Corona, CA: Five Guys bringing burgers to more Inland locations (Coming to The Crossings at Corona)

EXPAND: Branches will open in Rancho Cucamonga, Mira Loma, Redlands, Corona, Moreno Valley and San Bernardino.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries is poised to become a familiar site in the Inland region.

The Virginia-based restaurant chain, which opened its first Inland location in Temecula last summer, has six more listed on its web site as "coming soon", and franchisees say more are planned.

Molly Catalano, a spokeswoman for Five Guys in Virginia, said restaurants are slated to open next month in Rancho Cucamonga and Mira Loma, and others will follow within the next several months in Redlands, Corona, Moreno Valley and San Bernardino.

Five Guys restaurants typically run about 2,500 square feet and have no drive-through. The small menu offers hamburgers and cheeseburgers with a selection of toppings and a handful of additional items.

There were two Five Guys restaurants in California at the beginning of 2010; today, there are nearly 30, Catalano said.

Across the U.S. there are nearly 750 Five Guys locations, and the chain is beginning to expand into Canada. Catalano said every franchise territory has been spoken for in both countries.

Sharon and Dan Kuhnert, a Carlsbad couple who opened the Temecula location, hope to have their second location, in the Crossings at Corona, open within the next three to six months, Sharon Kuhnert said. And they are scouting locations in Murrieta and other nearby cities for two additional restaurants that they hope to open in the next year or two.

The Temecula store employs about 40 people, mostly part time, and Kuhnert said business has been great since they opened. "Even in January, they say it's a slow month, but our sales are very strong," she said.

The Kuhnerts are among three franchise groups with territories that reach into the Inland Empire.


Jeff Howes, a partner in Rexburger Boys LLC, another Inland franchisee, said construction is under way on the group's Mira Loma restaurant, located at 6285 Pats Ranch Road.

Plans are being submitted now for a Redlands site at 10040 Alabama St., and he said they hope to open there in early April. Leases are in the works on Moreno Valley and San Bernardino sites, he said, and they are scouting Riverside sites near Tyler Street, Central Avenue and downtown.

Howes, who lives in Riverside County, said the group hopes to open six to eight Inland stores this year.

He and his partners also are working with separate investor pools on Five Guys territories in Nevada and Washington.


Catalano said 36 restaurants are slated to open in the Inland region over the next eight years, according to current franchise agreements.

Nationally, the chain is on track to put another 1,500 new restaurants on the map over the next decade, she said.

Howes said his group looked at various franchise concepts and favored Five Guys for the quality of the food and brand, and for the support provided by the company.

The tough economy was not an issue, he said. "Burgers and fries, they seem to do well in either economy," he said.

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