The beginning of the end?

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Zeno Marx

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Retail space is EXPENSIVE. Back when sq footage was lesser, shops could afford to have slow-moving sale space. They could have a section of pipe racks that sold once or twice a year, mostly collecting dust and being a maintenance hassle, but also sort of providing a write-off on taxes. They can't afford to operate like that anymore. Every square foot has to move sales to pay rent, and for some reason, shops choose to operate out of places near large malls or in busy strip malls, where land owners get a premium for their retail space. You need the foot traffic, but you're going to pay dearly for it. The last time I went to a nearby Tinder Box, they had a single 2' shelf of tinned tobacco and only two small jars of loose tobacco. Maybe half a dozen total pipe tobacco options. The rest of the place was cigars and then expensive single batch whiskies in these odd 300ml (?) bottles that I'd never seen before, each signed and some super limited edition. They sell wine and whisky tasting tickets for social gatherings at maybe $30/ticket. This place was more of a boutique liquor store than a tobacco shop. Located right next to the biggest mall in a 60 mile radius, so I know the rent was very high. I found it really weird because I thought other stores had this whiskey thing covered, but I guess not. It's not as if they could sell the tickets and have whiskey and cigar tastings. You couldn't smoke in the building.

The days when retail space was rent controlled because someone knew someone who knew someone, or owners were idealists holding the fort down on pipes etc are no longer the case. Everyone is squeezing every drop of blood out of the rocks. You can blame it on anti-smoking laws and taxes, but it is every bit as much about the fierce retail climate as anything. There are no favors to be found anywhere. Even in the 70s-90s, a shop owner almost had to have three stores to milk out a single reasonable living for their family. It's why so many tobacconists had these mini-chains of stores.
 

GtrSmoker

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Retail space is EXPENSIVE. Back when sq footage was lesser, shops could afford to have slow-moving sale space. They could have a section of pipe racks that sold once or twice a year, mostly collecting dust and being a maintenance hassle, but also sort of providing a write-off on taxes. They can't afford to operate like that anymore. Every square foot has to move sales to pay rent, and for some reason, shops choose to operate out of places near large malls or in busy strip malls, where land owners get a premium for their retail space. You need the foot traffic, but you're going to pay dearly for it. The last time I went to a nearby Tinder Box, they had a single 2' shelf of tinned tobacco and only two small jars of loose tobacco. Maybe half a dozen total pipe tobacco options. The rest of the place was cigars and then expensive single batch whiskies in these odd 300ml (?) bottles that I'd never seen before, each signed and some super limited edition. They sell wine and whisky tasting tickets for social gatherings at maybe $30/ticket. This place was more of a boutique liquor store than a tobacco shop. Located right next to the biggest mall in a 60 mile radius, so I know the rent was very high. I found it really weird because I thought other stores had this whiskey thing covered, but I guess not. It's not as if they could sell the tickets and have whiskey and cigar tastings. You couldn't smoke in the building.

The days when retail space was rent controlled because someone knew someone who knew someone, or owners were idealists holding the fort down on pipes etc are no longer the case. Everyone is squeezing every drop of blood out of the rocks. You can blame it on anti-smoking laws and taxes, but it is every bit as much about the fierce retail climate as anything. There are no favors to be found anywhere. Even in the 70s-90s, a shop owner almost had to have three stores to milk out a single reasonable living for their family. It's why so many tobacconists had these mini-chains of stores.
The funny thing about that Edward’s shop in Tampa was they HAVE space for it. The “pipe tobacco section” the guy pointed me towards had several empty shelves and some shelves with just a tin or two.
 

Ranger107

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Holy smokes.... I’ve got about a third of that, and don’t see myself getting many more.... although I AM jonesing for a house pipe. Big time jonesing. I just love the thought of packing a single pipe and it lasting me through a whole movie. Or afternoon lol
Check out ebay for giant pipes. There is a Lorenzo old vic giant on there for $60. Have one just like it only blast not clear. Smokes great and with my morning burley I can get almost 2 hours out of it. Been debating on getting it myself but not sure I want 2 almost identical pipes. Plus I'm trying to wait out the guy who has the giant Molina that I want but won't pay $130 for, lol.
 
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