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10 years on

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Modern approach to musculoskeletal pain
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Tram no Metro - Bike danger
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Tony’s back in business
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Take more care with your insurance
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Best of friends
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My view of Docklands; from NewQuay
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Sharing our vertical commons
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Goodbye from Blender Studios
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A reading room for our community
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We Live Here

A Royal Commission into industry scandals
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Business in Docklands June 2010

03 Jun 2010

THE SHOP WITH EVERYTHING

After owning small businesses for the past 10 years, husband and wife team John and Jane Zhang are about to open a housing goods and giftware store in Harbour Town.

Currently operating a similar, but smaller shop in Doncaster, the Zhang’s are excited about the prospects of their new Docklands shop, Fantastic Home aand Gifts.

Offering a wide range of products from dinnerware and giftware, to pet accessories and stationery, the Zhangs hope the new store will attract many loyal local customers.

“We want to try and make it easy for people to find what they’re looking for and we want residents and customers to have a good experience so that they will continue to come back,” Jane said.

Jane, who refers to Docklands as “the future”, said the new shop would provide upmarket products at very reasonable prices.

“Once you have one shop its better to have another shop as you get better prices from the warehouse and that means good quality stock at a better price for the customer,” 

she said.

Not just providing the best quality goods, the Zhangs must also be doing something right in the employer stakes, as one of their former employees has followed them to the Docklands store.

“One of the girls who was working for us for three or four years at our Nandos shop in Greensborough, which we just sold, has come across to work at our Docklands shop,” Jane said.

Located in Harbour Town’s Studio Lane, Fantastic Home and Gifts will open in June and is offering 20 per cent off all its products for the first two weeks.

THE CAFE WITH NO COFFEE

Alan Wang is another young entrepreneur set to take Docklands by storm after opening an internet café in Harbour Town in April.

The 27-year-old Docklands resident, who previously worked in superannuation, wants people to know that the internet café could be used for both educational study as well as playing games.

Alan, who has been living in a Harbour Town apartment for the last year and a half, said he saw a gap in the market when he realised that there wasn’t any entertainment in Docklands other than bars and restaurants.

“On Friday nights I am holding LAN (local area network) parties, which means a group of friends, say 10 friends, can come in from 3pm and for $10 each they can play computer games against each other for the entire night,” he said.

Offering 40 computers and six PlayStation 3s, this internet café is appealing not only to people who want to stay in touch with friends, surf the net and study, but also to those who want to play games.

“People can come in and for $15 they can reserve a computer all day and that computer will be locked to them. So if they want, they can go shopping or to lunch or dinner and come back and continue.”

Open from 9.30am until midnight, Indus charges $2.50 an hour, $10 for eight hours or $15 for the entire day.

Indus also offers printing and faxing services, as well as repairs and services, including malware removal, operating system and driver reloading as well as data recovery.

Alan said his business would also provide house calls to Docklands residents and Docklands businesses.

Indus is located on the upper level of Harbour Town, on Studio Lane.

BOURGEOIS - IT'S FRENCH FOR...

In France, bourgeois means elite, capitalist or upper class. But in Docklands, Bourgeois means great coffee, fantastic food and friendly service.

Located in Victoria Harbour, Bourgeois opened just over a month ago and is already developing a reputation with local workers.

Under the watchful and experienced eye of young entrepreneur and director of the company, Ricky Marcelo, this new café, with 25 different types of hot chocolate on offer, is sure to make a splash in Docklands.

Ricky, who has always worked in the hospitality industry, said the café was different because it offered two different types of coffee blends, chocolate-coated coffee beans and a wide range of
hot chocolates.

“Our hot chocolates are extremely popular and they drive lots of people here. One of the girls from ANZ comes in with a very long list of hot chocolate orders for people she works with,” Ricky said.

Friendly, welcoming and always ready for a chat, Ricky has learned a lot from his time in the industry.

“I have brought the best from all the places that I have worked in,” he said.

“We have a pomegranate and couscous salad and that is something that was at another café that I worked at and it is very popular and no one else does it.”

With 30 types of different cakes, Bourgeois has enough sugar to get any worker through the afternoon and a wide enough range to please even the most discerning sweet-tooth.

“We also have about seven different savoury crepes and seven different sweet crepes,” Ricky said.

With a wide range of food and beverages and an artistic interior, Bourgeois provides a great space to warm-up with a hot chocolate and shelter from the fast-approaching winter chill.

Located at the footstep of the Myer building, this is the first Bourgeois store, with a second opening at 380 Docklands Drive in coming months.

LET'S GET PHYSICAL

Are regular gym hours too constraining for your time schedule?

Do you sometimes feel as though you need some help and motivation? Then have no fear, as Justin and his team at Jetts Fitness Docklands can help.

Having opened on April 23, Jetts Fitness Docklands, a 24-hour club, is quickly gaining a loyal following of people who like to exercise outside of the normal gym-hour parameters.

