Thanks to the April 2013 opening of Fria, downtown Santa Paula has a unique offering – a salad bar stocked with dark, leafy greens and self-serve frozen yogurt. Another unique aspect of Fria is the connection between this 100-year old building and Habitat for Humanity.
- Owner, Jennifer Lara and her boyfriend Victor Carrillo completed a major, yet affordable renovation of a former bridal salon thanks to recycled furnishings and building materials purchased at Habitat ReStores. They spent a year collecting items, designing the décor, and completed much of the work themselves. To compliment the look of the early 1900s building, they installed large ceiling lamps, exposed the brick, and covered the bright yellow walls with muted colors. As you can imagine, it took a lot of paint to cover the yellow walls.
- All that remains of the dress salon is a raised platform at the back of the café, now furnished with reupholstered furniture – including a church pew – that Jennifer and Victor found at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Oxnard. Jennifer said, “Everything you need you can get at the ReStore. If it’s not there one day, come back later and it will be there.”
- Items purchased at the Oxnard and Simi Valley ReStores include seven commercial ceiling lights, rolls of laminate for the salad and yogurt bars, interior paint, pans, brushes, rollers, door hinges, interior and exterior doors, swing door for the janitor’s closet, fire-rated doors for the bathroom and office, hardware and electrical plates, biscuits, table saw, miscellaneous tools, air dryer and tile for the bathroom, mustard-colored mid-century sectional couch, and orange church pews. The tables and chairs were purchased at the Anaheim ReStore and restored with stain purchased at the Oxnard ReStore.
- Plans include using the back area of the store for acoustic music performances and changing art exhibits will go on the wall closer to the door. Large canvases by friend Andrea Vargas are the first art featured.
Next time you’re in Santa Paula, stop by Fria!
Fria Frozen Yogurt and Salad Bar, Smoothies, Coffee, Arts y Mas
900 E. Main Street, Santa Paula CA 93030