When was the last time you mourned the loss of a beloved Starbucks location in Vancouver?
Those days are few and far between as Starbucks seems to colonize almost every major street in the city.
Though on Monday Feb.24, residents in the Renfrew-Collingwood community bid farewell to one of the most beloved spaces on Kingsway for the past 20 years. On gray, rainy days, we sought refuge in the spacious corner store beaming warm halogen lights and mesmerizing customers with the aroma of ground coffee beans.
Writer George Udo brought his family one last time. He has been going to the location almost every day for the past year to home school his son, and complete a novel in Portuguese. Although two smaller Starbucks locations are a five minute walk away, he hopes another cafe will claim the large space.
Peter Greenwell was stationed at the cafe for hours as a homeless program coordinator for the Morning Star breakfast program. A program that was the recipient of the day’s revenues.
Greenwell says the location has meant more than a coffee shop for locals. “I observed a lot of people coming and going, there were a whole bunch of different people sitting in groups and this was their fairly frequent kind of thing.”
“There were this group of guys that was behind me–there were about six of them and they had all been retired. They came for about an hour and a half catching up,” he added.
Greenwell also mentioned that it has served as a “home office,” and “spiritual outreach” for Pastor Daniel Louie who frequents the shop to hold a weekly discussion group.
The news of the store closing was a surprise to nearby residents. Due to the increase in rent, this location can no longer operate.