Owner says new lease shows store’s commitment to Port Washington
Sanfilippo’s Sentry co-owner Joseph Sanfilippo announced this week that the Port Washington grocery store is here for the long haul.
The store owners signed a long-term lease extension on the building at 101 W. Seven Hills Rd. with an option for additional years.
The lease extension is a major relief for Sanfilippo, who has owned the business with his brother Santo since July 2004.
Prior to the extension, the store’s lease was set to expire in summer of 2014.
“We had been talking about extending our lease for three years, but the previous building owner kept putting us off and putting us off,” he said.
When the building owner was forced into foreclosure a year ago, the process started all over again. Now, an extended agreement is in place with the new owner.
“We worked long and hard these past several months, and are happy to report a new long-term lease is finally complete. We look forward to serving the Port Washington community for many years to come.”
Sanfilippo cited local officials, especially Port Washington Mayor Tom Mlada, in supporting the store’s attempt to secure a new lease.
With that bit of business out of the way, he said, a variety of new grocery items have been or will soon be added to the store.
They include a new line of ready-to-eat sandwiches and wraps made fresh daily in the deli; new Golden Plump broasted, rotisserie and grilled chicken, also in the deli; Melo-Cream donuts in the bakery; fresh-baked breads from La Brea Bakery; expanded Dollar Item section; and a full line of black Angus beef cuts in the meat department.
To introduce the new products, the store will host a series of sampling events and promotions. The Shop Local, Think Port program will also be continued, and an expanded Taste of Port event is being planned.
Sanfilippo said several building improvements and additional services are likely to be introduced at the store in the coming months.
He said he is gratified by how well the community has embraced the business over the past nine years, as indicated by it twice being named the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year since the family took over operation.
“Located as we are just off Exit 100, I realize we are the first impression a lot of people have of Port Washington when coming off the expressway,” Sanfilippo said.
“Because of that, we think it is important that we be involved in the community.”
Sanfilippo has been a big proponent of the notion of local involvement, having moved to Port Washington with his family even before purchasing the grocery store.
Sanfilippo said he is equally proud of how involved his employees, which number between 75 and 80, are in local events and activities.
“I can’t tell you how many customers say, ‘I like coming here because the employees are always so friendly,’” he said.
The Port Sentry store has 50,000 square feet, which dwarfed neighborhood groceries until the super-store concept evolved.
Image Information: THE OWNERS OF Sanfilippo’s Sentry grocery store in Port Washington have signed a long-term lease extension for their building on Seven Hills Road. Grocers Joseph and Santo Sanfilippo (lower right photo) have owned the business since 2004.
Photos by Mark Jaeger