A Vons in northeast Pasadena is closing, here's what's taking its place – The San Gabriel Valley Tribune

A Vons supermarket that has served northeast Pasadena for more than 47 years will be closing its doors in mid-April, but the store will reopen in the fall as the city’s first Stater Bros. Market.

Von’s future at its 1390 Allen Ave. location was in question back in May when the company announced that it was in discussions with the landlord to continue leasing the property, adding at the time: “There is a possibility we will be forced to leave the store in the near future.”

Jenna Watkinson, a spokeswoman for the Southern California Division of Albertsons, Vons and Pavilions, confirmed Thursday that the store will close for good in April.

“We would have preferred to stay,” she said. “We had remodeled that store and introduced some features that aren’t found at any of our other stores. It has an expanded deli section and a health drink called Kombucha on tap.” Other upgraded features include expanded dairy and floral departments, an expanded sushi station and a new homeopathic soaps department.

Another makeover planned

Despite those improvements, Stater Bros. plans to put its own touches on the space. The San Bernardino-based privately-owned chain will take possession of the 42,000-square-foot building in May. It will then undergo a major remodel and reopen as a Stater Bros. supermarket in the fall.

The new store will feature a a variety of amenities, including at full-service seafood department,  FujiSan handcrafted sushi made in-house daily, a full-service bakery, a seating area and a floral department.

It’s not only the first Stater Bros. in Pasadena, it will be westernmost storefront in the San Gabriel Valley, with other locations in West Covina, Azusa, Covina, San Dimas and Glendora.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to establish roots in such a historic and beautiful community,” Stater Bros. CEO Pete Van Helden said in a statement. “We look forward to a good working relationship with the city of Pasadena as the extensive remodel process commences.”

Pasadena Councilwoman Margaret McAustin said a lot of the credit to clinching a new tenant goes to Alton Plaza Development Co., which owns the property.

“They were determined that this would remain a first-class market, so when the lease was signed, I was so pleased,” she said. “It’s essential that we have a Class A supermarket up here north of the freeway and east of Lake Avenue.”

Founded in Yucaipa in 1936, Stater Bros. has grown steadily to become the largest privately owned supermarket chain in Southern California and the largest private employer in both San Bernardino and Riverside counties. The company currently operates 171 supermarkets that are staffed by about 18,000 employees.

Employees moving to other Von’s locations

Meanwhile, the current Vons employs about 150 workers, and all of the employees will be absorbed into other Vons, Watkinson said.

“We have begun the process of offering employees placement in surrounding stores,” she said. “Our human resources department will work diligently with each affected employee and the labor unions to attempt to find other work that is both consistent with the applicable law or labor agreement.”

Closing store deals

Many of the store’s products will be discounted as the closure draws near.

“We’ll do a markdown process,” Watkinson said. “Some products like alcohol and tobacco can’t be discounted. But for other things we’ll start at a certain percentage and get more aggressive as we get closer to our target date.”

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