Timmy Smith says support for retailers comes in many forms. Photo Erin Johnson

Discounted ferry fares and collaboration between businesses will be key to a successful recovery for both local retail and wider Waiheke, say Oneroa business owners. 

One of the newest shops on the Oneroa block, and occupying retail space that was for a long time concealed behind a curtain of real estate posters, is Greatest Friend.

The doors have been closed during lockdown, but owner Angela Means has been busy in driving business through her online shops where she’s been selling more than ever – although still nowhere near enough to meet overheads. 

“Losing March and April is hard,” she says. 

From Thursday, her store will be open from 9.30am to 4.30pm every day.

“I feel really positive, I just don’t want to breathe out yet.”

To help with overheads, she is working hard on getting another business in to share the space and she would like to see more collaboration between Waiheke businesses to market Waiheke, its makers and creators, and products. 

“I think collaboration is key right now, it’s the way forward, not competitiveness.”

Angela is also hoping that commuters who are now working from home and perhaps going to the city less often, but still earning, can treat themselves to a wander up through Oneroa village. 

Nearby is Island Design, occupying what has been a bustling corner opposite outdoor cafe Double Shot. Owner Kat Hooton fills her shop with products from more than 30 suppliers, all of which are small Kiwi-owned businesses. • Erin Johnson

Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!

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