Metro-East News

Two burger places get statewide notice while another spot closes

If you’re a burger fan, you lost a place to visit in Fairview Heights when TBD Bar + Social closed but you can go to two other metro-east spots, the Mascoutah Steak House and JV’s Downtown Bar and Grill in Waterloo, which each gained attention for having a Top 5 burger in Illinois.

TBD announced Tuesday that the restaurant at 15 Ludwig Drive would close immediately. This was the former home of Houlihan’s for 24 years.

TBD, which is owned by Houlihan’s parent company, opened last summer and featured oversized versions of games such as Battleship and Connect Four.

The Mascoutah Steak House and JV’s Downtown Bar and Grill were two of the Top 5 nominees in a survey conducted by the Illinois Beef Association. Now, the association is collecting votes for the top burger place in the state and you can vote until May 31 through its website at www.illinoisbeef.com.

Hagel 1891 in Mount Sterling, Moonshine Store in Martinsville and Cerno’s Bar & Grill in Kewanee are the other contestants.

The Mascoutah Steak House also was one of the top five burger restaurants in the state in 2017. You can visit the restaurant at 9. W. Main St.

JV’s Downtown Bar and Grill is at 117 N. Main St. in Waterloo.

Dressbarn sets closing date

Dressbarn has said it will close all of its stores nationwide by the end of the year, The Associated Press reported Thursday.

Previously, the women’s clothing store chain said all 650 sites, including one in Belleville and another in Fairview Heights, would close but the firm did not announce a date.

The Belleville location is in the Belleville Crossing shopping center at the intersection of Illinois 15 and Frank Scott Parkway and the Fairview Heights location is in the Crossroad Shopping Center at 10850 Lincoln Trail.

Steak ’n Shake judgment

Restaurant Business reports that a federal judge has ordered Steak ’n Shake to pay $7.7 million to St. Louis area managers because the restaurant chain did not pay them overtime.

A Steak ’n Shake spokesman could not be reached for comment Friday but Restaurant Business reported that Steak ’n Shake’s parent company, Biglari Holdings of San Antonio, Texas, had planned to appeal a February jury verdict that preceded the judge’s order.

Meanwhile, the Steak ’n Shake at 4320 W. Main St. in Belleville remains closed since the doors were shut in January.

A sign says the restaurant will be renovated but a company statement has said the chain is seeking someone to buy the Steak ’n Shake franchise for the site.

In March, the burger chain, which was founded in Normal, Ill., in 1934, said it was permanently closing the Fairview Heights restaurant at 10860 Lincoln Trail.

Hotel opens after delays

Construction delays caused TownePlace Suites by Marriott in O’Fallon to open about seven months later than expected, but now that the extended-stay hotel is operating, business is booming.

“The hotel is amazing,” said General Manager Rhonda D. Hausman. “We opened on April 29. We had our ribbon-cutting on (May 17). We’ve been sold out almost every night. We haven’t advertised at all, so we’re doing very well on occupancy.”

The hotel is at 445 Regency Park Drive, along Interstate 64. It will operate as a Marriott franchise, owned and managed by the O’Fallon-based Allyson Group. Its president, Brad McMillin, also owns several other hotels and Beltone hearing-aid stores.

“(TownePlace) is the perfect location for leisure and business travelers,” he stated in a news release. “Located along the medical mile between the new HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital and BJC Memorial East Hospital, as well as just one mile from the O’Fallon Family Sports Park.”

The hotel has 89 suites, a conference room, indoor pool, lobby with complimentary-breakfast space, a guest laundry room and a patio with a firepit and grills. Each suite has a kitchenette with appliances and dinnerware, pots and pans for four.

“The average length of stay is seven days,” Hausman said, noting customers include Scott Air Force Base personnel, people relocating in the area and those displaced by fire or construction projects. “We’ve got people staying six months.”

BND reporters Mike Koziatek, Teri Maddox and Kavahn Mansouri contributed information for this article.
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