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Business - Dec 16/Jan 17

05 Dec 2016

Business - Dec 16/Jan 17 Image

The Conder Restaurant of NewQuay

By Sunny Liu

The Conder Restaurant all-you-can-eat Asian buffet has been a hidden treasure for those looking to fill their bellies with more than 100 dishes made to order.

The Conder is situated at the prime location of the Victoria Harbour, with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the serenity of the water.

Owner and head chef Yongbin Huang, also known by his English name Wilson, says the Conder has a touch of modernity in its buffet style.

“At the Conder everything is made to order. We don’t have any food on display because that would make the food not fresh,” Mr Huang said.

The Conder used to be a steakhouse but was turned into a pan-Asian buffet a year ago to provide a wider variety of cuisine to its patrons.

Mr Huang has a background in traditional Chinese cuisines. He started off as a military chef in China in 2003 and went on to private restaurants.

He came to Australia in 2009 and has worked for some big names including Dainty Sichuan, Dumpling Plus and Dragon Boat in Melbourne’s Chinatown. He was also a chef de partie at Crown Casino.

He took over the Conder in 2015 and transformed it into a local indulgence.

Apart from ensuring the dishes’ quality, Mr Huang says another reason for this modern buffet mode is to reduce food waste.

“Many traditional buffets put out their dishes and customers can pick and choose. But that creates a lot of food waste and is not hygienic,” he said.

“In here customers sit down at their table and order any food they would like and we prepare everything according to their order.”

This operation style requires more staff members but Mr Huang says quality is his top one priority.

There is no limit on customers’ orders. In two hours, they can order whatever they like, however they want it.

With about 100 dishes on offer, three separate menus are needed to list all of them.

Their specialty is in pan-fried Chinese and Japanese dishes, but there are also Malaysian, Taiwanese and Indian cuisines available.

The Conder is open six days a week during lunch and dinner hours, but it will extend its trading hours to seven days a week in December.

The fit-out of the restaurant is carefully designed to express the modernity of this innovative place.

Mr Huang’s philosophy is to spread the Asian food culture to Docklands and beyond.

With more than a decade of experience in the hospitality industry, the prospect for his business is certainly looking good.

The Conder is at 8-10 NewQuay Promenade. Contact the restaurant on 9670 8388. http://www.theconder.com.au

Getting people up and moving

By Sunny Liu

Anytime Fitness has just opened its brand new Docklands branch at Collins Square but it is already populated with patrons.

The world’s largest fitness chain takes pride in its friendly atmosphere and high-quality equipment.

“Anytime Fitness is not an intense body-building venue. It’s more family-oriented so everyone can come in and work out,” the Docklands branch’s manager Josh Jackson said.

The new venue is welcomed by corporate workers and residents in Docklands, who say the gym is a much-needed addition to their busy lifestyle.

“Our training classes and the 24-hour access is designed to help people fit a workout into their work schedule and we offer 30-minute small group training classes during the lunch hour,” Mr Jackson said.

The online instant booking system also adds to the convenience of keeping a healthy lifestyle.

As the name suggests, customers can access the gym anytime based on their daily schedule.

Anytime Fitness believes sitting is the new smoking. Office workers who sit in a chair for the whole day are prone to health problems.

All training classes, though short, are designed by qualified physiologists and are highly result-based.

The classes include kickboxing, Pilates, core conditioning and full-body circuit and are limited to 15 people in each class to ensure the training quality.

All equipment in the gym is imported from the US and includes a variety of cardio-training, body sculpting and weight lifting facilities.

Members have access to all 450 Anytime Fitness branches in the country without any extra charges.

Though there are several existing gyms in Docklands, Mr Jackson says the prime location of the new branch appeals to corporate workers.

Mr Jackson says a gym is long awaited at Collins Square, where 20,000 people work.

“Many of our clients come in during their lunch break and after work. It’s good to get people up and moving,” he said.

Mr Jackson said the philosophy of Anytime Fitness was to provide a convenient and friendly fitness atmosphere for people of all age groups.

With an area of 450 sqm, the equipment and classes are fitted in the multi-purpose space and the floor-to-ceiling windows give patrons a great view of a green Docklands.

It is the first Anytime Fitness branch in Docklands and Mr Jackson says “people can’t get away from Anytime Fitness”.

With the ever-growing population in Docklands, the market is very promising for a fitness centre that offers a wide range of activities and facilities.

People can try Anytime Fitness with a seven-day free trial. The new gym is at Shop 9B Collins Square, 747 Collins St.

Mr Jackson can be contacted on 0427 979 997 or (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

A bottle shop that comes to you

An idea that seems long overdue, alcohol delivery, is unsurprisingly taking off in the inner-city with the new service Tipple.

