Business

New Canaan businesses are the lifeblood not just of the “Magic Circle” downtown and other hubs of arts and commerce, but also are critical drivers and supporters of community events, human services and preserving the character of “The Next Station to Heaven.” In this section, we spotlight New Canaan businesses and profile their owners, in long-form interviews and spot features, celebrating our anchor businesses and welcoming those new to town.

Recent Articles

‘It’s My Passion’: ‘Early Lingo’ Founder Returns to New Canaan with International Early Language Learning System

Caryn Antonini grew up speaking foreign languages. The New Canaan High School graduate’s father ran an international division for his company and spoke different languages, “so I was always exposed to different languages and cultures,” the town resident recalled Friday morning. Fluent in French, Spanish, Italian and German (as well as English), Antonini continued her education at Georgetown University, where she studied children’s acquisition of language at the School of Language and Linguistics. Then, while in Europe on vacation and speaking to a friend of her husband’s, she was asked  why she wasn’t developing her own language program. The question stuck with her for the rest of the trip. Continue Reading →

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‘We Really Want to be Part of the Community’: Friends Open Nail Salon on Vitti Street

Longtime friends Silvia Narvaez and Maggie San had already worked for six years in nail salons before they decided a few months ago to open their own business. The pair found a place to realize their shared vision in New Canaan. “About two months ago we found this space” Narvaez said from the floor of ‘Studio 3 Spa & Nails.’

Located on the street-level floor of a single-story building at 36 Vitti St., the newly renovated space features five spa pedicure chairs, numerous manicure stations, a wall rack with color options and a facial room in the back. Much of the labor to make the space ready was done by the women themselves and Narvaez’s brother, they said. “The painting, the decorations, we all did ourselves,” Narvaez said, pointing out the different jobs. Continue Reading →

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Selectmen Move Toward Nixing Planned Summer Season of ‘Pop Up Park’

Officials on Tuesday urged the Pop Up Park’s organizers to realign with the local organization that’s supported the downtown gathering space in past summers—a relationship that appears to have broken down over moving a kiosk three feet. Ostensibly the municipal body that would grant a Special Events Permit for the Pop Up Park, the Board of Selectmen stopped short of saying it would definitely nix it. Yet First Selectman Kevin Moynihan and Selectmen Kit Devereaux and Nick Williams each signaled that the New Canaan Chamber of Commerce’s involvement—which the organization itself has essentially ruled out for a proposed July 21 to Sept. 3 season—was a make-or-break consideration. “Given where we are, I don’t think there is any way we are going to proceed with the Pop Up Park on the terms that we’d had last year,” Moynihan said during a special meeting of the board, held at Town Hall. Continue Reading →

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‘Design Solutions’ on Elm Street To Close

Specialty home goods shop ‘design solutions’ on Elm Street is closing after 24 years and will move to new location in Scott’s Corners, N.Y., its owner said. According to Pauline Dora, design solutions and other local businesses have suffered in recent years as more chains have opened in New Canaan. Since she opened her business, Dora said, “the world has changed dramatically.”

“It was a lot simpler,” she said. Dora added: “When we opened 24 years ago, there were two chain stores, today there are 15.” Dora said such stores can afford to pay higher rents. “It is very difficult to stay in business with the likes of Citibank and J Crew,” she said. Continue Reading →

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‘Gingerbitz’ on Elm Street To Close Friday

Gingerbitz, an eat-in bakery launched on Elm Street more than four years ago by a New Canaan couple, is to close Friday. Karen Zuckert said she and her husband, Andrew, have forged many new friendships through the business and “are very sorry to leave.”

“We really wanted to create something very special for the town,” she saId. “We live in town, we care about it. It’s disappointing. There is just not enough business in town to keep going and to the standard that we would like to keep it.”

Named after a sobriquet that had been bestowed on Karen by her late father-in-law, Donald Zuckert, the cozy shop offered her signature baked goods—including custom cakes, cupcakes and cookies—as well as an eclectic menu of sandwiches, salads, coffees and more. Continue Reading →

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