Mercer Island 2019 Local Business Year in Review

January 10, 2020 | by Erin Sirianni

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Happy New Year! It’s time for our annual review of local business activity on Mercer Island. Here’s a look at what opened, closed, and what’s in store for 2020. Also, congratulations to the recipient of the 2019 Mercer Island Business of the Year award!

2019 Mercer Island Business of the Year

Photo courtesy Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce

Congrats to Covenant Living at the Shores! Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Laurie Givan announced the award recipient at yesterday’s Chamber of Commerce meeting and shared the following message on Instagram:

“Congratulations to Covenant Living at the Shores, and their residents, for winning the 2019 Mercer Island Business of the Year. With 189 staff and 332 residents, they add significant value to our economic vitality and positively impact our community with their involvement in our churches, Farmers Market, MIYFS, the Women’s Club, the Rotary Half Marathon, the Mercer Island Parks & Recreation Department, to name a few. Thank you Covenant Living at the Shores for all you do for Mercer Island.”

What opened?

Three new food establishments opened in 2019 on Mercer Island. Classic burger joint Old 76 opened in the former Freshy’s location. Eat Local opened in Tabit’s Square Village bringing delicious frozen prepared meals to the island. French cafe L’Experience Paris replaced Convivial Cafe in the Islandia Shopping Center and serves delightful patisserie, coffee, tea, wine, and fine French fare.

Mercer Island’s shopping scene got an exciting new addition last year with the opening of The Boutique Lounge in the south end shopping center.

Aegis Living Mercer Island opened in downtown Mercer Island. The assisted living community includes 89 residences – a mix of studio, one-bedroom and select two-bedroom units, including 16 apartments homes dedicated to memory care. 

The Home Collaborative, a boutique co-working and event space, also opened on Mercer Island, as well as Island WIFI, a service-based business that assists residents with their home internet service.

What closed, changed ownership, and rebranded?

The Mercer Island Service Center, an auto repair shop, closed after 48 years in business on Mercer Island. The owners, who are now enjoying retirement, were awarded an honorary 2019 Mercer Island Business of the Year award from the Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce for their longstanding service to the Mercer Island community.

In February, Freshy’s Local Market closed their doors after a two-year stint in The Hadley building. The market was an expansion of Freshy’s Seafood Shack, a fish-and-chips spot, which closed at the end of 2018.

In July, Convivial Cafe shared an announcement on Facebook that it would be joining the Cépaé group – resulting in a change of ownership and a transformation into the French cafe L’Experience Paris. The post also indicated that Convivial Cafe owner Joel Wachs would join the group, and he now assists L’Experience with community outreach and events.

LeGuerisseur, a pilates and massage style studio located in the Key Bank building, has a new name – Aloha Wellness Spa. 

What’s ahead?

As reported by the Puget Sound Business Journal and The Seattle Times, New Seasons Market on Mercer Island will become Metropolitan Market by mid-2020. Stay tuned as we look forward to sharing more details with you in the months to come about the transition and store opening.

Le Fete, a French bakery, is also in the works for Mercer Island – with an opening date projected for late winter or early spring.

If you have any tips about local business happenings on the island, we’d love to hear from you.

Are you a local business owner? Feel free to share your business reflections for the year 2019 in the comments below.

Feature image: Aegis Living Mercer Island | Courtesy Aegis Living