Downtown Alameda is an ever-changing landscape as new businesses open. Within the last month a number of new business owners have brought their visions to the downtown district and have opened their doors to the public:
Best Beauty Bar (2544 Santa Clara Ave)
Newly opened in the former Pippa & Co space, this beauty salon provides hair, makeup, and threading services.
Cholita Linda (1337 Park Street)
Downtown Alameda’s newest restaurant got its start as a food stand at the Jack London Square farmers market before opening a spot in Oakland’s Temescal district. Cholita Linda serves Latin American comfort food including its famous fried fish tacos and pressed asado sandwich.
Joona Design Playground (1419 Park Street)
Owner Jeanne Henzel is an interior designer specializing in all-natural upholstery, innovative curtain making and contemporary hard treatments, color & design consulting, and on-site upholstery repair. Joona is currently open by appointment.
Main Squeeze (2300 Central Ave)
Head to Downtown Alameda for some delicious antioxidants and get your juice on! Alameda’s newest juice bar is serving fresh organic juices, acai bowls, smoothies, and wellness shots. Favorites include the Oasis Bowl and Maca Mama Smoothie.
Zap Payroll (2504 Santa Clara Ave, Suite #9)
Zap Payroll provides affordable payroll and HR that’s quick and easy. They provide services that are perfect for small business needs. Their knowledgeable and professional Payroll Advisors and HR Pros help employers every step of the way.
GRAND OPENING: Alameda Scoop
Alameda Scoop opens on September 15 at 1:00pm with free gelato, live music, and fun activities for kids. The menu of the new snack spot includes daily handmade gelato and other desserts. Look for matcha, black sesame, durian, lychee, thai tea, mangonada, taro, and other unique flavors to be offered on a rotating basis.
Additionally, a collaboration between Monkey King at the Brewery, Alameda Island Brewing Company, and Alameda Scoop includes an expanded 90+ seating area for patrons that will be family-friendly. It’s the perfect spot to enjoy food from Monkey King, beer from AIBC, and a treat from Alameda Scoop.
Do you have a new business that is in the works or opening soon in the downtown district? Contact the Downtown Alameda Business Association at (510) 523-1392 or email@example.com.
The fifth installation of the Love Our Island Art Walk returns to Downtown Alameda with a fun-filled evening on Friday, September 14. Rhythmix Cultural Works and the Downtown Alameda Business Association present three hours of art and music along Park Street and Santa Clara Ave as part of the 2nd Friday ArtWalk from 6:00pm to 9:00pm.
“Radical Beauty, Part 5“ brings empty downtown windows to life with images, light, sound, and conversation. Look for colorful light to spill through the windows on the corner of Park Street and Santa Clara Ave while sounds of Spanish gypsy guitar and driving percussion flow from a neighboring courtyard during this creative art event. Enjoy free musical performances on the street by Barrio Manouche, Inspector Gadje, and Omar & Friends.
Featured Art Installations:
1501 Park Street (future site of Gong Cha) – Nicole Mueller brings the tradition of stained glass into a new context, creating an abstract collage that is ephemeral, light-filled, and beautiful.
2353 Santa Clara Ave (future site of Baguette) – Using still-frame image sequences paired with short poetic statements, Najib Joe Hakim explores the themes of migration, borders, the environment, and conflict.
2301 Santa Clara Ave (historic gas station site next to Vintiq) – Charlie Sullivan repurposes found and discarded everyday items by rearranging them in a playful balance.
The Love Our Island Art Walk series is a two-year initiative supported by the California Arts Council. Learn more about the project, upcoming event dates, and featured artists at www.rhythmix.org.
Monthly 2nd Friday Art Walk
Enjoy art, conversation, and meeting new people at the monthly 2nd Friday ArtWalk in Downtown Alameda. Look for artist displays and special happenings at participating art venues, coffee houses, and nearby businesses.
Participating downtown galleries and businesses include Studio 23, 3Dot Art Gallery, Autobody Fine Art, PHOENIX, Lucky 13 Tattoo, Starbaby Studio, Alameda Island Brewing Company, Julie’s Coffee & Tea Garden, Bonne Vie, and more.
Additionally, SpeedPro East Bay, located at 1734 Clement Ave, will be displaying the beautiful artwork of Clayton J. Mitchell and the fascinating photography of Sam Breach.
Attractive building façades (or storefronts) support and encourage local business. They can have a significant effect on the attractiveness and marketability of the surrounding area. To encourage business owners to invest in the downtown and neighborhood business areas, the City of Alameda offers 50/50 matching grants to assist them in restoring or beautifying their façades.
