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Retail Roundup: Former Fairway Market gets revamp as Food Bazaar

The Westbury store will remain open during the

The Westbury store will remain open during the renovation, which is expected to be completed in three to five months.   Credit: Howard Schnapp

The former Fairway Market in Westbury has a new name and owner — and soon will have a new look.

Brooklyn-based Bogopa Enterprises Inc., which bought the supermarket in August from bankrupt Fairway Group Holdings Corp., is conducting a multimillion-dollar renovation of the store now known as Food Bazaar Supermarket. Bogopa also bought two other former Fairway Markets — in Red Hook, Brooklyn, and Douglaston, Queens — at a bankruptcy auction in July.

The 69,000-square-foot store in Westbury remained open during the takeover and will continue operating during the renovation, which is expected to end in three to five months, said Edward Suh, executive vice president of Bogopa.

"We took over seamlessly because we didn’t want to leave the community without a place to shop for food," he said.

The renovations at Food Bazaar will include a new layout, as well as new produce tables, fixtures and shelves. The red tile flooring will be replaced by polished concrete, evaporators will be added to the produce area that will recirculate cold air to keep produce fresh longer, and the seafood and meat departments will be expanded, Suh said.

"In addition to that, we plan on offering all of Fairway’s signatures, such as kosher breads in the bakery, the cheeses, meats, olive bar, the specialty coffee … that Fairway used to roast in house and now we do," Suh said.

Founded in 1988 in Queens, Bogopa is a family-owned business that operates 28 Food Bazaars in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, including one other on Long Island, in a former Pathmark in Brentwood. Bogopa acquired the Brentwood store from Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. (A&P) in a bankruptcy auction in 2015.

Manhattan-based Fairway Group Holdings operated 14 supermarkets in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut when it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January.

The only other Fairway Market on Long Island — in Plainview — closed in July after nearly 20 years on Manetto Hill Road after the parent company failed to find a buyer.

The Fairway Market in Westbury, at 1258 Corporate Dr. in Roosevelt Raceway Center, was slated to close this past summer, too, before Bogopa and Fairway Group reached a sales deal.

"We wanted to be a part of the Westbury community. We love being on Long Island. We wanted to grow our presence there," Suh said.

The terms of the sale, as approved by the bankruptcy court, required Bogopa to retain at least 90% of the approximately 130 Fairway Market employees in Westbury.

Bogopa retained all the employees, said Aly Waddy, secretary-treasurer at United Food and Commercial Workers International Union Local 1500 in Westbury, which represents the Westbury grocery workers.

"As far as the union is concerned, we’re very happy. … They maintained the union environment and, obviously, the benefits that the members needed to have," Waddy said.

The Fairway Market in Westbury opened in 2012, said Aaron Fleishaker, executive vice president of real estate for The Mattone Group, the Queens-based co-owner and manager of Raceway Plaza.

Retail Roundup is a column about major retail news on Long Island — store openings, closings, expansions, acquisitions, etc. — that is published online and in the Monday paper. To read more of these columns, click here. If you have news to share, please send an email to Newsday reporter Tory N. Parrish at tory.parrish@newsday.com.

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