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Ali-Hawk Local Star

I like to use local businesses for my goods and services as much as I can. I also like to applaud and acknowledge good service whenever I receive it - because it's not all that common!!

Joined 28 May 2012 Balwyn, VIC

  • La Primavera Boutique

    Clothing Retailers Adelaide, SA
    What a marvellous little gem this boutique is. The proprietor, Cathy, has been a seamstress for over three decades and she knows her craft. I visited her store on Saturday morning and found some really nice pieces. Her range includes many international designers and they are totally wearable. Being a skilled seamstress, Cathy was able to adjust the garments for me, so they fitted me perfectly. She then promised to make the adjustments and return them to me at my Adelaide hotel before I left the following morning. She lived up to her word and delivered the finished garments later that same day to my hotel. She then followed up with me by phone a couple of days later. Outstanding customer service. Thanks Cathy, I'll be back!
  • Unique Opal & Diamond Manufacturer

    Jewellery & Watch Retailers Adelaide, SA
    If you are looking for opal jewellery, I recommend this store. The jewellers are on site and available for advice and information. The staff are helpful and friendly. I met jeweller Steven Miles and he provided me with professional advice and a great deal. The range of products is good - they have more than opals and they also design items especially for customers. Here, I really felt as though they care about their work, their products and their customers ... and that they won't rip me off. I'll definitely be back again. Thank you.
  • Black Rice

    Cafes Melbourne , VIC
    Having recently moved our office to this part of town, I had lunch here for the first time. What a great find. There is a good range of fresh and delicious food here - pre-made sandwiches and wraps, lovely colourful salads and while-you-wait salads and sandwiches to order. I enjoyed my Turkey Breast, Smashed Avocado and Salad on wholemeal sandwich - made fresh for me on the spot. Everything except two small snack bars is made on the premises by their chefs. It's great and I'll be back. Thank you.
  • Kirk’s Wine Bar

    Restaurants Melbourne, VIC
    Although this is called a Wine Bar, it's a café too - it's open from before 8am on weekdays and is ideal for a pre-work coffee or an early business meeting. It's a bit tricky to know where the entrance is ... there is one right on the corner of the block and there's also one a little along Hardware Lane. Once inside, the place has small but workable tables, most pleasantly situated. Be careful not to select the table right at the corner entrance though as this will be buffeted by people using the corner entrance and may become irritating. The service is great and coffee is good - it's nice.
  • Le Petit Gateau

    Cafes Melbourne, VIC
    This place is ideal for a catch up either for business or with friends. The window display offers a range of delicious French treats and entices people inside. The service is excellent and food is very good. It's a small place but it's big on quality. The coffee is excellent. Thank you.
  • Rundle Mall Visitor Information Centre

    Adelaide, SA
    This is a small mall, but there's a lot going on. It's the first pedestrian mall in Australia to be created from a street that previously had traffic running along it. It only covers one city block, between King William and Pulteney Streets, but the shop frontages are deceptive. At almost every step there's a shopping arcade or larger centre to explore. At the King William Street end, the architecture is lovely - look up and you'll see Behive Corner, complete with a bee on the gargoyle of the building. On the other side is a lovely bluestone building - it's quite beautiful. The free tram runs past here too, with a stop right at the corner. Within the pedestrian precinct you'll find eateries and cafes, further west past Pulteney Street are designer stores and several restaurants. Take your time and have a good look.
  • Queen Street Mall

    Shopping Centres Brisbane, QLD
    This is a pedestrian mall, much like any other. It's a street converted into a walkway and nicely done. You will find several eateries and bars here (some open 24 hours) and some good quality stores. It's within easy walk of the central railway station and lots of buses.
  • Bar Bellacino

    Cafes Sydney, NSW
    I enjoyed a delicious Winter Vegetable sandwich here. It had cottage cheese, capsicum, eggplant, chilli and leaves - made on soy and quinoa grainy bread, Yum - it was spicy and delicious. This place is an Espresso Bar really, with a few things to eat. You can sit at the counter or at one of the tables spread around the lobby entrance. There's also a serving window outside, which no doubt gets a lot of passing trade. There's free wifi too. It's good. Thank you.
  • Luna Park Sydney

