Hello I’m Grainne McGarvey and welcome to my column which spots local hidden gems from the world of beauty, health, fashion, tourism and hospitality. I will have my nose to the ground (quite literally) to keep you up to date about the new or interesting products and services from our neck of the woods. If you know one – get in touch on twitter @pulseprni or email firstname.lastname@example.org
I’VE A NEW HOME @ HOMEBIRD
Next to PR and advertising agencies, I’d say that Holywood has more coffee shops in a square mile radius than anywhere else on the planet! So when I heard about Homebird, the latest new kid on the block (or in this case on the high street) I was slightly dubious about how it could survive.
I needn’t have worried, as it going from strength to strength and will soon be celebrating its first birthday in May.
As I’ve never had a tea or coffee (yes, I know I’m weird) the other beverages have to be up to scratch or I’m not happy. Well the hot chocolate was perfectly fine. If I was being picky it was quite basic and could have benefited from a little biscuit or frothy design on the top – of say a bird if we keep with the theme.
All is not lost as the other wee touches are what make Homebird special. Let’s start with the name. Rachel Elliott, who owns the business studied in Scotland and when asked why she missed home, she said it was because she’s a homebird – I love this, and in my opinion it’s good to have a name you can identify with. Sourcing all its produce locally and preparing fresh on site everyday is a double tick in my book. You can get everything from soup to sandwiches to traybakes and the nicest looking French toast fries I’ve ever seen, or in fact the ONLY French toast fries I’ve ever seen!
My pet hate is when coffee shops close at 3 or 4pm, as if the rest of us stop working at this time. Good news is that Homebird opens 7.30am-5pm during the working week (opening a bit later at the weekend). Although it doesn’t have a licence to serve alcohol, it will be running events throughout the year which will be BYO. Rachel would love to hear from (local) entertainers or organisers that would be interested in hosting an event, providing they fit in with the Homebird vibe.
If I had to sum up Homebird I would say that overall it is very welcoming. It provides customers with lots of space, something I don’t usually find in coffee shops. It is also both wheelchair and pram friendly with everything on the ground floor.
Rachel established Homebird as she was making sandwiches and cakes for family members from the age of seven and knew she wanted to turn it into a business. Her passion definitely comes across and you can usually find her working flat out with the rest of her 12 employees. I will definitely be making it my Holywood home for meetings, and from one homebird to another, I wish Rachel and her team every success.
Check out all of our G Spots! articles by Grainne McGarvey here.