Exterior of Thinker Makers Society art gallery

Old City Welcomes New Businesses

Inside of Claudia Mills studios

Thirty businesses and organizations have opened in Old City this year, including restaurants, art galleries, boutiques, and studios, like Claudia Mills Rugs at 133 N. 3rd Street.

PHILADELPHIA - Old City District is excited to welcome 31 new businesses and organizations to the neighborhood in 2021, with more scheduled to open in 2022.

The new businesses and organizations include (in alphabetical order): American Vegan Society, AXIOM Contemporary, Bangin Breakfast & Wild Brunch, BFIT4LIFE, Casa Vida, Claudia Mills Studio, Cray Taste, Damari, Embrace Dermatology & Aesthetics, Frame, Fred Astaire Dance Studio, Haus of Wood, Home Cuban Cafe, Ikki Japanese Cuisine & Bar, Jacqueline Michelle & Co., Kurry Shack, Las Bugambilias Mexican Restaurant, Mari Mi Bridal, Nic Grooming, Panda Tea, Penzey’s Spices, PFS Bourse Theater, Philly Style Bagels, Red Parasol Cafe, Ride Zoomo, The Dog Alley, The Jiu Jitsu Company, The Link Studios, Thinker Makers Society, Together, and Victoria Roggio Beauty.

The new businesses and organizations join a neighborhood known for its arts and design community, burgeoning tech and dining scenes, and hundreds of independently owned small businesses. 

Learn more about the new locations below:

American Vegan Society
17-19 N. 2nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

The American Vegan Society will open the American Vegan Center in Old City this year. The United States vegetarian movement was launched in Philadelphia in 1817, and is where the modern vegan movement began in 1957. Located on a charming corner of Old City, the American Vegan Center will initially act as a walk-up information center pointing to vegan food options and neighborhood veg-history sites. Opening on COVID-safe phases, the front room will become a shop with books, T-shirts, and Philly-specific vegan souvenirs. This summer, walking tours will showcase Philly’s rich vegetarian and vegan heritage. In the fall, the center is aiming to be open for presentations by chefs, doctors, scholars, authors, and others.

Inside of AXIOM Contemporary art gallery with white walls and artwork on display and a wood floor

AXIOM Contemporary
30 S. 2nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

AXIOM was established in 2011 in Santa Monica, CA.  The gallery specializes in pop, abstract, neo-street, and contemporary artworks from emerging and mid-career artists from all over the world, in all mediums. AXIO opened its Old City location in June 2021.

Bangin Breakfast & Wild Brunch
230 Market Street

Interior of BFIT4LIFE fitness studio with exercise bikes and a large theater screen

400 Walnut Street
Philadelphia’s first immersive fitness studio open its doors at 400 Walnut Street, on the street level of the Broderick luxury apartment complex. This brand new specialty health and wellness concept is bringing a first-of-its-kind immersive cycling experience to Philadelphia, mixing exercise with entertainment, and making exercise fun. With a 28-foot wide curved cinematic screen in the main cycling theatre, it's safe to say BFit4Life members will be treated to an unparalleled experience

Casa Vida
112 N. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Claudia Mills Rugs
133 N. 3rd Street 
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Claudia Mills Rugs recently relocated to Old City from West Philadelphia and Chestnut Hill. The N. 3rd Street location features a weaving studio and showroom. CLAUDIA MILLS STUDIO designs rag rugs in a fresh palette of colors and new fabrics, updating the age-old technique to create contemporary rugs for today’s living and working spaces.

Working in a small production setting, CLAUDIA MILLS STUDIO designs and manufactures one-of-a-kind handwoven pieces that are unique in today’s textile market of global mass manufacturing. Claudia offers a retail line of individual designs and custom, site-specific rugs. While the rugs have a contemporary, vibrant feel, they retain the texture and warmth of traditional rag rugs. Claudia Mills Rugs is open Tuesday - Saturday, 11:00am-5:00pm.

Cray Taste
118 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Clothing on display in Damari front window

72 N. 2nd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(267) 270-2322
Damari is a Philadelphia based mens and womenswear brand with a mission to create a truly singular experience for our sartorially savvy clientele. We are redefining modern suiting and custom garments with creativity, styling, and precise tailoring, all while keeping culture at the forefront.

