The quirky downtown Dallas bookstore and coffee shop Serj Books has closed its doors, although the owners say the closure will last for the summer only.
Downtown regulars who picked up coffee every day were dismayed to find the shop shuttered in early June without warning or notice. The only thing on the door was a note recently posted by husband-and-wife owners John Walsh and Anne Holcomb, informing customers of a change in hours, closing at 2 pm every day instead of 3 pm.
The shop hasn't been open since.
Efforts to reach the couple have not been returned. But one day later, Serj posted an update on its Facebook page, with a photo of a red arrow pointing to the medieval Château de Chillon located on Lake Geneva in Switzerland that said, "It was time for a break; seriously. Do not look for us. The red arrow is a decoy. September is just days away. We love you all. Respect."
However, a source close to the business said that customers and neighbors were told that something had come up with their family, and that they had to shut down.
Serj opened its handsome wood-lined shop on St. Paul Street in 2015. It has always had an eccentric personality, serving not just coffee, tea, soups, sandwiches, and desserts, but also personal touches such as the cashiers' ritualistic recitation of silly jokes. Tables are adorned with drawing paper and crayons; customers are encouraged to leave sketches which frequently get featured on Facebook.
There were big plans in 2016 to open a second outlet in the Mosaic building, but those were eventually scuttled.