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  • Tara Crutchfield

LKLD Best of 2023 - Retail



BEST CUSTOMER SERVICE

PUBLIX FB

@publix IG

@publix

The name Publix is synonymous with superior customer service, and that wasn’t by accident. “Throughout our history, our associates and customers have helped Publix grow from a single store into the largest employee-owned company in the United States,” says Publix. “We thank them by remaining deeply dedicated to customer service and community involvement, and being a great place to work.” Publix team members are always friendly and eager to help customers, creating a luxury grocery shopping experience.

2nd: Scout & Tag

3rd: (TIE) Amelia Paige Boutique

3rd: (TIE) Your CBD Store | SUNMED


BEST CLOTHING BOUTIQUE

AMELIA PAIGE BOUTIQUE

223 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland

(863) 500-4264

FB: Amelia Paige Boutique

IG @ameliapaigeboutique

Owner Alicia Lovett and her husband opened Amelia Paige Boutique in 2016. She writes, “I love our town and love having a place for you to come shop with your loved ones. Our family has poured so much love into this boutique, so we hope you love it as much as we do!” Amelia Paige offers on-trend finds to stock your closet, from tops, bottoms, dresses, and rompers, to jewelry, accessories, shoes, and gifts. One customer writes, “I absolutely love to browse through this store! Whoever the buyer is, does such a good job, and the decorator, maybe they’re the same, are so gifted. Every little vignette is so cute and fun. I love getting gifts there, and the clothes are darling. I will be back.”

2nd: Bungalow Boutique and Gifts

3rd: Plum Boutique


BEST GIFT SHOP

SCOUT & TAG

244 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland

(863) 225-2426

FB @scoutingVintage

IG @scoutandtag

This 3500-square-foot storefront offers plenty of locally-sourced Lakeland gifts. Scout & Tag has the cutest furnishings, decor, gifts, Lakeland-centric items, and Annie Sloan Chalk Paint products. Rafa Natural also has a space offering organic and natural skincare products inside Scout & Tag. After browsing Rafa’s delightful soaps and such, check out Scout & Tag’s offerings of seasonal items, custom pieces, apparel, accessories, bride and groom, baby items, pet items, furniture, home accents, drinkware, plants, books and paper goods, puzzles, trinkets, and more.

2nd: Bungalow Boutique and Gifts

3rd: Stationery Loft & Gift Boutique


BEST JEWELER

GAINES JEWELERS

112 S Tennessee Ave, Lakeland

(863) 688-8557

FB: Gaines Jewelers

IG @gaines_jewelers

“Excellent jeweler, great custom, one-of-a-kind jewelry, and much more!” writes one Gaines Jewelers customer. This gem of a jewelry shop has been a Lakeland staple since 1935. It originally opened as a watch repair shop, but today offers an extensive selection of jewelry, bridal, and gifts for every occasion. In December 2017, Gina and Dean Saunders, both longtime Gaines customers, purchased the store. “Purchasing the store was [Gina’s] way of ‘celebrating every day’ - she loves and finds joy being a part of not only a legacy business but also being a part of all of our customers’ special moments to be celebrated.”

2nd: Munchel’s Fine Jewelry

3rd: (TIE) Foshee Jewelers

3rd: (TIE) Marshall Jewelers


BEST ANTIQUE STORE

JUNE TAYLOR

125 N Kentucky Ave #103, Lakeland

(863) 331-5873

FB: June Taylor

IG @junetaylorshop

Looking for some abstract art to hang on your office wall or a new set of chairs to spruce up your living room? Check out,June Taylor! “Transitional design and pieces are what separate us. We’re not solely modern, mid-century, or antiques, but we like to mix the styles to create a unique store with a distinct look.” Owners Kelly and Bill work hard to find and restore an artful amalgamation of mid-century, boho, and classical pieces for their clients. One June Taylor patron said, “Kelly’s shop is amazing! Always full of thoughtfully picked items. We scored this beautiful bar hutch. Great shop to spend some time in. We will be back soon!”