We are a Black-owned brand with an in house celebrity stylist, design team, and tailor that are able to create any custom garment that you can imagine, or help you develop your distinct personal style. Whether you're an athlete heading into a game, walking down the aisle at your wedding or just trying to look fly as we all get back out into the streets of Center City! We make everything from formal garments, outerwear, upscale casual and loungewear - and we're always excited to push the envelope on something new.

Embrace Dermatology & Aesthetics
123 Chestnut Street, Suite 300 (inside the historic Corn Exchange Building)
Embrace Dermatology and Aesthetics, LLC in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is a comprehensive medical and cosmetic dermatology treatment center with highly-trained, experienced, and caring physicians, who are well-versed in the latest technologies and medical treatments.  
We offer patient-centered dermatologic care for all ages and skin types. From skin cancer screenings to aesthetic services. Embrace Dermatology and Aesthetics is committed to helping you meet your skin health goals.

Frame Philly
222 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Fred Astaire Dance Studio
205 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Numerous Fred Astaire Dance Studios located in cities throughout the United States and internationally, are required to maintain the highest standards of excellence through our International Dance Council and Fred Astaire Dance Studios curriculum certification. Although Mr. Astaire is no longer with us in person, our studios have produced a wealth of amateur and professional dancers who are the living embodiment of his style and grace. And we have been privileged to share the positive, transforming power of dance with hundreds of thousands of people – and have helped them discover a healthy, joyful activity they’ll enjoy for their entire lives!
FADS Philadelphia Old City has operated since April 2021. We are a brand new studio at the brand new location. Monday - Friday 12:00pm - 9:00pm, Saturday and Sunday by appointment.


Haus of Wood
223 Church Street

Home Cuban Cafe
17 N. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(239) 682-7426

Ikki Japanese Cuisine & Bar
310 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106


Exterior of Jacqueline Michelle & Co

Jacqueline Michelle & Co.
116 Arch Street
We offer a unique and complete palette of hair, makeup, and beauty services to make you and your party look and feel your absolute best on your special day! We believe getting ready on the morning of your wedding day should be relaxing and enjoyable. Our services are provided and led by professionals with over 5 + years in the beauty and bridal industry. We have a team of hand-selected, expert hair stylists and make-up artists prepared to take that extra step with client satisfaction and quality of work.  Our promise is to provide you with top notch artists and stylists that will not only create beautiful hair and makeup but also add to your experience. Together for over 4 years, our team is bound by the love of glam and creating a loving environment on your most special day. Our team members and our business continually evolve to stay on the cutting edge of our industry. We employ the top talent in our industry who work together as a team. Our people are intrinsically driven for excellence and we create a culture that is challenging, fun, respectful and rewarding. Our talents extend to all occasions and we offer a variety of services on location or in our studio! 

Kurry Shack food on display on a table inside of the restaurant

Kurry Shack - Old City
6 N. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(267) 761-5562

In Old City, Restauranteur Shafi Gaffar moved his operations across N. 3rd Street and changed Makhani into Kurry Shack to better be in alignment with the neighborhood needs and for pandemic safety. This location will specialize in delivery for Old City, Society Hill, Spring Arts, Northern Liberties and Fishtown - and surrounding neighborhoods. This location will focus on delivery, take-out and pick-up, with a counter and stools for around six to eight guests. The open kitchen lets customers see the Chef preparing food while they wait.

For featured items and secret menu items specific to Old City, Gaffar wanted to pay homage to Makhani (which he hopes will return some day after the pandemic). He also wanted to be responsive to his Makhani regulars that fell in love with his special dishes, including the mango-featured selections that were inspired by his childhood days on a mango farm with his grandparents. Dishes here that are special include the Mango Chicken as well as the Philadelphia Magazine Best of Philly Award-winning Mango Cheesecake - plus other specials and dishes from that menu.

When asked why feature some of the award-winning items from Makhani, Gaffar replied, "We have tried to be attentive and be sure to cater to the specific needs of each neighborhood. The Old City patrons had a lot of favorite dishes at Makhani that couldn't be found at any other restaurants in the city, and in some cases, the country.  We want to be able to provide those favorites in our new Kurry Shack, but with quicker and more affordable service."

Las Bugambilias Mexican Restaurant
15 S. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
 Las Bugambilias has been serving traditional Mexican food since 2007 in its original location on South Street. It has been the inspiration of husband and wife, Carlos Molina and Michelle Zimmerman. Both have worked in the restaurant industry for almost three decades. Las Bugambilias opened in Old City in May 2021.

