A CAFE with a difference – Bliss Cafe, Gift Shop and Well-being – opened this week in Windsor.
Owners Debbie and Garry Jamieson said the name summed up their philosophy.
“We wanted more than just a place to go to have a coffee… we wanted people to have a whole experience, so we have taken a holistic approach.
“It’s not your ordinary cafe,” Garry said.
The bicycle stand at the front of the cafe was a clue to their point of difference, as was the interior.
As part of their vision, the couple have transformed a former brick and roughcast home in Windsor St into intimate spaces for people to gather and enjoy companionship or just spend time out.
“It was a huge construction for the past seven to eight months… but we have created a feel-good place for people to come in and feel relaxed… and have a giggle,” they said.
Having worked in the aged-care industry also affected their choices when designing the layout, with spacious parking at the rear of the property and an extensive ramp to ensure people with mobility issues could easily access the cafe, Garry said.
Feeling like you are simply visiting a friend or neighbour, hours have gone into creating a homely atmosphere with the wooden floors, vintage tables and seating and vibrant decor.
“We have upcycled just about everything,” Garry said.
As part of their well-being vision, they offered gluten-free, raw and keto foods with the cabinet food changed daily, Debbie said.
“Even our mousetraps use keto bread, as well as the cream with the coffee.
“We will evolve… what people want, we will do.”
The cafe was not just for the ladies though, Debbie said.
“We also cater for the men with ‘man-food’… such as cheese rolls, chilli, pork and fennel sausage rolls, minted lamb, savouries, sandwiches…”
Adding… “We love tradies.”
Coffee-lovers could choose to have their drinks to go, or to stay, meet up with others and simply chill out.
“We have coffee from the UK, as well as special coffees from Hawaii.”
And the choice of refreshments wasn’t limited.
“We also stock the T2 products… tea bags, herbals, loose tea and merchandise.”
Debbie said other than its franchise stores, their venue was “only the second cafe in New Zealand allowed to sell the T2 products”.
“That’s because of our location,” she said. “The manager had previously lived in Invercargill and knew where we were locating our cafe.”
With Debbie’s background in holistic healing, including Reiki and reflexology, she also offered consultations on-site, with an off-site centre for further treatments.
Extending the holistic and well-being theme, a beautiful, relaxing gift room had also been set aside for people to browse at their leisure which stocked aromatic candles, soaps, balms, tea products, china, jewellery and stationery.