The new year will serve as a new chapter for one longtime Los Altos business.
The European Cobblery is scheduled to vacate its retail home at 201 First St. after 27 years in downtown Los Altos. The family-owned business’ final day is Jan. 31.
Stephanee Oberhauser, who manages the store with her husband, Steven, and father, Paul Roth, told the Town Crier that her family attempted to relocate the business to another retail space in the downtown area but simply couldn’t find a location that met their needs. Oberhauser politely declined to discuss the circumstances that led to the need to move the business.
“That was our first goal, to stay here,” said Stephanee, who recalled the day her father opened the First Street location when she was 9 years old. “This was certainly a hard decision.”
Still, she added, all is far from lost. The Oberhausers will join other family members to run the family’s Palo Alto shop at 410 California Ave., which opened in 1982.
Stephanee said the closing of the Los Altos location is really more of a consolidation of resources. She hopes the extra few miles to the Palo Alto cobblery won’t be too far to deter longtime Los Altos customers from making the trip in the future.
“It’s not like this is a situation where we’re going out of business or something,” she said. “Collaborating with my family to run the Palo Alto store just makes more sense.”
The change will also benefit her father and mother, Desiree Roth, who are working to open a new European Cobblery location in Campbell in 2014. The new location will shorten her parents’ commute significantly. They made the trek from their home in Morgan Hill to Los Altos for many years.
“They’re putting their energy into the new store in Campbell, so they’re jazzed about that,” Stephanee said. “One door closes, another door opens.”
Steven readily conceded that his family will miss the familiar faces – customers and nearby retailers alike – they have become accustomed to encountering on a daily basis over nearly three decades.
“I’ve been working for Steph’s parents since, gosh, I was 23,” Steven said. “It’s a place where we’ve been established a really long time, so it’s hard to give it up.”
For more information, visit europeancobblery.com.