Club manager and personal trainer (PT), Justin Chappell, said that for many people the desire to stay fit could often be bogged down by busy work and family schedules.

“At Jetts, we provide a solution that allows members to access the facility at a time that suits their schedule, in a convenient location within walking or a short driving distance from work or home,” Justin said.

Justin, a former PT co-ordinator at a large national health club, said he liked managing the new club as it felt more intimate.

“It’s a very different feel from working in a big club because you get a chance to know the people, their routine, social life and how they like to train,” he said.

Jetts Docklands caps its membership and offers the latest in equipment, specialised training groups, assistance with programs, personal training and integrated LCD televisions in each cardio machine.

Justin said the club offered an alternative solution to the larger, more expensive clubs.

“Our research indicated that people were paying for access to extensive change rooms, pools aAnd steam rooms, but often didn’t have the time to utilise them,” he said.

With no contracts, a membership payment is deducted on a fortnightly basis, so you’re never locked into any long-term agreement and, according to Justin, its rates are 40-100 per cent lower then traditional fitness clubs.

Prices start at $17.95 a fortnight and all members have access to the club 24 hours a day, seven days a week and can also attend any other Jetts Fitness club in Australia.

Located on the corner of Batman’s Hill Drive and Collins St, the Docklands facility is the 60th Jetts Fitness franchise in Australia and the first CBD based Jetts Fitness club.

Jetts Fitness Docklands is now open.

Phone 9642 8033 or visit http://www.jetts.com.au for more information on club facilities and services.

NASHI NUMBER SIX

Opening up a Nashi franchise in Victoria Harbour last month, young entrepreneur Sam Nash is making his mark.

Sam, who has seven Nashi stores throughout Melbourne, conceived the idea for Nashi seven years ago and backed his concept after noticing a move to healthy food in Europe.

Nashi provides healthy sandwiches, baguettes, paninis, soups and salads, which are produced daily in its climate-controlled, state-of-the-art kitchen in Collingwood. 

Catering and business development manager, Tracey Croker, said Nashi was a tight-knit family company and Sam was a friendly and loyal employer.

“Even the first lady that began cooking in Sam’s kitchen at home seven years ago is still cooking for Nashi today and that really helps us to still provide the home-style cooking that we have for years,” Tracey said.

Tracey said Nashi didn’t have a high turn over rate of staff and that the family feel of the business was reflected in the feature walls in their new stores.

“Sam has used pictures of his kids and nephews in wall murals and that reflects the kind of family person he is and the kind of company Nashi is,” she said.

Operations manager, Adam Brennan, who started at Nashi four years ago making Paninis, said Nashi not only provided a healthy alternative in food,  but also prided itself on its coffee.

“All Nashi baristas are trained by the guy who has won Australian Barista of the Year for fives years running and we also use a special blend of coffee at all our stores,” he said.

Adam, who travels between stores, said he was really enjoying being in Docklands.

 “It’s a really friendly environment. Before we moved here I didn’t think I would like it much and now I am even having my birthday at Harbour Town Hotel tonight, followed by ice skating at the Icehouse,” Adam said.

“Many of our clients that we cater to are here and when they began to move from the city we thought it was a good opportunity to open another store,” Tracey said.

Nashi is located underneath the Myer building in Collin St.

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

A LIFETIME'S BUSINESS EXPERIENCE IN JUST 25 YEARS

At 25 years old, Docklands resident and businessman Hangcheng Yang has had more life experience than some would in a lifetime.

Moving to Australia nine years ago as an international student from China, Hancheng graduated with a diploma in business administration at TAFE before going on to study a four-year commerce degree in
just three years.

With a healthy appetite for success, Hancheng tried his hand in many businesses, including importing and selling oil paintings and art, as well as owning and operating a girls’ accessories shop, before going on to motor sports.

Hancheng, who loves everything to do with cars, said after becoming involved in motor racing he realised that property investment was an excellent source of income.

“I bought an investment property to fund my racing and when I found I could pay for my fuel I thought that if I bought more property I could fund better parts for the cars,” he said.

Hancheng said he then decided he would build a house and went from builder to builder to get the best deal.

“When talking to builders I found that if I bought a few parcels of land and had them build multiple houses they would reduce the cost of construction. So that’s what I did and the first time I did it I sold them to friends and they all made money.”

Hancheng now operates a successful construction and development company, Best in Best Homes, and has just opened a second office for his business in Docklands’ Aqua Vista building.

“There are two types of people in Docklands, people who are renting and want to buy and people who are looking for an investment. I deliver the product in the simplest way, which is also cheaper.”

Hancheng’s company now buys land straight from developers, cutting out the middle-man and producing property at below market-value cost.

Hancheng said he then wholesaled the construction work to a builder, which reduced unit costs, and he was then able to sell them for less then market value.

Hancheng said Best in Best Homes works with eight different construction companies to deliver houses at a wholesale price. 

For more information on the company contact Hangcheng 0425 388 663.

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