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Nickel City Hardwood opens new showroom on Grand Island

Sat, Oct 27th 2018 07:00 am
Nickel City Hardwood of Grand Island celebrated the opening of their new showroom in the Grand Island Plaza Saturday with the help of the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce. Pictured, from left: Chamber of Commerce Eric Fiebelkorn; owners: Paul and Vanessa Hinderliter and son Lucas, Carley and Mike Antonelli; in back, chamber Vice President CJ Girard; Jenn Pusatier, Toni Amantia and Sue Berger of the chamber. (Photo by Larry Austin)
Nickel City Hardwood of Grand Island celebrated the opening of their new showroom in the Grand Island Plaza Saturday with the help of the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce. Pictured, from left: Chamber of Commerce Eric Fiebelkorn; owners: Paul and Vanessa Hinderliter and son Lucas, Carley and Mike Antonelli; in back, chamber Vice President CJ Girard; Jenn Pusatier, Toni Amantia and Sue Berger of the chamber. (Photo by Larry Austin)
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce celebrated another business expansion this week from a company that turned what could have been a disaster into an opportunity to grow.
Nickel City Hardwood held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the company's custom hardwood, tile, carpet, and luxury vinyl enterprise Saturday. Members of the chamber watched as the company owned by Islanders Paul and Vanessa Hinderliter and Carley and Mike Antonelli opened the doors on a new showroom at 2395 Grand Island Blvd., in the Grand Island Plaza.
Carley Antonelli said that after Nickel City Hardwood left its original location in the brownstone building on Whitehaven Road in January, the owners were excited to be setting up their first big showroom in the plaza. Lady Luck soon put a damper on that.
Antonelli said, "about 13 hours after that showroom was finished with our beautiful floors done and the walls painted, the roof failed and it flooded." The decision was made to move into a larger space in the plaza.
"We've been spending our time since then getting this space ready for the new showroom," she said.
The silver lining to the storm was an expansion of the business.
"We're definitely taking advantage of having more space so that we're able to offer far more products, which makes it a lot easier for our customers to see larger samples of what we have available," Antonelli said. "And we can offer a lot more products to contractors now as well, which is what we're utilizing the space in the back half of the showroom for."
Antonelli said Nickel City Hardwood can "offer far more products now. We're carrying many more brands, which allows our customers to have more options, and we carry products at a wider price point now."
Present in the Grand Island Plaza Saturday for the ribbon-cutting were Grand Island Chamber of Commerce President Eric Fiebelkorn and Vice President CJ Girard, among others. Girard pointed out that Mike Antonelli's parents are both Island entrepreneurs in their own right: his father is a businessman on the Island, and his mother owns Adrian's Custard and Beef.
"What a great story is that alone?" Girard said. "I think more than anything it shows that people who grow up children of business owners often don't stray far from the business owner mentality themselves."
That mentality has at its core an attention to customer service. The showroom is typically open by appointment only, allowing the owners to meet when it's best for their customers rather than the other way around.
"It allows us to meet whenever it's convenient for them. We've met with people at six in the morning or at nine o'clock at night," Antonelli said.
Vanessa Hinderliter said, "And most people work during the day anyway. I know we went through it when we built our houses. All these places that are only open during the workday, and you have to take a day off to talk with someone or even to just walk into a store."
"Having somebody standing here waiting for people to walk in the door is just cost prohibitive," Girard added.
Antonelli said one of the reasons to do business by appointment only is that it allows the company to realize savings that they can pass on to their customers.
Girard said Nickel City's opening is "a huge injection for the plaza. You see how beautiful the showroom is. They have a great presence here."
The plaza isn't the only beneficiary. Girard said the majority of the Nickel City Hardwood customer base is located on the Island, "so it really gives them the ability to beautify the existing homes on the Island."
The owners said the Grand Island customer base has been very good to them.
"We really appreciate our customers and their referrals because most of our advertising is just done through organic word of mouth," Antonelli said.

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