All American Home Center closes its doors

All American Home Center in Downey, Calif., was famous in the home improvement industry for a number of things, chief among them its size: 150,000 sq. ft. plus an outdoor garden center. But most people admired the family-owned home center for the fact that it survived the opening of a Home Depot right next store in 1996. In fact, the two retailers have adjacent parking lots.

Lanny Gertler, whose father opened the store in 1952, remodeled the large home center several times, and All American had a loyal clientele in its working class neighborhood in Orange County. But Gertler passed away in February 2010, and last month, the retailer hired Gordon Brothers Group to liquidate the store’s inventory, a process that will run into next month. Third-generation owner Tamar Kane has given no official reason for the store’s closure, although she issued a statement that said: “Our customers have shown us great loyalty for decades, and we hope they take advantage of these incredible savings on home improvement supplies.”

Industry insiders told Home Channel News that a group of senior managers tried to buy All American from Kane but were rebuffed.

In addition to being widely known within the industry, the store was also seen by television viewers. All American served as a setting in the HBO series “Big Love,” in which it played the role of the fictitious Henrickson’s Home Plus.