Clovis News

Word on the Street: Fresno State housing to open

New student apartments at Campus Pointe -- the mixed-use development near Save Mart Center in Fresno -- are ready for residents to start moving in this spring.

Palazzo at Campus Pointe could eventually house more than 1,000 students.

There are seven floor plans, with per-student rents ranging from $375 a month to $815. Parking fees are $35 a month for uncovered and $45 for covered.

Studio, two-bedroom and four-bedroom units are available. The four-bedroom units have two refrigerators, and each apartment comes with a dishwasher and washer/dryer.

Property manager Chris Duke said he is accepting leases for spring and fall 2010, with the first tenants able to move in April 15.

"This has a very much young vibe and a student-life atmosphere," Duke said.

Palazzo is next to Palmilla, a complex designed for university employees and others. Palazzo is a 10-minute walk from the heart of California State University, Fresno.

Palazzo's amenities include a 100-foot-wide pool, a clubhouse, a fitness center, and racquetball, volleyball and basketball courts. Each apartment has a kitchen, but students can participate in the campus dining plan, Duke said.

Palazzo is patrolled by private security and campus police. Security cameras focus on the common areas, and background checks are performed on every prospective tenant, Duke said.

Palazzo is just one housing option open to students. They also can live in the dorms or other off-campus housing, including Jefferson Commons near Barstow Avenue and Fresno Street and University Village apartments on Barstow across from Bulldog Stadium.

Sliding into business

Business was slow when Kevin Nikaido opened his sandwich shop last month in central Fresno. But a creative marketing move has brought the customers pouring in.

Nikaido opened Sliders, Sandwiches & More Jan. 2 on the northeast corner of First Street and Gettysburg Avenue. He sells mini "slider" sandwiches for $1.25 each and full-size sandwiches.

He invited customers to invent a sandwich made with ingredients he had on hand and name it. Nikaido posts the sandwich name, and if the business sells 10 in a week, it becomes part of the permanent menu.

One customer named Matt created the "Mad Matt" sandwich with pulled pork and coleslaw.

"He e-mailed everybody in his work, and in one hour we sold 17 of those sandwiches," Nikaido said. "I thought, 'Wow, this is such a good idea.' "

Business has been booming since, he said.

Customers whose sandwiches make it to the menu will have an 8-by-10-inch photo of themselves with a short biography on the wall.

Hotel building boom

Homewood Suites has opened a four-story, 83-bed, extended-stay hotel at 835 Gettysburg Ave. in Clovis as part of a building boom.

The company opened 27 hotels in 2009 and has 120 others in the pipeline.

The Clovis location is the latest in a string of new hotels in the area that include the remodeled Holiday Inn in downtown Fresno.

"We continue to see a steady demand in the upscale extended-stay hotel segment, and feel this property helps to fill a need in the growing northeast Fresno area," said general manager Jamie Maner, who has been in the hotel industry for 12 years. Danielle Evans, a 10-year veteran, is director of sales.