Going back to work after the Labor Day weekend just got a little easier, at least for Dunkin' Donuts fans who live in or near Santa Monica. Well, easier if you want to spend your early morning lining up with doughnut lovers badly in need of caffeine.
The first Dunkin' Donuts in Southern California will officially open its doors at 5 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 2 at their new Santa Monica location, at 1132 Wilshire Blvd. Pink carpet. Mascots. A “special California-inspired donut.” Welcome to Los Angeles.
For those of you who live for this sort of thing, note that the first 100 people in line will get swag (tote bag, etc.) and the very FIRST person in line will get free coffee for a year. Maybe just pretend its the Rose Parade and spend your day off on Wilshire in a lawn chair. Bring a thermos, since eventually you'll be able to refill it with Dunkin' Donuts' very best.
The Massachussetts-based company, which was founded in 1950 in Quincy, Mass., previously had restaurants in California but closed them in the 1990s. The Santa Monica restaurant is the first of a projected 1,000 new Dunkin' Donuts throughout the state; the first 150 to 200 will be open, theoretically, by 2020.
“We’ve been asked to bring Dunkin’ Donuts back to Los Angeles for many years and we’re proud to announce that the first full expression restaurant is opening in Santa Monica ahead of schedule,” said Paul Twohig, President of Dunkin' Donuts US and Canada.
A “full expression” restaurant, in case you're wondering, is a free-standing shop which offers the chain's full menu of coffee, doughnuts, bakery sandwiches, etc. Such restaurants can also have a drive-thru component — although not this one. Sorry.
There are, if you're counting, three “non-traditional” Dunkin' Donuts shops already in California: a recent Dunkin’ Donuts/Baskin-Robbins combination in a San Diego hotel and locations at Camp Pendleton and Barstow Station.
Next up are Dunkin' Donuts in Long Beach, Downey and Whittier, which are anticipated by the end of this year. The chain's first Northern California location opened in Modesto on Aug. 26.