In early fall 2020, Southlands became the home of Prado Cafe’s newest location, which has since become integral to the atmosphere of the community. From regulars who rely on this local haunt for their daily cup of joe to families who visit on weekends for a special treat, Prado has become a staple in the community.
A locally-owned family establishment headed up by Sammy Piccolo, Prado is much more than a charming spot to get a hot cuppa — it’s a pioneer in the local coffee scene. Sammy is an award-winning barista who has competed and won barista championships at the local, national and international level. But the part of his career he delights in the most is the ability to connect with people. We had a chance to catch up with Sammy and learn more about what makes Prado a special part of our Southlands community.
“When the opportunity arose to be a part of Southlands, it was an easy yes,” says Sammy. “Starting from the roots and being centred around the community was so authentic and perfectly aligned to our values and origins at Prado.” As a neighbourhood, Southlands is all about connectedness and opening up shop at the start of the community’s emergence and entering the neighbourhood with the original owners was an important part of the decision to set up shop here. “There’s a sense of pride and connection that comes with being part of the community’s inception, and coffee plays a huge role in creating community and connection,” says Sammy. “Connecting with the people here has filled our metaphorical cups up, and Southlands has become a part of our family. We feel so welcomed, at home and integrated into this community — getting to know the people is what it’s all about.”
When it comes to enjoying Prado’s coffee himself, Sammy is partial to an Americano paired with the infamous ‘cookie with no name’. If he has time to spare, it’s all about going for a solo stroll with his two dogs down to Centennial Beach to soak up the ocean breeze and warm sunshine while sipping an iced americano. If he’s catching up with a colleague or community member, his go-to spot is in the courtyards — a favourite place for locals to congregate and enjoy their Prado coffee while soaking up the Tsawwassen sunshine.
As the community and coffee shop continue to grow and mature in step with one another, Sammy feels more at home than ever. “We’ve gotten to know so many of the locals and we continue to build our connection with the people and the place we serve at Southlands,” says Sammy. “From welcoming new families to watching existing ones grow, we are a part of something special and enjoy every minute of the local vibrancy of this community.”