The name Croydon came from the area where Philip Levi had been born in England in the county of Surrey.
As soon as you arrive in Queen/Elizabeth Street, there is a strong feeling of community with its eclectic mix of shops, cafes and other businesses, thrown together with a splash of colour in some of the street art portrayed on the walls of the thriving establishments.
A stroll along the precinct brought me to 7 shops and businesses which stood out as worth a look and mention.
What an interesting name, which combines refreshment with restored furniture. A great place to soak up the atmosphere of Queen Street with its outdoor seating, especially on a nice day.
Fly Furniture Espresso Bar has been around for about 6 years and offers a wide range of all types of furniture, antiques and bric-a-brac including stone top tables with cast iron legs, vintage industrial machine lamps, stone jars, steel chairs and even concrete flamingos! There always seems to be something different and unusual each time you visit.
Whilst you are browsing you can enjoy some good coffee or tea in themed cups, saucers, plates and pots with their "fly" logo. Along with the tea and coffee comes some great pastry treats including citrus tarts, as well as other types of tarts, whether they be chocolate or caramel or refreshing passionfruit.
Fly Furniture Espresso Bar is open from Thursdays to Sundays between the hours of 11am and 4 pm.
Whilst you might be in the mood for homewares, just down the road is One Small Room, a business specialising in upcycled vintage, designer maker furniture and homewares. The owners have interior designer as well as architecture backgrounds and are well qualified to advise on styling and quality.
They have been around for some 13 years now and run both a retail outlet and design studio in Croydon, the retail shop in the main Elizabeth Street area and the studio in nearby William Street.
The business' industry design range as well as internationally sourced pieces are on display in the studio, whereas the shop features some great pieces of furniture including lounge suites, chairs, tables, sideboards, and some interesting artworks including sculptures. Many of the products available are locally sourced and made, and one that stands out is the wine bottle shaped lamp, which is certainly unique in style.
As part of SALA during August, the retail outlet is showcasing an exhibition by local artist Cassie Thring and all items displayed are for sale. The retail shop is open from Tuesdays to Sundays 10 am - 4 pm.
You may be feeling a little hungry after all that furniture and homeware browsing so a little further along Elizabeth Street is the Queen Street Cafe which offers some mouthwatering dishes on its varied menu, whether it be a substantial breakfast or lunch or simply a coffee and snack.
One of the tempting breakfast options would be the harris smoked salmon with persian feta and scrambled eggs which will set you back around $18. Queen Street Cafe also offers a great range of sandwiches as well as mains and the price range will be somewhere between $13 and $21.
Must be time for some more refuelling with a stop at the renowned Red Door Bakery. The owners here pride themselves with using fresh local ingredients including SA Angus Coorong beef in their pies, the flour and the seasonal local fruit on top of their pastries.
Everything is made by hand, which incorporates methods without shortcuts. It is also good to hear about what happens to excess food left over from the day's baking. Red Door Bakery donate it to Oz Harvest to feed the needy - a great initiative on their part.
Apart from a good range of pies and pastries, Red Door also make meat and vegetarian rolls and sandwiches as well as home-made jams and chutneys. If you don't feel like a normal sized pie or pasty, they also make a petite range, which also includes sausage rolls and some pastries/cakes. That way you can still indulge but maybe not feel as guilty with a smaller portion.
Red Door is open 7 days a week between 8 am and 4 pm.
As the name suggests, this French establishment specialises in both savoury and sweet crepes, whether it be for breakfast or lunch or a morning or afternoon snack. Glancing through the menu conjures up all sorts of visions of empowerment of the taste buds including one that is coined L'Orange Flambee, comprising of Orange Marmalade, Belgium Chocolate Sauce and Grand Marnier topped off with flames - wow!
La Lorientaise Creperie also has a great range of ice cream dishes, most of which involve either Belgian Chocolate, Swiss Chocolate or Strawberry Coulis.
Being licenced allows a good range of alcoholic beverages both local and some imported from France. The cheapest items on the menu are the croissants which sell for around $5 right up to Scallops, Creamy Leeks and Lemon which will cost you $17.
It is great to have a place of French indulgence in the middle of suburban Adelaide.
La Lorentaise Creperie is open from Wednesdays to Sundays between 8 am and 4.30 pm.
It is quite interesting to see the number of homeware and furniture stockists in such a short section of Elizabeth Street, however if you haven't found what you are looking for at the other places mentioned, you may find it here. Hype and Seek have been established in Croydon since 2001 and specialise in vintage as well as mid-century, industrial and space age furniture.
The establishment also stocks fashion items and a great unique option available, should you be not sure if a particular item is to your taste, is to hire it and then defer your decision to later buy.
The hiring service has been popular for not just private customers but also other businesses such as stylists, photographers, advertising agencies and media related companies to use in promotional type work.
The shop is open from 11 am to 4 pm Wednesday to Friday as well as Sundays, and Saturdays it is open from 10 am until 4 pm.
If you don't feel like driving to Croydon, there are good public transport options including the train which has a station right near Queen Street, which leads onto Elizabeth Street.
Within such a small area of Croydon you can't help but be impressed with some really good shops and businesses on show, whether it be for shopping or for enhancing the old taste buds. It is on my list to re-visit in the near future.