Vote for Your Favorite in the Downtown Alameda Holiday Window Contest

Books Inc Alameda Holiday Window ContestIf you haven’t quite rallied your holiday spirit yet, take a stroll in Downtown Alameda and enjoy all the wintry, whimsical wonder that is on display in over 30 of the downtown business windows. Local artists from 2nd Friday ArtWalks have been teamed up with downtown businesses to create dazzling holiday window displays this season.

Discover all the wonderful nooks and crannies along Park Street and throughout the Downtown Alameda shopping district as you view the creative work of these artists, from imaginative creatures to trees made of ice cream cones:

Alana Dill – Toy Safari (1410 Park St.)
Ash Cheshire – D20 Games (1530 Park St.)
Charlise Tiee – Starland School of Music (1631 Park St.)
Dave Sylvester – Books Inc. (1344 Park St.)  Read the rest of this entry »

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Downtown Alameda Businesses Receive Outstanding Service Awards (2016 DABA Awards)

Edward Jones Investments Alameda Office Jane Watson

Edward Jones (Office of Jane Watson)

At the end of each year, the Downtown Alameda Business Association presents special awards to member businesses in recognition of their outstanding service. The awards are given in four categories: Retail Business of the Year, Professional Business of the Year, Culinary Business of the Year, and New Business of the Year.

The selected businesses are recognized for their contributions to the success of our downtown district — owners and staff actively participate in downtown activities and they find ways to give back to the community in a number of ways. These businesses are excellent examples of the quality of service you can expect to find in Downtown Alameda year-round.

Congratulations to the recipients of our 2016 Downtown Alameda Business Awards!

Retail Business of the Year

Alameda See Spot Run pet supplies and cat adoption

Alameda See Spot Run

Alameda See Spot Run, 2510 Santa Clara Ave
Alameda See Spot Run is a local, family-owned store committed to providing products, services, and educational programs that help customers care for their pets without breaking the bank. When you shop with them, you receive personal service by staff who have a sincere desire to share their time and knowledge. Owner (and Alameda resident) Cynthia Schorle is also committed to serving the community at large. She serves on two of our committees — the Membership Committee and the Maintenance & Improvement Committee.

Professional Business of the Year (tie)

The Sewing Room Alameda sewing workshops and instructor classes

The Sewing Room

The Sewing Room, 2434 Webb Ave
The Sewing Room is not only a retail store, but it’s also a sewing workshop. Jennifer Serr and her instructors have a passion for the needle arts and enjoy sharing their expertise with students of all skill levels. Jennifer is known to have a remarkably relaxed and respectful way with kids that allows them to take risks and gain confidence. Jennifer also inspires community members to participate in sewing projects that benefit various charities. Jennifer first joined our Membership Committee in October 2016. Shortly after, she was appointed to our 2017 Board of Directors.

Edward Jones (Jane Watson), 1430 Everett Street, Suite A
There’s an advantage in working with an advisor who knows you and provides top-notch service. Edward Jones advisor Jane Watson exemplifies this by taking the time to help her clients identify personal financial goals, develop strategies to achieve those goals, and then monitor the progress for potential adjustments. Jane is also dedicated to supporting the greater Alameda community. She regularly hosts free retirement planning events and has served on our Membership Committee since 2013.

Culinary Business of the Year

Speisekammer German Restaurant Oktoberfest in Alameda

Speisekammer

Speisekammer, 2424 Lincoln Ave
Owners Peter Kahl and Cindy Kahl know how to provide an experience that entices people to return again and again. Patrons routinely go to Speisekammer for the authentic German food, one of the best beer lists in the area, and the weekly live music. Their hugely popular Oktoberfest is a signature event in the district every year. In addition, the staff at Speisekammer graciously play host for the Downtown Association’s annual meeting/mixer. Cindy has also been involved with our Maintenance & Improvement Committee for the last two years.

