Will 2010 be a year of recovery for coffee shops in Arizona? Unfortunately for one shop, the answer is no. Over Coffee, is closing on January 9th. The shop, which opened in November, 2006 is located in Surprise, AZ.

Other shops that closed recently include The Human Bean on Main and Country club as well as one in Fountain Hills. Mountain View Coffee in Fountain Hills closed a few months ago, it had been a mainstay of the Fountain Hills community.

Tara from Ground Control reports a big jump in sales over the last few months — are other shops seeing a bump in sales, too?

Thanks to Tara and Victor for the tips.

Arizona Coffee

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  1. I’ll confess to knowing nothing about the business of running a coffee shop, but I wonder if in some ways coffee shops are counter-cyclical. Right now, we’re seeing a huge surge in Central Phoenix coffee shops, and I sometimes wonder if it is because of the recession, rather than despite it.

    I base my speculation (and that’s all it is) on the following:

    People who are spending less on dinners out due to the recession still want third places in which to gather. For someone uncertain about his or her financial future, a $3 latte might be a more palatable purchase than a $30 entree.

    People who have become unemployed or self-employed as a result of the recession may wish to get out of the house, meet with prospective clients or employers, and network and cowork with colleagues. A coffee house can provide some of the collaboration and interaction that are sometimes hard to find outside an office environment.

    Of course the challenge with the latter item is getting people to actually buy enough beverage and food to make the cost of providing them with seating and wifi worthwhile. I wonder if the recession has brought about more issues with “campers” in coffee houses.

  2. Perhaps whether cafes are counter-cyclical to the economy depends on the cafe? I would venture to say the handfull of truely good ones have flourished during this recession, while a lot of the cookie-cutters aren’t cuttin’ it and many have folded. Not in all cases though, certainly there have been some respectable ones that have closed regardless of quality; probably due more to other things like outragous lease expense, location or ambiance. One thing’s for sure though, people will always drink coffee regardless of the economy whether at home or at “the third place”. I would venture to say even more so in a poor economy.