First Local Wood-Fired Mexican Restaurant to Open in Coralville

La Vecina & James Beard Award Nominee Rene Ortiz Bring Refined Mexican Cuisine to Iowa River Landing

CORALVILLE — This week, the co-owners of Marquee Pizzeria and Clinton Street Social Club announced their plans to open a third restaurant in the Iowa River Landing retail, dining and entertainment district. A full-service restaurant and bar, La Vecina will serve Mexican cuisine in an open wood-fired kitchen. Renowned chef and James Beard Award semifinalist Rene Ortiz is leading the culinary development.

Co-owners include Sam Hall, Ravi Patel, Raj Patel and Sajni Patel. This is the group’s third joint venture as co-owners in the Corridor. The choice to build La Vecina in Coralville reflects the group’s intent to further boost Coralville’s local economy and the IRL development in particular.

“We were looking for a modern, vibrant option for traditional Mexican cuisine, and we couldn’t find that in Coralville,” Sam Hall said. “La Vecina is basically the result of our shared admiration for the ingredients, the authentic flavor and the process behind Mexican cuisine.”

The La Vecina menu will feature fresh heirloom tortillas, fire roasted vegetables and main dishes, and seafood elements, such as fresh ceviche and a whole fish. While local farmers and butchers will provide most ingredients when available, some key ingredients will come from Mexico, including heirloom corn, spices, peppers and spirits.

The bar will include both traditional and modern interpretations of classic cocktails, heavily influenced by mezcal, tequila and sotol. A curated, rotating beer menu and natural wine menu will also be available.

A wood-fueled oven and grill with live fire cooking and smoking capabilities will be unique features unavailable at most Mexican restaurants in Iowa. La Vecina will include private dining space for groups of up to 25 people.

The restaurant will occupy the recently constructed 4,100-square-foot space next to Backpocket Brewery. With an abundance of windows and greenery set amidst a modern design concept, it is meant to feel like an urban greenscape.

La Vecina is accepting résumés for all staff positions. Résumés should be sent to [email protected]

La Vecina will post updates on Facebook and Instagram, and followers will have the opportunity to receive an invite to special events and the restaurant’s soft opening. To learn more about La Vecina, please visit:

Like La Vecina on Facebook: @LaVecinaRestaurante
Follow La Vecina on Instagram: @LaVecinaRestaurante

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Student Businesses to Open Collaborative Retail Space at IRL

Student Businesses to Open Collaborative Retail Space at Iowa River Landing

Foundry IRL to offer fashion, furnishings and accessories designed by emerging Iowa entrepreneurs.

CORALVILLE, Iowa (August 28, 2018) — Eight University of Iowa student-led businesses will open Foundry IRL, a collaborative retail space at Iowa River Landing in Coralville. Set to open in September of 2018, Foundry IRL will feature sustainable object and furniture designs by Vako Design, streetwear collections by Almvghty, Elevated Supply Company and Kulture Vaccine, accessories by Conquer Accessories, Yiran Li Design and Wanderlust Wraps and on-site cell phone repair by Parametecs.

Each business has already established a following through online retail, social media and local pop-up shops, but for most, Foundry will represent their first brick and mortar retail space. By locating at Iowa River Landing, which is visible to 70,000 cars daily from its location on Interstate 80, the brands will gain exposure to a broad demographic, and the opportunity to partner with neighboring national brands on special events and community engagement. The eight student entrepreneurs will also gain hands-on experience in floor design, merchandising, promotions, event management and customer service. “Foundry gives young entrepreneurs a way to share their creations. It’s exciting to be a part of the first group,” said Vakhtangi Darjania of Vako Design. Added Patrick Hagan of Almvghty, “The design of the store itself is one of our best features. It was a fun challenge to unify diverse businesses into a cohesive, design-forward atmosphere. We can’t wait to welcome our customers into the space.”

The concept for Foundry IRL arose when Iowa City real estate developer Deanna Trumbull served as a mentor for several student-led business developing retail products. Trumbull approached the City of Coralville to propose that Iowa River Landing lease a space to a collaborative of start-ups. Said Trumbull, ” A number of cities are making shared spaces for local products a key feature of retail development. This mix of edgy startups alongside major national brands makes for an exciting visitor experience, and highlights Iowa’s creative energy.“ Lynn Allendorf, Director of the Iowa John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, where the student businesses receive guidance and support added, “I’m excited to see these talented students take on this business endeavor. When student entrepreneurs integrate with the community, not only does it build our economy but it also encourages students to stay in Iowa after graduation.”

Foundry IRL is a collaborative retail and event space located at Iowa River Landing created to showcase leading companies emerging from the Founders Club, an incubator for student-led businesses within the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center located on the University of Iowa Campus. Foundry offerings include sustainably designed furnishings and decorative objects, urban streetwear collections and hand-made accessories for men and women.


