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Business in Docklands November 2010

26 Oct 2010


Having retired from the Australian Ballet in September, Docklands resident Jane Casson has set her sights on helping mothers achieve an overall body workout using pilates and has founded her business, Pilates for Mums.

With over 12 years experience in pilates and having danced for more than 14 years as a professional dancer with both the Australia Ballet and The Royal New Zealand Ballet, Jane has begun holding classes at The Hub every Wednesday night.

“Professional dancers don’t tend to have too long a career so we do pilates to get the most out of bodies. It’s really just a natural progression,” Jane said.

Recently becoming a first-time mother, Jane realised the need for mothers to be able to take time out for themselves and have a workout in a relaxed and fun environment.

“Being a mum is truly the best job in the world, but there is a lot of strain on you and mums really need to take time out for themselves. That’s what Pilates for Mums is about.  It’s about staying fit and healthy so you can be the best mum you can be and it’s targeted at mothers of all stages.”

With a focus on personal service and a genuine interest in her clients’ successes, Jane only allows a maximum of 10 people per class.

“I really want to be able give each client personalised service and focus on alignment and technique so any more than 10 and I wouldn’t be able to do that.”

Jane said her classes would be pilates with a twist and could be changed and modified to suit each individual’s level.

“I won’t just be doing floor work, but I’ll be incorporating a lot of equipment and play things. It’s basically like playgroup for mothers,” she said.

With a passion to inspire people we’re sure it won’t be long before Jane is adding more classes to her schedule.

Jane will be holding classes every Wednesday at 7.30pm at The Hub. For more information visit


Noel Comley and Jin Guan know that there are two very important things to Melburnians. The first is footy and the second is an industry that they are bound to make a splash in … coffee.

Opening Harbour Coffee House, at 02/198 Harbour Esplanade in Digital Harbour on September 28, the husband and wife team are ready to provide the perfect coffee and believe that they have the goods to make it happen.

“We’ve purchased the best beans possible and one of the best coffee machines in the world so that we can serve the best coffee because quality is something that we will not compromise on,” Noel said.

Having run a restaurant in the city in the past, Noel has an eye for potential and can definitely see the potential in Docklands and is excited about his new café located on the ground level of the LifeLab building.

“We thought we would get in early. Everyone says don’t go there. It’s at the end of the world but look at it. It’s so beautiful and pleasant and it’s going to be great,” Noel said.

Noel said it was his wife Jin who was the driving force behind the café and that it would be a great success as she was very determined.

“She’s an amazing Chinese entrepreneur and has helped clients of hers set up businesses for years and it’s now her turn,” Noel said.

A father of four, Noel said the business was also a way of making sure that his kids were set up for the future.

“Like any other parent you do things for your kids and a reason we do these types of things is to ensure that our kids have something for the future,” he said.

Noel’s kids are also involved in the business and are already planning to lend a hand.

“My second eldest daughter, who is 18, went and studied a barista course so that she could come here and work, but unfortunately she’s studying in Holland at the moment so it will have to wait until she returns.”

With fantastic coffee and a range of slices and focaccias, Harbour Coffee House is bound to be a new haunt for coffee lovers.


Docklands businesses are invited to experience a form of business networking which has proven successful all around the world and is brand new to this area.

A chapter of Business Network International (BNI) has relocated to Docklands from the CBD and is looking for new members.

The president of the Harbour Connections BNI chapter, Dave Fuller, said the group was interested in attracting local businesses looking for more sales.

Mr Fuller explained that the BNI concept was all about seeking referral business for other members of the group.

“In BNI we have a philosophy of givers gain.  It means that if I seek out and refer business to you, you are likely to do the same for me,” he said.

The Docklands-based chapter is hosting a special visitors’ day meeting on Wednesday, November 10 from 9am until 11am at the Harbour Kitchen under the NAB building facing the water on Victoria Harbour.  The group normally meets from 7am until 8.30am every Wednesday.

“We’d like people to know that there is a group down here that can help them grow their business,” Mr Fuller said.

Mr Fuller said the BNI concept allowed for only one of each profession in each chapter.

“Effectively, you lock out your opposition once you join a chapter,” he said.

Mr Fuller said BNI was the most successful networking group of its type in the world.

Businesses wishing to attend should call Silke Harmes on 9510 7600 or email her on (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)


With 20 years experience in hospitality in both Ireland and Australia, Mark O’Reilly is an old-hand when it comes to the industry and he has now brought his expertise to Docklands.

Migrating from Ireland to Australia 16 years ago Mark has enjoyed great success in Australia’s hospitality industry owning several venues across Melbourne.

Growing up with parents who owned hotels in Ireland, it was only a matter of time before Mark would begin to work in the industry which has taught him many lessons over the years on how to run a successful venue.

“A pub is a poor man’s university. You learn by your mistakes and you listen, but most importantly you have to have vision,” Mark said.

Vision is something that Mark has in spades, recently converting the heritage Goods Shed North into Docklands’ latest up-and-coming venue – Platform 28.

Located in Bourke St, Platform 28 is a gorgeous looking venue that effortlessly combines the old and the new.

From the big, black cast-iron heritage columns to the distinctly painted number 28 on the old brick wall, you are immediately reminded of the past, whilst enjoying all the luxuries of the present.

“We wanted to incorporate the rich heritage of the venue and have actually placed televisions around the venue showing vision from the past. But we also wanted a quality fit-out that was classy and people could enjoy.”

Opening on October 6, Platform 28 has already become a local favourite with many Docklands workers and residents.

“We’ve had quite a good response since opening and it’s only going to get better. It’s a great location close to tram, trains and Etihad Stadium and we’re sure it’ll attract even more people on Friday, Saturday and Sundays,” he said.

Open seven days a week and run as a casual dining, bar and function venue, Platform 28 and Mark’s Irish charm is sure to be a hit in Docklands.

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