Pedestrians in Harvard Square walk by a worker sitting inside the soon-to-be YougurtLand shop at 24 JKF street.
Cambridge frozen yogurt lovers can rejoice at the impending arrival of Yogurtland, a self-service yogurt store featuring 16 flavors and more than 40 toppings, to Harvard Square in mid-April. The yogurt purveyor will be housed at the former location of Faron Salon at 57 JFK St.
According to Larry Sidoti, vice president of development, the store plans to have a grand opening in late April.
Though Yogurtland has opened locations in 21 states since its 2006 launch, the California-based company is just beginning to spread to the East Coast. Huntley Castner, executive vice president of Yogurtland franchising, said the company is focusing its efforts on Boston, New York, and Philadelphia.
“We looked at all three of those cities and decided what would be the absolute best places that we could be in those cities. Not a surprise, Harvard Square was one of those locations,” Castner said.
Unlike some of the other Yogurtland stores, which operate as independent franchises, the new Cambridge location will be owned directly by the Yogurtland corporation.
“We believe so much in the Harvard Square location that we wanted to own the store ourselves, and we are really excited about it,” Castner said.
The store will be open from 11 a.m. to midnight every day and will include about 16 to 20 indoor seats and limited outdoor seating.
Vanessa C. Rodriguez ’16, a Florida native familiar with the Yogurtland brand, expressed excitement at the announced arrival.
“From what I’ve experienced, compared to other yogurt places, it’s a lot cheaper,” Rodriguez said. “They have a lot of flavors that are constantly changing, and it’s based off the way people rank them and what sells out the most, so they really care about the customers.”
Castner said that he expects that the continuous introduction of new flavors will attract many in the Harvard Square community.
According to Castner, a “Willy Wonka type” innovation team works year-round inventing flavors and “spending months and months of passion and efforts trying to get it right.”
Sidoti added that Yogurtland’s size—over 200 stores—allows it to offer high quality yogurt at a lower price per ounce than at most other stores.
“I’ve visited most of our competitors, and there’s a real difference,” he said. “[Students] are in for a real treat.”
While the new Yogurtland will open near fellow frozen yogurt chain Pinkberry, Castner said that the distinct experiences offered by the two stores—Yogurtland is self-serve and Pinkberry is full-service—will enable the stores to “live side by side.”
“In the end, the customer decides whether they love us,” Castner said.
“We’re going to do everything we can to help you guys love us.”
—Staff writer Nikki D. Erlick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
CORRECTION: Feb. 14, 2013
An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated the street address of the Yogurtland store slated to open in Harvard Square. In fact, the store will be located at 57 JFK St., not 24 JFK St.