Vacancies are filling up in downtown Poulsbo

Michelle Mendoza McMillen  ... her dance studio has opened a boutique as part of its diversification strategy.               - Richard Walker/ Herald
Michelle Mendoza McMillen ... her dance studio has opened a boutique as part of its diversification strategy.
— image credit: Richard Walker/ Herald

Downtown Poulsbo, marred in the last year by several recession-induced closings, is taking a fresh breath.

Several new businesses have opened or are opening; two relocated here from Winslow because of construction on Winslow Way.

Alexandra Home (“Where Vintage Meets New”) is opening in the space between Eloisa clothing store and Les Saisons boutique.

Bath Junkie is moving from Bainbridge Island to 18830 A Front St., Poulsbo, in front of Casa Luna. Bath Junkie specializes in scrubs, soaks, lotions, washes and after-bath products.

Embellish, formerly of 285 W. Winslow Way, Winslow, has opened at 18850 B Front St. The eclectic store sells art and furniture, as well as candles, soaps and gifts. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday; and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Closet Transfer has moved to 18940 Front St., from 19168A Jensen Way, its location for five years. Closet Transfer, which also has a location at 562 Bjune Drive, Bainbridge Island, specializes in “gently used” clothing for men, women and children.

The oldest building in Poulsbo — Adolph Hostmark’s grocery building at 18978 Front St., built in 1885 — will soon be the home of Thor’s Hammer & Needle Tattoo and Body Piercing.

Burrata Bistro and the Paella Bar, 19006 Front St., have a new sign. The European bistro-style sign reflects the style of the Italian and Spanish restaurants, owned by Kim Tomlinson. Business is going well enough that Tomlinson said she plans to buy the building in two years.

The Dance Within, 19043 Front St., has expanded into the space formerly occupied by the Internet    Auction Company. The dance studio owns and operates The Oasis Boutique in the space. Owner Michelle Mendoza McMillen said the expansion is part of the company’s strategy to thrive during the recession through diversification, building a strong connection with clients, and providing good value.

The Oasis Boutique specializes in unique apparel, footwear and gifts. The Dance Within offers dance and fitness classes six days a week, and also makes its space available for events. It has a windows and a deck with expansive views of Liberty Bay; McMillen said she is considering opening the deck for the Fourth of July.

Meanwhile, the Mentor Company is negotiating with a possible new tenant for the old Nilsen’s Appliance Center on the corner of Front Street and King Harald Vei. Nilsen’s moved to Silverdale in 2007. Jennifer Mentor Mills of the Mentor Company said April 20 a deal could be reached in a couple of weeks.

Mills described the prospective tenant as a new retail store. “It would be a good complement to the existing downtown mix,” she said. She said the tenant would rent a portion of the available 3,600 square feet, and that the building would be remodeled.

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