    Amusement Parks Milsons Point, NSW
    I attended a two day work conference here and it's very good. Yes, it's within Luna Park, so it's different ... not your usual business conference venue, but it's very well organised, with excellent facilities, good spaces and great service. The conference venue part of the park is not far from the main entrance. Its catering and support services (including security) are totally professional and reliable, with food of nice variety and good quality. It is easy to get to by public transport and has a very nice outlook.
  • The Governor's Table

    Restaurants Sydney, NSW
    This is a very nice restaurant, located at the front of Sydney Museum. The service is attentive and very respectful and the ambience is pleasant. My companion and I enjoyed Garlic Sourdough, with entrees of Chicken and Duck terrine (served with spicy rhubarb, peach chutney, leaves and Sourdough toast) and Grilled Asparagus with Mozarella and Tomato . Both dishes were beautifully presented - a feast for the eyes. The flavours were very enjoyable and well balanced. Our mains were a fillet of Barramundi (fish special) and Chicken with Heritage carrots - again, very nicely presented and delicious flavours. We didn't partake in desserts, but the menu looked good. Coffee was nice, but not hot enough for my preference. Overall we had a delightful dinner - it didn't take all night and was very enjoyable. Thank you.
  • The Meat & Wine Co Circular Quay

    Restaurants Sydney, NSW
    he first thing I notice when I'm seated here is - it's dark, really dark. That's fine for those who want an intimate dinner, but not so great if a diner wants to read or work while they're here. Anyway ... not to worry. I enjoyed very quick service here - I had promised to vacate my table within 75 minutes, so I couldn't waste any time. There's no problem with that. I ordered some Bruschetta, Chickpea Salad and a side garden salad. All was delivered within about 5 minutes. The Bruschetta is a wonderful, soft, baguette with a topping of salsa, avocado and cheese. It's pretty good - there's a huge carving knife along with it, to slice it up. The Chickpea Salad was a bit disappointing - literally a bowl of chickpeas with green peas, a little feta, some avocado, onion and sunflower seeds - it's what the menu said it would be but I was somehow left deflated when I saw it. The garden salad was good - colourful and fresh. If you're staying at the Intercontinental, which is co-located here, you can charge your meal to your room, that's good. Oh - one more thing - it's very noisy, so don't expect to have a comfortable private conversation with your friends. You should perhaps choose somewhere else for that.
  • Novotel Hotel Brisbane

    Cafes Brisbane, QLD
    This is a good, reliable hotel which I would not hesitate to stay at again. It is located right on the edge of the CBD and within walking distance of Queen Street Mall, Central Railway Station and city offices. It's ideal for anyone coming here on business, as I did. The rooms are clean, spacious and well appointed. Bathroom is good, shower has good water pressure, plenty of hot water and good towels. The bed is comfortable and there is wi fi throughout the hotel. Breakfast at the restaurant, The Pantry, has a nice range on the buffet and dinner selection is also good, with attentive service. There are several restaurants nearby also. The gym is well equipped, with the only tricky thing being the lighting ... if you go when it's dark outside, the lights are on a sensor timer, so you can be left working out on the treadmill when the lights suddenly go out - it happened to me several times. The gym's view is outside and onto the pool which is quite pleasant. Overall the hotel is good and I would not hesitate to come again. Thank you.
  • Australian Opals And Diamond Collection

    General Manufacturers Adelaide, SA
    I have purchased items from this store when I've visited Adelaide. Previously I bought an opal ring and most recently it was pearls set in rose gold. On both occasions I've found the staff to be attentive, friendly, responsive and very personable. They have gone out of their way to find something to meet my needs and it makes me feel as if I am getting careful attention. The store is not vast, but the atmosphere is very pleasant. The quality of their goods is high and (in my view) better than others in the vicinity. I will always come back here first to get something. Thanks particularly to Chris who was very helpful.
  • Bar Moda

