Freo's View




It is a lot busier in Fremantle than on the previous weekends, but not anywhere near as packed as I thought and hoped it would be.

Nice to see kids at the Esplanade playground and the skatepark again, and people enjoying the alfresco.

The social distancing requirements made for a very colourful photo of chairs at the food market.

Roel Loopers



Posted in alfresco, cafe, city of fremantle, covid-19, food, hospitality, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on May 26, 2020


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I asked Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt this morning how council would support cafes and other hospitality venues and allow them to extend their alfresco areas, so that they can accommodate more people, while the Covid-19 social distancing rules are in place.

I received following reply and encourage all those who need a bit more space to put tables out to contact the City of Fremantle.

The City of Fremantle will provide as much flexibility as possible to enable cafes and restaurants to make the most of the easing of social distancing restrictions.

With the State Government expected to make further announcements increasing the number of people permitted to ‘eat in’ at local venues, Mayor Brad Pettitt said the City would do what it could to help businesses maximise their trading footprint.

Most notably, this could include temporarily expanding alfresco areas beyond usual boundaries provided they remained safe for pedestrians and did not impede other businesses.

“Obviously as things start to open up we want to encourage business operators to make the most of the opportunity to increase trade,” Mayor Pettitt said.

“Sitting outside for a coffee or meal on a sunny winter day is always a pleasure in Freo and we are keen to do whatever we can to support this to happen.”

Business operators looking to temporarily expand their alfresco areas are encouraged to contact the City’s Environmental Health Team on 1300 MY FREO (1300 693 736) for advice and support.

For example Chalkys cafe, which I frequent often, could put tables east of their present alfresco area, or move them around the corner in Little High Street. When Premier Mark McGowan announces that more people will be allowed into the hospitality premises it is good to know they can expand and that Freo City will be supporting them!

Roel Loopers



Posted in alfresco, cafe, city of fremantle, development, hospitality, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on February 28, 2019




South Fremantle’s Calogero’s cafe are allowed to keep their unauthorised alfresco area after Fremantle Council reluctantly agreed to approve it with some modest modifications such as providing substantial bike racks.

The main issue with the unauthorised development was the removal of four car parking bays from the site to make way for tables and benches, but Councillor Dave Hume argued that there were other means, such as the CAT bus to get to the area and it did not rely on cars only as transport.

Councillor Andrew Sullivan said that when he looked at the alfresco from a community perspective it worked and he would not swap the ambience it created for a few car bays.

But Councillor Rachel Pemberton was not at all happy with the cavalier-attitude of the cafe owners who seem to think they can just do anything they like and ignore council laws and processes.

Now the cafe owners will have to put bike racks in the cross-over so that they cannot park their delivery van there either, so they’d better get on with that fast.

My one comment about this is that I in general don’t like retrospective approval, but I also don’t get it that it is o.k. for cafes to take street parking bays away to create alfresco parklets but that one cannot do that on one’s own property. That makes little sense to me.

Roel Loopers




Posted in alfresco, cafe, cars, city of fremantle, local government, parking, Uncategorized by freoview on February 2, 2019



The alfresco area of Calogero’s in South Fremantle is in doubt with the Officers’ Recommendation for this Wednesday’s Ordinary Council meeting for the retrospective application to be refused due to lack of parking and the removal of previous car bays on the site.

I personally like the little hub from Little Lefroy Road to Jenkin Street with the cafes and restaurants, but there is no doubt that lack of parking is an issue in the area, but will the addition of two car bays really make a significant difference and is it enough to demand the removal of the large alfresco area?

That stretch of South Terrace is due for more traffic calming and making the area look more residential, so that motorists are encouraged to slow down, so a large alfresco area helps to achieve that, probably more than adding two car bays.

It will be interesting to observe if Fremantle Councillors agree with the officers or if they are more interested in the visual appeal of the Little Lefroy hub with street furniture, trees, bike racks or more parked cars.

Roel Loopers



Carriage Cafe


I hear that the owners of the cute Carriage Cafe on the Fremantle Esplanade have been told that they can stay till March next year and then will be offered a lease until 2022, but with the option for the City of Fremantle to terminate the lease on a monthly basis.

This is ridiculous, unprofessional and unworkable, as no one in their right mind will invest in a business that does not have a secure long-term tenure.

Last winter the thick plastic ‘curtains’ that keep the wind and rain out of the cafe’s dining area where ripped to pieces during a storm, so the owners will have to put new ones in which will cost thousands of dollars. Why would they do that if they can be chucked out on short notice? Even a pop-up shop gets a six-month lease, for heaven’s sake!

