The White Spot restaurant on Douglas Street and Caledonia Avenue – a staple for about half a century – is closing for good, the Vancouver-based company said Friday.
A company statement said the location has been one of the hardest hit by the “direct and indirect impacts” of the pandemic.
“We are saddened to inform you that our Caledonia White Point in Victoria will not reopen,” he said.
Last year, the Caledonia Avenue restaurant closed for several months following provincial health orders affecting the food service, the company said. It reopened in March but then closed again.
Indoor dining is banned in British Columbia at least until Tuesday as part of the province’s “circuit breaker” restrictions aimed at reducing new COVID-19 infections.
The location is next to the Capital City Center hotel, which was recently purchased by the province for almost $ 25 million to provide 94 housing units with temporary support services. The province had been leasing the space for about a year, although many people were displaced by a fire last November.
Restaurants are among the businesses hardest hit by the pandemic, with many trying to survive by offering outdoor services and take-out, and others permanently shutting down.
“We enjoyed serving our customers in downtown Victoria and, in happier times, the many tourists who frequented the place. We look forward to serving our valued customers elsewhere in our restaurant family, ”the company said.
White Spot said he is working with staff to support them throughout the transition. No details were provided.
Four other White Spot restaurants remain in the capital region. They are at 1871 Fort St., Quadra Street in the Saanich Center, 941 Langford Parkway and 3401 Mount Newton Cross Rd. In central Saanich.
For the past several decades, White Spot’s Caledonia location has been a popular location for people attending events in the nearby arena. In the early 1970s, shoppers could walk to Caledonia Avenue or the Douglas Street Hall of the Town and Country Mall, now home to Uptown, for an all-you-can-eat “Family Fish Fry” Wednesday.
The Caledonia Avenue white dot is owned by company president Warren Erhart, business consultant Frank Bourree said. “It needs a bit of upgrading and that was probably taken into account when investing that kind of money.”
Given the strong development scene in Greater Victoria, where projects often have food and retail spaces on the ground floor, White Spot could end up moving to one of these locations, said Bourree, who has worked with the company in the past.
“I think White Spot could work very well in a new building.”
White Spot is a healthy company, with a strong group of franchisees and stable leadership, said Bourree.
On its webpage, the company says that despite the pandemic, it has opened six new locations in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario in the past year. It aims to open 30 new restaurants in Ontario over the next five years.
White Spot was founded in 1928, making it Canada’s oldest restaurant chain, the company said. Nat Bailey opened Canada’s first take-out restaurant on Granville Street and 67th Street in Vancouver.
Before the pandemic, White Spot served more than 17 million customers each year at 128 White Spot and Triple O’s (its quick-service restaurants) in British Columbia, Alberta, Asia and Ontario, the website says.
© Copyright Times Colonist