18 September 2020
Manager of Napier City Business Inc, Pip Thompson is feeling “cautiously optimistic” about the city’s post-COVID recovery.
“Many of Napier’s CBD businesses have seen exceptional sales since lockdown was lifted. Some say best ever. Locals have definitely been supportive, enjoying some retail therapy and dining out at our wonderful eateries,” says Pip.
While business may be booming for some, six inner city businesses have closed, although Pip points out some not necessarily due to COVID. “Some smaller independent retailers have decided to close for reasons outside of COVID but several national retail stores, banks and insurance companies closed as a direct effect of COVID. Some businesses of course have changed the way they operate, especially with working from home becoming the ‘new normal’.”
Despite this, Pip insists retail confidence is increasing and the city has welcomed at least six new businesses to its CBD precinct. “While these are uncertain times, we are seeing businesses evolve and open since lockdown and there are more to come.
Many land owners are considering inner city living as options for their second and third-floor buildings, which is exciting for Napier as inner city living builds vibrancy.
“Wallace Developments is soon to open its building on Tennyson St which will be the home of Caci Clinic, Blooms florist and residential apartments.”
The very important economic spinoff of the summer season for Napier will be no doubt be challenged with the lack of international visitors. But Pip remains upbeat.
“The CBD is resilient. With our independent stores, Marine Parade on our doorstep and Art Deco flavour, Napier is set to be the destination for locals and domestic travellers to enjoy our summer season.”
Sarah Thornton, Bay Buzz