Concept store is a boost to Limerick city

Nigel Dugdale

Reporter:

Nigel Dugdale

Concept store is a boost to Limerick city

LAST Saturday saw the official launch of Ryan’s Centra on O’Connell Street. James Ryan and his team should be very proud of the newly designed store which has made a significant impact to the look and feel of that part of the city.

The investment James has made in the store has seen it double in size and diversify its offering. The investment in Limerick city is unique in the sense that this is Centra’s first ever Centra ‘concept store’ in the country.

“The aim was to totally transform shoppers experience, becoming a destination store for great food. The store particularly services professionals and office staff who are under time constraints, but simultaneously are health conscious and wish to eat healthy”, Ryan says.

“We have aimed high and believe this store is a great addition to the city centre. We are particularly proud to be able to be the first in Ireland to launch the new look Centra concept. The store is really buzzing, with over 10 new jobs created with additional staff added to the team due to demand. We are already seeing the city of Limerick getting behind this new venture and really supporting it”.

 The store offers really convenient healthy alternatives, with customers given ample choice of quality healthy food that they can grab and go, or relax in the sit down area. A big draw in the store is the wide selection of gourmet hand prepared sandwiches, salad plates and healthy snacks in the 'Grab and Go' fridge which is the first point of contact when the customer enters the store. The success is due to the fact that they allow busy customers to get a healthy and nutritious lunch quickly and easily.

The store also offers exciting new cuisine from around the world at six different counters. There is a barista-served coffee, a gourmet deli counter, a prepared fruit range, a griddle counter - serving omelettes in the morning among other things. 

Other new additions include a chicken and wing bar, as well as a salad bar and a soup dock.

The comfortable sit down area is perfect for those who look to stay awhile, and with the lack of a late night cafe in Limerick, coffee is served in the store until closing time at 11pm seven days a week.

This new look store is redefining people’s perceptions of a typical convenience store, with their healthier more innovative range of products in store. The store has really extended their range and you’ll find items in store that you wouldn’t typically expect to get in a convenience store.

What James Ryan and the Centra team have done is not only introduce a new convenience store concept to Limerick but also setting an example of how store frontage can be more engaging with street life. The large glazed façade can be opened during spells of good weather creating a sense that the store is interacting with the street itself.

James Ryan has been a committed retailer in Limerick for a number of years and has also been very active in the Limerick City Business Association and Limerick Chamber. 

His investment in a quality new store is one that should be commended.

Joe Crowley was a passionate Limerickman 

JOE Crowley’s sudden and untimely passing on Monday afternoon has come as a shock to anyone who had the pleasure of knowing him. 

Joe was a very passionate Limerickman who always placed his pride in our city at the forefront of everything he did.

I knew Joe Crowley for a number of years but got to know him best on the number of occasions he represented Limerick as Leas Cathaoirleach of the council during 2014. 

Speaking to Joe you always got a sense of his deep pride in having been elected to the local authority particularly in a year where Limerick was getting so much good publicity as National City of Culture.

Joe was down to earth, considerate and, despite his political standing, was liked and respected by all those who knew him.

To his wife Christine, his three children and to his many relatives and friends I offer my sincere condolences. 

Magazine shines light on future

IT was great to see Limerick City named one of the principal winners in the European Cities of the Future Awards 2016/2017. 

The annual awards are hosted by fDi magazine, an international news and foreign direct investment magazine published by fDi Intelligence, a specialist division from The Financial Times Ltd.

The Magazine’s biennial league tables of the most attractive locations in Europe for future inward investment have become a key benchmark of FDI competitiveness across the region and serve as a barometer of attractiveness for the many cities and regions that are proactively pitching themselves for inward investment.

Limerick City has been named 'European City of the Future' in its population category and has been included in a list of the top 10 European cities in its population category for 'Human Capital & Lifestyles' and a list of the Top 10 Northern European Cities, which also features London, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Dublin and Stockholm.

Limerick city also has been named runner-up in its population category of the awards for 'Business Friendliness', 'Economic Potential' and 'FDI Strategy'.

Cllr. Liam Galvin, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick said: "Limerick is continuing to demonstrate its ability to attract considerable FDI in comparison to other parts of this country and I am delighted that this fantastic achievement is now receiving international recognition which will further boost efforts to promote the City's attractiveness as an investment location.”