Ajaccio: Is the night shopping still successful?

The nightly opening of stores downtown begins this evening and continues every Friday in the summer. Most merchants will participate but deplore the lack of entertainment and point out a disjointed organization and a lack of communication

A few hours before the launch of the traditional night shopping on the streets of Aiacciu, merchants Fish Street And its surroundings are not illusions. Mona has just opened her shop and jewelry workshop, rue de l’Assomption. She promised to play the shopping game at the beginning of the season but is waiting to see how many visitors this event will attract. “Last year, I had a pop-up store in Napoleon cycleI only took part in the night shopping once because it didn’t work out. If no one is there this season, I think it will be closed on Friday evenings”The young woman explains. Some stores plan to focus on the opening period, like Mood, operated by Clémence which announces attendance from the second night of shopping, Friday, July 15, until clearance sale.

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She regrets not having received any information from the City Council: “We didn’t even have a program! We didn’t get the event poster”She regrets. A rare exception in Dune, where his manager received the poster, distributed by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI), two days before his first shopping. But most shops on Fish Street are not familiar with the itinerary. For this 2022 edition, the Aiacciu City Council has decided not to apply any rules regarding opening and closing times for traders. A novelty that escapes from almost all stores. “We did not know that there were no working hours … but already in the last year everyone opened as they wanted”Julie laments behind the counter of the Casa Napoléon delicacy.

Atmosphere “sad and dreary”

However, night shopping is a good time for snacks and other ice cream parlors. Like Cedric and his salesmen. It will remain open until Saturday evening until midnight. “When leaving restaurants, vacationers prefer ice cream rather than entering shops, so other shopkeepers are discouraged”, Witness. Caffe’ Vergano owner believes the city council should set up more activities to attract visitors. Street companies can then play the game for at least six weeks.. In previous editions, performances on stilts or Brazilian dancers enliven the nightly shopping district, recalls Clémence of the Mood Shop. “Now it is sad and creepy!”entrusted to the manager of the jewelry store at the Hotel Fesch and Spa. “Before, it was crowded!”, Valerie regrets, pointing to the whole street. An opinion shared by one of her clients, Marie Dominique, who watched ‘The weather is deteriorating’. Some traders are expecting the full summer season to kick off this weekend and hope to count on vacationers and tourists from the city.

A series of activities guaranteed by the Town Hall

For its part, the municipality of Ayakyo promised that bands and artists would arrive at several places on Fish Street, from 7 pm until 10:30 pm throughout the summer. A fun tour and duck hunting for children will be organized on Place Foch, as well as a handicraft market. Regarding the lack of information raised by most shopkeepers, Michele Caprioli, who is responsible for the event together with CCI and the Federation of Ajaccio City Center Shopkeepers’ Associations (FACCA), claims that she has not received any complaints about the entertainment schedule or methods of communication. “The event program was normally distributed to traders for three days by a CCI agent”as you say.

But she admits, it’s hard to get lonely on schedules. “Each trader is independent, free to choose his own opening and closing times.”Michele Caprioli explains. This freedom is added to the delay in the participation of some stores in the night shopping. Some offer night shifts from the second Friday only. Lack of unity that can affect the organization of the event.

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