Six months after closing Desert Foothills Ace Hardware is reopening with new owners who’ve been in the business for 38 years.
The new owners, Martin and Art Ruggiero, are brothers. Their father opened their first Ace Hardware store in 1976.
“He wanted to have a hardware store to work at in retirement,” Martin said. “He really didn’t realize that a hardware store is not a retirement thing. It’s a business and takes a lot of hours. He worked for a couple years and my brother and I bought him out. It’s third generation now.”
Martin said he and his brother both have children helping out in their four Ace Hardware locations. This one in Ahwatukee Foothills will be their fifth store. Martin believes their family may be the oldest Ace Hardware ownership in the Valley.
“When we first opened up my brother and I were there 100 percent of the time,” he said. “We knew every customer by name. We remembered their projects they did last time they came in. It’s like family… I enjoy helping people. If you walk through that front door, you need help. It’s not like a clothing store or a place you’re looking for gadgets or whatever. You come in when you have a problem. When you come in and we can help you and get the project done correctly it makes us feel good.”
Martin said they’re excited to reopen the Desert Foothills Ace Hardware. The store closed suddenly at the beginning of the year. Martin and his family jumped on the opportunity to take over the location. In the months they’ve been remodeling and working on the inside of the store, he said they’ve had several people knocking on the door asking when they’ll reopen.
“Very rarely do we get an opportunity like this, in a neighborhood like this to open up a store, especially with customers banging down the door wanting us to open,” he said. “Sometimes you open a store and aren’t sure if you’ll have anyone come shopping at the store. With this one we’re sure we’re going to make it.”
The store is expected to open on Monday, June 8. They’ll have a soft opening at first and a grand opening this fall.
The store is located at 1335 E. Chandler Blvd. in the Desert Foothills Plaza.
• Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or firstname.lastname@example.org.