Delaware's hotel building is showing no signs of slowing down.
Hotel growth was at the center of Delaware Online/The News Journal's look at the businesses that came to Delaware in 2019 and will likely be prominent again on next year's list.
In many cases, hotel developers have pitched their projects as a way to keep people in downtown hubs and spending money at other local businesses.
That's especially true on the Wilmington Riverfront, where two hotels hope to bring guests to the underused Chase Center convention space. After years of construction and court battles, both opened late in 2019. A third in between them is on the way.
A Tru by Hilton took root in Georgetown, one of several hotels planned for southern Delaware near the beaches amid another building boom.
Those interested in following the comings and goings of local business may want to join Delaware Online's Facebook group, What's Going There in Delaware. The group is designed to spotlight and figure out what is being developed throughout the state.
For now, here is a list of businesses, including those hotels, that opened in Delaware in 2019 as reported on by Delaware Online/The News Journal.
The home of the Philadelphia 76ers G-League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats, the 76ers Fieldhouse opened on Jan. 23, about three weeks later than originally expected. In its first year, the fieldhouse hosted concerts, high school games, a Delaware Blue Hens basketball game, a 76ers scrimmage and Delaware Online/The News Journal's preseason high school basketball media day, in addition to Blue Coats home games.
Delaware's fifth Aldi opened in June in the Capital Station shopping center in Dover. The German grocer is known for its no-frills approach. Most of the company's items are sold under its own label.
Barnes and Noble moved down Concord Pikefrom a large store next to the Concord Mall to a smaller "prototype store" in the Concord Square shopping center.
A host of new stores and restaurants opened inside the Christiana Mall, including:
Box LunchCasperThe Children's PlaceDunkin' DonutsHelzberg DiamondsHickory FarmsIT'SUGARNorth Face
In February, Food Lion took the place of the former Superfresh in Newark's Fairfield shopping center along New London Road. The shopping center was also remodeled as part of a $4.5 million plan announced by developer Ernie Delle Donne in 2017.
Homesense opened in the Christiana Fashion Center in April. The discount furnishing store is owned by the same company behind TJ Maxx, HomeGoods and Marshalls
Video producers Christopher Bruce and Dan Pierce opened an audio and video production studio at 8th and Market streets in Wilmingtonin June. King Creative is the first full-scale video production house and audio recording studio in Wilmington.
The clothing and home decor retailer opened its first Delaware location in June in the Christiana Fashion Center next to the Fortunoff Backyard Store and Hair Cuttery.
Three medical marijuana dispensaries opened in Delaware in 2019 — a Compassionate Care Research Institute on Ogletown Road in Newark, and Columbia Cares on Concord Pike near the Pennsylvania border and in the Rehoboth Beach Tanger Outlets.
The more than 5,000 Delawareans certified by their doctors to purchase medical marijuana now have six dispensaries throughout the state.
Planet Fitness opened a location in the Christiana Town Center Dec. 18 in the space previously occupied by a Restoration Hardware Outlet. It is the ninth Planet Fitness in Delaware and the sixth in New Castle County.
A four-story 90-room hotel opened on U.S. 113 in July. It is the first Tru by Hilton in Delaware, a brand that caters to millennials with "efficient" and "midscale" rooms.
Just a couple hundred feet north of where Willey Farms burned in Nov. 2018, the farm's owners opened a market with fresh produce, local eggs and beef, gluten-free groceries and more. The market, which opened in May, is being rented while the farm's owners rebuild the main store.
Two higher-end hotels — a Hyatt Place and a Homewood Suites — opened along the Wilmington Riverfront after more than a year of parallel construction and a Supreme Court legal battle. They aim to bring crowds to the Chase Center, a chronically undercapacity convention space.