Pharmacist Nitin Saini is assisted by his wife Richa at their new independent pharmacy on Redford Street. (TERESA BIRD PHOTO)

Pharmacist Nitin Saini is assisted by his wife Richa at their new independent pharmacy on Redford Street. (TERESA BIRD PHOTO)

BIZ BEAT: New year means new businesses opening in Port Alberni

Creperie and pharmacy two of the newest businesses in town

TERESA BIRD

ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS

It’s a new year and new businesses are opening in Port Alberni.

Ironworks Café and Creperie opened to waiting customers Jan. 9. The new eatery at Argyle and Kingsway offers sweet and savoury crepes, along with specialty coffees and teas.

Although new to Port Alberni, Ironworks is not new for owner Dina Stuehler. She started the first Ironworks in Ladysmith in 2018, added one in Duncan a year later and opened in Nanaimo in 2020. But her latest café is a favourite.

“This is definitely one of the most beautiful cafes I have,” says Stuehler, who did a lot of the renovations herself. “I always saw the potential in Port Alberni. All of sudden, I had this opportunity. I looked, I saw, and on the spot, I took it.”

Stuehler worked in the hospitality industry, including restaurants and cruise ships, before opening her own cafe so she understands the importance of treating staff and customers well.

“I am creating an experience for people,” says Stuehler, who adds affordability is part of that. “I keep it as cost-effective as possible.”

The menu includes sweet and savoury crepes with gluten-friendly, keto and vegan options. Service is cafeteria style and take-out is available. Ironworks is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. See their menu at www.ironworkscafe.ca or call 1-855-748-9371.

•••

A new independent pharmacy opened in time for the new year. Pharmacist Nitin Saini is the owner of Good Faith Pharmacy, which opened on Redford Street in late December.

Saini has worked at many of the pharmacies in town since arriving in 2014, but wanted to do things differently for the health of his clients, so he opened an independent pharmacy that isn’t restricted to corporate policies.

“I want to take a collaborative approach,” says Saini. “I can check patient lab results and make sure the medication or treatment is right and whether the medication is needed. I can consult with the doctor or nurse and take the time to provide better service and care.”

He says this approach is even more important for those who struggle with addictions, mental health issues or for those who don’t have a regular doctor or health care benefits.

“Pharmacies traditionally just hand out medications, sometimes without all the background,” says Saini. “It’s having the right information and the knowledge that pharmacists have that can make a difference.”

Located next to Valley Vision, Good Faith Pharmacy offers prescriptions, over the counter medications, compression stocking fittings (certified), travel vaccinations, assessment and monitoring of health conditions, customized medications and packaging, wellness consultations, direct billing and telehealth services.

The pharmacy is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed on statutory holidays. Visit www.goodfaithpharmacy.com or call 778-421-1035

•••

Realtor Amanda Douglas has opened an independent real estate office, Abingdon Moore Realty. Douglas, along with realtor Marilyn Koehle, opened the office in Adelaide Centre on Johnston Road Jan. 4.

“We want to offer more options to local sellers and buyers,” says Douglas. Abingdon Moore welcomes all property inquiries and Koehle is also licensed for rental property management.

Learn more and see listings at www.abingdonmoore.com or call 778-734-2024.

•••

Sign up now to get fresh, locally-grown vegetables all summer.

The Shelter Farm is once again offering their Community Supported Agriculture “CSA” produce box program. How does it work? Sign up for a full or half share and receive a bag or box of produce grown at the Shelter Farm by students of the Market Garden Program, run in partnership with North Island College.

The Shelter Farm grows more than 70 different types of vegetables and herbs, as well as fruit, mushrooms, microgreens and eggs.

A full share is $675 for 21 weeks and a half share is $450. You can pay in installments. The first box is June 4 and can be picked up at Spirit Square Farmers Market at Harbour Quay. For more information, call Guy Langlois at 250-720-5177 or email guy_pashelter@shaw.ca.

•••

Port Alberni Marine Fuels and Services have been selected to provide vessel operator services for the new water taxi owned by the Uchucklesaht Tribe Government. The Ehthlateese 1 will primarily transport residents to and from the community in Uchucklesaht Inlet to Port Alberni. Port Alberni Marine Fuels and Services also operates the fuel dock at Tyee Landing.

•••

Michelle Cole has joined Jennifer Gillard at The Shear Lounge Hair Salon on Redford Street. Cole has been a certified stylist for 15 years, previously working in Port Alberni. Cole specializes in styling, haircuts and custom color services to suit your hair needs. Late appointments are available upon request. Call 250-735-5146 to make an appointment.

Teresa Bird is the Alberni Valley News publisher. Do you have a business tip for her? E-mail her at publisher@albernivalleynews.com.

BusinessPort Alberni

 

Dina Stuehler has opened her fourth Ironworks Cafe & Creperie location on Vancouver Island, this time in Port Alberni on Argyle Street at Kingsway. (TERESA BIRD PHOTO)

Dina Stuehler has opened her fourth Ironworks Cafe & Creperie location on Vancouver Island, this time in Port Alberni on Argyle Street at Kingsway. (TERESA BIRD PHOTO)