Media Contact:

Patrick Hagan, Foundry IRL
920 E. 2nd Avenue, Suite 110, Coralville, IA 52241 email: [email protected]
Phone: 319-771-0238


The “Concresence Planter,” by Vako Design, will be sold in three sizes at Foundry IRL, a collaborative retail space for emerging Iowa entrepreneurs located at Iowa River Landing in Coralville. Photo by Vako Design).

“Troubled 90’s Kid T-Shirt,” by Elevated Supply Company is part of a streetwear collection to be sold at Foundry, a collaborative retail space for emerging Iowa entrepreneurs located at Iowa River Landing in Coralville. (Photo by David Wu).

“Suede Moto Jacket,” by Almvghty is part of a couture streetwear collection to be sold at Foundry, a collaborative retail space for emerging Iowa entrepreneurs located at Iowa River Landing in Coralville. (Photo by David Wu).

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Arena in Coralville Breaks Ground

Arena in Coralville Breaks Ground on May 16

Transformative project totals $190 million in investment

CORALVILLE, IOWA–A ceremonial ground breaking for a new multi-purpose arena in Coralville will take place on Wednesday, May 16, at 4:00 pm. The site is on E. 9th Street near the Antique Car Museum of Iowa. An open house with additional information about the arena and other Iowa River Landing projects will follow the ground breaking at The Madison, 211 E. 9th Street. The public is welcome to attend.

Parking is available at the Coralville Intermodal Transit Facility, 906 Quarry Road, or the ramp at 300 E. 9th Street, north of the Coralville Marriott Hotel and Conference Center.

The 5,100-seat arena is the cornerstone of a transformative project totaling $190 million in investment that includes a 53,000 square foot fieldhouse, a Staybridge Suites hotel, mixed-use office and retail space, as well as a new and permanent home for the Johnson County Historical Society Museum, Antique Car Museum of Iowa, and Hawkeye Model Railroad Club.

This project, developed in partnership with the State of Iowa and private investors, will be a significant milestone in achieving the community’s longstanding vision of a riverfront recreation and entertainment district along the Iowa River and as a gateway for the community.

Arena construction is expected to be complete in the fall of 2019. Financing for the Arena, Fieldhouse, and Iowa Fitness and Sports Performance Institute includes private donations, $14 million in New Market Tax Credits, and $12 million from the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s Reinvestment District program.

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2018 Spring Fashion Show

The Iowa River Landing is excited to host our annual 2018 Spring Fashion Show at Luxe Interiors on Sunday, April 22. Invite your friends to catch up on the latest styles and enjoy food and beverages provided by our local retailers.

The show will be hosted by Luxe Interiors (920 E. 2nd Ave. Suite 110 Coralville, Iowa 52241) at the Iowa River Landing on April 22nd from 1-3PM. You’ll spend your Sunday afternoon catching up on the latest spring styles in jewelry and fashion, from stylish athleisure clothing to bridal-wear. Designs by Luxe InteriorsBrides by JessaDiamond Leaf JewelersEvereveTrueStyleJ.Jill and more will be featured. While enjoying the show, you’ll also enjoy food and beverages provided by WineStylesScratch Cupcakery, and High Ground Cafe. Did we mention this event is free for attendees?

RSVP to our event on Facebook


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Von Maur is Hiring!

Are you a fashion-forward people person? Von Maur is now hiring full-time, part-time and seasonal associates to join the sales team at our Iowa River Landing location. Be a part of Iowa’s hottest retail and culinary district and work with a fun and friendly team in a beautiful setting. (Did we mention we’re located next to a cupcake shop?!)



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Evolve Paleo Chef to open Summer 2018

Evolve Paleo Chef to Bring Health-Conscious Dining Options to Iowa River Landing

Café and Meal Delivery Service to Open Summer 2018

Coralville, IA—The Iowa River Landing announced that Evolve Paleo Chef, a health-focused café and meal delivery service, will be the next tenant to join the growing retail, dining and entertainment district. The Kansas City-based business will open its first Iowa location on East 2nd Ave, across from 30hop.

Evolve Paleo Chef’s unique business model allows customers to order up to a week’s worth of nutritious meals in advance, which are then cooked and delivered to their doors. Customers also have the option to purchase ready-to-heat meals, smoothies, snacks and cold-pressed juices on-site.

Managing partners Chris and Nikki Voss said they’re opening the new location to meet the needs of customers who want to eat healthy, but have little time to shop and prepare food on their own.

“We want to impact peoples’ lives by making it more convenient to eat real, healthy, great-tasting meals,” said Mr. Voss. “Being able to order a full week’s worth of fresh, healthy, chef-prepared meals and needing less than five minutes to prepare them takes the stress out of meal planning, cooking, and grocery shopping.”

