Is Beaufort Street ‘not as good as it used to be’?

Following the recent closure of some long-standing restaurants in Highgate and Mount Lawley, it does seem to beg the question why? There are so many factors unfortunately that can have an impact on a business, from high rents, to a slowing economy that saps consumer confidence as well as a suburb just not being ‘in favour’. Sad-looking empty shops in Subiaco, Mount Lawley and Highgate are testament to some of those factors and Inglewood hasn’t been immune either but is Inglewood showing signs of bucking this trend?

We know of at least 10 new independent businesses that have opened their doors in late 2018 or are about to. Are Inglewood’s lower rents, heritage buildings and an increasingly buzzing shopping strip becoming more and more appealing to smaller businesses’ looking for the next cool suburb? Well…., maybe (and yes we are obviously biased)!

It’s pretty obvious to anyone who lives locally that the area is evolving, changing and becoming a ‘destination’. As the local community group it’s something that Inglewood On Beaufort have been working so hard on helping to achieve. Nestled between the long-standing Mount Lawley and the still-cool-but-a-little-edgy Maylands, Inglewood has long been overlooked due to the fast-paced commuters on our main road into the city. But one by one, fabulous business owners are taking advantage of the up-and-coming area. 

New business owners Kasama and Neil are opening up their commercial kitchen – Kasama’s Thai Kitchen – to supply their long standing food truck and serve locals from their small front of house. They are regulars at the Monday Night Markets and the location was perfect for them, having access to loyal Market customers who travel to the event as well as locals who have already expressed a warm welcome on social media to the couple. 

Brothers Matt and Tom Shaw have opened their second burger joint Hoodburger to queues and a full house most weekends. Matt told us one of the main reasons they decided upon Inglewood was the competitive rents, and the fact they are in VERY excellent company with the shops in their direct vicinity. Businesses ARE looking at Inglewood as a viable option to open up shop!

Another side to the story of our businesses on Beaufort Street are the people who have seen it all and bought the t-shirt. The stalwarts of the strip, we’re talking Vince at Mondo’s Butchers, John of John’s Gentlemen’s Hairdressing, Sean at Bonanza Paint, Murray of the Inglewood Hotel and Larry & John at New Look Dry Cleaners. These long standing businesses form the backbone of our shopping strip and bring in many loyal customers. Without a mixture of these iconic businesses as well as the ‘new blood’ it makes an incredible cross section of shopping needs.

We also have a huge number of services along the way too – let’s not forget the Tyrepower boys, the accountants, real estate and health & beauty businesses. This selection of businesses is what makes Inglewood as a shopping destination more viable and more interesting. Yes, we have empty areas at the northern end of the strip. Progress in the current financial climate is slower than anyone would hope for. But, with such quality establishments as Cecchi’s, excellent restaurant and takeaway The Jolly Good Indian, newly opened Chef & Co, and soon to open (May 2019) award winning Kustom Klaws as well as the Paleo orientated butcher Paddock + Farm all giving the Bedford end of the strip a reason to thrive, it’s surely not going to be long before people start to fill in the gaps and redevelopments begins. 

And then at the other end of the strip, we have the family run, juggernaut of Three Coins and Trio, Louis spinning some of the finest coffee’s from Nexus and then, above Louis is the jawdropping foodie heaven that is 2nd Ave IGA……..and nestled in between Aldi looks like they are breaking ground soon in alignment with their late 2019 opening date. Bringing with it 2 retail spaces and a café space on site. We’re finding it hard to come up with any reasons why Beaufort Street is in trouble!

Progress in the ‘hood is a good and timely thing. The area deserves a shopping strip that is vibrant and eclectic. We have an excellent range of facilities that we can use at our disposal. Sure, it’s not as pretty as Mount Hawthorn’s Scarborough Beach Road, or have the potential ‘stroll-ability’ that you may find in Leederville’s Oxford Street, but it is accessible (thanks State Route 53!) and we do have vibrant hubs the whole way along Beaufort Street.

It’s good for the area, it’s good for the local economy and it’s good for the soul. Shopping local means that businesses get to earn a living, form relationships with all of us and we get the BEST service we can from our Strip. It’s a win-win for us all!

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