After nearly 40 years in business, will close its doors.
“We have served Bel Air and Harford County all that time,” Ali Rejaee, the store’s manager, said.
Rejaee said has wanted to purchase the property where Aref’s is located for a while.
“Finally they made an offer that Aref couldn’t refuse,” Rejaee said.
He added that the owner, now in his 70s, is also glad to take the time to spend with his family.
Aref Talanehzar opened the business in 1973 and has lived and worked in the Bel Air area since.
Located at 1329 A Baltimore Pike near the Maryland State Police Barrack, the store was originally one room, but when business grew, Talanehzar extended the building, according to Rejaee.
“We’ve been selling genuine handmade oriental knotted rugs,” Rejaee said.
He explained the store does not offer any machine-made rugs, and prices range from $40 for small doormat-sized pieces to $40,000 for some antique items.
Once the original shop closes, Talanehzar plans to open a smaller one nearby that will specialize in cleaning and repairs—by hand only.
“Customers for generations have been bringing rugs here to clean,” Rejaee said. “In this area, no, we are the only ones [doing what we do]."
The business employs four people, two who specialize in cleaning and repairs and two who work in sales. The sales staff will not be needed at the new location.
The existing business will remain open at least into January. Rejaee said the exact closing date will depend on Jones Junction's timeframe for taking the building.