• Andrea Lillo

Linen Loft closes doors on 22 years in Atlanta

Atlanta — After 22 years as a member of the retail community here, The Linen Loft will soon be shutting its doors permanently.

A specialty retailer offering a full range of soft goods for the home, The Linen Loft has maneuvered through a number of changes in this market since its opening, at one time operating as many as seven stores. However, one of its two remaining stores closed earlier this month, and the other will follow suit in early December.

Owners and founders Emil and Yvonne Horesh had decided several months ago that it was the right time to retire. And with three grown kids established in the very non-textiles areas of medicine, real estate and law, no one was left to take over the business.

"We got tired," Emil Horesh said, adding that the couple had thought about retiring for about three years now. And the time was right — the business had no debts for six years, he said, and had paid off every vendor. He added that Atlanta had become an intensely competitive community.

When The Linen Loft first opened in 1979, he said, customers living in this market had two choices when shopping for their linens: department stores or small, 3,000-square-foot boutiques. "When we started, there was not one big box in the area," he said.

And as The Linen Loft added more stores, Horesh placed a greater emphasis on luxury as well.

The Linen Loft, however, brought "everything under one roof," he said, which was a unique concept at that time.

"We had a totally different approach to the market," he said. "We came in with freestanding stores totaling 20,000 square feet, carrying better goods, with an every day low price policy."

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