Chch Cafe Owners Feel Positive About City's Redevelopment
A GREAT CUP OF COFFEE IS BACK ON THE MENU: CHRISTCHURH CAFÉ OWNERS FEEL POSITIVE ABOUT CITY’S REDEVELOPMENT
After many Christchurch cafes were wiped out in the September 2010 and February 2011 earthquakes, it might have been slightly more challenging to find a good flat white or long black in the city. However, with redevelopment work progressing and insurance claims finally being processed, the café culture is once again getting back to full strength.
The Coffee Club, one of New Zealand’s largest and fastest growing café brands, is one company that has noticed a surge in business optimism and café ownership in Christchurch. There are currently three The Coffee Club stores in Christchurch with plans to extend the brand’s presence over the coming years.
“There are some fantastic opportunities for café owners in Christchurch and more people are seeing that,” explains The Coffee Club director, Andy Lucas. “The city has always been something of a mecca for coffee drinkers and that has not been dampened by the quakes. A number of new brands and cafes have identified this potential and moved in, including our own The Coffee Club stores. Our focus is on bringing something a little different to the city – really good, ethically produced coffee along with quality all-day meals at a price that reflects great value. We will also be launching our new breakfast and lunch menus in Christchurch next month, which fits in nicely with the air of development and improvement that can be felt in the city.”
Andy Peng and Carol He have owned The Coffee Club Hagley Park - which is located on the city’s best-known designer street, Victoria Street - since June 2013. Despite their first Victoria Street café being destroyed in the earthquakes, they are feeling positive about the area’s redevelopment potential.
“I lost my first café in the February 2011 earthquake after owning it for just a year,” says Andy. “You have to dust yourself off and start again. I was lucky that my previous cafe survived the September earthquake and I had a few more months of income. Lots of cafes got destroyed in the first shake.”
“Christchurch and Victoria Street in particular feels really positive right now and must be the fastest developing area in Christchurch at the moment,” he adds. “There is construction work going on all the time. Lots of funding is being pumped into it and it’s predicted that all of the vacant land will be filled with new buildings within three years. We’re feeling good about the future and we’re looking forward to being part of the new Christchurch.”
Andy and Carol joined The Coffee Club as they were attracted to the support that the franchise group offered, as well as the brand’s rapid growth and popularity in New Zealand.
“The Coffee Club provides marketing and other support, making café ownership far less complicated. It’s hard going it alone without anyone to back you up,” says Carol. “We are hopeful that we will do well on Victoria Street and in the local community and would like to expand the store in the future. The earthquake was not a good experience for anyone, but people here are very strong, which I really admire. The future for Christchurch café owners feels very good indeed.”
The Coffee Club stores can be found throughout the North and South Islands.
For more information on The Coffee Club, including a full list of stores, visit www.thecoffeeclub.co.nz.