Garden State Harley-Davidson moves into new 26,000 square-foot location
Owner Bobby DiFazio has owned Williams Harley-Davidson in Lebanon, N.J., since 1999. That highly successful operation led DiFazio to purchase a second store within the last few years — Kosco H-D in northern New Jersey.
In November, DiFazio celebrated the grand opening of the second store, which he renamed Garden State Harley-Davidson, in Morris Plains, N.J.
“Williams has been a wonderfully successful and great-running dealership for the past 14 ½ years,” DiFazio said. “I had heard that there was a dealership up in northern New Jersey that was looking to sell. I went and did my due diligence and thought I’d give it a shot. We stood in the old facility for roughly a year and a half, while I built this building.”
DiFazio had been renting while at the old Kosco building, but made the move when he found a building he could purchase. The 26,000 square foot location is “more conducive for better business practices,” he said.
The building had stood vacant for the past decade, and the interior and exterior walls remained in place during the build out.
“I wanted to keep the old cinderblock look,” he said. “I wanted to try to create a factory industrial-type look, and I think that I’ve accomplished that,” DiFazio said. “We have offices and there is a wonderful mezzanine upstairs where customers can drive in and wait for their services where they can sit and relax in a beautiful lounge area with WiFi available. It was important for me to recreate our new home.”
DiFazio says the location is key, with extremely strong traffic patterns in the Morristown area, “and the motorcycle registrants in this area are very strong. I liked the fact that the building was available, and it was still in Morris County. I like the size, and I like the vision I had for the building to make it a beautiful dealership.”
Interest in the new location has been strong, and DiFazio likes what he sees when customers enter the dealership.
“There’s been wonderful floor traffic,” he said. “The exciting thing to me is if you sit and watch people enter the building, you can read their lips and there’s definitely that ‘wow’ factor.”
Fortunately, customers have been in a buying mode.
“Motorcycles, parts sales, general merchandise and service — we’re firing on all cylinders right now. It’s winter though, so it’s a different business stream than it will be in our great riding months,” DiFazio said. “We’ll have the holiday shopping season, then we have our dreaded January and February here in the Northeast. But then Daytona Bike Week sort of sparks that enthusiasm, and it gets motorin’ then.”
Contributing: Marjorie Kleiman, aka Shadow, Thunder Press