Beth McKibben, Eater Atlanta
A second location of Clarkston-based Refuge Coffee Co. opens in January at the historic Atlanta Daily World building on Auburn Avenue in Sweet Auburn. The activist-driven coffee shop, which also provides job training and opportunities for Clarkston’s large refugee community, replaces Condesa Coffee at the building.
Condesa, owned by Georgia Tech graduates Daniela Staiculescu, Amin Rida, Moe Reda, and Octavian Stan, opened in Sweet Auburn five years ago after finding success with the original coffee shop on the corner of Boulevard and Freedom Parkway.
“Condesa was there for five years [and was] successful on revitalization of the neighborhood, which was their goal,” a representative says. “The owners are focusing on other things.”
Condesa’s Sweet Auburn shop closes at the end of December. There are no plans to close the Old Fourth Ward location.
As for Refuge Coffee, owners Kitti Murray and Bill Murray plan to continue their mission of offering a “safe, multi-ethnic space void of agenda” for Atlanta’s refugee community in Sweet Auburn. This includes providing jobs and job training as well as hosting clothing drives, food pop-ups, and fundraisers. Since opening five years ago in the small city of Clarkston just east of Atlanta, the Murrays have served thousands of customers from over 80 countries from their coffee truck and shop in what some call “the most diverse square mile in America.”
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