Shoprite-Owner Buys Upper West Side Fairway Store in Auction

The original Fairway at 74th Street and Broadway was sold on Wednesday to Village Supermarket, the owner of the Shoprite and Gourmet Garage chains.

Village also bought three other Manhattan stores and its production and distribution center for a total of $76 million. The company previously said it plans to maintain Fairway’s unique style (so yes, once social distancing is over expect people to keep elbowing you in the produce section).

”Like Fairway, Village Super Market is focused on providing fresh and prepared foods and plans to retain the Fairway name and operate the stores in the tradition New Yorkers have come to know and love, ensuring Fairway remains the unique, one-stop shopping experience and ‘The Place To Go Fooding,’” Village Supermarkets said in a prior statement.

It’s a positive development, particularly compared to what might have been. Fairway was in financial trouble after adding on debt and expanding quickly. One report floated the idea that it might have to close altogether.

Fairway’s current operators will continue running the stores until the handover.

“Fairway Market continues to serve its communities by operating all of its stores, including stores not sold during the Court-supervised auction, and intends to do so for the foreseeable future to accommodate the current public need for our products,” the company said in a release.

Amazon will be taking over two Fairway store leases in New Jersey.

Thanks to tipster Upper West Sider for the heads-up.

NEWS | 53 comments | permalink
    1. your_neighbor says:

      From other reports, it appears that Village Supermarket only purchased the lease to the parking lot of the 125th St store so that one is probably going away.

      • Correct says:

        For sure that was a disaster, nobody was ever there.

        • Cato says:

          — “For sure that was a disaster, nobody was ever there.”

          1. Well, *you* must have been there, or how would you know that “nobody was ever there”?

          2. Nobody went there because it was too crowded.

          3. There were plenty of people there whenever *we* went. That is (I hope not “was”) a great store.

        • Mark Moore says:

          I’ve shopped at that Harlem store at least ten times a year for the last 20 years. It’s a huge loss.

      • Paul says:

        According to the linked story above, that’s not true, the deal is for all five Manhattan locations.

        Why would they buy a store’s parking lot but not the store? Especially one under a highway (not exactly a prime development opportunity).

    2. Chase says:

      glad amazon didn’t scoop up this one. hope they keep the 24 hour aspect.

    3. LUBOMIR FIRKO says:

      Good news. UWS wouldn’t be the same without this store.

    4. Leon says:

      This is about as good of a result as you can expect. When I was a kid in the suburbs Shop Rite was my family’s go-to supermarket and it was fine. Nothing fancy, but clean, fully stocked, reasonably priced. Since it is a larger chain hopefully they can use their purchasing power to keep prices down.

    5. CMC says:

      maybe they’ll do something to keep the store safe rather than a germ fest as it now is.

      • Ian Alterman says:

        CMC: I agree. I was the one who called the DOH on them when they put all their pickle and olive barrels on the floor, without a sneeze guard. I even saw children putting their hands in them to take out olives. It is illegal to keep any food less than 6″ above the floor. After my call and a DOH inspection, they finally built the platform for the barrels.

        • Sue says:

          I was in there one day last summer when someone knock into one of the platforms. Olives and glass and olive juice EVERYWHERE. What a mess. But they sure got it cleaned up quickly..

        • dd says:

          Do you remember the famous photo from years ago of a mouse peering out from a barrel of olives?!

      • Enid says:

        Agree! I reported them yesterday to 311, ABC, NBC and CBS’s tip lines, Cuomo’s office, NY Post tipline and to the Westside rag! Someone needs to go their and investigate. I did not exaggerate about my experience there, in fact, I didn’t describe fully, just how bad it was!

    6. Deb says:

      I wonder if the purchase by ShopRite includes the brownstones next to the Broadway store

    7. ALLAN B katz says:

      Who is taking over fairway in pelham

    8. Carol N says:

      Thank you.Glad it will keep the integrity of gourmet as much as possible

    9. Peter says:

      Nervous to hear something definitive about the Harlem location (which is better than the original Fairway at 74th Street). Please keep us apprised!

