Highland Coffees announces closure

Published: Sep. 29, 2014 at 2:21 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 29, 2014 at 2:23 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - One of the oldest coffee shops in Baton Rouge will close its doors by the end of the year.

Highland Coffees told customers Monday morning that it was not able to reach a deal to renew its lease in the spot it has occupied at LSU's North Gates since 1989. The last day the business will be open will be December 24.

Below is a copy of the letter:

Dear Friends of Highland Coffees on Facebook,

We shared the message below with customers at our shop this morning. We wanted to let you know as well. You mean everything to us.

Announcement to Highland Coffees Customers

It is with a heavy heart that we have to share the following news. Highland Coffees was not given a new lease on this space and will have to close the shop at the end of the semester. Our last day will be December 24, 2014. We are very disappointed, to say the least. We have been here for twenty-five years and had planned to stay for years to come. The owner of the property, a local commercial real estate company, said only that they have "decided to go in a different direction" with the space. They have not shared with us what type of business they plan to bring in. Highland Coffees will do its best to find another space to move into.

It is difficult to put into words how much we love our customers. We are thankful to have had the opportunity to get to know you for so many years here at the corner of Highland and Chimes. This unique, historic neighborhood across the street from LSU has always brought together such interesting, talented, and caring people. From the beginning our goal has been to serve the best coffee and tea that we could and to try to create an uplifting atmosphere in which customers could do what was important to them – talk with friends, read great books, do homework, write dissertations, or just sit and relax. Along the way, we have received far more from our customers than we have given. We have made countless wonderful friendships over the past two and a half decades. Highland Coffees could not have survived so long or have been a fraction of the shop it was without the support and participation in this coffee shop community of you, our customers.

We will enjoy this last semester here with you and then look forward to what comes next. As soon as we know what our next steps will be, we will pass our plans on to you. Thank you.

Clarke and all of the employees of Highland Coffees

The announcement was met with swift reaction from a surprised LSU community. A petition on is already collecting signatures to keep the java joint open indefinitely.

The Chimes Street area has undergone major changes in the last ten years, with a number of older businesses relocating or shutting down. Highland Coffees management said in the announcement that the business eventually hopes to reopen in a different spot.

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