Guido decided a weekend dance hall adjacent to the beer garden would be better used as a food market. He opened “The Palms Food Market,” which was one of Old Town Albuquerque’s original merchants. In 1967, Guido and his sons Angelo and Guido Jr. decided to move the market and liquor store to a larger building on 15th Street and Lomas, five blocks east of the original location. The new Palms Market was three times bigger than the prior location, but the quality of products was still as high as ever.
People came from all over Albuquerque and the surrounding area to buy homemade food items, including “regulars” from neighboring pueblos, including Acoma, Jemez, Santo Domingo, Santa Clara, San Ildefonso and others. As a result, the food market evolved into a trade center in the 1960s. Native Americans from the pueblos relied on Palms to cash checks and buy groceries. In some cases, they bartered handcrafted items for groceries. Over the years, the Del Frate’s accumulated an enormous amount of jewelry and arts.
By 1968, the market had so much jewelry that Angelo put out word in the community that there was a collection of Native American itens at Palms in the back office. The back office was about 8 x 10 feet. Yet, the trading company that exists today started in that tiny room. Word spread that they had everything from bread and milk to an impressive assortment of Native American collectibles.
Eventually Angelo and Guido sold the liquor license and began to buy inventory to fully stock a jewelry store. While the grocery store continued to operate as a service to Palms’ faithful customers, the jewelry business eventually dominated their time. Angelo branched out into other arts and crafts; primarily pottery and rugs. Palms soon acquired the largest combined jewelry and arts and crafts inventory in the world, with dealers from all over the world relying on Palms to supply their own stores based on the outstanding selection and reasonable prices. With the third generation taking the helm, the traditions that formed the foundations continue today.