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Where to Shop Like a Local In and Around Brighton-Le-Sands

After a morning at the beach, discover decadent desserts, stylish French homewares and your friendly neighbourhood florist.
By Caitlin Morahan
July 17, 2020
By Caitlin Morahan
July 17, 2020


in partnership with

After a morning at the beach, discover decadent desserts, stylish French homewares and your friendly neighbourhood florist.

Sydney is known for its beaches, and while Bondi, Coogee and Manly get all the praise (and, subsequently, the tourists), there is another beachfront spot that has flown mostly under the radar. Just 13 kilometres from the CBD, you'll find Brighton-Le-Sands.

The original vision for this strip of sand was to transform it into a seaside resort, similar to Brighton in the UK. That didn't quite happen — but in the past few years, the promenade that runs behind the beach has blossomed into a haven for food lovers, with restaurants, cafes, function centres and more. Step a little further away from the beach and you'll also come across local boutiques and family-run establishments that are sure to greet you as one of their own as you walk through the door.

We've teamed up with American Express to highlight some of the local businesses that make this seaside town thrum with life. Better yet, you can shop small at all of these spots with your American Express Card.

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    Brighton-Le-Sands has long been influenced by its vast Mediterranean population, and stunning beachside restaurant Neptunes is no exception. After its sleek new revamp in 2014, the restaurant boasts floor-to-ceiling windows that make the most of its waterfront position and it’s in this excellent spot that you can enjoy a signature seafood platter for two. The menu is the perfect blend of classic Mediterranean dishes and Aussie staples. Angus beef burgers and chicken schnitzels share space with hot and cold mezze plates, pastas and woodfired pizzas. The drinks list features a selection of Australian wines including a number of bright, crisp whites that’ll go down very nicely after a long day of shopping.

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    B & M Florist

    Setting B & M apart from other florists is the immeasurable passion the family-run business has for its craft. Thirty years ago, the shop was a simple corner store selling groceries and the occasional bouquet of flowers. As the supermarket giants began taking over, the groceries on the shelves gradually began to disappear, making way for more and more flowers — until one day, there were no more groceries. From there came the vast range of plants, gifts and homewares, alongside flower-arranging classes and decorations for weddings and events. The team here is very talented — it has a slew of awards to prove it — so no matter the occasion or budget, you’ll find a bloom that’s right for you.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt

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    Bay Vista

    Bay Vista has undergone several makeovers since its establishment as a diner back in 1991, but its conversion to a dessert restaurant has by far been the most successful. No matter what your sugary vice is, Bay Vista is sure to deliver; crepes, pancakes, waffles, brownies, cakes, pies, scrolls, ice cream and fondues are all on offer until the early hours of the morning. If you aren’t in the mood for a sweet treat, it also makes a mean grilled cheese sandwich.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt

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    Kitepower Australia

    Change out of your tracksuit pants, turn off Netflix and visit the team at Kitepower to get introduced to an adrenaline-filled, life-changing hobby. Australia’s largest specialty retailer of everything to do with kites and kiteboarding, Kitepower is run by a father-son team who have been immersed in the sport for nearly 30 years. The shop is right across the road from the beach so you can give your new toy a test drive straight away. And if you’re still yearning for that adrenaline rush, Kitepower offers kitesurfing lessons for the more daring.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt

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    The Party People

    Not only does this establishment have the best party decorations for miles, it also has the best ideas to make your soiree a memorable one. When we say it has everything you could possibly require for a themed shindig, we’re very serious. Dressing up as Frankenstein’s monster? Find green body paint and bolts for your neck here. Or, if fairies are more your speed, opt for a set of fairy wings and glass slippers. And if you’re throwing a Halloween party, The Party People will make sure you have everything from your fake cobwebs to your real jack-o-lanterns. It also hires out more practical decorations like tables and cake stands, but in our opinion, you just can’t go past the life-size, groaning grave digger. You know, for birthdays and stuff.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt

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    Manchester Warehouse

    This Kogarah warehouse is home to much more than linen — it’s more than equipped to give your home a complete makeover. Specialising in soft furnishings, Manchester Warehouse offers a range of textiles influenced by cultures all over the world, so you can liven up your home with a bit of Moroccan red or Irish green. The Warehouse is family-owned and operated, and the friendly staff are more than equipped to help you find what you’re looking for — sometimes before you even know what that is.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt

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    French Cargo

    For elegant, timeless pieces inspired by Paris, the ultimate city of style, make sure you stop by French Cargo for some, well, French cargo. Owner Kathie Argyros opened the doors to the boutique in 2014, stocking a chic range of homewares, including 100 percent French linen, cushions, candles, soaps, rugs and furniture. Argyros travels to Europe regularly to source fresh stock so you can expect to find a number of vintage and antique items from flea markets, too. We all know someone (probably your mum) who is just as obsessed with France as Argyros, making this a must-visit spot for your gift-buying needs — you could pick up a cotton apron for your amateur chef pal or wall art for your mates that just bought a house.

    Image: Trent van der Jagt.

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Shop small to support the local stores that make Sydney so great. To learn about American Express and the Shop Small initiative, which ends on August 31, visit here. Then, head this way to find more must-visit spots around the southern suburbs.

Top image: Trent van der Jagt.

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