Ashburton store opening!

Welcome! On 19 October, St. Pierre’s opened another new shop – and this one’s really special! Read on!

We’re now open in Ashburton, a bustling town in South Canterbury, about one hour south of Christchurch. But Ashburton is more than just a satellite town, it’s an important rural and industrial centre in its own right. Our location is just off the main street, by a major supermarket and mass retailer plus near several parks, so we expect there will be plenty of demand for our healthy, satisfying meals from workers, shoppers and families. Luckily the team will be serving both sushi and Bento Bowl products, so there’s plenty to keep the locals happy!

New shop partner Yoshiaki Taniguchi was busy but had a huge smile on his face, saying that

“I’m thrilled to become the founding Ashburton partner. I’ve been with St. Pierre’s for about three years now, it has been quite a journey from Invercargill to Christchurch and now to Ashburton. Blenheim Road was a great shop, but opening a new shop which also has Bento Bowl is on another level again! Running a dual-format sushi and Bento Bowl shop really is complex.

I’m so grateful for the support of so many people, it was a genuine team effort. First are Nan and Art, the Invercargill team who worked with me closely and taught me lots about how good the partnership programme is. Nelson partner Satomi and area manager Akiko gave me lots of training and advice for my new shop while also working flat out opening the Nelson shop! Liren supported me so well during the transition period, and I’m happy she is now doing great as the Blenheim Road manager.

My boss, area manager Kazuyo helped our new team in many ways before and after opening, working long days every single day until we settled into a routine. Finally, thanks to the staff who have moved from Christchurch to Ashburton. Ashburton is a nice place to live, energetic for its size and with a great community feel. I’m very happy to be here, and hope they are too.”

Wrapping off for the big unveiling!!!

Director Costa Katsoulis was very happy at the successful opening, commenting that

“The store has been so busy the first few days, the opening has really exceeded our expectations. We’re so appreciative of the support from the Ashburton community, and keen to repay them with our core values of great service and healthy nutrition.

We have a prime location, right by the KMart door for high visibility. With the Countdown nearby, we anticipate strong business in the evenings and nighttime as well as our staple lunch market. Ashburton is booming, it’s a prosperous town with high employment. With lots of people working and really busy, we think there will be demand for people to eat out a lot. There is also not much sushi competition in Ashburton right now, so we believe we’re filling a need.

After Papamoa, Napier Onekawa and Nelson Richmond, it’s another provincial shop success story. So many of New Zealand’s regional centres are very bustling and vibrant, and we’re keen to be part of regional NZ’s growth into the future.”

Director Nick Katsoulis gives his traditional – but always energetic – speech to fire up the crowd!

Design Manager Alina Nicholls was proud of the new shop, commenting that

“The new shop really catches the eye and invites people in. It has a contemporary design with modern high-grade finishes throughout, setting a high standard for the customer experiences. The interior design features a Bento Bowl neon sign, a trademark of the modern St. Pierre’s design concept. It includes a long communal table with our distinctive roof, evoking the logo. Our hope is that this statement table will help to bring people together over food.

This is the third shop I’ve worked with current architect team on after Richmond and Karaka, and I have to compliment the project manager Tricroft. They’re a local Ashburton company and have been great to work with.”

Finally, General Manager of Property Oliver Shaw was pleased and relieved at how the smoothly opening had gone, noting that

“We’re very happy with the new shop, it’s really a brilliant location. It’s on a prime site near the key anchors of Countdown and Kmart, a new and well-designed retail complex. It’s an exciting location because this is the first Kmart in the Ashburton region, but is also growing into a food hub, with more restaurants and takeaway outlets opening over the next few months. Notably, there are many complementary food and dining options near us such as Coupland’s Bakery. More broadly, Ashburton is rapidly growing beyond a rural service town into a regional hub and economic centre, and we’re really happy to become part of the Ashburton success story.”

We believe that the Ashburton shop will soon be a landmark in this vibrant, growing town. Our first shop in Mid Canterbury is a milestone for the company, so if you’re visiting Ashburton or just passing through, do stop by and see Yoshi and his team – see you there soon!

One more look at the shop the night before opening!

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