UNIVERSITY PARK -- Discount travel website Expedia is bringing its branded CruiseShipCenters store to Manatee County.
The franchised operation will be located inside Benderson Development's University Park Center at 5215 University Parkway, Suite 102, according to building permits, and could open this year.
The plaza includes Kohl's and The Fresh Market.
The Manatee County location would be the company's seventh Florida store, including one in Port Charlotte. Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, CruiseShipCenters has more than 170 independently owned storefronts and has been in business for more than 25 years. Expedia, based in Bellevue, Wash., bought into the company in 2007.
The 170-plus franchise stores drive business through cruise sales, with land-based vacations and hotel bookings and air travel rounding out the sales.
The Manatee County franchisee, University Park Travel Consultants, LLC, signed a five-year lease with Benderson Development Co., with one five-year renewal for the 1,107-square-foot space. The franchise is registered to Richard W. Rogers of Los Angeles.
The University Park Center will be seeing several new tenants this year including restaurant Chicken Kitchen, boutique Malibu Fox and waxing salon Lunch Box. Benderson is marketing the University Park Center as The Market at University Town Center.
Charles Schelle, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitter@ImYourChuck.