased to now have Panera Bread in Mundelein. This was one of our economic development goals to attract this restaurant to town because of its excellent reputation for healthy and delicious food," said Mayor Steve Lentz. "This is an excellent addition to a growing list of dining options in our village and on behalf of the board of trustees we extend a warm Mundelein welcome," Lentz said.
This is the 39th bakery-cafe in Chicagoland, said Mike Hamra, CEO and president of Hamra Enterprises, a Panera Bread franchisee in Chicagoland since 1998. Hamra Enterprises is a Missouri company that operates Panera, Wendy's and Noodles & Company franchises in Illinois and other states, as well as a Holiday Inn Express in Texas.
Meanwhile, Panera was sold to Europe's JAB Holding Co. for more than $7 billion about a month ago.
JAB is better known for the growing stable of brands it owns or has a big stake in, including Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Peet's Coffee & Tea, Caribou Coffee Co., Stumptown Coffee and Keurig Green Mountain.
JAB plans to turn Panera it into a private company. Though known for its sandwiches, Panera is a major seller of coffee. The chain operates more than 2,000 locations and has reported about $5 billion in annual sales.