New Business of the Year   Read the rest of this entry »

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New Businesses in Downtown Alameda (Oct/Nov 2016)

Tango Leather Alameda authentic Argentina leather goods

Tango Leather

There’s always something new to discover in Downtown Alameda, from charming shops to friendly services. These past few months have brought a number of changes along Santa Clara Avenue as businesses have found terrific spaces to occupy not too far from Park Street.

While strolling along Santa Clara Ave, you’ll find two new family-operated real estate offices that can help you acquire either a new home or an investment property. You’ll also find the new office location for the folks that know how to get things up and running on a timely schedule.

New retail is always of special interest in Downtown Alameda. The next time you’re window shopping on Santa Clara Ave, you might find yourself enticed by a stylish boutique that redefines trends with their display of unique handcrafted leather goods. There’s also a new shop-inside-a-shop on Park Street.

Help welcome the newest businesses to our downtown district! The next time you’re in Downtown Alameda, be sure to stop by and check them out.

New Businesses:

ReMax Tribute Alameda real estate

RE/MAX Tribute

NextHome Generations, 2545 Santa Clara Ave
* Real estate services with focus on investment opportunities.

PK Consultants, 2516 Santa Clara Ave
* Strategic management services and event planning for corporations, businesses, and individuals.

RE/MAX Tribute, 2437 Santa Clara Ave
* Full service real estate office owned and operated by a local family.

Tango Leather, 2543 Santa Clara Ave #C
* One-of-kind authentic leather purses and accessories handcrafted in Argentina.

New Associate Member:

Hilliard Management Group, 3527 Mt. Diablo Blvd, Ste 390
* Financial accounting and bookkeeping consulting firm dedicated to helping Alameda small businesses.

In the Works:  Read the rest of this entry »

Shop Local: Holiday Events in Downtown Alameda

Shop Local Saturday in Downtown AlamedaNestled between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday is another opportunity for shoppers to have some fun and get terrific deals. Forget the malls on Saturday, November 26 and make local businesses a part of your holiday tradition.

By shopping or dining at a small business in Downtown Alameda, you’re not only showing your support for local businesses but you’re also investing in our island community and preserving Alameda’s unique charm.

So let our merchants help you find unique holiday gifts, jewelry, clothing, toys, wine, and much more! Gift certificates also make a wonderful surprise.

Holiday Happenings in Downtown Alameda

Be an Alameda Island Shopper! Enjoy these special holiday happenings in Downtown Alameda:

The Sewing Room holiday stockingWed, November 23:
Relax before the holidays with an evening of live music at Speisekammer. The Saddle Cats play western swing starting at 8:30pm; no cover charge.

Thur, November 24:
Need last-minute holiday meal items? Alameda Natural Grocery and Farmstead Cheeses & Wines will have special hours Thanksgiving morning from 9:00am to Noon.

Fri, November 25:
Daisy’s is celebrating the return of Gilmore Girls to television on Friday, November 25. Enjoy special gifts and food — celebrated festival style!
Celebrate local music with four Alameda acoustic acts at McGee’s. Show starts at 8:00pm: Wicked LobstahAcoustic EmbersFlunch, and My Friday NightRead the rest of this entry »

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Find Back-to-School Shopping Ideas in Downtown Alameda

Back To School_Walgreens AlamedaBack-to-school shopping can be daunting. Whether you’re shopping for an elementary student, middle-schooler, high-schooler, or college student, back-to-school shopping means stocking up on school supplies. Instead of going back to the mall or driving to the big box stores, take a relaxing stroll through Downtown Alameda where you are sure to find everything you need to make this the best school year yet!

Basic School Supplies – The essential school supplies include paper, pencils, pens, rulers, markers, notebooks, lunch boxes, and bags. You’ll find all of these items and more at neighborhood convenience stores and pharmacies in Downtown Alameda.

Walgreens – “Everything your child needs to make the grade.

CVS Pharmacy – Name brand school and office supplies.

