Last March, Divisadero Health Haven owners Ted Nasser and Ray Salman told us that they were planning to close their popular grocery store, which has been selling organic foods and toiletries on Divisadero since 1994, sometime in the following two years.
Now, the store's days are officially numbered. "We are targeting to close in the middle of next month," Salman told us. Starting in February, Health Haven will be offering 15 to 20 percent off of its entire inventory, depending on the volume of items purchased.
The closure will now also apply to Pet Haven, Nasser and Salman's neighboring shop specializing in pet food and supplies. Previously, the duo had said their aim was to keep Pet Haven open, even after Health Haven closed down.
"We thought about keeping it open, but it doesn't make sense," said Salman. "It's not enough to support three families."
Tipster Christine S. alerted us to the store's closing, as indicated by a sign in the window. As someone who's lived in the neighborhood for almost as long as the grocery, she said, "I was shocked and saddened to see the 'everything must go' sign."
According to Salman, Health Haven's business has been on the decline because of competition; the store was affected when Falletti Foods moved to its nearby location on Broderick, and again when Bi-Rite Market opened its second location right across the street.
Salman had originally planned to keep the store open until he and Nasser secured a new tenant to move into the spot, but he said they were having difficulty finding anyone. The store has been struggling so much that they've had to raise prices, drawing some customer complaints on Yelp.
Salman said Nasser, who owns the location, will retire after the store closes. As for himself and his brother, who also works at the store, "We don't know what we are going to do. We need a break."