    Cafes Brisbane, QLD
    I got a coffee from the outdoor serving window on my way past today. The service is really good and the coffee was good too. It looks like a nice place to sit and watch the world go by too, shame I had to keep walking, but I enjoyed the coffee a lot. They also tell you how many shots they put in each sized cup, which is really helpful. Well done. Thanks.
  • Jo-Jo's Restaurants

    Restaurants Brisbane, QLD
    This is the kind of place you would choose to eat at if you need a lot of reasonable food, pretty quickly. It has a broad range of offerings on the menu and it's pretty straightforward - be shown to a table, order your drinks from the waiter and order your food from the kitchen. I had Turkish Bread with dips, then a Prawn and Mango salad, with a side salad. Overall it was fine. The bread was warm and good, salads fresh with good range of colourful ingredients and the service was reliable. I sat on the balcony which was nice on a balmy evening and when the thunderstorm came through I was able to sit, dry and just watch the rainy world outside. It was fine. I wouldn't be concerned if I came here again, I know I'd find something to appeal to me and most people probably will.
  • Sparrow & Finch

    Takeaways Brisbane, QLD
    I really enjoyed my lunch here. I had a sandwich prepared on-the-spot for me by a very flexible and responsive server. She made a delicious turkey with salad on rye and the entire experience was delightful. The cafe has a broad range of hot and cold offerings - sandwiches, salads, bar snacks, meals - and it's deceptively spacious. There's seating indoors and out - mostly outdoors to take advantage of Brisbane's warm climate. I don't think there's would be many sheltered seating options if it was raining though. Prices are excellent and the value is high, well done.
  • COPPA Spuntino

    Restaurants Brisbane, QLD
    This is a lovely place to have lunch. The outdoor seating is great - business meetings work well here. My companion and I enjoyed Burrata, Tomato & Basil which they very kindly served with toasted ciabatta for us. Then we enjoyed Pickled Octopus salad with garlic (lots of), onion and leaves. It was lovely. Service is prompt and good, informal but respectful. Coffee is good. I like the ambience. I would come back here again. Thank you.
  • The Restaurant and Novotel Brisbane

    Restaurants Brisbane, QLD
    I think this restaurant as changed its name to "The Pantry" now, but it's the restaurant in the Novotel Hotel. For dinner, the service is very nice and the serving staff are respectful, but informal. Food is good quality, there's a nice range of options and it's presented well. I enjoyed a "Breaking Bread" dish of Turkish Bread with Baba Ganoush (delicious), then some steamed vegetables and a lovely main size salad with chick peas and a range of fresh vegetables. Everything was very nice. Breakfast here is a little less customer-focussed. Staff are indifferent towards customers, but still get the job done. The range of food on the buffet is nice and quality is good. Coffee is acceptable. It's fine for a hotel restaurant. One excellent thing about it - it opens at 6am for breakfast, which is fabulous as most others aren't open until 6.30am, well done on that.
  • Otto's Bakery

    Bakeries Hahndorf, SA
    You will get a good sandwich here - made to order with fresh ingredients, but not German style. There are lots of German inspired cakes though. My sandwich was very reasonably priced too. Thank you
  • Morphettville Racecourse

    Racing Morphettville, SA
    I visited this racecourse for the first time yesterday. It's so easy to get to - take the tram (there's only one in Adelaide) towards Glenelg, and get off at Morphettville stop - the tram only stops there on race days. That will cost around $5. A taxi here from the city will take about 20 mins and cost around $45. The stop is right at the racecourse, so you can head straight in. If you can't find your way, don't worry -all service staff are marvellous and supremely helpful so they'll show you. The bar and eatery is on the ground floor right near the mounting yard and there's also another dining area two levels up. The TAB wagering staff are very helpful too - handy for someone like me from interstate who's not familiar with local practices. Grandstands are good, views and commentary are helpful and seating is comfortable. It's great and I will definitely return.