Clothing and ShoesTo make sure your child starts the school year in style, drop into one of Downtown Alameda’s clothing shops where you will find the latest apparel for fashion-conscious kids — everything from trendy shoes to socially aware t-shirts. On a budget? You can also find gently worn fashions at the re-use boutiques.

Doumitt ShoesBack to School_Doumitts Shoes Alameda – Trendy, fashion shoes for the entire family.

District Footwear & Apparel – The latest in metro-hip sneakers and apparel.

Lauren’s Closet – Clothes, accessories, and more for children and juniors.

All Good Living – Lifestyle clothing that is earth-friendly and made in the USA.

Computers & Electronics – Whether it’s new phones to stay connected with the kids, new computers to help with completing homework assignments, and or calculators for fun and learning, you’ll find a number of retail shops in Downtown Alameda that offer the right gadgets to help students get through the school year successfully.

Quick Communications – Verizon Wireless Authorized Exclusive Retailer.

Grand Communications – MetroPCS Authorized Dealer.

ABM Computers – Vast array of hardware and software solutions.

Music & Art Supplies – New supplies for music and art classes will help students master those extracurricular activities. There are a number of shops in Downtown Alameda worth checking out — whether it’s painting and drawing supplies, sewing supplies, or musical instruments and sheet music. (By the way, now is a good time to start making reservations for school holiday camps.)  Read the rest of this entry »

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Downtown Alameda Green Businesses: Gifts and Personal Services

Earth Day is celebrated each year on the third Friday of April. The first Earth Day arose from an interest in gathering national support for environmental issues.

The following businesses are doing their part to make Alameda a green-powered community by purchasing wind and solar energy. Alameda Municipal Power (AMP) and the Downtown Alameda Business Association encourage you to show your support for “Alameda Green” businesses by visiting them in person.

1-800 Flowers Central Florist, Alameda

Central Florist

Central Florist, 2404 Central Ave
Visit Central Florist to find the perfect flowers and gifts for any occasion and can even create a custom bouquet to fit your unique needs.

Daisy’s, 1322 Park Street
Necessities, Frivolities, & Embellishments for everyday life! Bringing a sense of carefree beauty and fanciful elegance to Alameda, this award-winning boutique is a beloved home accents and gift shop.

District Footwear & Apparel, 1336 Park Street #A
District Footwear has an inner-city vibe and carries a great selection of sneakers and apparel.

Helios Images, 1242 Park Street #B
This nationally ranked photographer specializes in destination weddings and documentary portraits. Douglas Despres and Katherine Park Deakin create lifestyle inspired photographs full of warmth and love.

Janene's Bridal Boutique Alameda

Janene’s Bridal Boutique

Himalayan Gift Shop, 1623 Park Street
Himalayan Gift Shop offers incredibly priced handcrafted clothing from India, Nepal, and Tibet. Find unique gifts for any occassion, from jewelry to Nepalese singing bowls.

Island Print Express, 2534 Santa Clara Ave
Island Print Express provides fast service for all your printing needs including posters, banners, and envelopes.

Janene’s Bridal Boutique, 2418 Central Ave
This local bridal shop offers top-of-the-line wedding dresses featuring exquisite silks, delicate European laces, beautiful embroidery, and fine hand beading. The staff are dedicated to making dream weddings a memorable reality.

Lauren’s Closet, 1420 Park St
Lauren’s Closet features new and used clothes plus accessories, toys, and more for expectant mothers, children, juniors, and young adults.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Find Award-Winning Businesses in Downtown Alameda (2015 DABA Awards)

We’re proud to announce the winners of the 2015 Downtown Alameda Business Awards!

At the end of each year, the Downtown Alameda Business Association presents special awards to business members for outstanding performance. The selected businesses (owners, managers, and staff) are recognized for contributing to the success of our shopping and entertainment district by actively participating in downtown activities and attracting a strong customer base. These businesses also demonstrate support for the community by giving back in various ways.

