PALMA CEIA — Limited parking was a primary reason Nicholson House moved its handmade jewelry, custom invitations and eclectic gifts from a Howard Avenue shopping center to the Carriage Trade Plaza. Owner Melissa Purcell said problems arose when the landlord allowed neighborhood bars to use their space for valet parking.
"This is better because we are more visible, there's more traffic and parking is a lot better," said Purcell.
Purcell and her mother, Beth Purcell, opened the original Nicholson House in Clearwater in 1992. Locations followed in Hyde Park Village and International Plaza. Those were all closed when her brother, Charlie Purcell, moved some of the inventory to Howard Avenue three years ago, doing business as Green Fish Greetings. In 2009, Melissa took over and restored the original name.
Since the latest move in May, some of the most popular items in the shop are Alexis Bittar's jewelry; Brian Andreas' whimsical Story People and local landmark mugs and cards by Tampa illustrator Charley Greacen, who also draws cartoons for City Times.
Nicholson House, 1902 S Dale Mabry Highway, is open Tuesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. Visit shopnicholsonhouse.com or call (813) 251-0236.
Urban Market tries to fill a downtown niche
Duckweed Urban Market manager Selena Fuller sees downtown Tampa condo dwellers as the company's niche to seize.
"We believe residents really need something like this they can walk to,'' says Fuller, who opened the tiny neighborhood store near the corner of Polk and Franklin streets July 27. "The closest thing downtown is on Bayshore."
Fuller said owners Michelle and Brent Deatherade chose to name the less-than-400-square-foot store for something small but significant. "Duckweed is the world's smallest flowering plant,'' said Fuller, "and they found out it's also a source of protein in some Third World countries."
Shelves hold basic staples such as milk, eggs, yogurt, frozen pizza and pet food, as well as local organic, hydroponic and natural products, including Eden Nectar honey and Buddy Brew coffee. There is a gluten and wheat-free section and a variety of marinades and hot sauces.
Duckweed Urban Market, 305 E Polk St., is open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Visit duckweedurbanmarket.com or call (813) 221-DUCK (3825).
South Tampa gets a new seafood venue
Something fresh and fishy is going on at Fish Tails Market and Gardens.
"A little piece of something South Tampa needed,'' said owner Simon Horsey, who last month began selling fresh fish and vegetables on S MacDill Avenue, just south of Euclid Avenue. He closed a similarly named seafood market nearby in February.
"We sell all locally caught snapper and grouper and will also bring in fish from the Pacific Northwest, New England and from Hawaii, big-eyed tuna," Horsey said.
Horsey makes his own smoked fish spread, crab cakes and smoked salmon. In a large greenhouse attached to the rear of the building, Horsey tends 30 varieties of herbs growing in hundreds of pots. In the fall, he will host fresh produce vendors every Saturday. A screened patio area may be reserved for private parties for shrimp boils and fish frys for up to 20 people.
Fishtail Market and Gardens, 4005 S MacDill Ave., is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. or call (813) 832-3632.
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