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From sports bars and spirits to a bakery and a tattoo parlor/coffee shop, Hartford’s Pratt Street will look very different in the next few months once 10 new Hart Lift businesses open their doors.
Thanks to the efforts of the Hart Lift program, an initiative by the Hartford Chamber of Commerce, these 10 businesses partnered with local property owners and received American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to help make their goals of opening a storefront a reality.

“It’s exciting to see how Hartford is being enhanced by these business owners’ dreams,” said Hartford Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Julio Concepción. “Bringing 10 new businesses to Pratt Street adds vibrancy to our city and contributes to our region’s economic success.”

On July 19 local business owners, city officials, representatives from the Department of Developmental Services, press, and Governor Ned Lamont visited Pratt Street for a Meet and Greet with approved applicants of the Hart Lift program. Visitors took self-guided tours of the properties, which are under contrition, and met with Hart Lift business owners to learn more about their plans.

Hartford Is Home

Bloom Bake Shop, which currently operates out of the Swift Factory, is one of the 10 businesses setting up shop on Pratt Street. “We’re expanding our business and looking forward to welcoming customers into our new shop. We’ll continue our farmers markets but now we’ll have a space for people to come and hang out as well,” said Co-Owner Monica Beaudoin. “We’re excited about all the energy and new business owners coming to Pratt Street,” added Co-Owner Alexandra Pilon.

Pratt Street’s vibrancy and business owner community are a draw for many of the Hart Lift applicants, including Refuge 33 Tattoo. “Pratt Street really has a good sense of community,” noted Co-Owner Yaritza Garrido. “We’re hoping to jump in on that energy.”

The Gentle Bull, which has studio space at Arbor Street in Hartford, is using the second location to showcase vintage clothing, home decor, and plants. Owner Gabrielle Rodriguez says she deliberately chose to set up shop in Hartford. “Hartford is my home and I love it,” she said. “I’ve grown my business here over the last few years. Being in the heart of downtown felt like the next right move for me.”

New Pratt Street Businesses

Hart Lift properties and tenants include:

  • 42 Pratt Street – The Gentle Bull, Gabrielle Rodriguez
    Vintage clothing and home goods
  • 44 Pratt Street– Run Down, Christian Scott
    High-end sneakers and apparel
  • 54 Pratt Street – Hartford Flavor Company, Lelaneia and Tom Dubay
    Uniquely flavored all-natural spirits
  • 68 Pratt Street – Capital Spirits, Ankit Harpalda
    Liquor store selling wine, beer, and spirits
  • 77 Pratt Street – Lyons Den, Jessica and Dan Lyon
    Live music bar and restaurant
  • 80 Pratt Street – Bloom Bake Shop, Monica Beaudoin and Alex Pilon
    Bakery specializing in cookies, cakes, and pastries
  • 88 Pratt Street – Urban Lodge Brewing Company, Michael Garrity
    Brewery tap room specializing in craft beers
  • 93 Pratt Street – El Gallo y El Coqui, Oscar Caamano
    Restaurant serving Puerto Rican cuisines and drinks
  • 95 Pratt Street – Refuge 33 Tattoo, Yaritza Garrido and Jose Serrano
    Tattoo studio and coffee shop
  • 103 Pratt Street – Corner 3, Matt DeCosta
    Sports bar serving pub food