Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

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Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by klkla » 14 Dec 2009 20:29

When I worked for Mayfair in the early 1980's there were two stores in Las Vegas, two in Reno, one in Carson City and one in Elko. If there had been others in Nevada they were closed long before I worked for them. Unfortunately, I don't remember exactly when the stores closed. They closed piecemeal, not all at the same time. The Northern Nevada stores were part of a small district that included two stores in Fresno and one in Madera, CA.

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Re: Safeway, Raley's and Roy's, Elko, Nevada

Post by storewanderer » 14 Dec 2009 21:20

So Mayfair lasted a lot longer in Northern Nevada than it lasted in Northern California it sounds like? Or was there never much a presence in Northern California? I don't think the store that was sold and rebranded "The Market" lasted long. If I recall correctly they took the old Mayfair sign away but kept the "Market" part up front. That shopping center now has a Smart and Final Extra newly constructed. The prior Mayfair Space houses a Marshalls.

This has always been a strange grocery market with a lot of different players, even to this day.

I had no idea the Elko Store was Mayfair as long as it was. I thought it would have been sold off whenever they left Utah.
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Re: Safeway, Raley's and Roy's, Elko, Nevada

Post by klkla » 15 Dec 2009 20:25

Mayfair did indeed leave Northern California years earlier.

When I started working for them in 1980 they had 102 stores scattered over 5 states.

Approximately 15 stores in Oregon and Washington (Small towns like Walla Walla east of the Cascades)
About 45 +/- stores in Arizona operating under the El Rancho, Food Giant and Low Cost Discount Foods banners
About 45 +/- stores in California and Nevada operating as Mayfair and Low Cost Discount Foods. All the California stores were in the Southern part of the state except for the three stores mentioned in the above post and included stores in Oxnard, Ventura, Bakersfield (2), San Diego (5), El Centro, and Brawley with the balance in Los Angeles/Orange County from what I remember.

The last Mayfair was converted to the Gelson's format about six months ago in Hollywood.

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Re: Safeway, Raley's and Roy's, Elko, Nevada

Post by krogerclerk » 16 Dec 2009 10:44

In 1967 Arden-Mayfair operated 281 stores in 7 western states.
California had 155, Arizona 28, Oregon 36, Washington 25, Utah 23, Nevada 13, and 1 in Colorado.

The company was organized into 15 divisions which had an odd geography.
Los Angeles 54
Bay Area 37
with 30 in California and 7 in Nevada
Arizona 28
San Diego 28
Utah 23
Riverside 19
San Joaquin Valley 17
Eugene, OR 13
Southern OR 12
Eastern WA 12
Western WA 13
Salem, OR 11
Sacramento 7
Southern NV 6
Colorado 1

The odd geography is the Bay area division having 7 NV stores despite the existence of Sacramento and San Joaquin Valley divisions to the east. Also Utah contained 23 stores and the division had 23 stores, so it appears the Elko store was always part of the Bay Area group. The 6 Southern NV stores could be assumed to be in the Vegas area. The lone CO store is somewhat puzzling as it is its own division, yet would seem logical that a single store would be managed with the nearest group of stores, Utah being the logical choice. From all appearances the Eastern WA operation lasted longer than the Western WA group. I get the impression the divisions functioned more like districts than actual divisions given their small size.

The CO store piques my curiosity as to where it was located and why would it be grouped alone. Was it near Denver or somewhere else along the Front Range, or was it a Western Slope store closer to the Utah border? So when was Utah sold off, as it was gone by 1980, yet Elko obviously survived into the 1980's.

So for drifting a bit off topic, but Mayfair seems to have a history almost along the lines of Food Fair, with a rapid rise and fall, but unlike Food Fair, actually survives as a supermarket entity today. The Arden Group today owns one shopping center in addition to the Gelson's chain. Does Arden still operate its dairy?

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by Brian Lutz » 16 Dec 2009 20:13

I'm not how many stores it would have added to the count below, but I believe that the Market Basket stores in the Seattle area (the ones associated with Marketime Drugs, which later was merged into Fred Meyer) got converted to Mayfair some time around 1970 or so. I know of 3 Mayfair stores that were in Bellevue. A 1969 photo of one of these can be found here. The building is still around, and currently houses an Office Depot store.
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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by tkaye » 19 Dec 2009 12:51

Mayfair sold their 16 Puget Sound-area stores to Lucky in 1975. Ten years later, Lucky sold off their entire Seattle division to Associated Grocers.

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Re: Safeway, Raley's and Roy's, Elko, Nevada

Post by klkla » 20 Dec 2009 19:42

krogerclerk wrote:The Arden Group today owns one shopping center in addition to the Gelson's chain. Does Arden still operate its dairy?
The company does not operate Arden Farms dairy anymore. The company started as Western Dairies in the 1930's and changed it's name to Arden Farms in the 1940's. Due to a lack of capital investment the dairies, like the supermarkets, gradually died. The last dairy, an ice cream plant in Alaska, closed sometime in the 1980's. It would have closed years earlier but for a lengthly lawsuit brought on by a union.

BTW... Arden Farms, Inc. acquired Mayfair Markets in 1964 and became Arden-Mayfair, Inc. in that year. It also acquired Gelson's Markets in the same year (but operated them separately due to an agreement with the Gelson's brothers). The company endured many financial scandals after that point and in response to one of them became Arden Group. Inc. in 1979.

