Marina Plaza Center, located at East Hillsdale Blvd. and South Norfolk Street, in San Mateo, was the first shopping center to serve San Mateo’s Los Prados community. The center and the surrounding community were founded and developed by the Keiter family in conjunction with Myers Brothers Construction, in 1962.
“We built many of the homes, constructed Hillsdale Manor senior apartments, and of course created Los Prados Shopping Center, now called Marina Plaza, to serve the new community, “ says owner Ken Keiter, who today is intimately involved with the day to day running of the shopping center. “I was a small boy when my father, George Keiter, built the center,” he adds.
In addition, the family owned and run business donated two sites to the City of San Mateo, one for Los Prados Park, which is still a vital part of the community, and another for an elementary school. The school served Los Prados children for many years.
“We also sponsored a community-wide contest to rename the local waterway, which was simply called the slough at the time. “Marina Lagoon” won first place. We wanted to follow that same feeling, so we renamed the center in honor of the Lagoon,” says Keiter.
Los Prados Shopping Center officially became Marina Plaza Shopping Center in 1989, when the Keiter family remodeled and expanded the center in order to serve the growing community. The center expanded again in 1996.
In 2005 the entire center was renovated to present cheery landscaping, outdoor restaurant dining, additional parking, and a completely revamped Marina Foods World Market.
Marina Plaza Shopping Center is a true melting pot. At last count 23 languages were spoken on site. The Plaza has 20 shops, restaurants and services.
Popular Marina Foods Market with its enormous selection of choice groceries from around the world, offers an array of the most exotic of foods, spices and vegetables. Marina Plaza’s collection of delicious and affordable restaurants, also offer a wide selection of menu’s from around the world:
Patrons enjoy everthing from Denny’s burgers and fries, to Taqueria de Amigo’s Mexican menu, Langkawi Malaysian cuisine, Hot Wok Café’s Chinese sit down and take out food, and Pho Saigon Vietnamese Meat and Noodle House offering 53 entrees.
Marina Plaza’s family of restaurants also includes: Tofu Cabin, a decidedly upscale, Korean BBQ restaurant. and OCHA, a café featuring Tapioca drinks, a taste sensation that has taken the Bay Area by storm. The drinks, made with green tea, fruits, syrups and tapioca pearls are paired with desserts and snack items such as crispy chicken.
Sheng Kee Bakery presents variety of Asian pastries, beautifully decorated cakes for all occasions, and an assortment of breads baked daily.
Marina Liquors, stocked with spirits from around the world, including Chinese wines;
Services abound at Marina Plaza. Debe’s, a popular hair salon; Marina Plaza Barbershop, where owner Manny Bessa and his staff have been serving satisfied customers for decades; Beauty Creation, specializing in innovative manicure and pedicure services; Laura's Day Spa, for men women and teens; East West, a full service Bank; Marina Dental office; Fashion House offers cosmetics and designer lingerie. A Best Western’s Inn is located adjacent to the shopping center.
Owner Ken Keiter has a scrapbook that documents the development of Los Prados. In it are pictures of a Highway 101 billboard that his father rented, during Prime Minister Khrushchev’s visit to the Bay Area in the early ‘60’s. The billboard, located at the Hillsdale Blvd. exit, said in Russian, “Welcome To America, Every person in this new Los Prados neighborhood is a free, happy homeowner.” Khrushchev and his entourage, enroute to San Jose, stopped to read the message, according to Keiter.
The Keiter’s continue to support the community with various activities each year. “Our merchants participate,” said Keiter, “and many donate gift certificates and prizes.”
Marina Plaza merchants have much to be thankful for,” say Marina Plaza merchants, some of whom been doing business successfully for more than 20 years at Marina Plaza. “We always have customers,” he says, gesturing towards an obviously busy parking lot.
Recently upgraded, Marina Plaza Shopping Center is located at the corner of East Hillsdale Blvd. and South Norfolk in San Mateo. Easy access and ample parking make it a popular stop for shoppers and diners.
Marina Plaza Shopping Center Norfolk at East Hillsdale Blvd. San Mateo, CA 94403
East Hillsdale Blvd at Norfolk St.
San Mateo, California
We are located at the corner of East Hillsdale Blvd. and South Norfolk Street
in San Mateo, California.
If you are driving:
From San Francisco
1. Take US HWY 101 SOUTH
2. Take the HILLSDALE BLVD. EXIT TOWARD FOSTER CITY
3. Keep RIGHT at the fork in the exit ramp
4. Go straight onto FRANKLIN PARKWAY
5. Turn LEFT onto EAST HILLSDALE BLVD.
6. GO OVER FREEWAY
7. Turn RIGHT at SOUTH NORFOLK STREET
8. Take NEXT RIGHT INTO MARINA PLAZA SHOPPING CENTER
From San Jose
1. Take US HWY 101 NORTH
2. Take the HILLSDALE BLVD. EXIT TOWARDS FOSTER CITY
3. Keep RIGHT at the fork in the exit ramp
4. Turn RIGHT onto East Hillsdale Blvd.
5. Turn RIGHT at SOUTH NORFOLK STREET
6. Take NEXT RIGHT INTO MARINA PLAZA SHOPPING CENTER
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