There’s No Sign Outside, but There’s Now a Starbucks in Yosemite Valley
It seems 25,000 signatures weren’t enough to keep a Starbucks out of Yosemite National Park.
A petition to halt the opening of a location of the coffee chain giant died a quiet death this month, when Starbucks began operating at Yosemite Valley Lodge’s Base Camp Eatery. The eatery’s website describes the business as a “Starbucks coffee bar.”
An executive from Yosemite Hospitality, a concessionaire in the park that’s a subsidiary of Aramark, says the company spent $7 million on the first remodel of the space since 2000, according to television station KGO in San Francisco.
The location opened in the Yosemite Village area March 16, KGO reported.
Requests from visitors in part drove the decision to open the Starbucks, a company official told The Guardian.
“We ultimately selected Starbucks based on feedback from guests, and because it aligns with our goals of elevating the food and beverage offerings throughout the park,” a spokesman for Yosemite Hospitality told the newspaper.
It’s the first Starbucks location in a national park, and the Fountain Valley-based Starbucks design team “wanted to be respectful to the park and added only what we needed to,” a designer said in a Starbucks news release.
There’s no exterior signage, and the bar is covered in reclaimed redwood from Northern California. Metal pendant lights are from Los Angeles and have an “exposed wood grain texture,” Starbucks says.
That’s likely not enough to satisfy Freddy Brewster, the former Yosemite trail guide and man behind the anti-Starbucks petition.
The store opening “is representative of what our culture is becoming,” Brewster told the Guardian. “The government is increasingly dependent on major corporations.”
This article originally appeared on Newser: There’s No Sign Outside, but There’s Starbucks at Yosemite
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