From left, assistant manager Christina Morrison, Desmond and Susan Vize, and chef Janeen Swart.
A breath of fresh sea air has blown through Bayside Bistro, with a change in management giving a new lease of life to the beachfront café, bar and restaurant, at the bottom of Kokihi Lane, in Snells Beach.
Following its closure last year, Desmond and Susan Vize, of Chocolate Brown and The Oaks Café in Warkworth, took over the seaside site in December and have since set about turning it into a bright and welcoming venue for locals and visitors alike.
With wide wooden decks and floor-to-ceiling glass windows, the bistro can seat up to 110 people and offers diners unrivalled beach and ocean views out to Kawau Island and beyond. Walls are lined with local art and photographs of Snells before the shoreline was built out.
The picture postcard position on the Snells Beach coastal path makes it one of the few waterside dining and drinking venues in the region, which is why Susan was so keen to take it on when the chance came up.
“We signed the contract on Monday and opened the following Friday,” she said. “We’re listening to locals and what they want, and they have been very welcoming. We want this to be a place for the whole community.
“On a lovely day when the tide is in and you’re sitting out on the deck with a cold drink, it’s just beautiful here.”
Susan is planning to run evening talks and events when Bayside is not open for dinner, and plans to support community groups and organisations whenever she can.
Bayside Bistro is open from 8am to 4pm, seven days a week and four nights for dinner, from Wednesday to Saturday. There are three menus catering to all tastes and appetites – brunch, lunch & kids; bar snacks; and dinner – plus coffee, ice creams, a fully licensed bar and a wide range of cabinet food.