Christmas Tree Shops filing for bankruptcy

PROVIDENCE – A long-time Massachusetts and Rhode Island retailer is reportedly set to file bankruptcy.

Christmas Tree Shops Inc., a Massachusetts-based business that been around more than 50 years, is planning to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this weekend according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. 

The company, which has a warehouse in Middleborough, Mass., and two Rhode Island locations, has hired Boston law firm Murphy & King to prepare for the filing, according to the report. 

The company originated as a single store in 1950 on Route 6A in Yarmouth Port, The Christmas Tree Gift Shop, that was only open May through October to serve vacationers. 

- Advertisement -

Chuck and Doreen Bilezikian bought the business in 1970 expanded the store beyond winter season gifts with summer vacation items such as beach towels, sunscreen and nick knacks.  

In June 2003 Bed Bath and Beyond, which filed for bankruptcy protection on April 23, purchased Christmas Tree Shops Inc. for about $200 million in cash.  

Bed Bath and Beyond sold Christmas Tree Shops to Handhill Holdings LLC in November 2020 for an undisclosed amount. In 2022, The Christmas Tree Shops logo was then changed to CTS to project that the store sold more than Christmas goods. 

The chain has 83 locations throughout the eastern United States, two of which are in Rhode Island, 19 East Main Road in Middletown and 300 Quaker Lane Road in Warwick. There are 15 Christmas Tree Shops locations in Massachusetts, including five on Cape Cod: Avon, Falmouth, Foxborough, Holyoke, Hyannis, Lynnfield, Natick, North Attleborough, North Dartmouth, Orleans, Pembroke, Sagamore, Shrewsbury, Somerville and West Dennis. 

(Providence Business News contributed to this report.)