Pub to fill grocer gap at Nelson Bay

BASIC SUPPLIES: Seabreeze Hotel licensee Simon Randazzo. Picture: Ellie-Marie Watts
BASIC SUPPLIES: Seabreeze Hotel licensee Simon Randazzo. Picture: Ellie-Marie Watts

THE Seabreeze Hotel has opened a small convenience store in its bottleshop in a bid to counter some of the impact Coles Nelson Bay's closure will have on the central business district.

Simon Randazzo, Seabreeze Hotel's licensee, said the convenience store, located within the bottleshop adjoined with the hotel, would be fully operational by the end of November.

"We knew about Coles closing down and had the idea to open a convenience store," Mr Randazzo said.

"It's all about trying to service the public as much as we can and better ourselves as well."

Coles, at Stockton and Donald streets, closes November 9, leaving Nelson Bay's CBD without a grocery and goods store.

The supermarket is to be transformed into a Woolworths.

However, it's feared that could take up to two years with shoppers having to travel to Salamander Bay Shopping Centre.

Mr Randazzo said Seabreeze Hotel's convenience store would aid residents, visitors and business owners within the CBD looking for a quick-stop shop.

"We're just trying to service those people who need something quickly, or are here on holiday and forgot something," he said.

The layout of the hotel's bottleshop has been moved around to accommodate the small convenience store, which would stock everyday items including bread, milk, deodorant, toothbrushes and small goods such as cold meats and cheeses.

Mr Randazzo said prices of the store's items would be as close as possible to supermarket prices.

Michelle Dand, manager of the Nelson Bay IGA, reminded residents they were still trading.

While not in the CBD but in Austral Street, Ms Dand said the trip was shorter than going to Salamander Bay.

"For the older people who do not want to catch the bus to Salamander Bay, why not think about coming to us? We're not too far from the CBD and we have everything," Ms Dand said.


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