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New Stainton's Co-op Announces a May 19 Opening

Ocean City merchants hope Stainton's will become a new downtown draw.

, a downtown Ocean City landmark, is celebrating its centennial year with the grand opening of its new Gallery of Shops from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 19.

The more than 70 distinct boutiques at Stainton's offer a vast array of diverse merchandise from apparel, accessories and art, to furnishings, photography, pottery and woodcraft. Visitors are encouraged to explore the maze-like galleries — with unusual items around every turn.

"We feel honored to be a centerpiece for the downtown Ocean City stores," said Harry Bassford, Stainton's manager. "Stainton's shops are just one of the many new and exciting changes to the area, but there is a wealth of artistry and craftsmanship here that really makes downtown Ocean City extraordinary."

With an immense 22,000 square-foot floor, Stainton's Gallery of Shops consists of a collective of 70 individual vendors offering merchandise in more than 80 department-like shops. Larger and more diverse than neighboring alliances such as Cape May's "The West End Garage" or Clermont's "The Marketplace at Teabury," Stainton's plans to attract both visitors and residents alike with the convenience of a single floor and check-out area, as well as free Wi-Fi in its lounge and cafe.

Named after the illustrious Howard S. Stainton, the Stainton's building has been a hub for the Ocean City community for decades. Beginning with a small structure built in 1912, Stainton expanded his dry goods business into a sizable department store, overlooking Model T's and petticoats on bustling Asbury Avenue. Today, the new Gallery of Shops hopes to reestablish this historic property's former splendor and celebrate the arrival of a decidedly new shopping experience. 

— News release from Stainton's: A Gallery of Shops

(Check back for additional coverage of the addition of Stainton's to the downtown.)

Nicole Foxman April 28, 2012 at 01:41 PM
ocdreaming, I am sorry, but I have to disagree. Stainton's is a collection of different shops with fun, interesting, unique and elegant merchandise - not flea market, at all.The floor-plan allows you to investigate all of this in a relatively small space, so it's really quite convenient. Any busy business district has parking issues, O.C. included. Stainton's was a four-story department store for many years. If downtown O.C, has enough appeal, people will find parking as they always have. Downtown Ocean City is a fun, convenient, and creative destination. That's why people come here.
Liz April 29, 2012 at 12:56 PM
I agree that parking will always be an issue in OC. If the stores are appealing enough, people will find a way to shop. From the descriptions of this, I immediately think, as ocdreaming said, "glorified flea market." I seriously hope I am mistaken. I own property and come to OC fairly often in the summer, and do like to shop on Asbury. I am close enough to walk and would LOVE some new shops. Keeping my fingers crossed.
Corina Jurgen May 07, 2012 at 01:06 AM
Hey everyone. I've recently been inside of the building, and let me tell you, this genius idea is going to make asbury thrive more-so than it already does. Trust me. Come down and see for yourself. The store is beautiful. Breath taking, some have said.
anonymous December 01, 2012 at 08:48 PM
The Gallery of Shops was a great idea unfortunately there has been alot of disagrements between the owners and the least capable owner has won out. And then Sandy hit. The owner took all of our inventory out of our stores before we even had a chance to assess our damages and then had the audacity to ask us to sign a waiver stating that we don't have any insurance. They put the merchants in a no win situation. As a customer, you will probably see many different vendors there. I know of many that are not going back. And if you want to support the vendors that have been screwed please boycott the store.
Nicole Foxman December 09, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Hello “Anonymous.” you are certainly entitled to your opinion, but I feel I must respond to.statements that may mislead or are simply not true. -The owners asked merchants to remove their merchandise from the sales floor prior to cleaning beginning Sun, Nov 4th - Sat, Nov. 9th. Some merchants had already moved their items by then. Free storage facilities were provided as well as additional people to assist in moving. -Some merchandise and fixtures were moved to storage if the merchants were unable to move the items themselves by Nov 9th. -The owners asked merchants to sign a form stating that there was no duplication of flood insurance (much like the form one signs when stating you do not have additional medical insurance coverage).This form protects the insurance company. It was not a waiver of any kind. -The overall purpose of moving quickly was to re-open as quickly as possible. Most merchants appreciated our expediency, enabling us to reopen for the holiday season. I am sorry that you did not.

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