Russo’s International Market to close in September

BY Wednesday, August 07, 2019 02:57pm

GRAND RAPIDS — The owners of Russo’s International Market have decided to close the store after 115 years in West Michigan, the company announced Wednesday.

The building had been on the market since early 2019, when co-owner Phil Russo told MiBiz that the company was “in the process of consolidating our square footage” because it did not need to use the entire 18,470-square-foot building, which is located at 2770 29th St. SE in Grand Rapids. 

“With great thought and consideration, Phil and Dave Russo have chosen to close their business, retire and relax,” the company wrote on its Facebook page Wednesday.

Phil Russo declined to comment on the future use of the building, citing a non-disclosure agreement.

According to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission records, Mega-Bev GR 29 LLC filed documents on June 24 to transfer liquor licenses from Russo’s to its entity. The company is an affiliate of Mega-Bev, an operator of specialty adult beverage stores with locations in Battle Creek, Lansing, Marshall, Kalamazoo, Hastings and Portage, according to its website. 

The MLCC enforcement division is currently investigating the license transfer request, according to state records.

Mega-Bev owner Scott Neiko declined to comment for this story. 

Specialty grocery retailer G.B. Russo & Son Ltd. has been in business since 1905, originally on Division Avenue in the downtown area. The building at 2770 29th St. SE has been home to Russo’s since 1976, according to its website. The company later expanded in 2008. 

Russo’s International Market is known for its range of deli meats and cheeses, as well as grocery items, prepared meals and a large selection of international wines, beers and spirits. The store also carries a range of kitchenware items. 

In May 2018, Russo’s closed a store at 241 W. Fulton Street in downtown Grand Rapids after just eight months in business. According to a social media post at the time, the Russo family said it planned to focus its efforts on the 29th Street store. 

Previously, Phil Russo told MiBiz the closing of the downtown store was not a factor in the decision to put the flagship building up for sale.

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