The Spot has a new spot

  • Jessica Else / The Garden Island

    Nani Lane prepares an acai bowl at the new location of The Spot in Princeville Shopping Center.

  • Jessica Else / The Garden Island

    Ellie Marcus takes an order at the new location of The Spot in Princeville Shopping Center.

  • Jessica Else / The Garden Island

    Nani Lane and Ellie Marcus present two popular items at The Spot in Princeville Shopping Center.

  • Jessica Else / The Garden Island

    The acai bowl at The Spot in Princeville Shopping Center is made from acai and banana with fresh fruit and handmade syrups.

Just shy of two years after opening The Spot in Kapaa, Nani Lane and Ellie Marcus have opened the doors on their second location in the Princeville Shopping Center.

“I’d say we’re busier here (in Princeville) in these first two weeks than we were after opening in Kapaa,” Lane said Monday during the noon hour about two weeks after their soft opening. “We have name recognition and we’re filling a niche that’s needed here.”

That niche is breakfast and coffee, which dwindled from the center after Lei Petite Bakery and Coffee Shop closed. At their original location, they serve a cold menu of frozen yogurts and smoothies, so the new The Spot has added to their menu to fill the vacancy.

“We use clean ingredients, and there’s something here for everybody,” Marcus said. “If you want an all-organic breakfast or vegan breakfast, we have that. We also have bacon and locally made sausage.”

The noon hour brought a cluster of customers to the frozen-yogurt shop, located across the covered dining area from Tiki Iniki. They ordered acai bowls and iced coffee sourced from local roasters, grab-and-go cookies and soft-serve bowls —made with or without dairy and topped with fruit, handmade syrups, cookies and chocolate chips.

Originally from New York, Marcus met Lane after moving to Kauai, and the two became friends. During a walk one day by Hanalei Bay, the two discovered their shared a dream of owning and operating an organic frozen-yogurt bar, and the duo decided to go into business together.

“We started talking, like new friends do, and found out our dreams were identical, down to details,” Lane said.

Lane, from Kilauea, had just returned to the island from traveling, and was working in a shave ice truck, and Marcus was working with a nonprofit.

“Ellie, she had the small business side of things, and I had the food industry side of things, so we’re a good combination,” Lane said. “So, we wrote out our business plan and went forward with it. Even then we were planning that in six months to a year we’d expand to either a food truck or a second location.”

Both living on Kauai’s North Shore, Lane and Marcus knew they’d want to expand north first. The ambitious duo said a third location could very well be around the corner, but they have no definite plans, yet — they’re focusing on their flagship and in Princeville.

“The Kapaa location is great. It’s right in the middle of town and we’re surrounded by local businesses,” Lane said. “Being on the second floor has had its challenges, but people find us and the locals know us.”

With a staff of around eight people between the two locations, and the potential to grow, Lane and Marcus said their success is a result of hard work and an undying dream, and they’re happy to share it with the community.

“We like that we can provide some jobs for a few people. That’s really cool. Plus, I grew up around here, so this is home,” Lane said. “And we really do have something for everyone. Just this morning I made someone frozen yogurt with kale in it.”

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Jessica Else, staff writer, can be reached at 245-0452 or jelse@thegardenisland.com.

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