Each business owner or property owner makes a commitment to finance 50% of the cost of improvements. Improvements can include:
- New awnings or signs
- Refurbishment of existing awnings
- Restoration of legacy signs
- Exterior Painting (including murals)
- Replacement of windows and doors
- Refurbishment of architectural features
- Rehabilitation of historic features
- Construction of outdoor eating areas
Benefits of the program include increased business exposure, more attractive streets, better first impressions for businesses, enhanced property values, improved marketability of the local business area, and more inviting places to walk and shop.
Nineteen façade grants were awarded in the downtown district during the 2017/18 fiscal year, resulting in over $240,000 being invested in the beautification of our downtown district. These are a few examples of successful projects, varying in size:
With the support of the Façade Grant Program, The Sewing Room (2434 Webb Ave) is now more visible from the street. Colorful new signs were installed on both the awning and the side wall facing Park Street. (more…)
Downtown Alameda is ever-changing when it comes to dining, learning, playing, relaxing, or working. Discover great food & drink establishments, charming shops, friendly services, and fun things to do in Downtown Alameda!
New Downtown Businesses:
AirLoom Deluxe, 2322 Santa Clara Ave
* Sneakers, streetwear, and vintage clothing.
Baby Cafe, 2321 Santa Clara Ave
* Hong Kong style cafe… delightfulness without boundaries.
Natural Mystics, 2322 Santa Clara Ave
* Everything for all your smoking needs… vapes, ejuice, pipes.
Project Burger, 2319 Central Ave
* Gourmet burgers, sandwiches, and tacos.
Romano Welch Architects, 1428 Park Street, Suite #C
* Architecture + Planning + Interiors.
New Associate Members:
Angela Klein Architect, 2622 Lincoln Ave
* Residential and small commercial architecture and interior design.
Beacon Business Bank, 1442 Webster Street
* High-quality financial solutions and personalized relationship-based service.
Clean Sidewalks+, service in Alameda
* Pressure and power washing services.
Fast Imaging, 835 Marina Village Pkwy
* High resolution printing at competitive prices. Design work available.
Golden West Betterway Uniforms, service in Alameda
* Delivering quality floor mats, uniforms, and linens — rent or buy direct.
Togo’s Sandwiches, 1929 Broadway
* Creating real, honest-to-goodness sandwiches.
Hang Ten Boiler, 2315 Santa Clara Ave
In the Works: (more…)
First day of school is nearly upon us but with the time left this summer you can still enjoy some summer fun on the island. Here’s a list of family activities that can be found in Downtown Alameda:
D20 Games is a dad-run place for tabletop gaming. The shop features regular kid-friendly events for players of Magic the Gathering, Pokemon, and other strategy games. “Two-Headed Giants” is a great way for parents and kids to play Magic as a team. Cost is $20/person and includes game packs. D20 Games, 2311 Santa Clara Ave
Children have fun acquiring new skills. The Sewing Room hosts classes and workshops year-round. The “Machine Basics Sewing Class” is perfect for those who have never used a machine ($50 fee). Sewing patterns and kits are also available for purchase in the shop for take-home projects. The Sewing Room, 2434 Webb Ave
Classic Video Gaming
Kids and their parents will have fun trying their hand at over 500 playable classic video arcade games from the 1980’s and 1990’s – all set to unlimited play! Some all-time favorites include Pac Man, Donkey Kong, Mario Bros., Paperboy, and Asteroids. Unlimited play is $5 for one hour or $10 for all-day admission. High Scores, 1414 Park Street
Art Lab and Play Gallery
Twirl is a daily play gallery for kids. Younger children can take a ride on the tike track, climb through the treehouse, or build a fort in the construction zone. Older kids can create things with play-dough experiments, wood and glass painting, or paper cutting activities. Drop-in admission for unlimited one-day play is $12/child. Twirl also offers Kid Art Evenings on Friday nights. Twirl, 1424 Park Street (more…)
Look for this summer’s East Bay Express “Best of the East Bay 2018” issue in local newsstands. This year’s results include plenty of old favorites as well as some first-time winners. These Downtown Alameda businesses are among the winners. Congratulations to all!
- High Scores is deemed the Best Place to Relive Your ’80s Childhood. The arcade is chock-full of nostalgia, classic jams on the jukebox, and good old-fashioned low-tech fun.
- The artists at Lucky 13 Tattoos are known for crafting quality tattoos in a welcoming atmosphere and have deservedly earned the reputation as Best Tattoo Parlor.
- Twirl is noted as a favorite for Best Indoor Play Space for Kids. Twirl has created a community hub where groups not only play, create, and explore but share experiences and build friendships!
