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Author Topic: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more  (Read 6328 times)

TheStranger

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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #25 on: August 27, 2016, 08:41:21 PM »

What briantroutman explains is correct, and not totally unique to HoJo restaurants.  There are quite a few chains where "corporate" has gone out of business, but if you owned a franchise in your town you can keep right on going, without either any support or oversight.  Quite a few more where such "orphaned" franchise owners have banded together to form a new support system, sometimes not including all of the franchise (i.e. franchisees in Town X and Y and Z band together, but guy in  Town W is totally independent).

Something like this happened to the Roy Rogers chain of fast food in the East, originally owned by Marriott. 

Marriott decided to get out of the fast food business and sold most or all of their company-owned Roy Rogers to Hardees, and they were then converted to that concept.  Did not work well. 

So the Hardees went back to being Roy Rogers for a while, and then they were sold to and became McDonald's (did we need more Golden Arches)?

But there were Roy  Rogers that were not company owned, and they stayed Roy Rogers (lots of brand loyalty kept them going). Then a former Marriott executive named Plamondon  bought the rights to the Roy Rogers name and related things, and his company (now run  by his sons) has been selling franchises again.  So in a sense, Roy Rogers as a chain has been revived  (the cowboy of that name is still deceased, as is his horse Trigger).

Did the Roy Rogers in suburban Cincinnati (which I went to in 2006, but which has since closed) ever fall under Plamondon ownership?  It always struck me as a rather far outpost of the chain, even in the Mariott-ownership era. 
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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #26 on: August 27, 2016, 08:49:02 PM »

What briantroutman explains is correct, and not totally unique to HoJo restaurants.  There are quite a few chains where "corporate" has gone out of business, but if you owned a franchise in your town you can keep right on going, without either any support or oversight.  Quite a few more where such "orphaned" franchise owners have banded together to form a new support system, sometimes not including all of the franchise (i.e. franchisees in Town X and Y and Z band together, but guy in  Town W is totally independent).

Something like this happened to the Roy Rogers chain of fast food in the East, originally owned by Marriott. 

Marriott decided to get out of the fast food business and sold most or all of their company-owned Roy Rogers to Hardees, and they were then converted to that concept.  Did not work well. 

So the Hardees went back to being Roy Rogers for a while, and then they were sold to and became McDonald's (did we need more Golden Arches)?

But there were Roy  Rogers that were not company owned, and they stayed Roy Rogers (lots of brand loyalty kept them going). Then a former Marriott executive named Plamondon  bought the rights to the Roy Rogers name and related things, and his company (now run  by his sons) has been selling franchises again.  So in a sense, Roy Rogers as a chain has been revived  (the cowboy of that name is still deceased, as is his horse Trigger).

Did the Roy Rogers in suburban Cincinnati (which I went to in 2006, but which has since closed) ever fall under Plamondon ownership?  It always struck me as a rather far outpost of the chain, even in the Mariott-ownership era. 

Under Marriott ownership, they went even further west, to Chicagoland's Woodfield Mall.  That one closed when Marriott sold the two great America Parks (of which, I know the Gurnee park had a Roy Rogers as well).
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briantroutman

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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #27 on: August 28, 2016, 12:55:13 AM »

Did the Roy Rogers in suburban Cincinnati (which I went to in 2006, but which has since closed) ever fall under Plamondon ownership?  It always struck me as a rather far outpost of the chain, even in the Mariott-ownership era.

Yes, that was during the Plamondon era, but that location wasnít owned by the Plamondonsí company directly. It was a local franchisee who hung on until 2012, when he decided to drop his franchise but keep most of the Roy Rogers menu and call the place ďRoneyísĒ...even reworking the í60s-vintage Roy Rogers sign to show the new name.

Under Marriott ownership, they went even further west, to Chicagoland's Woodfield Mall.  That one closed when Marriott sold the two great America Parks (of which, I know the Gurnee park had a Roy Rogers as well).

Iíd be interested in knowing just how big Royís footprint was at its peak under Marriott. Would the company have passed up the opportunity to situate a Roy Rogers right next to Great America in Santa Clara? Then again, expansion may have been hindered by proximity to Roy Rogersí food suppliers.
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Roadrunner75

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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #28 on: August 29, 2016, 10:47:58 PM »

I live near a standalone (not in a rest area) Roy Rogers in New Jersey that has been continuously open since the great ol' days when Roy Rogers were everywhere around here in the 80s.  For a long time I looked at it as a novelty of sorts and would go there every once in awhile.  I'm sure the novelty aspect kept it afloat for the last two decades for those looking for their Double R Bar Burger, fried chicken and roast beef fixes.  Now that Roy's is expanding again, the local franchise owner recently opened a brand new Roy's in Brick only about 5 miles north of their existing location.  Although I'm glad to see them popping up again, I think this was a bad move to open so close to their other location because it will dilute some of the novelty crowd and regular business at the existing restaurant before Roy's has the ability to really win a following again.  They should have opened another restaurant much further north in the Monmouth County area to not overlap their existing business.  I don't want to end up with no Roy's at all due to a poor business decision.  Arby's didn't last very long around here, so they should play this market carefully.

As for HoJo's restaurants, the last one I recall was in Asbury Park on the waterfront.  I'm sure I ate at one at some point, but can't recall.  I can specifically remember the HoJo's in York, PA on US 30 near the I-83 interchange. 
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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #29 on: August 30, 2016, 07:34:21 AM »

The only Howard Johnson's at which I remember stopping regularly was the one that used to be adjacent to the southern end of the Jersey Turnpike next to the old "Exit 1" toll plaza back in the 1970s and maybe early 1980s. After we stopped going there, which coincided with my father's being utterly tired of the I-95 route to New York, we started going over the Bay Bridge and up the Eastern Shore and we'd stop at a diner in New Castle, I think its name was Arner's. The other place we used to stop was if we took I-295 in Jersey. Back then it ended at US-130 and we stopped at the Town & Country Diner in Bordentown. It was still there last time I looked, but I haven't been there in at least 25 years. I don't drive north very often anymore.
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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #30 on: August 30, 2016, 09:45:39 PM »

I recall eating HoJos on the WV Turnpike often. I know I ate there a few times in Bradenton FL. As far as here in Columbus I actually can't remember eating at one though I'm sure we did. I'm thinking somewhere on East Main.
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Re: Howard Johnsonís restaurant to close, leaving only 1 more
« Reply #31 on: August 30, 2016, 11:47:13 PM »

Never ate at a HoJos. The only Roy Rogers I remember being remotely local was on US 1 somewhere between Richmond and King's Dominion (maybe Ashland) and it was already closed by the early 1990s...remember passing it on the way back from the theme park one day.
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