A spokesperson from the Iowa River Landing echoed the excitement:

“We continue to look for new, intriguing business concepts for Iowa River Landing, and Evolve is a great fit for us,” said Deanna Trumbull, Director of Leasing. “Their health-conscious meal plans will provide delicious and convenient options for cooks and non-cooks alike.”

To learn more about Evolve Paleo Chef, visit their website:

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The Complete Package: Valentine’s Day Gift Giving Guide

What do you get for the Valentine who’s the complete package?


Find the perfect gift, make a dinner reservation and book a stay at a 4-star hotel—all at the Iowa River Landing.

No date? No problem. Share the love with friend and family, and don’t forget to treat yourself.

It’s Not Too Late to Find the Perfect Gift
At IRL, it’s easy to find a last-minute gift that doesn’t feel rushed. All stores are open Monday – Saturday until 7PM or later, giving you the right amount of time to pick up something special on your way home from work.

Gift Ideas for Her:

Gift Ideas for Him:

Get last-minute deals on jewelry, wine & beer, clothing, home décor, spa service and more!

Featured Valentine’s Day Offers

Massage Heights

Gift of an Elevated Experience:

1 Hour Massage w/ Lavender Vanilla Foot Scrub: $61.99
1 Hour Customer Facial w/ a Lavender Vanilla Hand Scrub: $71.99

Gift of Well-Being:

3 Month Paid in Full Membership: $179.97

Gift Cards:

Buy $100 in Gift Cards and Receive $25 FREE!



20% off all Sweet Shop Chocolates

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Holiday Open House at the Iowa River Landing

On Sunday, December 10th the Iowa River Landing will join in Coralville’s Aisle of Lights celebration with our annual Holiday Open House from 2 PM to 5 PM. Celebrate the holiday season with the businesses of the IRL. We’ll have cookie and cupcake decorating and kids’ activities as well as shopping and food and drink specials.

Happy hour food & drink specials

10% off all products & FREE gift with purchase

Backpocket Brewing
$4 pints during Aisle of Lights

Brides By Jessa
10% off storewide

Diamond Dreams Sports Academy
12% off all gift certificates purchased from 2-5 PM, free cage time from 4-5 PM

Diamond Leaf Jewelers
Free jewelry cleaning plus holiday treats and special pricing on any item that is purchased off a wish list Evereve Extra 20% off of all markdowns

Fuzzy’s Taco Shop
Featuring Cranberry Vanilla Mimosas

High Ground Cafe
FREE coffee with the purchase of any other drink

Homewood Suites
Hot cocoa and stories with Buddy the Elf from 2–4 PM

30% off entire purchase

Johnson County Historical Society
Holiday crafts, apple cider, cookies, FREE museum admission

Hosting a Gentle Yoga Space

Luxe Interiors
Storewide discounts, free wrapping, free shipping on select items, complimentary glass of wine for shoppers

Marquee Pizzeria
2-for-1 wine and beer and $10 pizzas

Marriott Hotel and Conference Center
Cookie decorating and hot cocoa bar

Massage Heights
Buy three $50 gift cards— get 1 for free, plus limited time Hot Stone Peppermint Foot Scrub for $12

ProFit Gym
5-Class Pass (CrossFit, Hot Yoga, Cycling) for $60

Scratch Cupcakery
Special holiday favors plus mini cupcakes for kids to decorate from 3-5 PM

Storewide holiday sale — 20% off entire purchase

Von Maur
FREE photos with Santa

$2 off wine by the glass and draws

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Ethan Allen Coming to Iowa River Landing in 2019

The Iowa River Landing is pleased to announce the latest addition to this exciting retail, dining, and entertainment district. High-end furniture and home accessories retailer, Ethan Allen, is set to open in the area in January 2019.

The new Ethan Allen showroom will occupy 8,900 square feet of the new Watts Group mixed-use building that is set to break ground directly to the north of Scratch Cupcakery within the next month. The building features retail on the ground floor, second-floor office space, and residential space on the third and fourth floors.

Founded in 1932, Ethan Allen is known for providing “livable luxury.” Their products include everything for the well-designed home, from wood furniture to artwork, rugs, lighting, window covering, and more. Ethan Allen designs and builds most of what they sell.

“We are very excited to add Ethan Allen to the retail experience of the Iowa River Landing,” said Iowa River Landing Director of Leasing, Deanna Trumbull. “They will complement Von Maur, Diamond Leaf Jewelers, J.Jill, and lululemon as the area continues to become a premier destination for shoppers both in the region and beyond.”

To learn more about Ethan Allen, visit their website.

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J.Jill Opening November 9th at Iowa River Landing

jjill announcement

The Iowa River Landing is pleased to announce the latest addition to this exciting retail, dining, and entertainment district. J.Jill, a unique women’s specialty clothing retailer, will open a 3,500-square foot store on November 9th in the Iowa River Landing next to Lululemon on the north end of the retail main street. Continue reading

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