The Queen’s Cabinet boutique at Gig Harbor Marina & Boatyard hosted its final days of business last week.
Gay Peraza, who has operated the ladies’ boutique on Harborview Drive for almost 10 years, closed her doors for good on Sept. 30. Everything was marked 70 percent off — and all of it needed to the end of business on Friday.
Peraza is closing her doors after a long career as a Gig Harbor businesswoman. She has been a merchant along the waterfront since 1992, when she opened her clothing store in another retail space in the downtown area. For several years her Queen’s Cabinet boutique was located in the space now occupied by the Northwest Maritime Academy at the boatyard. She moved to her current location at the front of the building a few years ago.
“I’ve retired two or three times,” she said with a chuckle, warding off any creeping sentimentality over her decision to close her doors. “Business is just business. But now I’ll have time for other things, such as friends who want to meet for lunch, which I never could do before.”
Gay is looking forward to having more time to spend with friends and family — and maybe even some dogs.
“I may volunteer to walk prison dogs,” she said, referring to the Prison Pet Partnership program at the Washington Corrections Center for Women in Gig Harbor. The organization rescues and trains homeless animals to provide service dogs for people with disabilities. The program also operates a boarding and grooming facility at the prison to provide vocational education for women inmates.
“The dogs need to get out and socialize with people and other dogs. I could walk them right along here,” Peraza said, looking out at bustling Harborview Drive.
She has enjoyed her many years as a retailer in the harbor and will miss her loyal customers, she said.
She will also miss her landlord, Ron Roark, general manager of Gig Harbor Marina & Boatyard, which owns the Queen’s Cabinet retail space and the small building now occupied by Dolly Mama Too, a boutique of coastal chic home decor and accessories.
“I have many great customers and my landlord is great. (Roark) has been a wonderful landlord and I will miss them over there,” she added, tilting her head toward the busy boatyard outside her windows. “It’s a super space, and you can quote me on that. It’s very pleasant and is just a wonderful space.”
The 1,908-square-foot space will soon have a new tenant. Gig Harbor Water Sports, a branch of the Gig Harbor Fly Shop, will open later this month. It will offer canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddle boards, wetsuits and “all things for having fun on the water in Gig Harbor,” said Fly Shop associate and instructor/guide Justin Waters.