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The Good Life retailer closing after many years in Naples

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The Good Life store closing after decades in Naples


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The native kitchenware retailer operated for practically 50 years in Naples.
Tim Aten

The Good Life had a great life in Naples, however the native family-owned kitchen gadget retailer is completely closing Saturday after working in Naples for practically half a century.

It’s the final week to buy cookware, cutlery, attire, devices and presents for cooks and residential cooks from the longtime kitchen accent retailer within the Galleria Shoppes at Vanderbilt on the northwest nook of Airport-Pulling and Vanderbilt Seashore roads in North Naples.

In 1985, Dave and Debbie Schwarz purchased The Good Life from Dave’s sister, Sandi Schwarz Swift. After a formidable run, the household had been contemplating closing the shop for weeks. Though they didn’t make the choice to shut till post-season in Might, Hurricane Irma’s disastrous impact on enterprise final fall set the stage.

“Irma. That damage us, you already know. That killed September and damage October,” Dave Schwarz mentioned. “However we’ve been doing it a very long time.”

The Good Life started practically 50 years in the past on 13th Avenue South on the nook of Fourth Avenue South in downtown Naples. The unique proprietor, Jeannie Crockett, operated the shop for 3 or 4 years earlier than promoting it to Shirley Traxler, who additionally ran the shop not less than that lengthy, Schwarz mentioned.

“After which my sister purchased it. It was included in ’81,” he mentioned.

The Schwarzes needed to broaden the stock on the unique location on 13th Avenue, however the house wasn’t giant sufficient. So, they relocated in 1988 to the not too long ago opened The Plaza on Third Avenue in downtown Naples, the place they remained for practically 20 years.

The shop moved to its North Naples location greater than 10 years in the past. They had been the primary retail retailer to open in The Assortment at Vanderbilt, which ultimately was renamed the Galleria Shoppes at Vanderbilt. In addition they operated a second location within the Village Outlets on Venetian Bay in Naples for six years within the 1990s.

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Commercials for the going-out-of-business sale began operating Memorial Day weekend and the sale began Might 29 on the one-stop culinary store. All the things within the retailer – cookbooks, glassware, teapots, utensils and bakeware – is half off. Something that was used for a cooking class demonstration is 70 p.c off.

Even fixtures akin to eating hutches, tables, carts and wire racks are also on the market. “We’ve offered so much. Some to different shops,” Schwarz mentioned.

The Good Life has been a hands-on enterprise for the Schwarzes, together with their kids, Scott and Heather, who weren’t even sufficiently old to work there when their mother and father first purchased the shop. Scott Schwarz has been the shop’s supervisor for a number of years, whereas Heather (Schwarz) Maroney assisted in gross sales and cooking courses. The shop’s closing is bittersweet for your entire household.

The ultimate cooking class final week was a tragic second for them. The shop’s chef introduced not less than two cooking courses every week throughout season.

The late disco singer Donna Summer season was an everyday buyer when she lived in Naples. She walked via the shop and picked out merchandise she favored with out costs, Schwarz mentioned.

These are the kind of interactions that the Schwarz household will keep in mind. Regardless of traits and modifications in merchandise and expertise over time, it’s the shoppers that they are going to always remember.

“I’ll miss the folks essentially the most,” Schwarz mentioned. “We’ve an amazing buyer base. They’re like buddies.”

Whereas the native panorama has seen the shuttering of many different shops akin to Kitchen Potpourri, Lechters Housewares, What’s Cooking and Kitchens, high-end kitchenware chains Williams-Sonoma and Sur La Desk have survived up to now. As with many retailers, it’s powerful for mom-and-pop shops akin to The Good Life to compete with Amazon and different on-line commerce firms.

“On-line buying has undoubtedly made a distinction. All the things has modified,” Schwarz mentioned. “Approach again in ’85 there have been extra kitchen shops in Naples then there have been in another metropolis in Florida.”

Now your entire enterprise of The Good Life and its tagline, “For The Chef At Coronary heart,” are up for grabs. A sale would come with the shop’s identify, signage, fixtures and any stock left.

“We did record the shop. I wish to see The Good Life proceed,” Schwarz mentioned. “It’s listed proper now so if there’s any person on the town that desires to have a kitchen retailer, we’d work with them nevertheless lengthy they’d need us to.”

Until downsizing or relocating, the shop in all probability must transfer, although.

“What they’re going to do is break up this retailer. They will divide it,” Schwarz mentioned, noting that house owners of a pizzeria have already spoken for the northern slice of the shop.

A consultant from the Shoppes at Vanderbilt couldn’t be reached for remark.

The Good Life, 2355 Vanderbilt Seashore Highway, suite 176, shall be open 10 a.m. to six p.m. Monday via Friday and 10 a.m. to five p.m. Saturday. For extra info name 239-514-4663.

Have an area query? E-mail it along with your identify and metropolis of residence to [email protected] Tim Aten’s “Within the Know” is printed each Monday and Wednesday. Like Within the Know on Fb now at fb.com/timaten.intheknow.

Learn or Share this story: https://www.naplesnews.com/story/information/columnists/tim-aten-in-the-know/2018/06/11/know-good-life-store-closing-after-decades-naples/687898002/



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