A Royal welcome
Story and photos by Robin Elisabeth Kilmer
There is a new act on Broadway.
Royal Drugs opened its doors at 5030 Broadway at the Inwood Center less than a month ago.
Passerby may have noticed that Royal Drugs boasts the same size footprint as a large national drugstore chain, with similar merchandise and backlit lights displaying the goods to be found within.
But there is something owner Robert Forkosh wants to make clear.
“We are not a chain,” he says emphatically. “This is run by my family and my family only.”
“Chains are nonsense,” he added as he recalled a recent trip to a large drugstore. “I counted 12 people in line, and one at the register, rolling her eyes. There were boxes all over the place, and nobody was helping anyone.”
Forkosh said that he expects his friendly service and good prices will also distinguish Royal Drugs.
His wife Jane has served as an invaluable partner in the new undertaking, and they are together considering carving out an organic health niche, and selling organic beauty and health products.
Moreover, he is open to suggestions and community input.
“Anything that anyone needs that they can’t find somewhere else, I’ll get it for you. I’m here to figure out what everyone wants and needs,” he explained.
Forkosh is no stranger to the industry.
He has owned a pharmacy in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn before selling his business there to make the move to Inwood.
As Forkosh explained, it was a trip to Inwood Hill Park that drew him to set up shop in northern Manhattan.
“I went up on the hill, and saw this place, and it was love at first sight,” he said.
Forkosh, originally from the Ukraine, is thinking about living here, too.
Currently, he commutes from Brooklyn, a drive that sometimes takes over two hours.
“There’s not even a doubt,” he said of moving to the area. “Hopefully, it happens before I pull the rest of my hair out.”
“I want to be part of the community,” he added. “I’ve put my heart into this place.”
Royal Pharmacy is located at 5030 Broadway (corner of West 213th Street), Ground Floor, New York, New York 10034. The store number is 212.567.9800.