Victoria Jewellers

Victoria Jewellers

Project Details

Regina, SK
5,456 square feet
End Use: Retail & Services

Precious Project For Precious Gems

Family-owned jewelry business builds a new standard of elegance.

Sophisticated Interior: Structural system allowed interior of space to be open-concept, letting sophisticated interior and products shine.
Impressive Security: Customized wall system was modified to accommodate high-tech security measures, including expanded metal mesh.
Unique Requirements: A 60,000-pound walk-in vault required the facility interior be completed within a tight time frame.

Combining Elegance And Security

Jewelry Business Builds Elegant New Location With Impressive Security Features

Diamonds are a symbol of wealth, beauty and eternity. Mike Abrahamowicz understands the allure. He has spent nearly 40 years in the jewelry business and wanted to start a family business, building his own legacy.

In 2005, he opened Victoria Jewellers in Regina, Saskatchewan. He co-owns the business with his wife, and employs several family members. He attributes Victoria Jewellers’ success to the hard work and dedication of his family.

“Victoria Jewellers is not only a family business but a growing business. Although recent years have been challenging for many jewelers, we’ve had great fortune.”

Mike Abrahamowicz, Victoria Jewellers

As sales increased despite the recession, Abrahamowicz and his family saw it was an opportune time for expansion. With the help of a developer and Butler Builder® Dura Construction Ltd., they transformed Victoria Jewellers from a 1,300-square-foot retail store into a 5,456-square-foot freestanding location.

Choosing Trusted Partners

Abrahamowicz knew he wanted to enlarge his business, but he had not yet chosen a developer or general contractor. A flight to Mexico changed all that. On that flight, Abrahamowicz met Francis Bast, owner of Century West Development Corporation of Regina. A handshake on an airplane ride forged a partnership.

“In talking about Mike’s business and plans for future growth, we discussed a new building that he could eventually have the option to buy. Century West owned land that was in a good location for him, so it was a natural fit.”

Francis Bast, Century West Development Corporation of Regina

Bast and his colleague John Aston assisted with the site selection and planning process. They chose the southeast corner of Regina, the most affluent section of the city. They focused on one of the last parcels of land available in the commercially developed area, Abrahamowicz said.

When it came time to build the new facility, Bast and Aston recommended Dura, also located in Regina.

The Biggest And Best

Abrahamowicz wanted to become the largest of the jewelry stores in Regina. Because other retailers were in shopping malls, he decided to build a freestanding location. To satisfy Abrahamowicz’s request, Century West, Dura and architectural firm Walker Projects, Inc., planned a two-level facility, which includes retail and nonretail areas.

The retail area, approximately 4,000 square feet, is marked by 250 feet of display cases that are illuminated by LED lighting.

The Widespan structural system minimizes columns, so shoppers are not distracted away from the glittering diamonds. To create a free-flowing, open-concept layout, it also was important to not have columns within the facility interior.

Beyond the retail floor, there is plenty of storage. Shelving units, store displays and gift wrap are behind closed doors, hidden from the shoppers’ eyes.

There also is a full-service kitchen, boardroom and offices. For Abrahamowicz, it is about serving the needs of his employees — his family.

“My family spends most of our time here, often six or seven days per week. I wanted Victoria Jewellers to be our home away from home.”

Mike Abrahamowicz, Victoria Jewellers

The Latest In High-Tech Protection

A diamond is forever, unless it is stolen. And that remains a real possibility. By embracing high-tech security measures, Victoria Jewellers serves as a model for retailers throughout Canada and the United States.

The Shadowall wall system was modified to accommodate expanded metal mesh, a custom add-on which attaches to 26-gauge steel and acts as a penetration-resistant shield. Bulletproof glazing protects the front doors and vestibule. Security cameras surround the perimeter and interior of the retail store.

“It is important not only to safeguard the millions of dollars of gems, but to safeguard the employees as well. Butler building systems integrated seamlessly with the business owner’s security specifications.”

Tim Dean, Dura

The crowning jewels of the facility — the diamonds themselves — are contained in a 60,000-pound walk-in vault. Because of its extreme weight, the custom-designed vault was delivered in pieces. Dura led the charge in delivering and installing the vault, which required that the facility interior be completed within a tight time frame.

Elegance Defined

It was important to draw shoppers in from the busy streets of Regina with elegant design. For this reason, the building features an attractive stucco finish integrated with the Shadowall wall system. Eyebrow windows add architectural appeal.

When shoppers step inside Victoria Jewellers, they are greeted by rich wood display cases, Italian marble floors and pendant lighting fixtures.

This sophisticated interior is enclosed by the MR-24® roof system, which was specified because it is weathertight and durable. There needed to be zero risk that the products or displays could be damaged, and Abrahamowicz also wanted his building to last for generations to come. He envisions his children running the business someday.

“When I look at the building, I feel nothing but pride. I truly can say, ‘That’s one good-looking building. Victoria Jewellers is my family legacy.’ ”

Mike Abrahamowicz, Victoria Jewellers

Butler Builder®

Dura Construction Ltd.

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