Why does Fremantle Council make it so hard for businesses who want to stay in Fremantle, when vacant shop fronts pop up faster than weeds in our city? Does anyone at all understand what commercial viability means and how important safe tenure is?

Let’s be realistic and pragmatic about the Esplanade masterplan. The new hub and new cafe won’t happen for years, if at all, because the City of Fremantle does not have the money to finance it, so accept the reality and support the Carriage Cafe owners who have plans to also open at night as a restaurant.

West End businesses were left off the new shopping map, and Arthur’s Head businesses are not sure about their future there, while the place is falling apart because of poor maintenance, so it’s urgent time for Fremantle Council to stop talking about wanting to activate the West End of Fremantle and actually start supporting those who are already activating it!

Roel Loopers



Posted in alfresco, city of fremantle, hospitality, parking, parklet, Uncategorized by freoview on November 13, 2018




Interesting to note that the Brazilian carnivore paradise LAPA in Fremantle’s High Street got rid of their alfresco parklet.

I wonder if they have to make way for more police car parking or if the alfresco was not worth the money because it was rarely used by patrons.

And talking about parking, several parking bays in front of the Esplanade Hotel on Marine Terrace have disappeared to make way for a taxi rank, that used to be in Collie Street.

Roel Loopers



More from the Fremantle Council Planning Committee:

  • A small bar and deli for 29 Leighton Beach Boulevard in North Fremantle was approved by the City of Fremantle Planning Committee last night after many people spoke for and against it.

One of the main concerns was noise from the alfresco area rising up to the balconies of residents because of the hard surface below.

It is a fair concern that could be addressed if council insisted on noise control, such as carpeting the alfresco area and putting a soft noise reducing top over it and plants around it, but a small amendment only addressed the area of alfresco activity and that it could not expand.

  • The development proposal for a cafe/restaurant next to Frank’s the butcher in Wray Avenue came back to the Planning Committee, after the proponent had taken the plans to the State Administrative Tribunal after they were rejected by council. The committee last night was adamant. that not enough changes had been made and that parking in the very popular hub was already and issue that could not cope with another cafe, so the proposal was rejected again.
  • The Solar Farm on the former tip site in South Fremantle was approved. Concerns about contaminated dust were deemed unnecessary as the site will be monitored while it is largely without control now.

It is a bit of a surprise that people now are concerned about contaminated dust when a solar farm will be built over the surface and no doubt acts as dust reduction and the site will be professionally managed. A very good outcome I believe.

  • Bad acoustics in the North Fremantle Hall is still an issue and the large public gallery which included twenty Curtin University students had to move chairs to the sides to get closer to be able to hear the Councillors and staff. Unacceptable.
  • A rather farcical situation at the start of the meeting when chair Jon Strachan ruled that all public submissions would be heard before the committee deliberated, but he was overruled by his colleagues who wanted the procedure to remain as it is and that the public speaks before each item which is then debated by committee. It means that people who are not interested in other items on the agenda don’t have to sit through the entire meeting, so it is a basic courtesy to the community.

Roel Loopers





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Some Fremantle impressions I took yesterday. A tiny hole in the wall cafe, two bookshops combined in a reflection, the Fishing Boat Harbour early morning, and lots of bikes at another cafe.

Freo is full of hidden treasures and surprises. Explore it!

Roel Loopers


Posted in alfresco, bar, city of fremantle, hospitality, Uncategorized by freoview on February 5, 2018


Ronnie Nights


Here a sneak preview through the window of Fremantle’s newest bar RONNIE NIGHTS which will open this week.

The small bar in Market Street has taken over the premises of the Maya Indian restaurant/Aunty G. and is owned by the operators of the STRANGE COMPANY bar in Nairn Street.

The bar has two street level areas and also an upstairs section, so check it out once it is open.

Nice to see the floor tiles and the pressed tin ceiling have been preserved.

Roel Loopers



Posted in alcohol, alfresco, bathers beach, fremantle by freoview on November 17, 2016

The West Australian reports today that Fremantle’s Bathers Beach House is the first hospitality outlet in WA that has received a liquor license to serve alcohol on the beach. This will no doubt attract criticism from those who believe beaches should remain public spaces and not be leased to commercial operators, but I believe it is a good step forward for our nanny state to catch up with European standards on this issue.

What I don’t like is the awful metal steps that have been added to the timber deck that is part of the heritage interpretation of the area and it is disappointing the City of Fremantle did not insist on timber steps in character with the boardwalk.

That brings me to the issue of locals complaining that people who use the Mortuary area for weddings and functions close off the boardwalk to the public. That should not be allowed.

Roel Loopers

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