The grocery store occupies the former Food Lion building, which had been vacant since 2012.
After seven years with no grocery store on the beachside in Ormond Beach, Lucky's Market is now officially open.
The company celebrated its grand opening with a bacon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, May 8, but doors were open to eager shoppers the day before. The 27,650-square-foot building at 101 E. Granada Boulevard that once housed the former Food Lion has been transformed over the last nine months since Lucky's announced it would open a location in Ormond Beach. The city's former Economic Development Director Joe Mannarino had been working to bring the grocery store to town for three years before he retired.
The Lucky's Market chain was created in 2003 by Trish and Bo Sharon, two chefs from Boulder, Colorado, who regularly sought out "good, wholesome food" for themselves and their children, according to the company website.
“They wanted their love of cooking to be brought into a grocery store that was affordable to all people, and was entrenched in the community," Store Director Melissa Bradford said.
That is what Lucky's became, Bradford added. Like the store, she is also new to Ormond Beach, having moved here in February.
Lucky's Market will employ about 130-140 employees, she said. The hiring process is ongoing. An average starting wage for store clerks is $25,000 per year, plus benefits.
The grocery store's job creation is part of the reason the City Commission approved an incentive package as part of a growth assistant program agreement with Lucky's last August. The incentives included $11,000 for job creation, a 10-year reimbursement of the business's tangible taxes up to $50,500 and $52,500 for Lucky's capital investment on construction and new equipment. Lucky's capital investment totaled $4.3 million.
City Commissioner Dwight Selby said the city is judicious on the incentives it awards, and that they are not easy to get. Capital investment in the downtown is especially important because it generates a larger tax base in the city's Community Redevelopment Area district.
“It’s very exciting filling that big void that has lasted for so many years, and especially with something that is so very much needed on the beachside," Selby said.
He's looking forward to having Lucky's in the community. Selby also said he was excited to find out that it is not a large chain, with less than 50 stores nationwide.
"The fact that they selected Ormond Beach for one of their stores, I think bodes well for our community," Selby said.
Ormond Beach resident Mary Jane McPhee said she enjoyed shopping at Lucky's for the first time. She liked all the different brands available and the increased options to buy organic.
“When you’re a retired couple, you don’t want to make a big meal," McPhee said. "I’m going to come here and get something made, or in the right portions.”
The store will help people eat healthier as well, she said. That's why she was excited to come. Everybody in town has been waiting for Lucky's to open, McPhee added.
Lucky's Market also features a "sip and stroll" concept, where shoppers can purchase a beer, glass of wine, or kombucha to drink while they shop. Bradford credited the store's successful opening to the team members, some of which travelled from other U.S. stores to help.
“They make all of this happen," Bradford said. "It’s amazing to see how they do it.”