Farro's much-anticipated newest and fifth store opened its doors yesterday in the Orakei Bay Village. The site is a fully-restored warehouse that formerly operated as a gin distillery. Curiously, it was also the first venue that Farro's owners and founders, Janene and James Draper, originally chose for their inaugural store, ten years ago, before opting for Lunn Avenue.
It's not hard to understand why they coveted the Orakei Bay Village so much.
Its strategic location above Hobson Bay, and adjacent to the Orakei train station, is particularly handy for the surrounding suburbs of Mission Bay, Remuera and Newmarket. Additionally, the high-pitched ceilings and natural light contribute to the marketplace atmosphere that Farro is well-known for. According to Janene, the new store's layout has been adjusted to improve the staff-customer interaction.
"Here at Farro, it's all about the customer and their experience in-store, so the new layout has been designed to encourage face-to-face interactions, especially in the deli area," she told us.
The spotlight remains on small, local producers. For many of them, Farro has become a point of reference, with hundreds of new products being put forward every week. "We are here for New Zealand's artisan and small producers, they have evolved and grown with us, and we helped them growing," said Draper.
As Nosh fell from grace, Farro Fresh has consolidated its position as Auckland's leading gourmet grocer. The company doesn't seem to worry too much about Nosh's new ownership. "We have already gone into different directions, and with all these changes of ownership I think they have lost their focus," said Janene.
The Orakei's opening brings the Farro's family to 450 employees, working across five different locations.