2nd: Dixieland Relics

3rd: The Curated Collective


BEST THRIFT STORE

LIGHTHOUSE MINISTRIES THRIFT STORE

3111 US-98 S. Suite 130, Lakeland

(863) 687-4076 ext. 256

FB: Lighthouse Ministries

Lighthouse Ministries offers many noteworthy programs, including a Gospel Rescue Mission sheltering men, a residential Life Learning Program for men and women, outreach centers, and community homeless intervention. But it’s their thrift store getting the praise today. Lighthouse Ministries Thrift Store accepts donated goods like clothing, furniture, and household items and offers them at low prices. Proceeds help fund their resident interns who gain experience working there.

2nd: Top Buttons

3rd: The Salvation Army


BEST PAWN SHOP

WEST COAST PAWN & GUN OF LAKELAND, FLORIDA

5619 US Hwy 98 N, Lakeland

(863) 816-5830

FB: WEST COAST PAWN

West Coast Pawn & Gun is a family-owned business serving Lakeland since 2008. “We take pride in giving our customers excellent customer service while providing a relaxing atmosphere with an abundance of options.” One customer writes, “I have been doing business with West Coast Pawn for about 3 years now. They have great prices and very knowledgeable. I have been in a lot of gun shops and they like to speak down or act like you have no clue what you are talking about. If you are new to firearms and don’t want to deal with that environment I suggest going in and speaking with them. If I could give them more than a 5-star, I would! You guys have my business!”

2nd: Value Pawn & Jewelry

3rd: GC Pawn Lakeland


BEST BIKE SHOP

LEROY’S BIKEWORKS

6935 S Carter Rd #2, Lakeland

(863) 937-9028

FB: LeRoy’s Bikeworks

IG @leroysbikeworks

For bikes, bike rentals, accessories, disc golf, service, and more, cycle down to LeRoy’s Bikeworks. Reviews laud LeRoy’s for friendly, expedient service and reasonable prices. One happy rider wrote, “Great shop, great service! My bike was in serious need of a tune-up and Mike did an excellent job getting it back in working condition. He even had it ready for me a day early. It rides better than ever. Definitely recommend!”

2nd: Bent’s Schwinn Cycling & Fitness

3rd: Trek Bicycle Lakeland


BEST BOOK STORE

PRESSED LKLD 213 E Bay St, Lakeland

(863) 603-3166

FB @pressedlkld

IG @pressedlkld

You’d be hard ‘Pressed’ to find a better bookstore in the area. Independent bookstore and coffee shop, Pressed is a Best Of LKLD voter favorite! Christina and Paul Needham opened the downtown Lakeland bookstore two years ago as a “gathering space for people in our community to work, read, study, and engage in meaningful conversation.” After picking up an Ethos coffee, Honeycomb Bread Bakers, or Bandidas pastry from the bar, browse the Pressed curated selection of new and used books across genres. Book it over to the events tab on their website to see what’s happening at Pressed!

2nd: Books-A-Million

3rd: Little Bus Books


BEST FURNITURE STORE

BADCOCK HOME FURNITURE &MORE

(Multiple locations)

FB @badcockfurniture

IG @badcockfurniture

Check out Badcock’s selection of living room, dining room, and bedroom furniture, along with mattresses, appliances, electronics, and more. They even have financing options with affordable payment plans. Want a visual of what that new bedroom set might look like in your home? Badcock’s website offers a Room Planner where you first select the room that fits your home, style the space using the hundreds of Badcock items to choose from, and shop those items by checking out online or save it for in-store purchase.

2nd: June Taylor

3rd: Havertys Furniture


BEST LAKELAND DOWNTOWN FARMERS CURB MARKET VENDOR

BANDIDAS

FB: Bandidas

IG @bandidas_lkld

Gabby and Gio are the oh-so-sweet couple behind this Lakeland pop-up cafe. According to Bandidas, “Connection is at the core of everything we do. Through the lens of food, we strive to create inclusive spaces where everyone is welcome. From pop-up markets to wholesale pastries, our menus are ever-evolving to highlight the seasons and our current inspirations.” Over savory empanadas and toothsome tres leches the Bandidas babes have cultivated a following that crave their craft kitchen fare. Visit this Lakeland Downtown Farmers Curb Market mainstay for some of the tastiest treats and best vibes around. (Pro tip, check out their online cake orders. I’m getting a guava and cream cheese layer cake for my birthday!)

2nd: Meraki Bakehouse

3rd: East of These

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