New Business in Hervey Bay

performance-hobbiesYou may not have noticed but since Christmas a number of new businesses have opened up here in Hervey Bay and that’s a good indicator of the health of the local economy.

One business you may have missed is tucked away in one of the back units at 17 Liuzzi Street (next door to St Vinnies) … you can’t even see it from the street but once you’re in the store you’re not going to want to leave.

There is just so much interesting stuff in this shop that big kids (i.e. adults) are going to have trouble leaving.

Look up and you’ll see some amazing radio controlled planes. Look down and you’ll see plenty of hot radio controlled cars that will bring out the latent petrol head in any adult.

Performance Hobbies is open Monday to Saturday at 17 Liuzzi Street Pialba.

Hidden Businesses in Hervey Bay

Another Hervey Bay businessHervey Bay is an amazing place for tourists and everyone thinks of us as a tourist town but there’s a lot more to Hervey Bay than just tourism and some of the most innovative businesses here in town are not among the most obvious.

These businesses might not have a shopfront or an office. Clients and customers rarely if ever come to their door but those businesses are out there, taking their products to the world thanks to the Internet.

There are packaging designers … importers of everything from coffee machines to paper flowers … retailers and wholesalers who sell everything from computer mice to fishing tackle and cafe equipment … and even people who have designed, manufactured and now retail their own products.

The latest that we here at the Gossip have come across is an unassuming guy who, despite some debilitating injuries that now confine him to a wheelchair, has designed a simple tool that gives other wheelchair users the freedom to go fishing.

Robert Agius from Reel Keen has designed the Reel Keen Rod Holder … a tool that basically turns a wheelchair into a game chair in just a few minutes. A heavy baseplate uses a person’s weight to anchor the rod holder to their wheelchair and the rod holder then holds and supports a fishing rod.

Robert is now marketing the tool on his website and he’ll ship it anywhere in the world. So if you know someone who loves to fish but is restricted because they’re in a wheelchair then get them to have a look at the Reel Keen Rod Holder.


Stocklands Vision for Hervey Bay

If you missed the memo then I’ve got to tell you that work has finally commenced on the extensions to the Stocklands shopping centre here in Hervey Bay.

The back car park has been closed and the end of Central Avenue has been blocked off … there are cranes and trucks and even one of the exits to the car park in the shopping centre across the road from Stocklands has been blocked for at least a week.

No doubt it’s all a nuisance to some but the end result … a much improved shopping centre … will be worth it. But what will it all look like once it’s finished?

Here is Stocklands vision for Hervey Bay:

New Things in Hervey Bay

A new block of office suites opened a couple of weeks ago and already there are tenants moving in and it’s having an impact on one neighbouring office buildings where a considerable discount is now being offered to anyone interested in buying a suite. Work on Liuzzi Chambers commenced back before Christmas and the final touches were added at the end of March.

liuzzi chambers in Hervey Bay

Liuzzi Street may not be the best known street in Hervey Bay but with a varied and growing group of businesses calling the street home it won’t be long before most people find where it is.

A new kind of therapy has come to Hervey Bay in the form of Salt Haven. Visit their website by following that link and you’ll find an interesting therapy for people who suffer from respiratory diseases.

Hervey Bay

A New Cafe in Hervey Bay

Hervey Bay's newest cafe - the Bay Bar and GrillIf you’re looking for somewhere a little different to eat out this weekend … or any week night for that matter … then have a look at Hervey Bay’s newest eatery … the Bay Bar and Grill down on the Esplanade at Scarness.

It’s only been open for three nights and things are a little quiet at the moment so you won’t have to book in advance.

We dined there last night and it’s definitely a place that we’ll be going back to … and taking a few friends. The menu isn’t extensive but there’s something for everyone and the prices for food, wine and spirits is quite reasonable -we can happily recommend the chicken or the Bug.

The service was bright and cheerful too.

The Bay Bar and Grill is open from 5pm till late 7 days a week and this weekend (18-19 February) they’ll also be open for breakfast.


