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Boniere to reopen under new management

Submitted by on 1, September 16, 2010 – 4:50 amNo Comment

Photo by Michele Ellson

Word on Park Street is that Boniere Bakery is set to reopen under new management. The family that had run the Park Street bakery for the past five years shut down on Friday.

“Boniere Bakery is going to open up as soon as the new guy can,” the Park Street Business Association’s Robb Ratto said. He said the new manager approached the building’s owners and former bakery managers Peter and Regina Beck “out of the blue.”

Diane Jatczak, whose family cleared out the space Wednesday, said they had to quit the business because the Becks were raising their rent an that they were “just managing” in the tough economy, though Ratto characterized the family’s departure as “much more a landlord-tenant dispute.” Jatczak said her family would be looking for a new space and that they would continue to fulfill orders that have already been placed with them; they’ll keep their same phone number.

The Becks – he’s from a family of German bakers a few generations deep – took over Boniere in 1976, a century after it opened as a bakery and dry goods store. It’s believed to be one of the oldest continuously operating businesses in the Bay Area.

That’s good news at a time when Park Street is seeing a number of businesses close or downsize. Space Happy shut its doors at the end of August, and a reporter noticed on Tuesday that Amazon Aquariums had also shut down. Furniture seller Pillow Park Plaza is downsizing their operation, and Park Jewelers left their most recent location to move back into their old spot, which had been occupied by a spinoff business, Park Ice.

Ratto said smaller and mid-size spaces on Park have been filling with new businesses about six weeks on average after they were put out for let. The former Mints space near Tomatina is now occupied by In Bloom, a shop catering to teen girls, and he said he believes the former Robek’s space could be occupied again soon.

Still, he said larger spaces – including the old bank building on the corner of Park and Central and the space formerly occupied by Video Maniacs – are taking longer to rent. And Ratto said that he’s not sure they’ll fill up anytime soon.

“Between the election and the holidays, that’s probably not going to be addressed until the first of the year,” Ratto said.

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