A long-standing, gorgeous, family-owned candy and gift store is being pushed out of Burlingame in favor of yet another restaurant. The original musician and confectioner, Anthony P. Basques, opened in the 1930s on Ocean Avenue in San Francisco. His son, Tony, and Tony’s family learned the art of candy making from him and eventually moved the famous store 26 years ago to the old Crosby Commons on Primrose.
As my friends, wife, grandchildren and I have enjoyed the enchantment of Aida’s over the years, we reminisce about walking through the forest green doors with the scrolled letters of “Aida Opera Candies” into a wonderland and old world charm of toys, gifts, chocolates, peanut brittle, and center pieces for weddings, showers, holidays. We remember our family’s birthday gifts with chocolate numbers celebrating the year wrapped in crinkling gold-lettered cellophane and rainbow colored satin bows beautifully tied by Lorri, granddaughter of the founder.
Any time we needed a special gift to commemorate an event, such as a chocolate baseball or chocolate piano, a bag of special peanut brittle and chocolate popcorn, a box of golf ball candies, etc., we knew right where to go to find it, and that it would be hand wrapped with the glitter or simplicity we wanted.
Today there is another scrolled sign on the door: “Closing? Or Moving?” It is as if Willie Wonka has posted a closing sign. Yes, we will make one last visit as the family at Aida packs up and has their going out of business sale.
Let’s hope for a resurrection of the collection and confections.
Editor's Note: Burlingame Patch has confirmed that Aida Opera Candies will be leaving its current location, as its lease is up and the owner wishes to replace the candy shop with a restaurant. Aida Opera Candies is looking to relocate at a different location on Burlingame Avenue. For more information on Aida Opera Candies, Burlingame Patch ran on the shop last year.