The sale marks the end of an 88-year run that started when Russian immigrant Eman Masin bought a train car full of damaged furniture that he repaired himself and later resold.

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Masins Furniture Co., a high-end furniture store in Bellevue that has been run by the same family for four generations, has been sold to Tacoma-based rival Seldens.

The sale, for an undisclosed sum, marks the end of an 88-year run that started when Russian immigrant Eman Masin bought a train car full of damaged furniture that he repaired himself and later resold.

Masin’s humble Central District store evolved into a Bellevue luxury outfit where sofas retail from $3,000 to $15,000. In recent years it grappled with the challenge of more and more consumers flocking to cheaper, yet still stylish, furnishings. The sale, expected to close in the summer, presents a hope of renewal to the business.

“We found people these days aren’t interested in a lot of custom-ordered stuff,” said Masins President David Masin, a great-grandson of the founder. “They want instant gratification” along with moderate prices and “the same sense of style.”

Masin added that the 25,000-square-foot warehouse on Bellevue’s Main Street wasn’t big enough to showcase a lot of the brands Masins was missing.

So merging with Seldens, which has a 145,000-square-foot facility in Tacoma and much more diversity, made sense, Masin said. “Our product mix will be greater, so we can offer product to a larger group of people instead of pigeonholing ourselves in the super high-end,” he said.

We wanted to align Masins with another family-owned business.” - David Masin, company president

With the deal, Seldens, which Masin described as a “friendly competitor,” gets an entry into the Seattle market and into the pricier segment of the furniture business.

Other than that — and the sign at the entrance — not much will change at the Bellevue store, Masin said.

The 40 employees, among whom are 10 interior designers, will stay. Masin will remain at the head of the Bellevue store as a Seldens’ employee.

Seldens is also a multigeneration local company. “We wanted to align Masins with another family-owned business,” he said.

The deal is “bittersweet, I should say, only because we’ve been here for so long. But we’re excited to see this happen,” Masin said.

Masin’s great-grandfather Eman came to the U.S. in 1920, originally to New York. But he had friends who worked in the jewelry business in Seattle, and he took his family (with a 10-month-old son) to look for opportunities at the other end of the continent.

“He had no idea of what he wanted to do, but found he really liked repairing things that had fallen from trains,” his great-grandson says.

The elder Masin’s first furniture deal took place after a friend who was in the business had a train car filled with damaged furniture and asked Masin if he was interested in purchasing it.

“At the time it was a big pill to swallow, but he repaired every single piece of furniture,” Masin said.

The family’s first store was on 23rd and Jackson; in the 1950s, they moved out to Pioneer Square. David Masin recalls that as a 6-year-old, he’d crawl underneath the dining table to overhear his great-grandfather, his grandfather and his father talking shop.

Masin, now 38, became president in 2010. The next year, the company moved the operations to Bellevue.

But the sale means that most likely there won’t be a fifth generation of Masins at the head of the storied shop. Masin has two children — a 6-year-old boy and a 4-year-old girl, who both have “offices” at the Bellevue store and have appeared in the company’s TV commercials. Masin says he had a difficult conversation with his boy last night.

“I got extremely emotional. I always thought, and he always thought, that he’d be part of this business. It’s not going to happen now,” Masin said.

“But he’s a smart kid. If I were a good Dad I’d tell him not to jump into the furniture business anyway,” he said jokingly.