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Agape buys building housing Army Navy Store, cafe

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Agape Senior has acquired the building at 1621 Main St., home of long-time downtown fixture Army Navy Store and Salina Café. (Photo/Chuck Crumbo)

By C. Grant Jackson
colanews@scbiznews.com
Published Oct. 19, 2015

Agape Senior, the senior care services company that moved its headquarters operations to downtown Columbia in 2014, has purchased the 1621 Main St. building that houses the Army Navy Store and Salina Café.

The purchase price was $500,000. Sale of the building, which was owned by Dan Floyd of Lexington, was confirmed by Ansel Bunch, senior associate broker for CBRE in Columbia, who represented Floyd.

Officials at Agape did not return phone calls regarding the sale. However, there has been some speculation that the Agape Pharmacy will move from across the street into the space which currently houses the Army Navy Store. Agape would then expand the hugely popular Michael’s Café & Catering into the adjacent pharmacy space.

The Army Navy Store, which has been a fixture on Main Street since 1982, will either relocate or owner Andrew Zalkin said he will retire.

The owner of Salina Café, which occupies the rest of the building, could not be reached for comment. The restaurant has been in the process of being remodeled and rebranded as “Salina Café – The Hookah Hangout.”

Zalkin said he has not been told if or when he will have to move out of the building. “I’m sure I’ll be here at least through Christmas,” Zalkin said. If he does decide to retire, Zalkin said, “What I’ll miss more than anything are the customers.” He characterizes his business as “a mom and pop store without mom.” He adds that he would look at relocating if he could find a space downtown.

The Army Navy Store has been in downtown Columbia since in 1947, first on Washington Street, then Assembly Street, and for the last 26 years, on Main. Zalkin started working for the store in 1978 when it was on Assembly Street and became the owner in 1988.

The building has about 17,000 square feet with roughly 11,000 on the ground floor, 2,700 on the second floor and a 3,000 square-foot basement.

This is the fourth building that Agape as purchased in the 1600 block of Main. In 2014, Agape renovated buildings 1614, 1620, and 1626 Main as home for the Good Life Café, Michael’s, Agape Pharmacy, a 24/7 Health & Fitness Center, Agape Physicians Care, Agape Conference Center and the corporate offices for Agape Senior.

Agape brought more than 100 workers downtown. Its operations, coupled with the Mast General Store and the Nickelodeon Theatre, completely revitalized the 1600 block of Main Street.

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