Detroit politicians, movers and shakers and members of the media gathered Wedesday at the opening of the House of Pure Vin wine shop on Woodward, just a few blocks from Campus Martius in downtown Detroit.
The 3,100-square-foot store is on the first floor of the Lofts at Merchants Row, a building owned and managed by Bedrock Real Estate.
The stylish store has enough shelf spaces for 4,000 of bottles of wines, with a focus on Michigan labels. The plan is to double the amount of wines offered next year.
House of Pure Vin is owned by Detroit natives Regina Gaines, Terry Mullins and Andrea Dunbar. Besides being a minority-owned business in heart of downtown, House of Pure Vin’s opening is important because of its contribution to the resurrection of that strip of Woodward.
“I remember walking down this block in 2006,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan at the grand opening. “I was a member of the Super Bowl host committee. The game was played a few blocks away, and Roger Penske chaired the committee and he was horrified that much of this stretch of Woodward was vacant storefronts.” He said Penske ordered the empty store fronts to be painted to look like businesses were inside.
“(Penske) said we’ll know Detroit makes it back when we don’t have to paint businesses on the windows that aren’t really there,” Duggan said. “Detroit’s not going to come back with auto plants coming in (with) 5,000 and 10,000 jobs. Detroit’s going to come back when people like Terry and Andrea and Regina decide that this is a place that they want to start a business.”
Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones also was present at Wednesday’s event to present the owners with the Spirit of Detroit Award.
“We start off by saying ‘jobs and opportunities’ and that always sounds great, but I also say ‘relaxation’ behind jobs and opportunities,” Jones said. “What a better place than right here than say, you can come in and get your relaxation and and go home.”
“We sincerely thank you for bring House of Pure Vin to downtown Detroit,” she added. “Excellence has no substitute and we give a toast to you on being part of the rebirth of Detroit.”
Co-owner Regina Gains addressed the crowd and thanked the Detroit business leaders who helped House of Pure Vin become a reality, including attorney Ali Dagher, Bryan Waldron of Bedrock, designer and architect Christian Unverzagt, Derek Edwards of Invest Detroit and others.
“This has been a situation where we have possibly every entity — from public, to private, to institutions — come together and help fund an endeavor,” Gaines said. “Many people talk about what the narrative or what Detroit needs to be about, how we can’t sit down at the table and get deals done... as you can see this is the furthest thing from the truth. Three women, two of us are single moms, come together with a great idea, and we have some great men that got behind us.”
House of Pure Vin
1443 Woodward, Detroit
(313) 638-2501 or houseofpurevin.com
Open noon-9 p.m. Mon.-Thurs., noon-11 p.m. Fri.-Sat. and noon-5 p.m. Sun.