Freo's View

GENUINE ABORIGINAL ART AT TRUE BLUE MARKETS

Posted in aboriginal, art, city of fremantle, markets, shopping, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on August 16, 2019

 

 

The new Fremantle TRUE BLUE MARKETS has opened opposite the Fremantle Markets in the Henderson Street mall, so go and have a browse.

Brian and Annette Kent are well known faces in Fremantle and the Aboriginal art on offer is genuine and painted by local artists, and not from sweat shops in Indonesia or China.

It is very important when we send tourists to the  new markets to know that they support our local Aboriginal artists, so promote them and spread the word!

Roel Loopers

NEW AUSSIE MARKETS FOR FREMANTLE

Posted in city of fremantle, markets, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on August 9, 2019

 

Markets

 

I noticed the signs for the all new TRUE BLUE MARKETS this morning where the Pine Warehouse opposite the Fremantle Mrkets used to be.

It will be good to see that retail space activated again. This from the website:

True Blue Australia is one of Australia’s largest manufacturers of postcards, greeting cards and locally produced souvenirs. Products featuring photographs by Annette Kent are produced for almost every town in Australia. True Blue also has their own kilns to produce glass and clay jewellery, platters, art glass and awards.

Many Aboriginal Artists from the Perth metropolitan area and regional WA produce paintings, artefacts, jewellery and souvenirs at their communities and the True Blue workshop.

Roel Loopers

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WHEN FOMO MEETS MANY-AT FREO’S KINGS SQUARE

 

I received the exciting information below from SPACEMARKET about the FOMO retail at Fremantle’s Kings Square:

We’ve been working with Sirona Capital on an incredible new concept within the FOMO FREO Kings Square precinct, right in the heart of Freo. It’s going to be like nothing you’ve seen before in WA. This includes (drum roll) the return of MANY to its original home, with a beautiful new MANY Emporium spread across the lower ground floor— and as you’d expect, The Emporium will be full of your favourite local and independent businesses.

Alongside MANY, within the impressive open-plan shopping area bathed in natural light from the sweeping, skylit ceiling, we envision a sexy little wine bar, food offerings, a gorgeous beauty and wellness space, plus a heavy sprinkling of other lovely things. Think; flowers, conti rolls, a beaut bottle of wine, house plants, books, stationary….

Off the back of MANY 6160, which opened in 2013, Sirona have committed to continue the concept of borderless, open-plan retail. We’re equally committed to ensuring a dynamic mix of businesses trading right here in Freo, and are gunning to ensure the space is the opposite experience of a generic big box shopping centre.

This is where you come in!

When we launch in April 2020, we want to showcase the best of the best at FOMO FREO, and we’d love you to help us spread the word. There will be space available in our impressive lower ground level, but also street floor tenancies which face the newly revitalised Kings Square, library and civic centre.

From a retail perspective, this feels like an unmissable opportunity. Population and parking are often named as key barriers to small business success in WA — here in FOMO, we’ll have 2,000 office workers relocating into the upper levels (also planned for April 2020), and another 1,000 in neighbouring refurbished offices. And parking? There’ll be 600 bays right out the back.

Obviously, we’ve got a dream hit list of brilliant operators who we’d love to join us in this venture, but of course there will be many more out there who we don’t yet know about. We’d love them to be involved too! We’re calling on; barbers, specialist fashion shops, glasses and sunglasses boutiques, menswear designers, gorgeous homewares and lifestyle purveyors, fabulous florists, grocers, whole foods, art prints, YOU NAME IT. Bring us your best Perth.

Brilliant, enthusiastic and high quality operators – contact Kate@spacemarket.com.auor sarah@spacemarket.com.au (immediately!) for more info and to arrange a site visit.

 

Roel Loopers

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ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST

Posted in city of fremantle, hospitality, retail, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on August 4, 2019

 

down

 

Another one bites the dust. It is a real shame to see another retailer closing its doors in Adelaide Street at Fremantle’s Kings Square, but as major retailer David Jones stated Australia is in a retail recession and that is impacting on all major shopping destinations in the Perth metro area.

I hear it is a serious challenge for developers in Fremantle to fill new retail and hospitality spaces and that a popular health food restaurant might also be on the verge of closing down because it is barely making enough money to pay the rent.

The Fremantle community needs to support our local traders or more will be forced to close shop!

Roel Loopers

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FREMANTLE DOWN BUT NOT OUT!

 

walk 3

 

When things are down we have to remind ourselves of the good things as well, so I was thinking about the demise of Fremantle traders, the hardship of many retailers and the increasing vacancies of shops. Yep, we all know the problems are not unique to Fremantle and similar issues are happening in other parts of metropolitan Perth and WA,  but that does not help anyone.

What might be better for Fremantle though is to talk up our city’s uniqueness and achievements instead of having constant negativity in the news media, so I was thinking about all those iconic Freo traders who have been here seemingly ‘forever’.

I am sure my list is incomplete so please add all those long-term surviving traders I have overlooked.

