2018 sees Retail NI member Arcadia Delicatessen realise a significant milestone as the third generation family business celebrates 85 years of trading from the same unit on Belfast’s Lisburn road.
It is the oldest retail business still in existence on the popular South Belfast shopping street.
Over that time, The Arcadia has morphed from local bakery into the award-winning cornucopia of delights it is today. Ellen Brown took the shop beyond the war years and it was her son, William, who began to add such exotics as French Brie and Greek olives to the selection reacting to the requests of his clientele returning from holidays on the continent in the 70s and 80s wanting to relive those summer holiday memories.
Over the 85 years there have been many interesting stories to tell and famous customers across the threshold including a cross section of journalists and politicians, which often makes the Saturday queue a very interesting place!
William, who still works in the shop, handed the reigns to his son, Mark and wife Laura ten years ago and they have further developed the business to compete in today’s challenging food retail environment.
In recent years, a burgeoning local food scene and a newfound pride in the quality of local products on offer has seen Mark Brown become an ambassador for local products, providing many artisan producers with their first retail shelf space beyond market stalls.
Mark Brown said
“I am proud to continue the business which my grandmother worked hard to establish in South Belfast. Times have changed and we’ve had to move with them but I hope we still stay true to the original values of a high quality food offering and great customer service”
“Arcadia has managed to hold onto its old fashioned customer service whilst providing a 21st century offering incorporating a successful gift hamper website and added value channels such as their popular bespoke cheese wedding cake service.
“With this continued attention to the ever-changing retail environment, Arcadia will be around for a long time to come”
Retail NI Chief Executive Glyn Roberts said:
“Congratulations to Arcadia on their eighty five years in business. They are a fantastic example of family run independent retailer adapting to a changing retail market and providing superb customer service”
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