Garden centre branches into pets and coffee

Allan Dippie (left), managing director of Nichol's Garden Group, with dog Ben outside the construction site of a new cafe, pet store and garden store in Dunedin. At rear are (from left) Nichol's Garden Cafe owner Frances Raymond, cafe manager Lana Topia, Nichol's Dunedin manager Rhys Gibbs, Pet Warehouse Dunedin manager Gareth Keenan and cafe owner Bryan Raymond. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
Allan Dippie (left), managing director of Nichol's Garden Group, with dog Ben outside the construction site of a new cafe, pet store and garden store in Dunedin. At rear are (from left) Nichol's Garden Cafe owner Frances Raymond, cafe manager Lana Topia, Nichol's Dunedin manager Rhys Gibbs, Pet Warehouse Dunedin manager Gareth Keenan and cafe owner Bryan Raymond. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
Flora, fauna and a cuppa will come together in a redeveloped Dunedin business complex.

The site on the corner of Timaru and Teviot Sts is being made into a garden centre, a pet shop and a cafe.

''I'm pretty exited about it,'' Nichol's Garden Group managing director Allan Dippie said.

Mr Dippie said the garden centre and cafe would move into a new extension.

Nichol's Garden Cafe would open in November.

The former garden centre would be converted into a pet shop and would open in February.

The Pet Warehouse would shift from the Bartons Building on the corner of Manse and Stafford Sts and be rebranded Nichol's Pet Warehouse.

In England, garden centres and pet shops often retailed together but in New Zealand it was a rarity.

Cafe owner Bryan Raymond said the licensed cafe would have seating, inside and out, for about 90 people.

Pet Warehouse Dunedin manager Gareth Keenan said the new pet store would have 320sq m of floor space - about twice the size of the shop in the Old Bartons Building.

The new shop would have an aviary and an outdoor area, he said.

''It gives our store an extra dimension.''

shawn.mcavinue@odt.co.nz

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