Congratulations to our 2015 award winners! These businesses and individuals are excellent examples of the quality of goods and services, along with fantastic customer service, that you can expect to receive year-round in Downtown Alameda.

Retail Business of the Year 

Alameda Bicycle family rides

Alameda Bicycle

Alameda Bicycle, 1522 Park Street
It’s not enough just to sell bikes. Alameda Bicycle also works to ensure that customers enjoy their new purchases by inviting them to be part of a community through organized bike rides and offering free lifetime maintenance services. In addition, Alameda Bicycle supports our downtown events by providing space for secure bike parking at each of the street festivals.

Professional Business of the Year

Alameda Eyes Optometry, 1432 Park Street
Whether you need a routine eye examination, an eyeglasses fitting, contact lenses, or treatment for an eye infection, the staff at Alameda Eyes Optometery will provide you with the best care, advice, and options. They take the time to get to know you, your eye care history, and your vision needs. As the newest owner of the downtown business, Dr. Anders Hansson doesn’t hesitate to volunteer at our district events.

Culinary Business of the Year

East End pizza in Alameda

East End

East End, 1650 Park Street
East End is in it for the love of good food, good drink, and good company. The seasonally-driven menu features award-winning wood-fired pizzas (plus a whole lot more) while the bartenders excel at craft cocktails with a healthy dose of imagination. In addition to providing a comfortable and inviting atmosphere, East End puts great effort in supporting the community by hosting fundraiser events throughout the year.

New Business of the Year

Alameda Island Brewing Company, 1716 Park Street
Since opening earlier this year, AIBC has been about more than just making great beers. Brewmaster Matthew Fox and his wife strive to be innovative while embracing the island’s history with names such as Neptune’s Pale Ale, Cavanaugh Kolsch, and Park St. Morning Porter. The beautiful tasting room and the relaxing patio are welcoming gathering places for all in the downtown district.

Member of the Year  Read the rest of this entry »

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Shop Local – Finding Holiday Desserts in Downtown Alameda

Downtown Alameda has a terrific selection of shops and restaurants. You’ll find everything from antiques to jewelry, and from bagel shops to wine shops.

This week’s featured local businesses: Bakeries and Dessert Shops

Crispian Bakery, Alameda

Crispian Bakery

Crispian Bakery (1700 Park Street)
Crispian Bakery is a small-batch bakery producing French-inspired American breads and pastries. Stop by to see their holiday selection of pies, tarts, small cakes, and cookies. Custom cakes can also be ordered in advance — their specialty is a French-style layered cake called Entrement, available in a range of chocolate and fruit flavor combinations.

Feel Good Bakery (1650 Park Street)
Located inside the Marketplace, Feel Good Bakery bakes fresh daily using the finest ingredients. The artisan bakery offers pastries of all kinds including macarons, cakes, tarts, cupcakes, and cookies.

Mama Papa Lithuanian Bakery (1239 Park Street)
Mama Papa Lithuanian Bakery offers all the best traditional and modern pastries from their Lithuanian chef’s cookbook such as cookies, pastries, pies, rolls and cakes. Even their famous honey cake can be ordered as a whole piece at an affordable price.

Teazzert, Alameda

Teazzert

Teazzert (1342 Park Street)
Teazzert the ultimate spot in Alameda to indulge in bliss. They have a variety of desserts and baked goods for you to choose from: macarons (the latest flavors include vanilla-strawberry, salted cream cheese, chocolate mint), ice cream sandwiches, and cupcakes. Organic cookies by local San Francisco bakery C.B.G. come in both gluten free and non-gluten free packages for holiday gift giving.

Tucker’s Super Creamed Ice Cream (1349 Park Street)
Tucker’s Ice Cream specializes in rich and full-flavored old-fashioned super creamed ice cream. Tucker’s is also famous all over the Bay Area for their fresh fudge, ice cream cakes, and the finest baked cakes. Their delicious snowballs make for an especially nice holiday treat.

More dessert ideas for the holidays:  Read the rest of this entry »

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