The oldest shoe shop in metro Perth is Bodkin’s Bootery in Freo’s west end High Street, Bousfield and Warrens menswear have been here for as long as I know, and so has Ruocco’s pizza, the Capri, Culley’s, the news agency in the mall, Cicerello’s, Galati’s, Franks, the South Fremantle fish&chips.

Top that with the Sail&Anchor, National, Orient and Federal hotels, the Norfolk, Little Creatures and Newport, the Local and South Beach Hotel, the Tradeswind, Esplanade and Federal hotels, and the Fremantle Markets.

The Moore&Moore cafe has been open for more than ten years and so has the old Roma, that closed for a while but reopened. The Attic is still going well and so are Gino’s, Chalky’s, Picollo’s, and Duck Duck Bruce in Collie Street have been doing so well that they are opening a new second place in Bannister Street.

Kennedy’s the barber is also going well, and while Norm Wrightson’s will be closing  due to the Manning building development it has been THE iconic Freo barber for ages. And let’s not forget Bitches Brew the framers and art gallery, Kakula’s Sister,  and Japingka Gallery and Megan Salmon’s fashion shop.

The Manning building development with a new tavern, brewery and distillery will be great and so will be the Police&Justice complex tourist attraction with hotel, FOMO at Kings Square will offer a whole new shopping and hospitality experience, and a few new hotels  and residential apartment buildings will pop up in the centre of Freo over the next years as well

It might often feel as if Fremantle is on it’s knees but the fight is not over by a long way, and Freo people and traders know how to fight and the community knows how to support one another. We’ll get through these tough times by telling ourselves and others that Freo is a pretty outstanding place to visit, shop and live. We can do it Freo!

SHOP AND HAVE FUN IN FREO!

 

Roel Loopers

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A SUNNY WALK THROUGH LOVELY FREO

Posted in city of fremantle, community, shopping, Uncategorized by freoview on July 29, 2019

 

walk 3

walk 2

walk 4

walk 1

 

It is such a lovely day that I went for a long walk today and soak up some of that gorgeous sunshine.

Mayor Brad Pettitt rode by on his bicycle just before I bumped into former WA Premier Peter Dowding who was waiting for a bus to South Fremantle.

I took photos of the ‘renovator’s dream’ at Little Lefroy Road, of the owner of the pre-loved record shop soaking up the sun, a tree trolley at Wray Avenue, and iconic butcher Franks who just can’t get enough signs up to promote his meaty delights.

It is all those things that make Fremantle the special place it is.

Roel Loopers

 

UNFAIR TO BLAME LOCAL COUNCILS FOR RETAIL DECLINE

 

Kings Square

 

It is rather hypocritical for Bill Marmion to berate Fremantle Council about economic development in his letter in the West Australian on Thursday. Has Mr Marmion forgotten that he was a minister in the Barnett government that created the biggest billions of dollars debt in the history of Western Australia?

Fremantle Council has in fact been proactive for ten years to start the economic recovery with encouraging developers to start building in the CBD, and that is happening with the LIV and Heirloom residential developments now occupied and with four hotels approved at the Woolstores shopping centre, the former Point Street carpark site, the Police&Justice complex and another one at the Warders Cottages next to Fremantle Markets. And the Kings Square Redevelopment Project is on track and will open in the first quarter of next year with a creative new retail concept called FOMO.

A new Destination Marketing campaign for Fremantle was launched two months ago, but retailers must adjust to the changing shopping trends instead of blaming local councils for the decline of retail. Some Freo traders still have boring window displays as if it’s the 1960s and refuse to modernise their shop fronts and customer service.

There is plenty of parking in Fremantle Bill Marmion with over 5,000 bays plus a new carpark coming on line next year in Parry Street.

The world changes, and while Fremantle Council is far from perfect and often frustrates me they are well ahead of other local councils in the economic rebirth game.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE CHAMBER REJECTS WEST AUSTRALIAN CLAIMS

 

The Fremantle Chamber of Commerce has hit back at The West Australians article that casts doubt on Fremantle’s economic growth potential and position.

In a media release the FCOC wrote:

Unlike many urban centres in Australia, Fremantle is currently experiencing unprecedented investment and renewal underway, with the combined value of private and public investment in the pipeline totaling more than $1.3 billion.

The Fremantle Chamber of Commerce is actively connecting, uniting and assisting in the growth of a successful and vibrant business community that builds on Fremantle’s unique advantage, its heritage and its maritime focus.

Fremantle Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer, Danicia Quinlan said: “Fremantle, like most urban centres, is affected by the current wave of societal change in the way people gather, shop, dine, interact commercially and manage environmental challenges. Learning from other Councils, or even other cities locally,mand internationally, is an important way to navigate our way through these changes. We need Fremantle Councillors and the Mayor to be an active part of trying to find ways to manage all of these complex challenges.”

