Le Macaron French Pastries, the newest business among Celebration Pointe’s growing list of dining and entertainment, celebrated its grand opening yesterday with photos, balloons and lots of sweets.
The Le Macaron franchise was started in Sarasota by founder Rosalie Guillem and Audrey Guillem-Saba. It will serve the residents of Gainesville and surrounding areas with the simple luxury of French culture and cuisine.
Peter Amato, owner of the Gainesville location, has been working since the summer of 2020 to get this business open to the public. The process was a bit difficult at times due to COVID-19, but Amato had the support of the management team at Celebration Pointe, the Greater Gainesville Chamber, other Le Macaron franchise owners—and most importantly, his family.
“My wife, my daughter and the community were a big driving force of the passion I had for this,” Amato said. “Everybody came together to help me be successful.”
Amato’s wife and daughter, Akiko and Alysia, both helped Peter to make Le Macaron something unique. Alysia is a recent UF grad and a nurse but was excited for the opportunity to work with her parents and help them achieve their goal. Alysia oversaw a large majority of the aesthetics and design inside the store.
“I just love design and creating an inviting space where people can come in and enjoy all that we have to offer,” she said.
Akiko was born and raised in Japan, and really focused on implementing the culture of hospitality in Japanese businesses within their own staff.
“I want people to be wowed,” Akiko said. “Not just with our product but with our service. We want to treat our customers like they’re special.”
Greater Gainesville Chamber President Eric Godet said now more than ever it is crucial to support small businesses like Le Macaron.
“Our small businesses are really critical, especially during a pandemic,” Godet said. “We just want to make sure they’re getting all the help and the support that they need from the community.”
Greg Guillem, a member of the family who founded Le Macaron and who oversees franchising opportunities, believes that their product is the best of its kind. He credits this to their authentic recipes and high-quality ingredients.
“We believe we have the best macarons in Florida, the United States, and possibly, the world,” he said.
If you go:
- Address: 4949 Celebration Pointe Ave., Suite 80, Gainesville
- Hours: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun.-Thur., 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat.
- Phone: (352) 554-5402
- Seating: indoor, outdoor (with free wifi)