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Is Starbucks Building a Huge, 'Eataly-Like' Coffee Center in NYC?

There are already so many Starbucks locations in Manhattan that estimates suggest you're never more than 5.6 blocks away from the nearest one. But a news report this week suggests the coffee giant is hoping to build something much larger than another of its standard, Frappuccino-slinging cafes in NYC -- a massive store resembling more of an "Eataly-like" coffee center. 

The report, published by the New York Post, claims Starbucks is searching for a space as large as 25,000sqft for the so-called coffee center, which is said to be similar to the company's enormous Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room in Seattle. Starbucks has already looked at potential locations in Chelsea, the Meatpacking District, and on Fifth Avenue, according to the report, which cites only unnamed sources. In other words, none of this information is coming directly -- or officially -- from Starbucks, and should be taken with a healthy grain of Salted Caramel Mocha.

Obviously, the idea of a massive Starbucks doesn't sound farfetched, given the rise of popular food halls in NYC, but everyone might want to pause and take a deep breath for a second. When contacted by Thrillist, a Starbucks spokesperson was quick to ice down the reported plans, saying "assertions that we are bringing a Roastery to New York are rumors and speculation." The spokesperson went on to say that Starbucks has previously revealed plans to open hundreds of its new Starbucks Reserve stores in key global markets, one of which recently opened in NYC's Chelsea neighborhood. In other words, Starbucks is, unsurprisingly, tightlipped.

At this point, it's unclear if the Post report is pointing to the same plans previously reported by The Real Deal, a New York real estate publication. In January, the magazine reported Starbucks was in talks to lease the entire 25,000sqft retail component of a new, 10-story luxury building at 860 Washington Street in the Meatpacking District. Again, this is all unconfirmed by Starbucks so far, but that doesn't make the prospect of a giant Starbucks superstore any less exciting. 

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Tony Merevick is Cities News Editor at Thrillist and is not going to lie -- something like this would be awesome. Send news tips to news@thrillist.com and follow him on Twitter @tonymerevick.