Published on February 17, 2023
February is Black History Month. It’s a time to recognize Black Canadians and educate ourselves about their history, their successes and honour their achievements.
This year the theme for Black History Month is “ours to tell,” which reminds us that we all have a story to tell that is worthy of being shared, heard, and respected.
In addition to celebrating their culture and communities, we can also support black-owned businesses. There are many black-owned businesses in Ottawa to discover not only this month but throughout the entire year. During your next conference at the Shaw Centre, uncover these amazing Black-owned businesses within the National Capital Region. From retail stores to cafes to art – no matter what you’re into, there’s a business seeking your support.
J’TM Resto Bar
Address: 101 Clarence Street, 11-minute walk from the Shaw Centre
A delicious restaurant by day and a trendy bar by night! This restaurant is owned and operated by a group of young entrepreneurs with a deep passion for gastronomies who want to share their creations with you! Dine for brunch with your fellow conferencegoers and enjoy items like their Sweet Platter, which includes; black velvet waffles, crepes, french toast, berries, J’tm sweet sauce, and mango caramel sauce. The restaurant becomes a lively nightclub in the evening with various impressive cocktails. Join them for Fancy Fridays and enjoy an evening of live music and bottle service.
Luxe Blooms Flower Café
Address: 254 Dalhousie St, 13-minute walk from the Shaw Centre
Stop to smell the roses while you enjoy yummy treats and tasty drinks surrounded by pink flowers! Not only is this one of the most aesthetically pleasing cafes in Ottawa, but it also serves as a floral shop. Enjoy your Italian Grilled Caprese Sandwich or a lavish Lemon Lavender Cheesecake while you wait for your bouquet, balloon arrangements, or flower wall rental. Don’t forget to capture the picture-perfect moment by taking a selfie by their Hey Gorgeous flower wall.
Stacey Martin Lifestyle
Address: 145 York Street, 11-minute walk from the Shaw Centre
Being fashionable doesn’t mean you need to be uncomfortable! Stacey Martin Lifestyle is an eco-conscious luxe loungewear brand that finds common ground between fitness and fashion. Her pieces are made from the softest natural cotton and rayon from bamboo materials.
Check out the brand’s signature wrap – double-lined and made with bamboo/cotton fabric. It’s a fan favourite and a must-have, especially for this time of year!
Address: Rideau Centre, Level 1
This black-owned shop has multiple locations, but the closest to the Shaw Centre is in the Rideau Centre, which is conveniently connected to our building. Artist Fiona Khaemba is the founder and creative director. Her art represents all groups of people, communities, pop culture, and more! Her goal is to create art that is inclusive and creative. This artist should definitely be your go-to for prints and canvas.
Island Flava Caribbean Restaurant
Address: 409 Dalhousie St, 6 minute walk from the Shaw Centre
Ottawa is home to many amazing international cuisines, including Caribbean! Island Flava is your one-stop shop for authentic Caribbean foods. They have been voted Ottawa’s favourite Caribbean restaurant by Faces Magazine for 5 years running and the overall winner 6 times! Chef Lennox Antoine prepares fresh rotis shells daily. Choose what you’d like in your roti from a selection of oxtail, curry goat, jerk chicken, and more; enjoy a fresh tropical juice such as mango or sorrel.
Address: 551 Somerset St W, a 7-minute drive or 30-minute walk from the Shaw Centre
The Vanitea was founded by two best friends, Hind and Chanel, who were inspired to open their own restaurant after traveling the world together and dining at high teas that echo the experiences of European or middle eastern teas. Reserve your spot for an afternoon of high tea, including traditional scones, jams, a collection of sweets and savories, plus your tea of choice. This intimate space is beautifully decorated with flowers and plush furniture, encompassing coziness and elegance.
Address: 55 ByWard Market Square Door 20, 8-minute walk from the Shaw Centre
Owned and operated by Florence Aku Sevor is a stunning boutique steps away from the Shaw Centre. Her collections include a blend of contemporary, ethnic, and retro styling. All her pieces are designed and handcrafted locally. Her love for fashion began in Ghana, Africa, where she was born. Taking inspiration from many traditional fabrics and to this day, Florence travels to Ghana to source materials to incorporate into her designs. She is dedicated to creating a collection that is inclusive of all sizes, genders, and generations.
This list is not exhaustive of the black-owned businesses in Ottawa; there are numerous businesses you can support while visiting the national capital region. We invite you to discover more from the list of resources below.