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On Biz: Aloha, Hidden Gems Fashion, Blessingdales | Local


Aloha Hawaiian-Chinese Restaurant dining room closing

After nearly 40 years, the Aloha Hawaiian-Chinese Restaurant, is closing the dining room to customers.

“I’m 72,” said owner Susan Lee. “Me and my husband, we’re getting too old. We cannot handle the business.”

The restaurant, located at 3025 N. Kandy Lane, will continue to offer carry-out and bar/gaming services starting May 15. Hours will continue to be from 3  to 7:30 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.

The restaurant, known for its Chinese and Polynesian cuisine and decor, has been successful for Lee and her husband, she said. “Everyday is packed, even the weekdays,” she said. “The restaurant is very, very busy.”

“Maybe we can find a good hand to take over the Aloha, so it can keep running,” Lee said. “Most customers want that.”

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The community has expressed their sorrow of the news. “Lots of people cry,” Lee said.

Hidden Gems Fashion moving to Decatur

Hidden Gems Fashion is set to open a Decatur store selling women’s clothing, said owner Fatima Naser.

The store was originally in Savoy for nearly a year. The products will now be located in the former Seno Formalwear store at 2715 N. Water St..

“With the commute, living here, it just became too much,” she said. “We decided to move.”

The products include clothing as well as accessories such as purses and shoes made in Turkey. “It’s good quality stuff,” Naser said. “They have a major fashion district that a lot of people don’t know about.”


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The owners are not new to Decatur. They also own Tasty’s Chicago Grill on Pershing Road. They like living in Decatur, Naser said. “And we could use some good clothes here,” she said.

The owners expect to open their doors on May 20 with a grand opening scheduled for the beginning of June.

Help and Hope Mission Market has closed

Help and Hope Mission Market, located at 553 W. Wood St. closed its doors on April 30. However, the merchandise and the employees moved to the popular thrift shop, Blessingdales, located at 345 W. Eldorado St.

“We didn’t have enough to do two stores,” said Carolann Carara, director of retail operations at Blessingdales. “And staffing has always been a bit of a problem.”

Blessingdales and Help and Hope are ministries for God’s Shelter of Love, Women and Children’s Shelter. “The staff I have typically don’t have to have a full time job with benefits,” Carara said.

“At Help and Hope, some of the most diligent workers were two 91-year-olds and a 75-year-old,” said Crystal Watkins. “We just transitioned them here.”



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