AN air of confidence has returned to Portland’s central business district traders following a late Christmas spending spree which has spilled into the New Year.
Several businesses contacted by the Portland Observer earlier this week reported that their Christmas figures were up on previous years, and that an influx of tourists since Boxing Day had kept the momentum going.
The Bentinck St alfresco strip has been a winner from the tourist trade.
Two cafes, Port of Call and Kopi on the Beach, reported business was above last year’s figures, with staff at Port of Call flat out with a full house of customers at 3pm Monday when the Observer visited.
Whitegoods and electrical goods store Bi-Rite has also experienced a buoyant period after reporting a slow start to December.
Store operator Liz Lindsey said trading was good.
“There had been a slow start in December, and then the last 10 days before Christmas really picked up, our Boxing Day sale was good and since then it has continued,” she said.
“There has been a real influx of tourists in the town and the weather has been great.
“Whereas last Christmas people were buying a lot of TVs, it is the smaller items that are selling well this year, iPads, iPhones.”
Toyworld reported the period had been very good.
Store co-owner Allan Geraldene said local people were buying locally.
Read more in Friday’s Portland Observer.