I am a chief writer for Weekend Notes, a copywriter, published poet and Editor of poetry magazine ‘Fruit Salad’ (on hold). I also write children's fiction and inspirational pieces.
Published November 9th 2015
Tropical haven takes you to Caribbean
The Bungalow & Basket haven at 400 Ruthven St.
The odd pretty beach frock to cover your 'kinis' will lure you beyond the doors of The Bungalow & Basket to find there are many surprises awaiting you. If you are missing the beach boutiques this is the place for you.
A taste of the tropics in the mountains is just what Toowoomba needed, as this recently opened store and café will testify. Baskets, homewares, arty jewellery, floral crocheted baby wraps, coffee body scrubs, candles and soaps are among a wide variety of goods, Bondi-beach style. Sturdy and beautiful paper shopping bags designed in Paris may appeal to the recycler. Gorgeous and delicious-smelling lime, basil and mandarin soap isn't quite as eye-popping as 'Smelly Balls'. These colourful woolly balls on a string are to be soaked in your choice of exotic aromatic oil, such as Caribbean Kiss. A word of caution - these balls strip paint and are highly flammable.
Building relationships with the customers is at the heart of this laid-back haven. The lightly-tanned beauties serving, make you feel like you're at the coast with their breezy but professional friendliness.
For a cup of tea al fresco, try 'Mother Earth' with jasmine, pear and vanilla or perhaps 'Field of Dreams' with camomile, lavender and spearmint. Tutti Fruity Iced Tea and other tantalising cold drinks are available.
Select a coffee from the menu or invent your own combo. Would you like half water, half milk with a dash of honey? Coffees are mellow and not too sweet on the syrups, which include salted caramel and hazelnut. Your latte mug has no handle or heat protection so bring your hankie.
The cabinet is limited but includes one or two gluten free items which may include large succulent apricot balls. Love a slice of raspberry, banana and macadamia loaf; heavenly when toasted. The carrot cake is a double layer with heaps of sultanas and carrot.
Al fresco coffee served with loving care in coastal style.
The authentic coastal culture of The Bungalow & Basket could have you leaving the store feeling surprised there isn't a surf shop next door. Next time you find yourself missing the seashore, drop in for a chat, coffee or browse.