Best Old-School Florist

Lyal Nickals Floral Design

With a long and storied history beginning in 1934, it's no surprise that Lyal Nickals draws a customer base so loyal they keep coming for generations. Mr. Nickals originally opened his flower shop in Oakland, but moved to San Leandro for the robust selection of greenhouses and orchards. Even after a tragic fire that burned down the shop on Christmas Eve in 1961, he wasn't deterred — he rebuilt, and continued to cultivate the business until young couple Debra and Michael Delaney bought the shop in 1998. Today, they keep Mr. Nickal's old-school spirit alive as one of a dwindling number of full-service, brick-and-mortar florists in the East Bay, providing and delivering to 14 different cities. While many of today's florists hold consultations at coffee shops and do business strictly when they feel like it, Lyal Nickals is available 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., six days a week. So even if you forget that beautiful bouquet for your sweetie until the last minute, they've got you covered.

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