- With comfy seats and in-theater dining and drinking, the Alameda Theatre & Cineplex offers the Best Luxury Theater Experience in the Bay Area.
- Burma Superstar is hands down the Best Burmese Restaurant in the Bay Area to experience Burmese homestyle cooking and their award winning tea leaf salad. We think the Alameda location is one of the best.
- Peet’s Coffee at the corner of Park Street & Central Ave is one of many locations serving the Best Coffee throughout the Bay Area.
- It’s not enough just to sell bikes. Alameda Bicycle also wants to make sure that the people who buy them use them and enjoy them. This makes them one of Best Bike Shops.
- You’ll find La Penca Azul serving delicious Mexican food and margaritas every day of the week. It’s no surprise that they are considered one of the Best Mexican Restaurants in the East Bay.
View all the results here: www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/BestOf
Enjoy the summer sun and experience island fun at one of Alameda’s biggest and best events! The 34th Annual Downtown Alameda Art & Wine Faire will be loaded with art & craft vendors, mouth-watering festival foods, local craft beer and wine, live music on three stages, and two kids’ areas with games and carnival rides. Festival-goers will also enjoy a stroll in Alameda’s historic downtown district where many of the unique shops, restaurants, and services will be offering specials throughout the weekend.
When you combine our lovely weather, live music, refreshing libations, games and rides, and your favorite fair food all wrapped up in Alameda’s beautiful island surroundings, you have a must-attend event. The 34th Annual Downtown Alameda Art & Wine Faire has something for everyone and is FREE to attend. The fun happens July 28 & 29 from 10:00am to 6:00pm each day.
Each day offers nonstop live entertainment. Swingtown is coming all the way from Florida to perform a tribute to Steve Miller & Peter Frampton on Saturday starting at 1:00pm. Some of the Bay Area’s best tribute bands will also be here to get the crowds dancing in front of the stages. (view music schedule)
Thanks to Coconut Cay SkyJuice, the new acoustic Alameda Stage will be bursting with local music programmed by Alameda guitarist Jim Parodi. Catch performances by Alameda amatuer and professional musicians including solo artists Drew Harrison, Michael Barrett, and Paul Manousos, and bands Flunch and Wicked Lobstah. (more…)
Celebrate National Ice Cream Day in Downtown Alameda on Sunday, July 15.
National Ice Cream Day and National Ice Cream Month was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan on July 9, 1984: “Ice cream is a nutritious and wholesome food, enjoyed by over ninety percent of the people in the United States. It enjoys a reputation as the perfect dessert and snack food.” (Presidential Proclamation 5219)
Although the proclamation was intended to be for one specific day, the celebration continues each year on the third Sunday of July.
It’s worth the trip to celebrate National Ice Cream Day in Downtown Alameda. The city’s oldest operating ice cream shop, Tucker’s Super-Creamed Ice Cream, started in 1941 using family recipes. Over the years, this favorite gathering place has been joined in Downtown Alameda by a variety of frozen yogurt and boba tea places.
Find frozen treats and milk teas at these downtown locations:
Locally owned businesses make Downtown Alameda a better place. They help our community thrive and add to Alameda’s unique charm. To all of you business owners who have recently surpassed milestone anniversaries, we celebrate you!
Supercuts, 1329 Park Street
Fort Knox, 1546 Park Street
Alameda Theatre & Cineplex, 2317 Central Ave
Alameda Wine Company, 2315 Central Ave
Jack in the Box, 1257 Park Street
Jo Ann Nails & Hair, 1619 Park Street
Kevin Minney, Partner in Wellness, 2515 Santa Clara Ave #107
Park Barber Shop, 2326 Santa Clara Ave
5 Years: (more…)
Get ready to have some fun in Downtown Alameda on July 4th.
The Mayor’s 4th of July Parade is one of the best Independence Day parades in the Bay Area. Spectators of all ages look forward to seeing a lively procession of vintage cars, hand-decorated flatbeds (“floats”), dancing horses, marching bands, dancing troupes, cheering squads, bicyclists, musicians, costumed characters, clowns, and surprises.
Since its inception in 1976, the annual parade has grown to boast over 160 “floats” and over 2,500 participants that travel along a 3.3 mile route across the island city, from Park Street on the east end to Webster Street on the west end.
This year’s Grand Marshals are Pauline Kelly, former owner of Pauline’s Antiques, and Duane Watson, former owner of Lee Auto Supply. Both were longtime shop owners in Downtown Alameda before retiring this year.
For a front row seat along the Park Street sidewalks, plan to arrive well before the 10:00 am start time. The Mayor’s 4th of July parade attracts over 20,000 people and many of the spectators search out the best viewing spots in Downtown Alameda. (more…)