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First look: Serenbe’s next retail piece billed as suburban strip mall alternative

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One Mado concept will marry more traditional retail with distinctly health-conscious uses

A rendering of One Mado, which is currently under construction.
One Mado (left) will neighbor a few live-work buildings at Serenbe’s Mado hamlet.
Courtesy of Serenbe

The burgeoning, eco-conscious mini-city that is Serenbe is gearing up to debut what it calls “a first of its kind commercial office and retail building” soon.

This fall, “One Mado” is slated to open at Serenbe’s Mado district, a $250 million mixed-use development.

It’ll offer what project leaders call an alternative to the traditional, suburban strip mall, and its marriage of health proprietors and more general retail attractions could be becoming a trend on Atlanta’s fringes.

Mado is one of four unique hamlets centered around either education, art, agriculture, or health and wellness offerings at Serenbe, located in Chattahoochee Hills about a half hour southwest of Atlanta’s airport.

Mado stresses a wellbeing focus, and the upcoming One Mado will offer three stories worth of healthy eats, office and retail space, a fitness center, and maybe even a pharmacy, among other amenities, officials told Curbed Atlanta this week.

The Mado project broke ground in August 2016 and is still in construction phases, according to a Serenbe spokesperson.

Another rendering of One Mado.
The structure will have an open-air staircase dissecting it.

“The building is 100 percent up and wrapped,” the spokesperson said in an email. “[Crews are] placing the windows in next week, and then stucco exterior is next.”

Plans call for 30,000 square feet of the ground floor to be used for a unannounced restaurant concept. It’s slated to be an “upscale, fast-casual restaurant,” according to a press release.

Above that will be the gym, spa, yoga studio, and offices for holistic medical practitioners, which could include, among other healthcare professionals, a chiropractor, acupuncturist, herbal massage therapist, and essential oils specialist.

The upper floors will be accessible via elevator and an open-air, sculptural staircase designed by Atlanta artist Andrew Crawford, according to Serenbe’s release.

Another rendering of One Mado.
Windows are being installed soon.

Serenbe is also being designed in line with EarthCraft standards, which means it’s aiming to be environmentally sustainable with an emphasis on geothermal heating and cooling, solar panels, and more efficient water and energy systems.

The Serenbe spokesperson said most of One Mado’s space has already been leased, although tenant names will not be announced for another 45 to 60 days.

One Mado’s health focus echoes, in a way, a project at the heart of another large-scale, ground-up community south of the city: Pinewood Forest.

In March, ground broke on the Piedmont Fayette Wellness Center, a modernistic, two-story structure that will provide more than 60,000 square feet of exercise and healthcare space near Pinewood Forest’s town center.

At the Fayette County project, expect gym and fitness uses and space for medical professionals, including physical therapists and exercise physiologists.