Mari Mi Bridal
323 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Interior of Nic Grooming

Nic Grooming
229 Chestnut Street
A classic Philadelphia barber shop experience for the modern gentleman. Walk-in only. No appointments. Open 7 days a week.
NIC Grooming Barbershop was born from three generations of Philadelphia barbers. The Berardi men, took notice of the lack of men’s specialty barber shops in Philadelphia.  They used their expertise in men’s haircutting to create the ultimate ‘old school’ barbershop experience in Center City Philadelphia. As a satellite barber shop of, Richard Nicholas Hair Studio, NIC Grooming is the ultimate blend of old-school craftsmanship and modern technology. It provides a premier barbershop experience and offers haircuts, straight razor shaves, and color blending at $50 each. If you’re thinking what’s the closet barbershop near me and you live in Center City, then Nic Grooming has you covered.
Panda Tea
50 S. 2nd Street 

Penzeys Spices
233 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

PFS Bourse Theater
400 Ranstead Street
In 2021, the Philadelphia Film Society took over operation of the five screen, 776 seats Bourse theater located in the heart of Old City Philadelphia. The PFS Bourse’s programming focuses on critically-acclaimed first run indie and art house films, along with curated content. The announcement of the new venue comes during an celebratory year for PFS. 2021 marks the 30th anniversary of the Philadelphia Film Festival, as well as the 20th anniversary of the Philadelphia Film Society. The PFS Bourse opened in June 2021 and hosted screenings during the Philadelphia Film Festival in October. 


bagels on display on a metal tray

Philly Style Bagels
218 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Philly Style Bagels, located in Fishtown, opened its second shop in Old City in March 2021. Philly Style Bagels hand rolls and bakes each and every bagel. The bagels are boiled in Yards IPA and water mixture and baked in a pizza oven; this technique is uniquely our own. The business started as a pop up venture, based out of Pizzeria Beddia, and that was nearly 7 years ago. Our brick and mortar opened its doors 5 years ago and we are proud to have added to the PSB family in Old City. Our product is unique. We're really excited to have expanded in Old City and our space welcomes everyone!

Red Parasol Cafe
220 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Located in the historical district of Philadelphia, just steps away from Benjamin Franklin's printing shop, Red Parasol Cafe with its friendly staff is offering a beautiful and cozy place for customers to enjoy different types of espresso drinks, hot chocolate, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, ice creams, and smoothies. Red Parasol Cafe also has a variety of gifts and Philadelphia souvenirs.

Ride Zoomo
305 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

The Dog Alley
239 Market Street
The Dog Alley is a new dog day care in Old City. The day care is owned by Ally Clifford. She has previously owned a dog walking business for 5 years so you may have seen her around the neighborhood with a dog always by her side. So you know your dog will be in good hands! The Dog Alley is a fun and safe space for your dog to spend the day while you are at work or need to get errands done.  At The Dog Alley, dogs will be playing, napping, going on walks and given lots of belly rubs and treats by our loving staff! We also offer dog baths to keep your fur baby nice and clean. Monday - Friday, 7am-7pm.

The Jiu Jitsu Company
31 S. 2nd Street, 2nd Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106

213-215 Arch Street
THE LINK STUDIOS is a collective of hair & beauty services as well as retail. We specialize in extensions. Visit us for unique hair products. We’re open Wednesday-Saturday 10-5PM. 
Follow us on Instagram @thelinkphilly for more on our monthly “LINK-UP” pop-up shops & events. 

Thinker Makers Society
320 Race Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Thinker Makers Society is a Black Owned and operated art gallery located in Old City Philadelphia that was born out of necessity. With only two African American gallerists being listed in the Art Dealers Association of America, and only 2.5 percent of the businesses in Philadelphia being Black Owned, it was clearly a need for Thinker Makers Society. Our goal is to not only build community around our space and artists, but to give direct access to those who would otherwise not be able to show in Old City. This is why we focus primarily on BIPOC artists. The work we show ranges from prints and paintings, to large pieces that can be hung from high ceilings. We also carry an array of books, clothing and records, because art has many forms and mediums beyond simply what one may hang on a wall. We are Thinker Makers Society. Join us in changing the world.

138 N. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Victoria Roggio Beauty
219 Cuthbert Street, 6th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106