Marc and Paul Brombal: Sidonio’s for Men/ Art of Denim

At the corner of Norfolk and Suffolk Streets on the edge of downtown sits an elegant grey house. It was once, many years ago, a girls’ school and is now home to a duo of upscale clothing stores — Sidonio’s and the hip haberdashery, The Art of Denim. Here you’ll find two staunch champions of Guelph General Hospital — Marc and Paul Brombal.

Supporting Guelph General Hospital has been a strong focus for the brothers since 2003 when they became involved in the Black Tie Bingo fundraiser. They offered in-kind donations of auction items for the event and gradually increased their support over the years. They look forward to the event every year. Paul says, “We like the BTB fundraiser because it has become one of the social highlights of the year. Who doesn’t like getting dressed up to celebrate the community by helping to promote the health and well-being of all Guelph’s citizens?” Explaining their patronage, Marc says, “We’ll all use the hospital at some point in our lives; the whole community uses the hospital. At the end of the day, if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything.”

Marc was born in the hospital, and Paul’s son Christian was born there in 2010. Paul tells a story about that time. Four months before Christian was born, his wife Lisa needed emergency surgery. She spent three days in the Family Birthing Unit (FBU) on the sixth floor. Returning home, they found a letter from the Foundation thanking them for their support and telling them that the proceeds from the Black Tie Bingo that year went to pain pumps in the FBU where Paul’s wife had just stayed. Kismet!

When it became apparent that the pandemic was going to persist this past May, the Brombals decided to offer masks at their store. One of their go-to suppliers, an Ontario manufacturer, created the masks, which are a real hit with customers. After just three months of sales, the Brombals donated $3725 in proceeds to the Foundation!

And since October, in a partnership with the Foundation, the businesses have been selling Together, We Care face masks in their store and online, with all proceeds supporting the Hospital’s Together, We Care capital fundraising campaign.

Paul and Marc’s generosity offers a wonderful example of local businesses finding creative and impactful ways to support our community’s hospital. Bravo!