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Business Buzz

I Feel Pretty Inc., FreshCo, and Riverbank Bistro
Business Buzz raw
FILE PHOTO/St. Albert Gazette

Lifting women’s spirits 

A St. Albert businesswoman aspires to bring sunshine and happiness into her clients’ lives. Shanet Tougas, founder of I Feel Pretty Box Inc., started her subscription box business in the summer of 2020. 

The woman-focused subscription boxes are sent out four times annually. They contain surprise casual clothing in an individual’s personal size, and home items. 

As part of the e-commerce boom across Canada, Tougas started small with a couple of local subscribers who messaged each other delighted with the boxes. 

“Then all of a sudden, we blew up. I remember working on my computer one evening and, "Ding, ding, ding!" Within two hours, we had done $10,000 in sales. Shortly after, we had orders coming in from not only Alberta, but from British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario,” said Tougas in an email to The Gazette

The boxes are priced at $189 quarterly. Although the price is out of range for some, Spring 2022 is sold out and customers are pre-ordering for Summer 2022. Check out www.ifeelprettybox.ca. 

Grocery store opens 

With little to no fanfare, FreshCo opened Dec. 17. Owned by Sobeys Inc., the discount supermarket is located at Gateway strip mall on Hebert Road. 

The business model aims to offer customers fresh, high-quality food at discount prices in a modern setting. The look is of a well-appointed grocery store such as Safeway or Sobeys with a market vibe and wide aisles. 

It highlights an entire double-sided aisle of ethnic foods, fresh produce, meats, dairy products, snacks, and home products. There is even a feature aisle focused on heavily discounted foods with good savings. 

Anyone lacking a grocery bag will pay extra for one, and staff do not bag purchases. However, the grocer does offer a refund and exchange if shoppers are not satisfied with purchases. 

Most romantic restaurant 

Valentine’s Day has passed but you can still feel the love at Riverbank Bistro. Open Table listed it as one of the 100 Most Romantic Restaurants in Canada 2022. The online reservation service cited the fine dining restaurant as one of only 15 in Alberta. 

“It’s just the setting. We’re located in a Victorian-style house on the river. And we like to create ambiance. We still have candles at the table, and it adds a nice touch,” said executive chef Daniel Ducharme. 

While ambiance is important in a romantic experience, Riverbank’s original western Canadian culinary dishes and fine wines seal the deal. 

“We wanted to pay homage to [chef] Willy White. We didn’t want to mimic what he did. We wanted to create a fresh take on what he did.” 

Open Table’s Romantic Restaurant nomination is Riverbank’s fourth. It is located at 8 Mission Ave. 

If you know of a St. Albert and area business that has recently arrived, moved, or shut its doors, let us know by email at [email protected] with “Business Buzz” as the subject line.