Sponsored by B&B Department Store
Ocean City has been “America’s Greatest Resort” for over a century. Although the city has evolved during this time, much has endured. The B&B department store has been a mainstay on Asbury Avenue for 42 years. However, this beloved store almost closed its doors for good earlier this year. Following the closure of B&B South, including the Ocean City location, B&B North has taken over ownership, ensuring the beloved store is here to stay. “We are thrilled to take over ownership of B&B in Ocean City. We renovated the location but made sure to retain the VW and Cessna aircraft that made the design so memorable. We are also updating the ranges we offer so we have more to offer and once again make B&B a premier shopping destination,” says Jeffrey Davidson, Owner.
It’s no secret that physical stores have suffered recently. About 40% of US department stores have closed in the past five years, according to Bloomberg.com. However, there is something sentimental about shopping in a store. “There’s a human side to in-store shopping, and shoppers are looking for that visceral experience,” according to Greg Petro in Forbes.com. Ocean City’s B&B department store has found that one place where a memorable customer experience meets consumer needs. “It’s amazing to see generations who love to shop here. We have several customers who shopped here growing up and now continue to shop here as adults and bring their children here. It’s an Ocean City tradition that evolved right next to town,” adds Davidson.
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The first large B&B store opened in 1974 by business partners Dave Davidson and Philip Bertole. The chain has grown to include four locations in New Jersey. When Dave and Philip retired, the B&B department store chain eventually split into two separate companies, North and South. Jeffrey Davidson took over the northern locations. Earlier this year, Davidson learned that stores across the south were closing, including the one in Ocean City. Rather than closing the stores, B&B North took them over under the B&B North umbrella. Davidson brings extensive retail experience to Ocean City’s favorite department store. With over 30 years of retail experience, Davidson has seen the industry change. He started his career at Bambergers and Macys. He then became Regional Merchandise Manager for Montgomery Wards in the Midwest and was responsible for 39 stores in 8 states. “I returned to B&B in 1993 and ran the business from 1998 to 2006, before splitting into two companies, where I continued to run B&B North. I’m incredibly happy to own them again,” says Davidson.
Now under innovative ownership by Davidson, B&B in Ocean City has made several updates while carefully preserving the nostalgia. “We’ve totally remodeled the store with new lighting, fresh paint, new oak lockers and more windows for a modern, fresh look that reflects the style of the brands we sell,” adds Davidson. They have also hired all new friendly and helpful staff to ensure customers have a fun shopping experience.
Another major change you will notice at B&B is new updated merchandise. “We pride ourselves on offering the best and most unique surf and beachwear on the island. We scour the country for the best clothes you won’t find anywhere else,” says Davidson. B&B offers a huge selection for men, women, and juniors as well as beach-themed gifts so everyone can find something to match their style. “You will never see the same article twice. We completely change the inventory often so the looks are always up to date with the season,” says Davidson. You’ll find O’Neill, Quicksilver, Rip Curl, Billabong, Roxy, Life is Good and many more in men’s, women’s, juniors and young men’s. As well as accessories, gifts and beach equipment.
“I’m so happy to be back in Ocean City and look forward to continuing the B&B tradition in the best way possible,” says Davidson. B&B will be open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, now through Labor Day, and will remain open year-round.
B&B DEPARTMENT STORE INFO
Location: 827 Asbury Avenue, Ocean City
Hours: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
For more information, call 609-391-0046 or visit BnBDepartmentStore.com