A new shop in the Capstan neighbourhood is hoping to bring the full Japanese convenience store experience, including late closing hours to Richmond.
Daruma is located right next to Supermarket 2000 in Union Square on Capstan Way, and it is opening on Nov. 22.
The shop will be joining Richmond’s catalogue of Japanese grocery stores in selling Japanese snacks and products, as well as ready-to-eat food such as sashimi, onigiri and bento boxes.
And a big part of the Japanese convenience store experience is being able to buy a late-night snack, which is why the shop will be open from 9:30 a.m. until 12:30 a.m. every day.
Owner Yuki Ma said she fell in love with the culture when she travelled to Japan, and convenience stores are an integral part of the experience. Since many have been unable to visit Japan due to the COVID-19 pandemic, she hopes to bring the experience to the Richmond community instead.
Ma also hopes to make expensive ingredients more accessible through her shop, as dining in has become more expensive due to rising costs of living.
“We hope to provide a convenient service for people on a budget to get better ingredients (such as wagyu, ikura and bluefin tuna) so they can bring them home and share with their friends,” she said.
Ma told the Richmond News a second location will be opening inside Downtown Vancouver's Parq Casino next month.
Richmond was chosen as the first location because of its large Asian population, explained Ma, and Union Square is one of the busiest plazas in the area.
Meanwhile, a new bubble tea shop One Tea has just opened on the other side of the plaza, taking over ShareTea’s old location.