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The Worlds Most Iconic Local Businesses

Local businesses are the backbone of our communities, but many have literally changed the world, here are our 5 most iconic local businesses:


Zephyr surf shop

This is a truly legendary local business, Jeff Ho Surfboards and Zephyr Productions was a surfboard manufacturing facility and surf shop located in Santa Monica, California. It opened in 1977 by Jeff Ho and Skip Skip Engblom and was home to the Z-Boys skateboarding team, made famous in the film Lords of Dogtown and in the documentary Dogtown and Z-Boys.

Skateboarding was on the rise, new skateboarding companies were cropping up, more and more competitions followed with even larger cash prizes.

Ho couldn't compete with the money his team was being offered so each member of the Zephyr team moved on. The Jeff Ho and Zephyr Surfboard Productions shop closed down soon afterward but there is no doubt this is one of the most

Castro Camera

In 1972, Harvey Milk, the first openly gay person to be elected to public office, opened Castro Camera at 575 Castro Street (in between 18th and 19th Streets) and lived above the store with his partner.

Harvey Milk was an avid amateur photographer and opened the camera shop with his then-partner, Scott Smith, using the last $1,000 of their savings. Not only did they sell cameras and film, but the camera shop also became the center of the local communities growing gay community and headquarters for Milk’s gay rights campaigning.

Because he was so well known for promoting gay rights, businesses and the community, Milk became the unofficial "Mayor of Castro Street." Many people from Milk’s inner circle, including the photographer Daniel Nicoletta, Milk’s campaign manager Anne Kronenberg and his speechwriter Frank Robinson, worked at the store with Milk.


Harvey Milks' story is one of love, hope, equality, and pride and it all began in a local business.

The Haçienda

The Manchester-based nightclub was more than just that; it was an institution.

Its lasting impact on the music scene in Manchester and its influence on club culture are still prevalent to this day. And although it’s been over 20 years since it closed its doors for good, its legacy is still unrivalled.

The Wild Card

The Wild Card Boxing Club is a haven for both world renowned fighters and the up and comers.


As a professional trainer, Freddie has trained a number of world champions including Manny Pacquiao, Bernard Hopkins, Miguel Cotto, Oscar de La Hoya and Mike Tyson to name a few.

Roach has made over 36 world champions to date but what makes this local business particularly special is the club is open to anyone wanting to work out for only $5 dollars a day.

Freddie is surrounded by a colourful group of people making this a truly unique local business

Sukiyabashi Jiro (すきやばし次郎)

Sukiyabashi Jiro is a sushi restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, Japan. It is owned and operated by sushi master Jiro Ono. It was the first sushi restaurant in the world to receive three stars from the Michelin Guide. Jiro Ono was the subject of the film Jiro Dreams of Sushi, the film follows the then 85-year-old sushi master and his quest for perfection.


As when many successful local businesses Sukiyabashi Jiro is a family business and and Jiro now 95 still works in the restaurant with his oldest son.






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