“This makes number eight,” Issa says.
The almost 5,000-square-foot restaurant is opening in Touffaha’s new 8,700-square-foot retail center between Buffalo Wild Wings and Discount Tire.
“Derby is (a) great community, and we have (had) an eye on it for a while,” Issa says. “Finally, we decided to move forward.”
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He says it made sense to locate at the Marketplace.
“There is a lot happening.”
For now, IHOP’s hours will be 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 6 a.m. until midnight on Friday and Saturday.
“As soon as it’s operationally feasible to do, we’ll be open 24-7,” Issa says.
He says with training and getting established “there is a lot of elements.”
Issa says holding off on 24-hour service is a way to ensure nothing is compromised.
“We just want to get a handle on it.”
Also at Touffaha’s center, Taco John’s is opening in 2,400 square feet in February.
LemonShark Poke had been a possibility for the center, but it looks like that isn’t going to happen.
Issa and Touffaha have three IHOPs in the Wichita area – on East Kellogg, near K-96 and Rock Road and now in Derby – plus ones in Lansing, Dodge City, Garden City, Hays and Liberal.
They’re starting construction in February on one in Blue Springs, Mo., that will open around June.
In May, they’ll start construction on a new IHOP in Merriam that will open next fall.
This week, though, Issa says the focus is on Derby.
“We think it’s going to be a great opportunity and a big plus for us and the community as well.”