    10. Enid says:

      My friend sent me this article after I shopped at the Fairway on Broadway and 74th. I can NOT believe what it was like and I am kicking myself for staying there. I should have taken photos but I didn’t think to. There was absolutely NO social distancing, no crowd control, no sanitizer for the carts, NOT one protection and total non-compliance with the CDC recommendations and what I thought were the state mandates. I begged the person behind me in the long line to check out, to give me space and he did not. The aisles were so crowded and even the customers who seemed to be concerned, and trying to be careful, couldn’t find an inch of space to move over. If anyone else was there, I recommend calling 311 immediately!

      • m.pipik says:

        Yep
        I passed Fairway @74 yesterday and saw the checkout line going out the front door and everyone standing close together. I wanted to look for some things there, but they weren’t important so I didn’t go in.

        I was wondering if there is a number to call or text about this situation.

        It is more frightening that so many people were shopping there and ignoring social distance. These are my “neighbors” and they don’t seem to care about other people. I’m not using the words I really want to use here.

        • Enid says:

          Hi, thank you for posting your experience. The more I think about this, the more upset I get. YES, you can call 311, which I did and reported exactly what happened. I also filled out two forms with the media after googling tiplines. Unfortunately only the NY Post and ABC came up in my search. I will attempt more today. I plan to call Cuomo’s office as well. If I get sick, I will raise all kind of hell cause it was truly bizarre in there and unconscionable and irresponsible! NEVER, EVER will i go back there again!!! It would be great if you would report them as well, as there is power in numbers.

          Many thanks…

          https://nypost.com/tips/

          https://abc7ny.com/need-a-story-investigated-click-here/148344/

      • Nicole says:

        Enid — it’s like you took the words right out of my mouth! I was also at Fairway this evening (just before 5 pm) and I’m definitely kicking myself. After grabbing one item downstairs and then fighting my way through to go to the second floor, I found it was just as bad upstairs. People would push past me in the narrow aisles and there was little to no room given in line.

        From now on, I need to just wait it out at Trader Joe’s — knowing that once you’re inside, at least it’s a less stressful experience! I also have not tried Citarella yet, but they appeared to have someone controlling the number of customers entering.

    11. Adam says:

      It’ll be the same old Fairway? Only time will tell, but I kinda doubt that.

    12. sheila wolk says:

      One thing thats good is that ShopRite makes great spring water..I will be sure to go back later when its all turned over and virus is gone to get a delivery on their great water.
      Gristedes used to sell their water when they were partners about 18 months ago but they parted ways and so did the water.

      I love Fairways rotisserie chickens and soups..Hope shoprite keeps the cooks who makes those and cheese department is GREAT to!

    13. E. Terriss says:

      I had heard cpl months ago that they had
      been bought by Safeway…???
      New owner seems to have a monopoly on food chains in the greater NY area… that foretells higher prices!!!
      Elaine

    14. Sandra Lublin says:

      I love the store in Pelham Manor. Hope it stays the same. Especially the Murray’s chickens. I understand Murray’s cickens are only sold to Fairway. Please keep up the tradition. I also love their rotisserie chickens.

    15. EliteMMA says:

      The move of Fairway Market to keep operating all of its stores for fulfilling a public needs is really appreciative. Please visit – https://www.elite-mma.com/

    16. Iris says:

      Amazon took over more than two stores and sounds like it’s is planning to turn them into distribution warehouses.

      It’s is very unlikely that Village supermarkets and that must be a new owner, as ShopRite was owned by Wakefern a family business for decades, is not going to eventually use that lot differently and building a high rise job tip of the store ( since Fairway owns the land)

      • Jeff says:

        Wakefern does not own ShopRight. Village owns a portion of the Wakefern coop, along with other grocers who also purchase at least 85% of their goods through Wakefern. Village & all the other stores who own a portion of Wakefern, get a patronage dividend from Wakefern for being owners & buying through the coop.

    17. MKL says:

      What is happening with Harlem store?

