Young Art, which operates side-by-side fashion and art instruction stores in downtown Vancouver, is closing both businesses.
The company's owners said in a statement that they are not renewing their lease with the Al Angelo Co., which expires April 30. Instead, they are transitioning their businesses to Southern California and will be looking to expand the Young Arts brand into new markets.
"The owners and staff at Young Art wish to communicate appreciation to all their loyal patrons who helped make Young Art a success over the past ten years." the statement said.
Ginhee Gentle, a long-time sales associate at the store, said the stores are owned by Jaehee Kim, who lives in California. She said the Asian Mini Mart, around the corner at 812 Columbia St., is under the same ownership and will remain open.
Young Art opened in 2003 and for several years operated at a second location in east Vancouver. The store is currently conducting a liquidation sale.
Gentle said many customers and families enrolled in arts classes are sorry to see the stores go. But Gentle said she's happy that the Young Art concept will take root elsewhere.
"I hope people understand it's a positive, not a negative," said Gentle, who is moving to California with the company.