Choppa Rolling Ice Cream
After less than two years, Choppa Rolling Ice Cream quietly closed its doors in the Hollister Village Plaza in Goleta. (Joshua Molina / Noozhawk photo)

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In a city with Cold Stone Creamery and Yogurtland, there apparently just wasn’t enough room for Choppa Rolling Ice Cream in Goleta.

The Thai-style ice cream shop in the Hollister Village Plaza has closed its doors. The unique shop opened in March 2018. It used a special machine and a recipe of milk, sugar and cream to create the ice cream on site, which could create long lines.

The on-demand ice cream shop occupied the former Zizzo’s coffee shop, which also was short-lived at the spot. 

Owner David Chen has another restaurant in Santa Barbara called Choppa Poke, 716 State St.

Chen did not return Noozhawk calls for an explanation on the store’s closure. 

Amazon In, Building Out

The former Saks Fifth Avenue Building, which is now the home of Amazon, is on the market for $38.4 million.

The building at 1001 State St. in Santa Barbara is owned by high-profile developer Michael Rosenfeld, CEO of Woodridge Capital Partners

Amazon just moved into the building in January after more than a year of planning hurdles and renovations of the building. The property was listed by broker Austin Herlihy of Radius Commercial Real Estate. 

The listing describes the site as “an irreplaceable landmark building on State Street in the heart of downtown Santa Barbara.”

Amazon has a 10-year lease on the 48,600-square-foot building. 

La Cocina Closes

The third time was not the charm. 

La Cocina restaurant, 7 E. Anapamu St. in Santa Barbara, has closed its doors after nine months. The restaurant opened in June 2019. 

The restaurant specialized in Meso-American, Spanish and Mexican-Californian cuisine.

The previous restaurants at the site, Somerset and Smitty’s, were both quickly rebranded during the past few years, paving the way for La Cocina. 

All of the food at the restaurant was homemade daily, using organic, non-GMO and locally sourced ingredients whenever possible from farmers markets.

Santa Barbara Tax Revenues Up and Down

Sales tax revenues for Santa Barbara rose 3.7 percent in the final quarter of 2019, for a total of $6.29 million. The city’s projected sales tax revenues for the 2020 fiscal year are $24 million. 

Hotel bed taxes during the same period were down. The city received about $1.11 million in transient occupancy taxes for December 2019, which was 6.1 percent below December of the prior year. The city attributes the hotel bed tax drop to the residual effects of the Cave Fire and the wet weather during Christmas week.  

The tax figures rebounded in January. The City of Santa Barbara collected about $1.09 million, which is 6.2 percent above January of last year. Santa Barbara collected about $12 million in transient occupancy tax revenues through the first seven months of this fiscal year, which runs from July 1 through June 30. The city’s adopted hotel bed tax budget is $20 million. 

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.