Owner of new Kamloops cafe He Brew's said she has felt welcomed, supported since opening their doors

Cafe 'all about community'

The owner of He Brew’s Ahava Coffee House said she has felt welcomed and supported by the community since opening the cafe’s doors for the first time last week.

Janelle Seelal said the downtown business community and the public have embraced the new, family-owned shop, which opened Wednesday, April 14.

“Kamloops is awesome. People are really welcoming the cafe and they're happy,” Seelal said.

“Even though it's outside, it hasn’t placed a damper on anything. They’re enjoying the sun. And actually, everybody is drawing to our spot because of the sunlight on the side of the road.”

The coffee house is located near the corner of Victoria Street and Second Avenue.

Even though public health orders have temporarily restricted indoor dining, Seelal said this hasn’t posed any serious challenges for the cafe.

“We have the two front areas, and then we got permission to use the side from our landlord. So that helps us a lot,” she said.

She said the coffee shop serves hot and cold drinks and food from scratch, alongside an array of desserts.

“There’s just lots of healthy options. Sandwiches, salads, soups, we try to have lots of things in the cooler in front of us,” she said, adding an ice cream bar is also in the works.

Seelal, who moved to Kamloops from Trinidad in 2019, said this cafe is a “huge accomplishment,” a business in the making for over 15 years.

She said she operated a cafe in Trinidad, as well as a construction and engineering firm that is still running.

According to Seelal, while engaged in prayer one day, she heard from God that she was to open a coffee house in Canada, and name it He Brews.

“He wanted us in B.C., and he wanted us in Kamloops,” Seelal said of the message she received. “So everything just fell into place.”

In July 2019, Seelal moved to Kamloops, and in the fall of 2020, she saw the advertisement for the shop location.

“Speaking with the owner, I knew for sure that this was the spot for us,” she said.

He Brew’s currently has seven employees, according to Seelal, and they are hiring more baristas in order to expand their hours.

The coffee house currently opens at 8:00 a.m., and the closing hours have fluctuated between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. depending on the day, and staff availability, Seelal said.

Seelal said ultimately, the business isn’t just about the coffee.

“It's all about community, putting a smile on someone's face.”

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