U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 03-01-2010, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Arlington Virginia
4,538 posts, read 8,134,541 times
Reputation: 9705

Advertisements

Video Vault, the Old Town Alexandria video shop that claims to have the worst movies in town, is closing due to the bad economy and, of course, Netflix, the increasing trend toward downloading films on the internet, and watching via cable TV's on-demand service. The Vault opened in 1985, back when VHS tapes were king, and has sported a wide range of foreign, indie, offbeat, and horror titles.

Courtesy: dcrtv.com - washington dc/baltimore area radio/tv/media

Washington, D.C.ís Video Vault Closing Doors For Good After 25 Years.... I'm writing to share some sad news. After 25 years as a mainstay in Old Town Alexandria and among movie-lovers and wackos nationwide, Video Vault will soon be finis, kaput, closed forever. What happened? Well, the story of packaged media (movies, but also music and maybe books) is simple: It's all about digits. Too many digital downloads, too many digits on that rent check. My wife Jane and I always believed in the value of good advice and customer service. In tough times, low cost and convenience trump all that. We haven't had any time to really look back over the 25 years, but we did scrape up some of our favorite news articles about the Vault. Sorry to say, the National Enquirer piece isn't available online, neither are the Entertainment Weekly or Wall Street Journal, but here's some stuff that helps tell our story, a kind of virtual press kit: Finding VHS in a DVD World - 2006 - washingtonpost.com... Movie 'Turkeys' Run Free at Specialty Video Store - 1990 - Associated Press... Thrillers Are Treasure at Alexandria's Vault - 1987 - washingtonpost.com... Treasures in Relocated Vault - 1993 - Washington Post (preview)... Best Place to Rent Bad Movies - 2008 - Washington City Paper... Vault About to Burst - 2002 - The Astounding B Monster... Video Vault Uncovered - Multimedia fansite about Video Vault... My wife Jane and I will be around the store until the end, telling our story and selling off everything that will fit through the door, especially our collection of 65,000 movie titles, ranging in quality from the great to the good to the God-awful! Many titles in our inventory are impossible to find elsewhere - we've prided ourselves on selection that no chain and no other mom & pop store could beat. Our GOING OUT OF VIDNESS sale starts today and runs until April 30. Come see us, you never know what amusing title, anecdote, or graphic art might be fodder for your reporting. I'm in the store from 11-6 nearly every day. You can reach me at 703-549-8848. I'd love to hear from you, and tell a few stories, and yes, get some more folks in the store at least one more time. Support independent retail! Jim McCabe
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-01-2010, 03:53 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
206 posts, read 380,060 times
Reputation: 129
I've seen the sign for that store when I ride the lunch loop. I always thought it was an "adult" video store. Oh well...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 04:31 PM
 
3,378 posts, read 3,230,514 times
Reputation: 709
It's sad. There are a number of factors as the article points out. I don't believe that it is just due to the digital downloads. Some entertainment stores have thived in this economy, but many do not. While I think that videos and music have suffered, they will never completley go away. I think that a new store will emerge in old town W/I the next few years to capitalize on that sector. A sore that specializing in new & used records, CD's, movies and coffee will do well in old town (although we have quite a few coffee shops) maybe they can sell beer too

Record sales are up significantly over the past year, so we'll see what happens to videos.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 05:36 PM
 
1,623 posts, read 4,318,449 times
Reputation: 1291
Don't forget Redbox and the public libraries carrying a lot of DVD's. But the real killer for Video Vault was simply the lack of parking once they moved locations. That made it very difficult to make Video Vault your regular video store and their customers found alternatives. Their old location on S. Washington street would be packed on weekends, while I never really saw more than a couple customers at a time on Columbia St.

I'm sad to see it go. It was the kind of place that Quentin Tarantino or Kevin Smith would work at when they were slackers. They had a huge selection of foreign, art house, documentaries, and cult flicks. There aren't many places where you can find every film Woody Allen, Akira Kurosawa, and John Waters made.

Last edited by slim04; 03-01-2010 at 05:48 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 05:48 PM
 
3,378 posts, read 3,230,514 times
Reputation: 709
Quote:
Originally Posted by slim04 View Post
Don't forget Redbox and the public libraries carrying a lot of DVD's. But the real killer for Video Vault was simply the lack of parking once they moved locations. That made it very difficult to make Video Vault your regular video store and their customers found alternatives. Their old location on S. Washington street would be packed on weekends, while I never really saw more than a couple customers at a time on Columbia St.
Good point. Sometimes 1 block away can really make or break a business. They probably also lost out on potential customers because of less visibility. Washington st is much busier than Columbus St.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 10:58 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,995 times
Reputation: 12
I say good riddance. While the store may have an interesting selection of movies, and the people who worked there really know their movies, but I found the people to do nothing but talk badly about their customers. I was a frequent customer due to the lack of convenient video stores in the area. However, I cringed every time I walked in; hoping that I would not be pulled aside to hear the owner rant and rave about different people. The pure disrespect shown for other people was unnecessary and rather pathetic. Maybe the closing of the store had more to do with this simple-mindedness and less to do with anything else.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 11:09 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,993 times
Reputation: 11
I completely agree! I was not a subscriber to this blog but when I saw the above comment I signed up. I was in the store the other day(I love the selection which is why I come all the way to Alexandria every once and awhile to rent movies) and the stuff the owner was saying about why he was going out of business really took me back. Doesnt he realize that people can't just take away your business without reasoning? I am a small business owner in Fairfax and although the contracts may be a bit different, you can basically only get your business seized if you, 1) sign a contact and 2) if you do not pay your bills. So why even try and blame others for your lack of ability to keep on top of things? I say go out gracefully! And leave your customers with a good memory of the very unique business.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2010, 11:26 PM
 
3,378 posts, read 3,230,514 times
Reputation: 709
Interesting comments from some real customers. I hadn't been there in years, but I know where it is, and drive/walk by VV many times. It sounds like they were bitter about the decline of business, and were quick to blame the customers. Of course we know that the customers are what kept them in business.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2010, 06:39 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,798,500 times
Reputation: 42860
Video stores and record stores will go the way of the cobbler and the horse shoe maker. There will be one or two who survive, but mostly they're a relic of the past.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2010, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
593 posts, read 2,242,104 times
Reputation: 301
Renting videos is just a tough business model as it is -- even before the influx of Redboxes and on-demand.

A family friend back home owned a video store for almost 20 years (1988 - 2007) and said that averaging out the 20 year period, he basically broke even [i.e. barely eked out a profit]. Some years during the "heyday" brought in profits, but he was always incurring huge costs when the format changed every 5th year or so (from VHS - Laserdisc - DVD - BluePurpleMantaRay...) and he had to re-buy old titles on the new formats.

To this day he still loves to tell the story of how he had the foresight to resist buying Laser Discs:
Quote:
"I'd have had to hire a 'runner' just to help people carry those things out to their cars!"


Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Virginia > Northern Virginia
Similar Threads
View detailed profiles of:
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. | Please obey Forum Rules | Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top