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The Island Store reopens under new local ownership

By Staff | Feb 5, 2019

TIFFANY REPECKI The Island Store is now owned and operated by Bailey's General Store.

The Island Store has officially changed hands, and the new owners are well-known islanders.

Last year, Bailey’s General Store purchased the rights to the business from former operator Michael Gulnac and signed a new lease with the building’s owner. The store reopened over the holidays.

“We are open and received a warm welcome,” Calli Johnson, whose family owns Bailey’s and the Sanibel Catering Company by Baileys, said last week. “Our manager, Eric Dampier, and his team are looking forward to serving guests and residents alike during our upcoming busy time of the year.”

She explained that Captiva shoppers have requested Bailey’s presence on-island for years.

“When an opportunity arose to purchase the business from the previous owner, we decided it would be a good fit,” Johnson said, adding that the aim is to serve customers at a more convenient location.

TIFFANY REPECKI The Island Store Manager Eric Dampier ready to serve island residents and guests.

The store currently employs three full-time staffers. Shoppers will find household basics like cereal, canned goods and snacks, along with fresh produce, meats, frozen items, Bailey’s products and kitchen necessities. There are beverages, wine and spirits, with plans to expand on its food service offerings.

“Many of the products are the same, with some changes depending on availability,” she said.

Those would like to see a particular product in stock can speak with Dampier.

“We’ve added most of what the community has asked for,” Johnson said.

She noted that shoppers can still find Molly Malone’s Seafood set up on the porch.

Prior to the reopening, Bailey’s cleaned and rearranged a few areas.

“Renovations are planned for later in 2019,” Johnson said. “We are going to update the building exterior and interior, while maintaining the Captiva architectural standards for historic buildings.”

In the early 1900s, the building housed a boarding school.

“We appreciate our shoppers’ patience while we get our feet under us,” she said. “We will continue improving the variety of offerings available.”

Johnson noted that while it is operated by Bailey’s, The Island Store name will be retained.

“We’re excited to continue serving Captiva residents and guests,” she said.

Johnson unveiled the news about the switch in ownership during the Captiva Community Panel’s meeting in November. At the time, she explained that the store would be operated much like it has been in the past, with a feel similar to its Sundial market, and the goal being to serve the island’s needs.

It is open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

For more information, call 239-472-2374.

The Island Store is at 1500 Andy Rosse Lane.