And more feedback from Fremantle traders:

The damage The West Australian is doing to Fremantle and its businesses far surpasses any perceived damage by council. Fremantle Markets is running at full occupancy with over 56,000 visitors last weekend for the 3 days period. Feedback from traders was “sales were excellent”.

Councils everywhere are going through a difficult time, however, the City of Fremantle Economic Development team and the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce regularly engage with businesses and continue to make many great improvements to the city” .

Natasha Atkinson – Chief Executive Officer Fremantle Markets and Winner Business News 2019 40 Under 40

Our focus is on Fremantle with our affordable and green residential developments. Our projects generally achieve an equity internal rate between 15-30% and we don’t see this slowing. Fremantle business has a great future as we focus on building on our competitive advantage of heritage, environmental consciousness and community spirit”.

Tao Bourton, Fremantle’s Yolk Property Group Director

It is exciting to see so many new businesses have decided to invest their potential in Fremantle not only for today, but for many years to come. We look forward to working together to build a unique and vibrant business community.”

Ivan Dezba, Fremantle Chamber of Commerce President and Managing Director, Benny’s

People more cynical than I am might well suggest the constant attacks on shopping in local councils are a PR exercise to promote urban shopping centres, from where more advertising dollars can be obtained than from the traditional High Street shopping destinations.

One week we read and see that all is wrong and violent in Cockburn, then it is Rockingham, Fremantle, Subiaco, Mount Lawley, Leederville, Perth, etc.

Is it PR, is it political to give less power to local councils, or is it just lazy journalism during slow news cycles?

A West End cafe owner told me that last Friday, Saturday and Sunday had been some of the busiest days they have experienced. Maybe it is time for the West and its sister TV and radio stations to be more balanced and allow Freo’s positive stories to come out in the open instead of always focusing on the negative aspects.

Roel Loopers

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RETAIL DECLINE A HUGE WORRY FOR OUR CITIES

 

Recent media reports in the West Australian and on TV news show that retail is severely struggling in Perth and that Fremantle’s worries are not unique in that regard. Of course that is cold comfort to our Freo traders.

The same complaints Fremantle traders make are made by Perth traders; parking costs, antisocial behaviour and homelessness.

According to one news outlet one in five shops are vacant in the Perth CBD, so that is even higher than in Fremantle, with one trader saying that they were experiencing the worst trading conditions in a decade, with whole days of no sales and no customers entering the shop.

The sad fact is that there is a lot of on-line shopping and that many people prefer the sterile all-weather comfort of shopping centres where there is little antisocial behaviour, no homeless people and three-hour free parking.

In summer shoppers escape to the cool airconditioned comfort of suburban shopping centres, which keep them warm and dry in winter, so that is something old-fashion High Street shopping can’t offer.

While free parking might be an option for big and wealthy Perth council a small city such as Fremantle is reliant on parking fees and parking fines revenue. Fremantle Council would have to substantially raise council rates if it introduced free parking.

Fremantle could however offer free weekday night parking to try to attract more people into town in the evenings.

What the demise of retail will mean for the FOMO retail concept at Kings Square, that will open mid next year, is yet to be seen, but don’t expect miracles in the short term.

There is no point in not supporting local traders but then complain that retail shops, cafes and restaurants close and that so many shops are vacant, so support our Freo traders!

Roel Loopers

FREO’S LAST TEN YEARS NOT A FAILURE

There is a Not Happy Brad! whinge letter in the Fremantle Herald today by a Keith Manton, who blames the Fremantle Mayor for just about everything that is wrong in our city.

Drug taking, street drinking, begging. Blame the Mayor when everyone by now should be aware that WA Police is responsible for taking care of these issues and crimes and anti social behaviour. They do that pretty well with assistance of the Fremantle community safety officers.

The one point I agree on with Mr Manton is that lack of good quality architecture we are getting, but most of the major projects are approved by the state’s JDAP and not the City.

According to the director responsible for the removal of the yellow foil at High Street comes in under the $ 220.000 budget, so not anywhere near the one million Mr Manton claims it will cost. Can we get an update on that please Director Graham Tattersall. Thanks!

Vacant shops and the cry out for more diversity is nothing new. Retail vacancies are unfortunately happening everywhere around Perth and Australia and Fremantle Council cannot enforce lower rents or dictate to property owners which tenants and businesses to take on, although the economic development team has been trying hard to get more diversity in Fremantle’s shopping.

It was on expert advise that Fremantle Council decided not to renovate the old Civic Center and go ahead with an all new one that will compliment the Sirona Capital commercial development at Kings Square. To say that replacing the ailing building was totally unnecessary is being ignorant of the facts.

Have the last ten years of Fremantle under the leadership of Mayor Brad Pettitt been a failure, as Keith Manton claims? I don’t believe so, as the Kings Square Redevelopment Project will make a significant difference to the economic revitalisation of our city. It will require a bit more of our patience, and no doubt that is very difficult for many of our struggling traders, so let’s support them!

Could Fremantle Council and the administration improve? Absolutely, and I have no doubt they are aware of that.

Roel Loopers

 

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