Star Markets closes its Moiliili doors

Star Markets closes its Moiliili doors

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

MOILIILI (HAWAIINEWSNOW) - A grocery store that's been a fixture in Moiliili for nearly 70 years, is now closed.

On Monday night, Star Markets on King Street shut its doors for good. It now officially belongs to Times Supermarkets.

But a Times grocery store may not be what the community will see in its place.

It's the very first Star Markets, which opened in 1940, and it's the first to close. The grocery store has served the Moiliili community 24 hours a day.

But on Monday night, it closed at 9:00 PM for good.

"I'm very sad it's like losing part of my family, like I'm losing a family member, so I'm going to miss this place," said Litheia Nakamoto, a Star Markets employee for 34 years.

The Moiliili branch is the first of seven stores to close, as part of a deal with Times Supermarket to buyout the grocery chain.

"Well, I've been going to this store for forty-something years and when I heard about the news that they're going to close, I feel bad because it's close for us to come down here and go shopping," said Kauasi Mataele, a customer.

"This community is an elderly community and the grandmas and grandpas walk to this store and you know I see them everyday and I'm just going to miss them," said Nakamoto.

What the community will see next is not quite clear.

Star has said that it will transfer the Moiliili and Ewa Beach stores to CVS, owner of Longs Drugs.

But the transaction is not yet official.

The next closure will be the store at Ewa Beach, which is set for this Thursday.

A manager couldn't give an exact number, but says a handful of people at the Moiliili store were laid off. However, he said Times hired back a majority of the team.