Contemporary Japanese pub called SAKU opening next to Connolly’s in Uptown

Contemporary Japanese pub called SAKU opening next to Connolly’s in Uptown
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A new five-story project called the Binaco Tower is being built between Hearst Tower and Connolly’s in Uptown. The building will house five tenants total, with contemporary Japanese pub SAKU going in on the ground floor.

“SAKU (meaning to bloom in Japanese) while not revolutionary elsewhere, is entirely fresh to Charlotte,” co-owner Dao Nguyen said. “After visiting Japan and living in California for three years, I saw a culture of street food and bar food that I wanted to replicate here.”

SAKU’s menu will feature small plates paired with drinks — a concept popular throughout Japanese pubs. It’ll be taking 1,330 square feet of ground floor space, and Nguyen co-owner Sopha Lim hope for a mid-January opening.

Details on the other four tenants will be announced separately over the next couple of months.

The building: Binaco Tower is roughly 13,000 square feet and five stories, each with its own balcony. The tower will house five businesses total, one per floor.


“I grew up on 5th Street so it’s home to me,” Binaco President Vijay Bhojwan, whose family’s clothing store was once where the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center stands today, said. “Over the past 17 years, we’ve made the most of our street-level holdings but have decided to take a page from major cities and go vertical.”

Binaco also owns the building that houses Connolly’s, Prohibition, The Local and SIP.

“I’m doing my part to make Charlotte more metropolitan and 5th Street our official entertainment district,” Bhojwan said.

Available space: Three floors have already been leased and ” Binaco is in serious discussions on the remaining two,” according to a press release about the project.

Location: The exact address is 123 E. 5th St.

Timeline: The project broke ground this past July and is expected to be complete by the end of 2019. Look for the other four tenants to be announced this fall.

Binaco building

Bianco Tower rendering 5th street uptown

Rendering courtesy of Binaco

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