Categories: Business

White Rock tradition continues in new location

One of White Rock’s longest continuing businesses is still going strong in White Rock.

Hillcrest Bakery and Deli – a fixture in the city for 45 years – will mark its grand re-opening Saturday, Nov. 18 at its new premises at 15231 Thrift Ave.

The move to the Saltaire Building (at the corner of Thrift Avenue and Johnston Road) was precipitated by the impending demolition of Hillcrest Mall for the construction of the second phase of Bosa Properties’ Miramar Village.

“Bosa let us know about it at the end of November last year, which was very kind of them – but it took all of 11 months to get it all done,” said David Moyer.

“We’re really happy to be able to stay in White Rock and keep the bakery in the community – we’ve said we’ll do anything we can to stay in White Rock,” said his wife Sheena.

“We’re super-excited to be able to stay here,” David added. “We just live down the street.”

The couple took over the bakery after former owner Mike Heywood and his wife Vanessa retired in 2011, but they weren’t exactly new to the business – David had worked there as a baker since 1988.

And while the premises may be new, they’re still conscious of the history of the bakery. In fact, a venerable 10-foot maple work bench – still bearing some of the scars of its many years of service – has been repurposed as several sale counters in the bakery, plus butcher blocks, while another portion was gifted to Heywood as a souvenir of his former business.

All the equipment from the mall location has been reinstalled, along with refurbished display cases, Sheena said.

For the Moyers, who have also been able to keep all their former employees through the move, it’s also turning into even more of a family concern – son Max is now working in the bakery, while their seven-year-old granddaughter Hailey can be seen there on Sundays.

“She’s decided she wants to be a cake decorator, and she’s only charging us $10 for her services,” chuckled Sheena. “It’s only child labour if they don’t want to be here.”

Although the configuration of the new bakery actually means a little less working room in the back, the beneficiaries are the customers, who now have much more indoor seating for enjoying a coffee and Danish or some other baked temptation.

All of the popular Hillcrest baked goods, take-out meals and deli items remain the same – including Sheena’s bread pudding and sauce – although the Moyers are taking the opportunity to add more import items like specialty cheeses and interesting jams and relishes, and they’ve added “about eight or nine gluten-free items,” Sheena said.

With Christmas just around the corner, more and more of the bakery’s Christmas imports and special seasonal baked goods will soon be appearing, the Moyers said – along with their popular pre-prepared Christmas dinners.

And, mindful of the recent closure of Buy-Low Foods, the bakery is also carrying a modest selection of grocery items in smaller quantities as a convenience for long-time Hillcrest customers.

“And there’s lots of free underground parking here,” David said. “(The lot) is brightly lit and clean, and there’s an elevator that comes right up to Johnston Road for those who can’t get around as easily.”

Meanwhile other former Hillcrest businesses are now settling into new locations in White Rock or South Surrey.

Nancy Holt’s women’s clothing boutique Holt Couture (formerly She’s Some Kind Of Wonderful) is now just across the street at 1446 Johnston Rd.; Bombshell Hair Lounge is at its new quarters at 1550 Foster St. (on the far west side of Central Plaza).

Central Plaza is also the location for Lily Li’s Lily Health Care Group Ltd. (formerly Stariver Health), at 15136 North Bluff Road, while Oxana Petrakova and Mark Kushnir of Oxana’s Cafe and Burrito Bar have now taken over the Java Express franchise at 15090 North Bluff (but are still providing some home-style delicacies, including borscht and other soups, breakfast crepes and burritos).

Alex Browne

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