Alberta-based specialty grocer Italian Centre Shop has opened its fifth location in the Edmonton suburb of Sherwood Park. The standalone store at 8005 Emerald Drive is the first location the company has built from the ground up.
The 22,500-square-foot store is situated in the Emerald Hills Urban Village development, which features 11 acres of shops and services and is home to dwellings ranging from multi-family to senior-assisted living, duplex bungalows and townhouses.
It is the biggest store in the Italian Centre Shop network, comprised of three stores in Edmonton, and another in Calgary. It features a 50-seat café, a 30-seat patio, a hot table featuring Italian comfort foods, a full-service pizza bar and an in-house gelateria. It will employ approximately 130 people, about 60 of whom are full-time employees.
“Every time we open a new store, we always wish there was more space, so we’ve made this one bigger,” said Italian Centre Shop owner and president Teresa Spinelli, whose father Frank opened the company’s first store in 1959. “We’re hoping this model works for us, because it’s a little bit different to our other stores.”
Italian Centre Shop has typically taken over existing buildings when opening new stores, but commissioned OCI Architecture—which has offices in Edmonton, Montreal and New York—to design the new store around the Spinelli family’s passion for Italian culture and tradition.