Monday, February 1, 2016

San Gabriel Valley Small Business Spotlight

Two San Gabriel Valley businesses which this blogger patronized as a customer - one has flourished (Howard's TV & Appliance) and the other has vanished (Yama Japanese Restaurant).

Howard's TV & Appliance

Founder Howard Roach began his business as a radio repair shop in 1946 at 303 E. Valley Boulevard in the city of San Gabriel - you can read some company history at their website; the San Gabriel Tribune's Lauren Gold wrote a piece on Mr. Roach in 2012.  Today Howard's has numerous locations throughout southern California.

In 2011 it was announced that the company would relocate from their oldest store at 300 E. Valley and head further west onto Main Street in Alhambra.  The new store finally opened sometime last year.  Here are some pictures of the former store in 2012:

The former store at 300 E. Valley Boulevard is now Hawaii Home Center.
In the 1980s, Howard established his business as a 100% employee-owned store according to the website.  1981 was also the year that their second block-long superstore opened in the city of La Habra.  Here are some ads of years past:

Ad from March, 1957, listing another of Roach's early stores at 213 E. Valley Blvd.

Ad from October 1958
Ad from July 1959
Ad from August 1959

Ad from September 1959

Ad from November 1960, informing of the store move from 303 to 300 E. Valley Blvd.
Ad from March 1973

Yama Japanese Restaurant

One of the oldest remaining "old school" Japanese eateries in San Gabriel Valley (established in the 1960s) is pictured below taken about September, 2012.  Shortly after these photos were taken, the business must have changed hands - the dining room was remodeled, the old 1960s era booths were gone.  About a year later, the restaurant was gone, too.