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Benetton Closing in Dupont Circle, “Surprisingly, G-Star Raw is still open”

by Prince Of Petworth January 16, 2014 at 11:30 am 41 Comments

1666 Connecticut Ave, NW

Thanks to @melissaeweiss for tweeting us this morning:

“And another north Dupont store closing its doors. It’s Benetton. Surprisingly, G-Star Raw is still open. It’s the third shuttered business on that stretch in the past couple months (first YogiCastle, then Potbelly [across the street]). So sad!”

Anyone remember when this space was a movie theater?

  • Pcat

    I saw I Am Curious Yellow at that theatre. I think it was called the Janus.

    • textdoc

      Yep! Some people called it the Heinous Janus.

      • Anonymous

        Those would be people who don’t know that it’s pronounced like Janice!

  • Anonymous

    Not at all surprised about Benneton. That demographic shifted to the east.

    • Anonymous

      Yep, they are all in PG County now. Maybe they’ll open up a shop at National Harbour.

    • Duponter

      What demographic is that?

      • Anonymous

        the babe demographic – duh!

  • DowntownJim84

    I think you’re thinking of the AMC Loews Dupont 5. That was on the other side of the circle and closed a few years back. Before Benetton I think there was an AT&T store in that location. Does that sound right?

    • textdoc

      There were two theaters — the Dupont 5 south of the circle and the Janus north of the circle. Both had fairly small screens. The Janus was infamous for having columns in the middle of at least one of its theaters, although I think they managed not to place any seats so as to create sight obstructions.
      I don’t remember exactly how many storefronts the Janus took up. It definitely covered what’s now Sette Osteria and I think G-Star Raw.
      The Janus closed several years before the Dupont 5 did.

      • Ward One Resident

        In addition to the columns in the middle of the theater (that actually had seats behind them) for one of the theaters you had to go into the lobby to buy your ticket and then go back outside to go in the door to the theater.

        DC used to have a ton of theaters, but it seems like we’re getting a bunch again albeit in multiplexes instead of smaller places like Janus, Embassy, etc.

  • Anon

    My cube-mate Mattias works right by that Potbelly. He is certainly “so sad” it is closed.

  • Anonymous

    Going out of business sale?

    • Anonymous

      Here’s hoping! That’s the only time I’d shop there.

      • Anonymous

        +1 I really like their scarves and gloves. Someone give a holla if there is a sale going on.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, because disappointment is only permitted for small and local businesses. God forbid someone enjoy something provided by a large company. The horror! (PS, do you not realize local employees will be let go as well? Does that at least not garner sympathy?)

  • Anonymous

    Well hopefully more retail steps in to fill the void. I would hate to see it become a “nouveau American” small plate place or even worse an empty storefront. I hope I’m wrong, but I fear 14th streets dramatic rise is Dupont’s gradual loss.

    • Anonymous

      More room for another Comfort Shoes!

      • Anon2

        Seriously. There are three (THREE!) Comfort Shoes-es on that block. Different, better retail would be great, as would another sit-down restaurant. Or anything, really.

      • Duponter

        You beat me to it. Was absolutely my first thought – how are there still so many shoe stores open on that stretch?

  • Melissa

    Well, when you walk down that block several times a day, it’s a bummer to walk past empty storefronts. And just because they weren’t locally owned doesn’t mean they weren’t locally staffed. They employ folks in the neighborhood — Potbelly was a hub for local musicians. So yeah, it is so sad.

    • DowntownJim84

      I bet a lot of those folks will end up hanging around at Cosi’s now.

      • textdoc

        Some people disdain Cosi for being a chain, but I love their salads (and their breakfast bagel sandwiches, on the rare occasions that I’m near a Cosi during breakfast hours).

      • sproc

        So-so. Not a big fan of cardboard-y flatbread. Definitely recommend going to the Cosi on the south side of Dupont. The northern one was utterly filthy when I last visited in Dec.

  • Ginger

    The Benneton at Pentagon City mall closed this month, too.

  • DC_Chica

    Yes, I saw the Blair Witch Project there when I was in college!

  • ShawGuy

    Not exactly welling up with tears over this one. It was these large national chains, specifically those oriented more towards heterosexual women (I’m looking at you Ann Taylor Loft and Benetton) that slowly but successfully drove out the small, independently owned lgbt businesses like Lambda Rising on this same stretch of Connecticut Avenue starting fifteen years ago. Now they’re closing down themselves? Pardon me while I go look for a tiny violin….

    • Anonymous

      Damn those heterosexual women with their cardigans and their sensible shoes! The HUMANITY!

      • Duponter

        Face it, the heterosexual women have figured out they can live in Dupont instead of Clarendon and DC will never, ever be the same.

        • Anonymous

          As a gay lady who really kind of likes The Loft, I take exception to your remark.

  • Nicky

    The Janus 1 & 2, where at least one of the theaters had a column in the middle of it and the seats were angled to the screen.

  • Rich

    The Janus name was long gone when I lived in DC during the 90s. I think it was a Loews before it closed. I do remember the pillars.

    Lamda Rising self-destructed and opted to capitalize on owning their building; there were never many LGBT-owned businesses around there and some like the video store and the leather place do remain.

    • textdoc

      Loews/Cineplex Odeon was the chain, but Janus was the name of this particular theater in the chain. The Washington Post article describing its closing referred to it as such: http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-361757.html

  • Anonymous

    I used to work in the building back in 97, probably the year of the Janus. We used to leave work early to try and make 4:30 movie. Saw lots of foreign films there. And you had to get there early enough to make sure you weren’t sitting behind a giant support column! Good memories though.

  • djdc

    The Benetton used to be where Krispy Kreme is now.

  • Duponter

    It’s strange to think there used to be THREE theaters within three blocks or so of the Circle – the AMC on the south end and the Janus and the one on Florida just behind the Rite Aid. All gone.

    • The Dupont Circle 5 and the Janus (both Loews/Cineplex Odeon, I believe, or at least they were by the late 1990s) were such terrible places to see a movie that I wasn’t sad to see them close, but I do miss Visions.

  • Jay

    I saw The Blair Witch Project at that theater. I had to sit in a seat partially blocked by a column.

  • What would people think of a sunglasses store on that strip?


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