Metro Centre Cushions Arrival of Furniture Boutique

Peoria, IL, October 01, 2008 --( Peoria fixture Metro Centre helps with development and launch of Metro Plantation, a brand-new home furnishings concept

Part of Metro Centre's new effort as local business resource

Locally owned businesses don’t have to face the market alone anymore. Metro Centre, Peoria's hometown shopping center for more than 30 years, is lending a hand — helping emerging local businesses with everything from basic concept to final logo design. The first business to take advantage of this new effort is Metro Plantation, a totally new approach to retail home furnishings created by Peoria entrepreneurs Michelle Wilson and Pam Dillon.

"It's been amazing," Wilson said. "We always knew we had the ideas, the energy and the passion to open a totally new kind of home store, but the people at Metro Centre gave us the practical guidance and advice to turn that dream into reality."

Metro Centre worked directly with Wilson and Dillon to help craft the image of the new store, including the name, logo and interior design of the store itself.

"Forget fancy out of town business consultants," Dillon said. "We found the same type of expertise on University Street."

Metro Plantation is a furniture store that blends classical and modern styles to comfortably fit the taste of any home. It has roots in "country" furnishings but with a decidedly crisp and modern look. It opened to the public on September 25th.

The store is a direct result of teamwork between the owners and Metro Centre.

“Metro Centre is great for small businesses because they go out of their way to help and are always on-site a few doors away whenever we need them," said Wilson. “That’s what was so great about working with Metro. They didn’t just give us a space, they gave us business planning advice, graphic design help, and a real partnership that was a huge part of turning our dream into a reality.”

Wilson, the owner, and buying partner Dillon have known each other for fifteen years and worked in a similar store, the Village Plantation, where they developed their taste for style and design. Recently they decided to branch out and start a business on their own.

"We really want to expand towards all ages and styles and not limit ourselves to just ‘country’," says Pam Dillon. “I’m excited about our new, crisp, clean look.”

Wilson and Dillon came to Metro Centre with their idea sketched out, and together with the Metro Centre staff, they came up with a business plan and "look" for the company.

“In a time when hometown shops and restaurants are getting squeezed more than ever by big box stores and mega-malls it’s the right time for us to truly partner with our tenants versus just collecting a rent check,” said Metro Centre’s Eric Brinker. “We’re absolutely thrilled to be part of Pam and Michelle’s dream and we know Metro Plantation is going to be a huge hit in Peoria.”

Metro Centre has been close to the heart of Peoria for more than 30 years. Metro Centre stores are still locally owned and operated. The shopping center has remained a fixture in Peoria thanks to a focus on the community, friendly faces behind the registers, the unique selection of stores and a commitment to friendly, personal service.

For more information, please contact:

Jason Fuller
(309) 692-6690

Metro Centre
Eric Brinker