In just 12 months, co-CEOs Matt Walsh and Ryan Barrington have expanded the service to more than 120 suburbs and has carried out more than 20,000 deliveries.

Tipple not only guarantees delivery in under an hour but drinks are delivered to the customer’s door cold and ready to drink.

As a former Docklands resident himself, Matt Walsh said the service had already proven to be a massive hit for people living in apartments.

“This is just a super solution for people who live in apartments chasing convenience,” he said.

“We believe the Tipple alcohol delivery business has significant appeal to people who live in apartments where it’s a bit more difficult to get in and out with heavy purchases. We remove the hassle.”

While alcohol delivery exists in a handful of cases overseas, Tipple is the first business of its kind in Australia.

With a long background in the fast food and liquor industries, Tipple is Mr Barrington’s brainchild.

“I came up with the concept probably two and a half years ago,” he said. “My brother and I opened up a chain of kebab stores, to complement our bottle stores and we offered a delivery service.”

“We thought we can deliver food in under an hour so why not alcohol?”

Having started with one shop and a fleet of three delivery vehicles, the business has rapidly grown to four locations and more than 40 drivers.

Through its easy to use app, available through the App Store and Google Play, alcohol is delivered to your door cold thanks to the customised insulated carry containers fixed on each Tipple delivery bike.

And while the service has proven useful for people hosting a gathering at home, Matt said that most of its customers had incorporated Tipple as part of their regular shopping habits.

“Almost half of all of our deliveries are wine and we’re able to offer some pretty exciting and very well priced high quality wines,” he said.

“Many of our customers who order regularly have just built us into the way they go about their alcohol purchases. It’s been received very well and the repeat business validates what we’re doing.”

Most importantly, Tipple takes responsible serving of alcohol (RSA) very seriously and has developed its app in such a way that enforces that message. All drivers are RSA trained and valid ID is required upon every delivery.

With a vision of bringing the service to more cities around Australia, Mr Barrington said it was exciting to be at the forefront of a new marketplace.

“Everyone is so busy these days so instead of ordering 12 bottles that they don’t have storage space for, they’re ordering what they need for one or two nights at a time,” he said.

“Mobile phones have become the remote control for life. Customers want to be able to use their phone to co-ordinate various aspects of their lives. Apps need to be easy and simple to use and improve the quality of life for customers. At Tipple we want to improve the drinking experience for our customers.”

For more information visit http://www.tipple.com.au

A local solution for Airbnb owners

For the hundreds of inner-city apartment investors attracted to the Airbnb model, there is a new Docklands business geared up to take away the associated grief.

After nearly 10 years in the short-stay apartment space, there is not much that Julian Dieckhaus hasn’t experienced.

His battle-scars are a type of insurance for owners wanting to leverage the sharing economy but are unsure or not confident about doing all the work themselves.

Mr Dieckhaus points out that his new business doesn’t manage any bookings. The owners are expected to do that themselves. But, for everything else, there is TurnKey Accommodation.

Mr Dieckhaus said he offered packages that could be taken individually or collectively and included: cleaning; maintenance; key drop and pick-up; security bonds; guest greeting/vetting; owners’ corporation issues; after hours assistance with site security and dealing with general guest issues.

“Some owners want the flexibility to use the apartment themselves when it suits them. Some might have their children or other guests staying from time to time,” he said. “Often, they just want a turnkey solution!”

Mr Dieckhaus said Airbnb was a minefield for inexperienced owners who often did not know the potential traps and pitfalls.

“If their guests go crazy and hold a party, dealing with the owners’ corporations’ breach notice is the last thing they want,” he said.

“It’s much better to avoid a potential problem in the first place. The hefty damage bond payments we insist on will weed out the problem guests.”

“Essentially, we are offering a level of comfort that someone is looking out for them,” he said. “Our services are cost-effective and time-effective.”

Mr Dieckhaus’s team will even decorate and furnish an empty apartment if required.

“There are many interstate and overseas Airbnb apartment owners who would get great value from people like ourselves who can represent them on the ground,” Mr Dieckhaus said.

He pointed out that TurnKey Accommodation in no way competed with local real estate agents. For the investors wanting a long-term weekly income Mr Dieckhaus suggest using a local agent.

“We’ve got a very good working relationship with the local agents, and we want to keep it that way,” he said. “We really just see ourselves as being positioned in the middle between the Airbnb apartment owner and their guests.”

Mr Dieckhaus has a long history with Docklands, having managed NewQuay Marina from 2001. In 2004 he moved to Docklands to live and loves the place.

He got involved with short-stay apartments in 2007 when he started managing a local short-stay business.

In 2014 he took over Accommodation Corporate Docklands (ACD Apartments) and earlier this year acquired Docklands Prestige Apartments, which he continues to run under its existing brand.

Mr Dieckhaus can be contacted on 9642 0105.

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