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More Empty Stores In West End

LONG BRANCH: The retail churn in Long Branch's West End continues as stores are still coming and going along Brighton Avenue and 2nd Avenue.

The latest closures are Ruean Mai Thai, Hello Chef and a realtor in the space next to Vanity Fur on the south side of the street.

Ruin Mai Thai was a Thai restaurant which lasted in the space for just over a year. The space has been a revolving door over the years with businesses such as Carpaccio and Ciao inhabiting the storefront.

Hello Chef at 604 2nd Ave., was the home of chef Dan Vogt's prepared meal and catering restaurant which offered healthier selection. We spoke to Vogt and he told us his business started off well, but that all the construction along Brighton Avenue last summer hurt his business badly.

"I had cones in front of plaza for months," Vogt said.

Vogt said he will now focus on his personal chef model where he does not need a storefront.

He said the space will soon be replaced by Becca's cookie bar, a gourmet bakery where people can make their own cookies, ice cream sandwiches and other goodies.

In addition to the closed spaces, a "for rent" sign is posted in the front of Arcomano Opticians at 78 Brighton Ave. However, the business is still open at this time.

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