    18. UWSEd says:

      SHOCKED that we haven’t already heard of a high-rise planned for 74th/B’way.

    19. ilyNYC says:

      We have been to Fairway for one reason or other almost every day for the past two weeks. Despite the usual round of sour comments about Fairway, I have never once seen the conditions about which some here are complaining. OK, when people pass by each other in an aisle, there may be a few seconds of less-than-socially-distant proximity — I have seen that in every open essential business that I have visited, including Trader Joe’s. Everyone that I encountered in Fairway was appropriate, considerate, sober, and gracious. I appreciate Fairway and the Cafe (whose cityscape view I also appreciate) and I am wishing the best to all its employees and customers in this next chapter 🙂

      • Enid says:

        That’s absolutely NOT true! If they were being responsible, they would limit the amount of people they allowed inside at the same time as other stores are doing! Where were the cart wipes? How many of the employees wore masks or gloves? Some wore gloves but not all! And why would you even want to defend them in the least during these very dangerous times when NY State and particularly NYC is the state with the largest number of cases anywhere in the world! I think it’s no time to be casual about their responsibility. Trader Joe’s took too long to get with the program as I was there 10 days earlier, but at least they changed their policies and practices after Sunday, March 22nd, 8 pm!

      • jem says:

        Yes – Fairway is an important part of the community and staff are working hard so people can get food and stay home.
        We owe Fairway staff our thanks.

        • Enid says:

          Yes, thanks to the workers who stock the shelves, check out the customers and work for low wages with no protections! It is those people that are most at risk by allowing customers to get close enough to them and they aren’t even wearing masks! But Fairway’s management should NOT be congratulated and if Shop Rite bought took over just in time to screw things up, THAT corporation needs to be held accountable! Go there at your own risk!!!

        • ilyNYC says:

          Yes, I extend my thanks to them as well. My observations of admirable conduct at Fairway during these challenging times were not offered casually or offhandedly or even to defend Fairway — they were accurately stated. For some commenters to imply that other commenters are not being truthful is regrettable.

        • Tuileries says:

          Gracious comment; yes, agreed.

    20. Carleen says:

      I’m happy they are going to run it like a Fairway store, I just wish they can keep some of the very good works, like the ones that manage (for example) the deli and go to different stores, to make sure everything look good and always has products ,so you want to come back ,they work very hard . You need good people who are will to work and trust .

    21. Wendy says:

      shop rite on Long Island is pretty good. this is the best of a bad situation imho.

    22. MH says:

      I am shocked and disgusted by the lack of social distancing at Fairway. People cluster and create human blockades and seem not to care about their fellow customers, make no effort to create space, even the checkout lines are filled with people standing too close together. Why don’t they limit the number of people who enter, like Citarella does???? What is WRONG with people?! We are in this together!

      • Enid says:

        MH you are completely accurate! I posted about it yesterday and the more I thought about it, the more worked up I got! So I reported them to 311,ABC, NBC and CBS’s tip lines, Cuomo’s office, NY Post tipline and to the Westside rag. I would urge you to do the same if you can. Amazing how someone commenting here is so defensive about the store. That person must have stock in it because we can NOT be overly cautious during this unprecedented health crisis. Maybe they are invincible…

    23. Matt says:

      What about the Fairway at west 125th street?

    24. Larry says:

      Hopefully the stores will become Shoprites, and not like Gourmet Garage, which is a second-rate, overpriced shop.

    25. Mike stein says:

      What about the East 86th Street fairway?

    26. Martha Livingston says:

      Thanks for the heads-up; as a customer in the Douglaston, Queens store, I wonder what the fate of this store will be.

    27. Paul says:

      I think that their current sneeze guard at their olive bar is totally inadequate, but I was told by the Dept. Of Agriculture (the agency with jurisdiction over food markets) that they had OK’d it (confirmed by Assemblywoman Rosenthal). The DOH said they couldn’t do anything about it. I think it’s outrageous that they have gotten away with this.

    28. Alan H. Zwiebel says:

      Will Passover orders be fulfilled? Paid for already, will they be delivered as planned?