Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

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storewanderer
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Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

Post by storewanderer »

This is a real beat up old Ralphs. It still retains most of Ralphs decor and aisle hangers.

I'm not entirely sure what was on the left wall of the store between produce and seafood (there is a fixture that says Floral) which is mostly covered in tarps. What is odd here is seafood is at back left, dairy (drinks now) was at back center, and meat was at back right. Maybe this new operator added in the seafood area at back left and moved the fixture.

Also once you get to service meat the sales floor is blocked and you cannot get over to the other side wall. I was able to go into the other side wall closed area a bit and it appears they tried to build a second seafood department but for some reason it is out of commission. Construction does not appear to be in progress and the area looks dated.

Store demanded $10 minimum purchase for credit card use but had no issue with a debit card under $10. Decided that was fine and put that through and decided to get $10 cash back while I was at it. The employee saw me select cash back and canceled the payment in the middle of the process and said you can't do that, no cash back. Okay why does the system offer it then? News flash to these guys- it costs more to process a debit card (flat fee rate around 30 cents) for a $6 purchase than it costs to process a credit card (12 cents interchange fee plus 2 or 3%) but I guess math isn't their strong suit or they just want to hassle customers.
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Re: Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

Post by ClownLoach »

I think this Ralphs closed around 1993, and may have been earlier than that. I know it was already gone when I still lived in Garden Grove, and I moved out in 1994. It has been a Vietnamese grocery store for a very long time. They kept the oval Ralphs sign housing for a while until the current operator replaced it, and they're still using an oval sign pylon. Down the street about another mile was a Ralphs The Giant next to Target at Brookhurst/Westminster; it is now Shun Fat and last time I saw it the original Ralphs scripted style produce sign was still there. I don't remember if the checkerboard wallpaper had been removed or not. Ralphs over the years has pretty much abandoned Garden Grove, Santa Ana and Westminster except for one store. It is a large gap in their coverage area in Orange County. Stater Bros and Albertsons are still present in Westminster although one vintage SB closed a couple of years ago, may have been on Brookhurst.
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storewanderer
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Re: Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

Post by storewanderer »

ClownLoach wrote: May 23rd, 2022, 5:30 pm I think this Ralphs closed around 1993, and may have been earlier than that. I know it was already gone when I still lived in Garden Grove, and I moved out in 1994. It has been a Vietnamese grocery store for a very long time. They kept the oval Ralphs sign housing for a while until the current operator replaced it, and they're still using an oval sign pylon. Down the street about another mile was a Ralphs The Giant next to Target at Brookhurst/Westminster; it is now Shun Fat and last time I saw it the original Ralphs scripted style produce sign was still there. I don't remember if the checkerboard wallpaper had been removed or not. Ralphs over the years has pretty much abandoned Garden Grove, Santa Ana and Westminster except for one store. It is a large gap in their coverage area in Orange County. Stater Bros and Albertsons are still present in Westminster although one vintage SB closed a couple of years ago, may have been on Brookhurst.

SmartSelect_20220523-173445_Google.jpg
I was surprised to see the open Albertsons in Westminster. I suppose it will be the sole surviving conventional. Also another Albertsons in Fountain Valley basically a block from Westminster. Fountain Valley just got self checkouts added (like the one that is closing in Carson, so not sure how much that means). It kind of needs a remodel, it looks like it was remodeled around 2005 back toward the end when they started a slightly cheaper version of Jewel interior again.

Shun Fat still has that Ralphs produce sign but other than that it is difficult to tell the store was a Ralphs. I notice Shun Fat seems to remodel their stores over time as they take them over, probably depending on how they perform. I have not had good experiences with Shun Fat around Sacramento but they seem to be growing pretty constantly. Shun Fat has a Ralphs on Mack Road in Sacramento (this is a former Albertsons from the 1999 divests; Ralphs did a full upscale remodel on the store spending a boatload of money in 2000- awful neighborhood, so bad Ralphs didn't even convert this to FoodsCo though it probably would have made sense to convert it like they did to the Gerber Road which was another Ralphs big remodel and Stockton Blvd/Fruitridge Ralphs which had the late 90's Albertsons interior when divested as it had just been remodeled by Albertsons) and when they moved in it basically looked like Ralphs but over time they've done a lot of work to the store.
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Re: Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

