Re: Help me locate/identify a few stores

06/12/18 - posted by Frank Dunnigan

USE (on Alemany) was United Shoppers Exclusive.

GETs kept the buildings that had been erected circa 1950 for the Lakeshore Plaza Shopping Center. To see images of what the west and east sides of the center looked like (before GETs, but very similar when GETs was in place), see:

Entering in the middle section of stores on the west side, you showed a card and were buzzed into the store by a group of ladies working a switchboard in a glassed-in booth just inside the entrance. The buildings on that west side included clothing, cameras, and housewares. As GETs expanded, large openings were cut in the walls to inter-connect multiple buildings, with stairs included because of the change in slope. There was also a pharmacy on the corner nearest Lucky (which at that time was near and parallel to Ocean Avenue), and I seem to recall that there was a direct entrance to the pharmacy. On the east side of the parking lot were toys, games, sporting goods, paint & hardware--though I am not remembering having to be buzzed into these sections. On that east side corner opposite the pharmacy, there was also a liquor store with a direct entrance, and around the corner from the liquor store (going toward Everglade Drive) there was a dry cleaner, a photo shop, and a burger place, all with direct entrances.

GETs also had a policy of sealing customer packages with a different color adhesive tape daily--taping the receipt onto the outside of the bag or large item purchased.

In the early years of GETs, the former Grant's Charcoal Broiler became a restaurant called Orlando's--said to be owned by Orlando Cepeda--but that spot closed early on. GETs later became GEMCO, and later the entire center, (including the 1950s-era Lucky store), was demolished to make way for what is there today.

The Western Neighborhoods Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.