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by marshd1000 » 22 Dec 2009 18:12

Besides Walla Walla, where were the other Eastern Washington Mayfair stores? I had always thought they were only in the greater Seattle area?

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by romleys » 24 Dec 2009 18:24

Here is a list of the Mayfair Markets operating in Northern California...
1731 West San Carlos St. San Jose
31st & El Camino Real San Mateo
10075 East Estates Dr. Cupertino
3120 Arden Way Sacramento
2350 Florin Rd. Sacramento
239 West 11th St. Tracy
1750 Miramonte Ave. Mountain View
3922 Middlefield Rd. Palo Alto
14100 Blossom Hill Rd. Los Gatos
580 Masonic Way Belmont
1761 Grant Ave. Novato
1701 Willow Pass Rd. Concord
222 Valle Vista Vallejo
1320 South Main St. Salinas
1433 West Jackson St. Hayward
313 West Olive St. Madera
350 Bay St. San Francisco
3660 Broadway Oakland
355 Ocean Ave. San Francisco
1735 Geary Blvd. San Francisco
1570 Hamilton Ave. San Jose
1305 South Winchester Blvd. San Jose
725 Sunnyvale-Saratoga Rd. Sunnyvale
1760 North Fremont Blvd. Seaside
1801 Fourth St. San Rafael
340 Third St. San Rafael
2316 Monument Blvd. Pleasant Hill
260 Mayfield Ave. Mountain View
6730 Telegraph Ave. Oakland
434 East 18th St. Oakland
2350 Junipero Serra Daly City
2665 Geneva Daly City
6867 Mission St. Daly City
1570 West Campbell Ave. Campbell
590 North 11th St. Hanford
2233 South Mooney Blvd. Visalia
3502 North Blackstone Ave. Fresno
4896 East Kings Canyon Blvd. Fresno
4118 North West St. Fresno
917 East Olive Ave. Fresno
2736 Divisadero St. Fresno

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Locations - East S.F. Bay Area-1963

Post by Jason B. » 11 Sep 2012 02:01

An Oakland Tribune advertisement in January 1963 listed five Mayfair locations in the East San Francisco Bay Area (three of which were open 24 hours):

1. OAKLAND – Broadway & MacArthur (open 24 hours)
2. EL CERRITO – 11600 San Pablo Ave. (open 24 hours)
3. CONCORD – 1701 Willow Pass Road
4. HAYWARD – 1433 West Jackson
5. SAN LORENZO – 515(?) Paseo Grande (San Lorenzo Village) (open 24 hours)

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by marshd1000 » 16 Jan 2013 21:57

I know I am resurrecting a old thread about Mayfair. But I remember Mayfair Markets when I was a child. As stated earlier, they sold their Western Washington operations to Lucky by 1975. I do remember being in Mayfair one last time in 1980 in Newport, Oregon. But according to a earlier post, there were Mayfair stores in Eastern Washington, in places like Walla Walla. But I am wondering what other cities and towns in Eastern Washington had Mayfair Markets? Can anyone answer that?

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by rnaikens » 20 Jan 2013 18:55

The last Mayfair in Las Vegas was on Paradise Road. Ed Meyers, President of Mayfair at the time took over this store as part of his severance. He operated it until the airport quite forcibly bought him out. He took that money and bought the old Fox\Markettown\Food Fair\Pantry Pride\Smiths\Pioneer at 22 E Oakey. That store closed in 2003 and has been vacant ever since.

His last store has a significant grocery history. ... ersion.JPG

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by Steve Landry » 21 Jan 2013 02:07

Very cool foto!

Any idea how many of those Fox stores actually existed in Nevada?
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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by RandallFlagg » 23 Apr 2013 23:27

A fb friend just posted this. It was located in Cucamonga (now Rancho Cucamonga) on Foothill Blvd. Rte. 66. I grew up shopping here with my mom. I'm guessing this pic is late 60's early 70's. To the left and out of frame was a small TG&Y, a bar, laundromat and dry cleaner. Today it is an Autozone.

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Re: Mayfair Markets - Geography and History

Post by klkla » 20 Apr 2017 23:01

There is an interesting article about Mayfair's history and legal problems here: ... c-history/

Interesting thing is their description of Mayfair's history: "The company's history may be traced as far back as the 1933 incorporation of Western Dairies, Inc., a small California dairy operation that gradually expanded its geographic scope and product line to become a grocery retailer known as the Arden Farm Company beginning in 1940. By 1964, Arden Farms was ready for growth through acquisition. In October of that year Arden acquired Mayfair Markets, a chain of supermarkets in Los Angeles, creating Arden-Mayfair, Inc., later a subsidiary of the Arden Group. At the same time, Arden acquired a small chain of supermarkets from the Gelson Brothers. The Gelsons had opened their first store in North Hollywood in the late 1940s. "

But on the Gelson's website they have their own description: "We like to say there’s a little bit of Mayfair in every Gelson’s — its gusto, its cand-do spirit, its love for the customer — even though the last Mayfair Market recently became a Gelson’s. The Mayfair Connection actually began years before Gelson’s did. Estimates put the genesis of the chain sometime around the stock market crash of 1929. In 1948, eight existing California stores run by the Mayfair Companies were merged with 43 California Van’s Markets, both owned by Arden Farms Co., to create a new chain of stores: Mayfair Markets."

Don't know which version is accurate but I would assume it's Gelson's.

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