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25 new businesses open in downtown Knoxville over 2021

Have you been downtown recently? When you go, get ready to experience dozens of new businesses, from restaurants to retail and everything in between.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — If you haven't been downtown in a while, expect to see lots of new storefronts when you go — 25 of them to be exact.

That's how many new businesses opened in Downtown Knoxville in 2021.

Michele Hummel, executive director of Downtown Knoxville, said she is impressed with the number of new businesses — especially during the pandemic.

"Over 80% of our businesses downtown are locally owned," she said. "So it's just another way to help support the downtown businesses and our local economy."

Let's learn about all these new places, starting with restaurants!

New Restaurants

Vida Pan-Latin restaurant and The Vault speakeasy-style are open right next to Krutch Park.

Across Gay Street, FaiThai Kitchen makes the transition from a food truck to a brick-and-mortar Thai restaurant.

Also on Gay, Babalu reopens under new management and new daquiri bar Fat Tuesday calls the Kress building home.

Down a bit, Hello Tea House is open as a mix of a bubble tea shop and an Asian bakery.

On Market Square, Bernadette's Crystal Gardens is a three-story crystal-covered bar.

Around the corner, Koyo Knoxville takes the former location of Kaizen.

The new upscale Japanese restaurant is a spinoff of sister restaurant Nama.

In the Old City, Osteria Stella Italian restaurant and Brother Wolf bar open next to each other, down the ramp from Wicked Chicken which is currently renovating on the 100 block of Gay Street.

New Retailers

Rocket Fizz classic soda and candy shop is open on Market Square, along with Newport-based boutique Fruit Jar Alley and popcorn and gift shop Proper Popcorn.

Christopher Robin Arts is open off Gay Street, and Two Bikes bicycle shop and Java Racer motorcycle and scooter shop now call the Old City home.

New Wellness Storefronts

Two dental practices are now open downtown, Ethan Long, DDS and Marble City Dentistry & Facial Esthetics.

New Salons and Barbers

Marble City Salon and Tree of Life Salon & Spa are now open, along with Ojas Beauty, Doctor Jane, and hair removal and tanning salon Sugar Coated.

And once you're all dolled up, head to selfish selfie studio for some pictures in the Old City.

Up next to open in 2022 are The Brass Pearl oyster bar in Market Square, Nashville-based Frothy Monkey café and coffee shop on Gay Street, and Vid'l plant-based restaurant in the Old City.

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