For the Empire Tea Room’s Colin and Pam Webby business is driven by a different type of black gold.
Their café’s location, metres from a number of Taranaki’s oil and gas company offices, has seen their coffee sales defy economic fluctuations since they bought the business in 2007. “We see a lot of people from across the industry every day, and a lot of meetings are held here,” Colin says.
“But the business also benefits in other ways, like the events that the industry supports – for instance WOMAD is our busiest weekend. It’s different to the other parts of the country we’ve worked in.”