Maui Business

Maui’s One-Stop Mom-and-Pop Window Covering Shop

May 25, 2016, 1:18 PM HST
* Updated May 25, 3:04 PM
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Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo.

Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo.

It’s a fact of life almost everywhere nowadays—the reach of big-box stores continues to expand, setting up increased competition for small, locally owned businesses.

Fortunately on Maui, the resolve among many stalwart island residents to “buy local” has opened the door for specialty niche businesses.

It’s a movement that embraces everything from the foods we eat from grocers and restaurants, the beer, wine, rum and vodka we drink; the arts and crafts we purchase; to our swimwear, surfboards, jewelry and clothing; and even made-on-Maui furniture.

That’s very good news for Maui’s “moms and pops.”

huck & Lisa Burke, owners of Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo

Chuck & Lisa Burke, owners of Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo

So when it comes to purchasing window treatments for Maui’s homes and condos, shoppers can also find a specialized alternative to the behemoth retailer; a well-established shop in Kīhei run by an experienced team who knows the business inside and out.

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“Do one thing and do it well,” said Chuck Burke, who, with his wife, Lisa, owns and operates the business. “We’re a one-stop specialty business.”

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The Burke’s tale is a common one among small business on Maui. It’s a Maui-style retelling of the story of David and Goliath.

And just like the parable, the little guy better have really great aim—in this case, at his target market.

The Burke’s not-so-secret giant-slayer is a combination of personalized service, expansive product knowledge, a selection of quality products and old-fashioned business values.

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When the Burke’s opened their Maui business in 1988, it was at a time when a handshake, shaka and a short game of “who do you know” was enough to begin a long-term relationship.

But as times changed with the advent of superstores that measure tens of thousands of square feet and offer hundreds of thousands of products, akamai small business owners have focused on service.

“Small local businesses can give a level of service that’s above and beyond what the big chain stores can offer,” Chuck said. “You won’t get Lisa’s personal touch and expertise at a mega-store.”

“Many of our customers have told me they chose us because of our personal service and knowledge,” said Lisa, who offers free, in-home consultations. “Being a locally owned company also appeals to people who want really personal service and follow-through. They feel more comfortable with that. They know we’ve been here for years, that we are accessible and have a proven track record.”

“We’ve been in business for 28 years and I know it’s our service that has helped make us successful,” Lisa concluded.

“With us, every order is custom; nothing is ready-made,” Lisa added.

“We offer the best products from literally dozens of manufacturers and we find solutions to window covering needs that fit every budget and design style,” said Lisa. “The “big boxes” aren’t able do that.”

PRODUCTS

  • Draperies
  • Cornice Boxes
  • Verticals
  • Grass Shades
  • Plantation Shutters
  • Wood Blinds
  • Roller Shades
  • Roman Shades
  • Decorative Hardware
  • Repairs and Installation

Sole-proprietor small businesses like the Burke’s depend on relationship-building with their customers. Lisa said they’ve worked with some of their clients for years.

“We have decades-long relationships with many of them,” she said. “That’s something a small business like ours prides itself in. It proves to me that people still like doing business with people they know. We depend on our loyal customers and we do our best to earn them.”

Some of the benefits of doing business with locally owned companies like the Burke’s include instant accountability, quick response time, same-day appointments and fast turn-around.

“Those qualities set us apart from the bigger, more impersonal stores,” said Lisa.

“In many ways, small local businesses are old-fashioned businesses,” Chuck added. “You know, the kind where you take your work personally, you take pride in it and you take it seriously.”

Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo

Island Window Coverings. Courtesy photo

Buying local requires a commitment to Maui; it’s an investment in our community by customers who value and compare quality, service, expertise and follow-through.

Some call it doing business with aloha.

“It’s what keeps our customers coming back and there’s no substitute for loyal customers; they are our lifeblood.”

Island Window Coverings is located at 300 Ohukai Road, Ste. 308. Call (808) 874-8602 or go online.

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