Given that B&N has opened a smaller format store in Fredericksburg, a restaurant bookstore in Asuburn, and a small-footprint store in Fairfax, as well as many other small bookstores across the country, one might conclude that Barnes & Noble had given up on the mega-bookstores of the past.
And you would be mistaken. I was just reading on the Rockville Nights blog that B&N is opening a bookstore in Rockville, MD. It’s located in the Congressional Plaza shopping center, across the street from the Hilton where the Capclave SF con is held most years.
Edit: According to local stories from 2019, B&N is actually moving its Rockville store to a new location in the Congressional Plaza shopping center. (Everything in the bookstore is brand new, though.)
I briefly stopped by today to check out the store, and I can report that this is a full-sized bookstore comparable to the several older B&N stores I am familiar with (you can’t really tell this until you approach the storefront).
Right now the staff is stocking the shelves, and setting up the cafe. I happened to arrive at just the right time for the afternoon sun to shine in the windows and ruin my photographs, but Robert Dyer was more fortunate.
He got several good shots of the cafe in the store, and posted them on his Rockville Nights blog:
He also got a shot of the interior that showed the store is decorated in a style I have not seen before.
According to the banners in the windows, the store will open on 5 August.