Industry News | June 13, 2013

Costa Vida Going Strong After 10 Years of Business

A decade after launching its Baja-inspired fresh Mexican grill concept, Costa Vida will open its 50th restaurant in Vernal, Utah, on June 17, 2013.

 

With 49 locations already open and operating in 10 states and Canada, and an additional 200-plus restaurants in various stages of development, the company has significant growth planned for 2013.

 

With a heavy presence in the West, Utah-based Costa Vida is expanding its concentric growth into Midwestern regions with development plans for Minnesota, Missouri, and Montana.
 

"This is a busy and exciting time at Costa Vida. We're extremely proud of this accomplishment, which is the culmination of a lot of hard work from our wonderful team at Costa Vida," says Sean Collins, company CEO. "We feel like this is the tip of the iceberg of what we can do as a brand and look forward to the next 10 years."
 

Costa Vida's menu, inspired by the surfing culture and local cuisine of the Baja Peninsula Coast, features made-to-order burritos, tacos, enchiladas, quesadillas, salads, and nachos. Protein choices include sweet pork, grilled chicken, shredded beef, Raspberry Chipotle Chicken, grilled steak, and chile verde. Entrees are served with cilantro lime rice and black or pinto beans. House-made guacamole, sauces, and salsas can be used to customize any order and include Mango Salsa, Honey Habanero Salsa, Salsa Fresca, and Pico de Gallo.

With the exception of the flour and wheat tortillas and two desserts, Costa Vida's menu items are gluten free.

Collins says the brand's success stems from its laid-back vibe. "We all love to go to the beach, and Costa Vida reminds people of that fresh and uplifting feeling they get at the beach.”

That beach-like aura comes from surf videos playing on flat-panel TVs throughout the restaurant, as well as high-energy music and the aroma of the Baja-inspired flavors being served up.

To augment the company's growth, Costa Vida is seeking experienced multi-unit franchisees with the experience and capacity to manage a growing brand. A minimum development agreement of three locations is required and the company's average franchise agreement to this point has been for nine stores.

Special promotions will announce the 10th anniversary during the entire third quarter, according to Brian Dixon, director of brand marketing. This will include a 10th anniversary drink cup and social media mentions.

A typical footprint for a Costa Vida restaurant is 3,000 square feet and most have patio dining.