SANTA MONICA (CBSLA.com) — Fans of Dunkin’ Donuts rejoiced Tuesday morning after the pastry chain opened its first Los Angeles-area store in Santa Monica.
The 12th Street and Wilshire Boulevard location opened at 5 a.m. to more than 200 people lined up outside.
“I’m blown away by the number of people,” franchise location owner Gary Haar said. “This is far from routine.”
“This is the best donuts, coffee, everything, that you can get. And it’s been a long time, two-and-a-half years I’ve been waiting for it to come out here,” Chris, who ordered a coffee, bagel, donuts and munchkins, said.
Johnny Hoops, the first person through the door Tuesday morning after waiting 30 hours outside, won free coffee for a year, while the next 99 customers received swag bags.
“Finally Dunkin’ Donuts has come to California, so I’m getting a little piece of what I miss from home,” Hoops, who is from Connecticut, said.
“I loved the brand in New Jersey, where I’m from, and I couldn’t believe there were no stores here in California and I thought it was a fabulous opportunity, so I ran with it,” Haar said of why he brought the chain to LA.
He plans to open 10 mores store in Los Angeles over the next eight years.
Dunkin’ Donuts opened its first Northern California location in Modesto on Aug. 26 and has plans to open 45 more Southland stores in both Orange and LA counties by 2015.