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Downtown Blog: Downtown Profiles

Baggins Shoes: The largest selection of Converse & Vans sneakers in the world!

Baggins Shoes, owned by Glen Lynch and business partner Brydie Griffin and located on Lower Johnson Street, offers about 700 styles of Converse and 300 styles of Vans to sneaker aficionados all over the world.

Get Hooked on this Downtown Victoria Deli

Relatively new to downtown Victoria’s growing foodie area along Blanshard and Fort streets is Hook Fine Foods, a gourmet smoked and cured seafood delicatessen that has been open nine months as of December 9.

“We had been looking for a storefront for a couple of years,” said co-owner Chris. “We looked on Government Street but the space was too big. I really liked this building; it’s a good size for us. And this is a good little foodie area.”

She She Bags & She She Shoes - Sister stores for a splash of colour and fun

For long-time residents of Victoria, Shelagh Macartney may look familiar, more familiar even than her two Trounce Alley shops - She She Bags and She She Shoes. Shelagh started out in Trounce Alley with All in Bloom, a lovely gift shop full of quirky, unique items that made perfect gifts for friends and family.

Jam Cafe and Union Pacific - They're family!

Seven years ago, husband and wife team Jim and Candy Walmsley opened Union Pacific Coffee Co. at 537 Herald Street, “I’ve been in the restaurant industry – mostly front of house operations – since I was 16 years old,” said Jim. “I wanted to get out there and do it on my own.”

Originally seeking a location in Vancouver, Jim and Candy couldn’t find a space that suited their vision, so they decided to move back to Victoria where Jim had grown up and still has family.

Get on the water with Ocean River Sports

Ocean River Sports is a family endeavor for the Henrys, one that has resulted in one of Victoria's, and Canada's, best outdoor adventure stores.

Silk Road - Local business with world-wide appeal

Silk Road has been a staple for tea lovers locally and world-wide for more than two decades. The store is a thriving local success story that has expanded our knowledge of tea and led a revival of Victoria's long standing tea culture.

Outlooks: A one-stop shop for men in Victoria

Looking good and feeling confident is easy for the men of Victoria with a one-stop shop in Outlooks for Men at 534 Yates Street.

But Outlooks for Men isn’t originally a Victoria store. Dale Olsen, then editor at a Kamloops newspaper, bought the store from a friend in Kamloops and moved it to Victoria 23 years ago.

“I always wanted to come back; I’ve always loved Victoria,” says Dale, current owner of Outlooks for Men. “I loved it when I came here to go to university, then I went away and I always wanted to come back.”

An almost-50-year-old downtown gem: The Cobbler

Did you know that The Cobbler shoe store at 718 View Street has been in the same location under the same owners for 46 years? There is a lot going on behind the unassuming store front between Sapphire Day Spa and St. Andrew's Square!

“The owners chose this location because Victoria is such an old city and the downtown is always the heart of an old city and the hub of an old city,” says Marion Martin, store manager. “Every day down here is different. I meet people from all over the world and it’s just interesting.”

Bliss Boutique = West Coast Chic

Siblings Steph and Jeff Shannon aren’t from around here… but their co-owned women’s clothing store – Bliss Boutique – is the epitome of Victoria’s unique West Coast chic style.

Steph and Jeff grew up in Calgary, Alberta; Steph moved to Victoria after high school to pursue an education in graphic design, while Jeff followed a few years later to complete a business degree.

Chorizo & Co, a 3-in-1 Spanish deli, pantry, and café

Chorizo & Co has been a long-time dream for co-owners Tomas Dosil and Jonathan Lee. The idea of opening a Spanish-style deli/pantry/café arose more than ten years ago; business planning began three years ago. The long-awaited shop finally opened last August at 807 Fort Street.


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