Plans are in the works for the vacant building at the southeast corner of North Federal Highway and NE 49th Street in Lighthouse Point to become a Whit’s Frozen Custard store.

Whit’s Frozen Custard opened its first location in 2003 in Granville, Ohio, and now has over 70 stores in nine states across the U.S. There are 18 stores in Florida, but currently none in Broward County.

The man behind the Whit’s Frozen Custard franchise planned for Lighthouse Point is John Khoury, who resides in The Cove neighborhood in Deerfield Beach, just one mile from the future store’s location.

Khoury anticipates the store will open in late spring or early summer of 2023.

True to the brand’s tradition, the Whit’s Frozen Custard in Lighthouse Point will feature frozen custard made fresh daily on site. In addition to churning vanilla and chocolate flavors throughout the day, there will also be a rotating flavor of the week and a flavor of the day. The frozen custard can be combined with a variety of toppings (over 30 to choose from) served in a cup, known as a Whitser, or in a sundae, milkshake, float or cone. The store will also serve the brand’s signature Whittie, which is frozen custard sandwiched between two freshly-baked cookies. There will even be a doggie sundae for patrons who come with their canine companions.

The store will offer vegan, no-sugar-added, gluten-free and non-dairy options. There will also be a to-go freezer for custard cakes, pints and quarts, Whitties and other take-home items.

“I saw an opportunity to bring a great franchise into Broward County,” said Khoury. “I was really sold on the company’s focus on high-quality products made with the freshest ingredients, and creating a great customer experience.”

Khoury explained that frozen custard is a dessert similar to ice-cream, but is made with eggs in addition to cream and sugar, giving it a richer flavor. It is also served at a slightly warmer temperature than ice-cream, and has a denser texture because less air is incorporated in the final product.

Khoury will be the owner/general manager of the store. There will also be a part-time manager, and 10 to 20 part-time employees. The store’s hours of operation are currently expected to be Monday through Thursday, 12pm to 9pm, and on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 12pm to 10pm. The store’s address is 4850 N. Federal Highway.

A site plan for the project is scheduled to go before the Planning and Zoning Board this month.

According to the plans, there will be a patio with outdoor seating along the west side of the store, which is the front façade. There will also be indoor seating.

Khoury, who is leasing the property, said the building itself requires minimal exterior and interior renovations. Landscaping improvements will include two shade trees along Federal Highway and colorful plantings around a new monument sign with the Whit’s Frozen Custard logo.

“I’m excited and honored to be opening in this particular location,” said Khoury. “It’s a gateway to the wonderful neighborhoods of Lighthouse Point and The Cove area of Deerfield Beach.”

Khoury, who grew up in upstate New York, has 38 years of experience in the industrial baking industry. In tandem with his career in the baking business, Khoury had his own Italian ice and frozen custard business for 23 years.

“I’m hoping the store becomes the community’s go-to place for tasty frozen treats,” said Khoury.

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