Comings and Goings in Hervey Bay

It’s been something of a tough year for business in Hervey Bay and over the last couple of months we’ve seen quite close down … but at the same time there have been some who are willing to take a chance and build a business in this great town.

So let’s have a look at some that have left Hervey Bay and some that have arrived or are in the process of arriving.

If you’re a foodie then you may already know that Dom’s Cantina on the Esplanade has closed as has his other restaurant … the Wheelhouse … down at the marina. It was definitely sad to see Dom go and we wish him well with his new venture in Melbourne.

While Dom’s departure was fairly public with garage sales at both venues the closing of another restaurant here in Hervey Bay happened much more quietly. We lost one of the best chef’s in town when the owner of Smoked Pepper decided to close and move to Qatar.

While we have lost a few cafes/restaurants we have also gained one or two. Hog’s Breath has opened behind Pizza Hut/KFC and down at the Wetside end of the Esplanade at Scarness … next to the Indian restaurant we now have Cobbers Cove Café.

We also have a new café down at Wetside … Whale Tale opened a month or two ago and we would certainly recommend it for breakfast. Sadly early mornings are about the only time you can get parking anywhere near the café.

Other businesses to have moved on include Metaland … on Boat Harbour Drive … and Scrappers Haven in Liuzzi Street.

Danny the hairdresser on the Esplanade at Scarness has also moved on. He decided that it was time to retire and he’s now living the life of a Gray Nomad while a new owner continues to operate from Danny’s old shop.

And coming to Hervey Bay soon is a new Woolworths/Caltex service station down on Boat Harbour Drive between Pialba and Eli Waters.

The servo is currently in the early stages of construction but it shouldn’t be long before we have another servo in town that offers fuel discounts to people that shop at Woolworths.

Retail Lease Legislation

Everyone knows that right now retail businesses are struggling and you don’t have look far in Hervey Bay to see vacant shops that were once thriving retail outlets.

As conditions have steadily got worse it’s often been the lease conditions that have meant the difference between closing the doors or battling on and that difficult situation that many small retailers find themselves in.

As sales drop it becomes harder and harder to pay the rent and at a time when landlords … especially those in major shopping centres … should be more understanding many have refused to consider reducing rents and have even gone so far as to increase rents when it came time to renegotiate a lease.

Now the state government is reviewing the retail leasing legislation … the Retail Shop Leases Act 1994 … that was initially introduced to address a power imbalance between shopping centre landlords and small retail tenants.

The Attorney General is urging Queensland retail tenants, landlords and other stakeholders to have some input into the review and anyone who does want to have their say should start by downloading the discussion paper that’s available at

Comments will be received until 30 January 2012.

The Cost of Doing Business in Hervey Bay

Yesterday we had an interesting chat with one of the owners of a rather successful small business here in Hervey Bay.

He and his wife came to Hervey Bay and started their business from scratch and after a lot of hard work it has grown to the point where they are looking for new premises so that they can grow even more.

To their horror they have found that the cheapest industrial premises they can rent in Hervey Bay that will suit their business will cost them $1200 a week … and that’s just for the empty building.

So they’ve been looking outside of the region and they’ve found another suitable building on the Gold Coast for $400.00 a week … and that includes most of the fittings they will need for their business.

It seems that they won’t be in Hervey Bay much longer and it makes you wonder just how many other small businesses Hervey Bay is missing out on because of the high rents that landlords and agents seem to think that businesses can afford to pay here in town.

Hervey Bay’s Milliner

The royal wedding is now passed into history but we keep on seeing images of THAT hat … in fact if you saw the royal wedding you would have seen lots of images of some unusual head pieces.

Not many people know but Hervey Bay has it’s very own milliner … Sheneek … and while none of her creations made it to the royal wedding they are beginning to appear all over Australia thanks to their online store.

The price tags that went with some of the hats you would have seen at the royal wedding might make you feel a little faint Sheneek’s prices are much more reasonable.