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Fast Food

New Nesters opens in Vancouver

A little bit of Whistler has moved to Vancouver.

This week a Nesters store opened in the upscale Yaletown neighbourhood of downtown Vancouver.

"It’s been very busy," said Ric Laidlaw, president of Buy-Low foods, which bought the Whistler store in June.

The 10,500 square foot Vancouver store will look familiar to any Nesters shopper, with a deli, bakery area and meat department and the same signage everywhere.

The cornerstone of friendly, helpful service, a wide variety of goods and non-tourist prices for food will be key parts of the shopping experience at the new Nesters too.

But, said Laidlaw, the facilities will all be on a smaller scale as the store is not as large as the renovated Whistler store.

Even your Whistler value card will be accepted at the Yaletown Nesters. New computer technology will eventually be introduced and one new card will be issued for all Nesters locations.

Buy-Low foods has been supplying Nesters for the last 17 years and so when the four partners in the grocery store decided it might be time to sell Buy-Low was excited to have the chance to purchase it.

"It is a very good store," said Laidlaw, who is considering opening other Nesters in other locations.

He believes the store, which set its brand through its tag line ‘where the locals shop’, will be a hit in Yaletown.

"The same people who live in Yaletown and ski in Whistler frequent the Nesters store so we hope they will look for the same experience in Vancouver," said Laidlaw.

There are about 4,500 people living within a one-kilometre site of the new store at Nelson and Seymour, and more development is underway.

"We would love to be able to service all the people who live and work in the area rather than tourists," said Laidlaw.

Former Nesters owner Martha Heintzman is thrilled the Nesters brand will soon be a household name in Yaletown.

"I look at it as a huge compliment," she said.

"It is fun being a part of that little bit of history. We started as a little independent Ma and Pa store in Whistler really, and it has had such huge success in Whistler and now it is branching out so I think it is great.

"I am proud to have been part of the beginning of this."

Buy Low kept the Nesters management team, indeed Whistler store manager Bruce Stewart has been working in Vancouver to get the new store up and running.

Buy-Low foods is a division of the Jim Pattison Group.