After marking their 40th year in business in January, Kay Snyder and Robin Mooney have announced that Arcade Jewelers will be closing the location at 51 E. Burlington St. in downtown Riverside and will, at least for now, operate as an online store.
In an interview with the Landmark, Mooney said that Arcade Jewelers will close its doors by June 30, at the latest. The business, which has been located at the Burlington Street storefront since 2008, has lost its lease, Mooney said.
The building at 49-51 E. Burlington St., which houses the jewelry business, the Riverside Post Office branch and a couple other offices, had been for sale for more than a year. Mooney knew throughout May that another possible tenant had been negotiating to lease a large portion of the building.
On May 26, said Mooney, she received word that Athletico, the Oak Brook-based chain of outpatient physical rehabilitation centers, would be taking over most of the building. The post office reportedly will retain its space there.
“The timing is bittersweet, but maybe it’s a sign that it’s time to look at a way of doing business differently,” said Mooney, who established the store’s online business after joining her mother at the store in 2008.
In an article in the Landmark profiling the business’ 40th year in Riverside, Mooney said online sales accounted for about half Arcade Jewelers’ revenue.
The hardest part of learning about the end of the lease may have been breaking the news to her mother, who has been living in Florida. Snyder started Arcade Antiques in 1976 in the Arcade Building in downtown Riverside, and has remained active in the business.
Snyder has always been particularly partial to having a brick-and-mortar location because it brought her face to face with customers. Mooney handled the online part of the business.
Mooney flew down to Florida over the Memorial Day weekend to tell Snyder of the situation personally.
“She’s been calm about it,” Mooney said.
Although she said she called several Riverside building owners to inquire about possible retail space, including the Arcade Building, Mooney said “at this time there wasn’t the right fit available.”
Mooney said she would have liked to stick it out a little while longer on Burlington Street, which is undergoing a major streetscape face-lift. The business had a good Christmas season in 2015 and the 40th anniversary also drove traffic, Mooney said.
Mooney felt the business might also have profited from the physical change to the downtown business district.
“These are game-changing events here,” she said. “You never know, things change pretty quickly in this town.”
Instead, Mooney will spend the next three weeks liquidating much of the storefront’s inventory and selling display cabinets, mirrors and lamps as well as getting other items photographed and entered into the online store inventory.