MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – After 30 years of selling books, hosting authors, and providing a respite for literary lovers on Lincoln Road, Books & Books on Miami Beach is closing its doors.
“The Covid certainly accelerated the process,” said owner Mitchell Kaplan.
The independent bookstore opened at 927 Lincoln Road in 1988. Kaplan said the pedestrian mall was still a hidden gem for locals.
“To open up and be a part of its growth and development has been a very exciting ride over these 30 years,” Kaplan said.
Rising rents, even before the pandemic, have been hard on mom and pop stores.
“This has been something going on for at least two, three, four years. Where small independent business like mine are just being priced out of the road,” he said.
Some national chain stores have cleared out their storefronts. BCBG, Diesel, and Beach Bunny Swimwear were empty as of Monday night.
Kaplan is hopeful this is just part of another cycle in Lincoln Road’s lifespan on South Beach.
“The good news is, the future of Books & Books is really bright. We’ve opened our other stores, and people are coming back with smiles on their faces,” he said.
Kaplan is optimistic about discovering another gem on Miami Beach to put down new roots.
“Another quirky street on Miami Beach that that I can be a part of and help develop as well,” he said.