Post by ClownLoach »

storewanderer wrote: May 23rd, 2022, 10:48 pm
ClownLoach wrote: May 23rd, 2022, 5:30 pm I think this Ralphs closed around 1993, and may have been earlier than that. I know it was already gone when I still lived in Garden Grove, and I moved out in 1994. It has been a Vietnamese grocery store for a very long time. They kept the oval Ralphs sign housing for a while until the current operator replaced it, and they're still using an oval sign pylon. Down the street about another mile was a Ralphs The Giant next to Target at Brookhurst/Westminster; it is now Shun Fat and last time I saw it the original Ralphs scripted style produce sign was still there. I don't remember if the checkerboard wallpaper had been removed or not. Ralphs over the years has pretty much abandoned Garden Grove, Santa Ana and Westminster except for one store. It is a large gap in their coverage area in Orange County. Stater Bros and Albertsons are still present in Westminster although one vintage SB closed a couple of years ago, may have been on Brookhurst.

SmartSelect_20220523-173445_Google.jpg
I was surprised to see the open Albertsons in Westminster. I suppose it will be the sole surviving conventional. Also another Albertsons in Fountain Valley basically a block from Westminster. Fountain Valley just got self checkouts added (like the one that is closing in Carson, so not sure how much that means). It kind of needs a remodel, it looks like it was remodeled around 2005 back toward the end when they started a slightly cheaper version of Jewel interior again.

Shun Fat still has that Ralphs produce sign but other than that it is difficult to tell the store was a Ralphs. I notice Shun Fat seems to remodel their stores over time as they take them over, probably depending on how they perform. I have not had good experiences with Shun Fat around Sacramento but they seem to be growing pretty constantly. Shun Fat has a Ralphs on Mack Road in Sacramento (this is a former Albertsons from the 1999 divests; Ralphs did a full upscale remodel on the store spending a boatload of money in 2000- awful neighborhood, so bad Ralphs didn't even convert this to FoodsCo though it probably would have made sense to convert it like they did to the Gerber Road which was another Ralphs big remodel and Stockton Blvd/Fruitridge Ralphs which had the late 90's Albertsons interior when divested as it had just been remodeled by Albertsons) and when they moved in it basically looked like Ralphs but over time they've done a lot of work to the store.
I was looking for a DMV kiosk and that Fountain Valley/Westminster border store had one. Agree that the lower end Jewel decor isn't great but I was there around 2pm in the middle of the week and the store was hopping. All the registers were open with lines. Store was very busy and appeared to have a diverse customer mix. That center is otherwise predominantly Asian businesses, but it has picked up some very busy restaurants (Brodard) and is adding a couple from a very hot up and coming upscale restaurant group including a hybrid Japanese-Italian restaurant that will be very popular (yes that is an odd mix, but the sister restaurants with different fusion foods are incredibly good). And the mix in the store was heavily adjusted for the neighborhood including a lot of Asian produce. It is another example where if the conventional store learns the needs of the local community and really adapts then it will thrive. But if they just try to be a conventional without merchandising for the neighborhood they close their doors. Ralphs was really bad at that back in the 90's in Orange County - they did not see the massive demographic changes coming and before they knew it they were closing stores left and right for the next decade plus. I wonder if a list of old original Ralphs builds for Orange County exists with the current use? I can only think of a handful of what I call original Ralphs builds left there (Garden Grove, Orange, Mission Viejo on Marguerite) although some may have been heavily remodeled like Garden Grove was when it expanded and absorbed the strip mall next door. Probably the most creative reuse of a traditional glass front Ralphs has to be the Rodeo 39 Food Hall at Garden Grove and Beach in Stanton. That Ralphs sat vacant nearly 30 years and now it is the hottest food hall in the area and seems to be sticking (for a while every other vacant space was being converted to this use and several flopped in the pandemic).
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Re: Saigon City Supermarket-Westminster

Post by SamSpade »

ClownLoach wrote: May 25th, 2022, 6:14 am I was looking for a DMV kiosk and that Fountain Valley/Westminster border store had one. Agree that the lower end Jewel decor isn't great but I was there around 2pm in the middle of the week and the store was hopping. All the registers were open with lines. Store was very busy and appeared to have a diverse customer mix. That center is otherwise predominantly Asian businesses, but it has picked up some very busy restaurants (Brodard) and is adding a couple from a very hot up and coming upscale restaurant group including a hybrid Japanese-Italian restaurant that will be very popular (yes that is an odd mix, but the sister restaurants with different fusion foods are incredibly good).
Off Topic
Hate to drift off topic, but Brodard looks like the most beautiful upscale Vietnamese restaurant. Too bad I'm hundreds of miles away.

We have one here that is nationally respected (Pho Van), but not quite as high-end.
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