Crepes, Comfort Food, Candles and More! Owner of Union Market Tustin Takes Us on a Tour

Andrea Young Gives Us the Inside Scoop of This Tustin Hot Spot

Written By: Ameihia Turingan
Photographed By: Erik Isakson

Expert: Andrea Young
Credentials: Owner of Union Market Tustin
In Their Shoes: Before her current role, Andrea Young was a stationery store owner.

Andrea Young is the co-creator of Union Market Tustin, a 22,000-square-foot industrial-style marketplace located in The District at Tustin Legacy. Since 2014, the Union Market Tustin has offered a variety of tasty dishes, refreshing drinks, and beautiful items from small business owners. The marketplace is currently home to 23 restaurants and boutiques, which are all arranged to fit in a puzzle shape. While Young has been developing other Union Markets, we brought her back to ruminate on the Union Market Tustin’s beginnings and how it continues to grow and serve the community daily.

Q: What about The District at Tustin Legacy drew you to open your first Union Market there?

Andrea Young: Actually, they approached me. But when I went to visit the mall to see the space, I just knew it was a perfect fit. The feeling I got from the management/landlord, which is key, was fantastic and I still feel the same three years later.

Q: What makes the Union Market Tustin different from other retail and restaurant concepts?

AY: We are not just a food hall, we have it all: retail, restaurants, bar, specialty shops, live music and a music producing venue. We are an experience!  

Q: What was your inspiration when designing the aesthetic of the environment?

AY: I wanted a warm and hip environment that’s pretty neutral with some small design aspects. Nothing over the top so when the tenants design their own spaces, they stand out.

Q: The marketplace is set up as a close-knit community. How did you decide to divide the space to accommodate a variety of different restaurants and shops?

AY: When we reached out to prospective tenants, we knew that we wanted 50 percent food and 50 percent other shops. So based on our tenant list, we designed the layout and what worked best for everyone.

Q: How has the Union Market grown and developed since opening in 2014?

AY: We have definitely come into our own, all the tenants are flourishing and we have constant foot traffic. It takes time but we did it!

Q: What aspects do you look for when picking prospective tenants?

AY: Their passion is number one, and of course their concept as well.

Q: What is your favorite item that you’ve purchased from a boutique here in the center?

AY: I love my small retailers so much, I bought the Grand Bazaar from Spice & Tulips—I use it daily. I also love the jewelry from The Shangri-La, I think I wear her earrings every day. I bought the cutest baby outfit at The Treehouse for my niece. She loved it. And I never go wrong at Luella Boutique when I need a cute new outfit.

Q: What is something unique about the Union Market Tustin that most visitors don’t know about?

AY: Well, what is so exciting for me is that my grandfather was stationed on this exact land in the Marine Corps Air Station in the ‘40s and 80 years later I’m ‘stationed’ here.

Q: Looking towards the future, what do you expect next for the Union Market Tustin in 2018 and beyond?

AY: Continued success and the growth of our concepts.

Q: What is the most rewarding part about owning and developing concepts?

AY: I just love when I walk around and hear all the amazing comments from our shoppers. Sometimes I sit at the bar just to listen to the chatter.

Andrea’s Must Try Dishes

Hatch: Pastrami Slider and Lama Nui Tiki Cocktail
The Kroft: Short Rib Poutine
Cubed: Cali Bowl
Mr. Holmes Bakehouse: Raspberry Hibiscus Kouign Amann
Market2Plate: Build Your Own Pasta Dish
Kettlebar: Pan Roast
The Central Bar: Mexican Bonfire
Portola Coffee Roasters: Hot or Cold Mocha
Treatery: Dark, Milk or White Chocolate Treat Jars
The Dirty Cookie: Chocolate Chip Cookie Shot
Bear Cheese Tart: The Baked Cheese Tarts
Milk Box Bar: Matcha Milk Tea
Front Porch Pops: Mile High Pop Sundae
Churned Creamery: Salted Butter Caramel CroCream With Topping
Crêpe Coop: OG Crepe
Sweets Choice: Happy Hippos by Kinder

The Center: Andrea Young co-owns The Central Bar in the middle of the market. With its close proximity to the stage, it allows visitors to eat and drink while listening to live music.

Native Roots: Andrea Young grew up in Huntington Beach and currently resides in Newport Beach.

In Their Shoes: Her past experience helps her to understand and empathize with her tenants. “I understand the other side of the business. I was the tenant once. I know the struggles you go through as a store owner. I keep that in mind everyday when working with my tenants,” she said.

What’s in a Name: The Union Market’s name derives from the definition of union (“the act of being joined”), which best describes its purpose—to work together to be successful and bring the community together.

Union Market Tustin in The District at Tustin Legacy
2493 Park Ave
Tustin, CA 92782

Food, Fashion and Fun—The District at Tustin Has It All

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