Shop Small Merchant Series – Stefan Ambrosch
Shop Small continues to be an annual shopping tradition — just one part of the larger Shop Small Movement to support small businesses every day and everywhere. Because a visit to our family-owned Village, shoppes, and restaurants not only supports our local economy but also promotes a thriving community.
Name of your stores: UNA Boutique, KITCH, Vault Coffee, Mango’s Wood-Fired Pizza Company, Deviant Donuts, Mango’s Ice Cream
Your name and relationship to stores: Stefan Ambrosch, Owner
How long have you been in the Village? 9 years
How did the idea for your businesses come about?
I grew up in Mystic, I would visit the Olde Mistick Village as a small child with my parents, fed the ducks, I went to the movies with friends in the village as a teenager, I strolled and shopped the stores at Christmas for gifts as a young adult… so Olde Mistick Village has always been part of my life. As far as opening my first business in Olde Mistick Village everything started with my love for great pizza. Mango’s was and is my first business in Olde Mistick Village. A common thread from some of the best minds in business is that you should do what you love and what you know…. well I LOVE pizza so I started out in building 6 back in 2009, which is now my ice cream shop. We worked really hard and passionately to build that little shop from nothing to something we were very proud of and in 2016 we expanded into our current location at building 8 and it has been crazy ever since. I found that I really love to build businesses and the relationships that come with that so I have continued to do so.
What makes your stores so special?
Olde Mistick Village has so many fantastic shops, and so I have some high standards to try and live up to – but there are some common threads that I try to strive for in all of my shops. The right product at the right price is very important but honestly, the thing that stands out and makes our stores special is the staff that works them. I hear on a regular basis how great the staff is and that makes me very proud. I know that they are treating our customers extremely well, which means they will be back.
What about your store(s) are you the most proud of?
The “family” that has developed with myself and much of my staff. My brother Ben has been with me since day one and it is a true blessing to be able to work with him and see him grow over the years, the same can be said about many of my staff – some of them have been with me since day one or at least 6 years plus. That says something. I am most proud of that.
What motivates you every day?
Passion. I am passionate about what I do and in turn that has been very important to our success.
What do you like the most about being in the Village?
I love the small town and family feel. You can’t find that in a mall or online. Mystic is an amazing place to have a business in general, but having my businesses in Olde Mistick Village is just wonderful… it is very fairytaleish.
In what ways does your business give back to the community in and around Mystic?
We try and give back as much as we can. We host fundraiser nights for local schools & organizations, donate to the YMCA, Mystic Aquarium, Mystic & Noank Library, and numerous other local charities and events.
We would not be here without the support of so many in the community so it is important for all of us to pay that forward.
Mango’s Wood-fired Pizza Co. is located in Olde Mistick Village, Building 8e, 27 Coogan Blvd. Mystic, CT 06355
Mango’s Homemade Ice Cream is located in Olde Mistick Village, Building 6, 27 Coogan Blvd. Mystic, CT 06355
VaultCoffee/Deviant Donuts is located in Olde Mistick Village, Building 15d, 27 Coogan Blvd. Mystic, CT 06355
UNA Boutique is located in Olde Mistick Village, Building 12b, 27 Coogan Blvd. Mystic, CT 06355
KITCH is located in Olde Mistick Village, Building 19a, 27 Coogan Blvd. Mystic, CT 06355