Tucked away inside Scion's new building in Rotorua, you'll find a beautiful open plan space home to Eastwood Cafe. Keep reading to hear our chat with the team about how Eastwood came to be.
A : Eastwood Café is located inside Scion’s new three-storey building which has been the main inspiration for the design along with the natural backdrop of the Redwoods Forest. The building is named ‘Te Whare Nui o Tuteata’ which acknowledges Tuteata, the tupuna or ancestor of Ngāti Hurungaterangi, Ngāti Taeotu and Ngāti Te Kahu. The hapū have also been integrated into the design of the building, with the triple peaks over the entry way representing the three hapū.
Eastwood Café is the younger sibling of Terrace Kitchen with quirks of his own. He’s approachable, yet surprising, open and raw. Liked by everyone, envied by his friends and inspired by his natural surroundings. The setting we have created is authentic, modern, timeless, and above all, holds its own. A space that feels open to all, loved by family, pets and captured by passers by.
Q : What is the story behind the name of your business?
A : After a lot of deliberation we came up with the name Eastwood. This is named after the location of the café which is located on the East side of Rotorua township intertwined with the overwhelming interior design material of natural timbers and of course surrounded by the tranquil Whakarewarewa forest which naturally leads to the name ‘Eastwood’.
Q : How long have you been in business?
A : We originally started out as ‘The Blue Baths’ back in 1999 which was a venue and events business. We then expanded from there and created the much loved Terrace Kitchen & Bar, followed by Terrace Airside, Terrace Catering and finally Eastwood Café came alive in December 2020. We have several strings to our bow so rebranded at the beginning of the year to ‘Plenty Group’ as a collective brand to incorporate all of our off shoots. We organise public events, have several cafes throughout Rotorua, provide wedding and conference catering and also coordinate event venues throughout the Bay of Plenty.
Q : Have you found any special uses for our tea?
A : Yes! Not only is the tea delicious served as a hot cuppa we have made a popular Bloom iced tea that is an Eastwood favourite in the summer months!
Q : One inspiring or interesting account that you love to follow on Instagram?
A : Shepherd Restaurant in Wellington is an account we love to follow and dine at when we’re down there showcasing a fresh approach. We also love to follow Millers Bread Kitchen which is based across the ditch. They take the bakery game to a new level with artisan breads and delicious daily baked goods.
Q : Do you have any words of encouragement for other businesses dealing with the impacts of lockdown?
A : I think the hospitality industry has been hit extra hard by the lockdowns but I think the support of local communities is key. I think in these times, it creates an opportunity to deepen connections with your loyal and local customer base. Thinking outside the box and streamlining operations will help to save costs and take the time to get creative & proactive such as revising the menu offering or giving the café a lick of paint. The world will return to ‘normal’ soon enough so just stay positive during this time and you’ll get through the other side before you know it!
Thanks Eastwood Cafe! We love your beautiful space and connection with the community ☆