Toni Rubin, appropriate, co-owner of Coconut Island in the European Village complex, with her daughter, Jessica.
In the practically 10 years because then, the couple has observed the economy’s ups and downs, as nicely as adjustments — superior and negative — inside the 11-acre retail complex at the west end of the Hammock Dunes Bridge.
“We’ve been right here considering that Day 1,” Toni Rubin mentioned. “We had been one particular of the initial retail shops that opened right here.”
Rubin recalled those early days fondly, when the retail and condominium complex was new and there was a lot of excitement about the development.
“In the beginning, it was so flourishing,” she said. “It entirely looked like Downtown Disney.”
Considering that then, the actual estate industry collapsed, sending Palm Coast from the major of the list of quickest-expanding cities in the nation to a spot as a poster youngster for the housing bust and Fantastic Recession.
All the while, the Rubins, along with their daughter, Jessica, kept hard at work establishing the business enterprise and creating relationships with loyal prospects.
Toni Rubin stated the couple moved to Palm Coast from South Florida, where they owned a lighting and household accessory organization.
“When we came up here, we wanted to do a thing enjoyable,” she mentioned.
One particular of the factors that makes Coconut Island exciting, she said, is the relationships she has created with buyers.
“It’s extra individual, which I adore,” she said. “I have made lots of mates in this company.”
Another difference involving the lighting and home accessory business the Rubins left and Coconut Island is the items they sell.
“It alterations a lot additional than lighting did,” mentioned Jessica Rubin. “With clothes and jewelry, it changes each and every three months. It’s unquestionably extra exciting. We get new products each and every day.”
Toni Rubin mentioned current changes at European village — such as new landscaping, improvements to the gazebo in the central court area and some new restaurants — have helped bring more shoppers to the retail complicated. But there are nonetheless some things she would like to see modify.
“Our most significant issue is the city not letting us have signs,” she said, referring to the inability of company owners to place indicators on the exterior of the building facing Palm Harbor Parkway.
“People nonetheless to this day go over the bridge and say they by no means knew we have been right here.”
But Toni Rubin said the enterprise has a lot of loyal clients, each full-time residents and snowbirds. And with the economy enhancing, she is optimistic about the future. A lot of that optimism comes from holiday shoppers.
“It’s been a quite fantastic holiday season,” she stated. “We’re beginning to see a plus alternatively of just hanging on.”
Rubin said she knows a lot of other organizations in the city have not fared as effectively over the previous couple of years.
“We have been one of the fortunate ones to be capable to hang in there,” she said. “That’s for the reason that we are household run.”
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