We're the first boutique wine bar and home furnishings store down here. We owned the two Carrabba's Italian Grills in Austin before we moved -- my husband's from Edinburg, so we knew the progression of McAllen, the growth and what was going on down here. We saw the need and the niche in the market.
With small businesses here, they're kind of less a dime a dozen. I love Austin, I'm from there born and raised, but there are great, funky, cool wine lounges everywhere, and great, funky, cool furniture stores. There are not really that many accessible businesses here. It's not a saturated market.
It's pretty cool here -- there's an amazing entrepreneurial spirit. Anywhere you can drive, it's all local, independently owned small mom-and-pop businesses. McAllen definitely isn't slowing down in growth. There's homes and businesses and new things going on every day, everywhere. I'd explain McAllen as kind of being -- I wouldn't say 'recession-proof,' but if it's bad here, it's worse everywhere else.
We have a lot of Mexican nationals who come across to do their shopping and dining and entertainment. We actually thought we would have more traffic from the Mexican nationals coming over, but we haven't yet. Hopefully we'll see more business from tourism from the Mexico side. -Tina Peng
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