Author: Nic Crowther

First float at Pure Zen

Life is busy. From dawn to dusk there are hundreds of people, messages and notifications competing for our attention. Sometimes it’s hard to pull yourself away and focus on ‘the now’… and sometimes we just don’t want to. For me, every day starts with the news coming on the alarm clock. Every evening finishes with me falling asleep to a podcast. Between those moments is all the other stuff and noise that makes up everyday life. The opportunity to spend an hour in one of Pure Zen’s flotation tanks was as exciting as it was daunting. How would I...

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Agostinis: Where on-trend meets nonna’s kitchen

Many of us have great memories of gathering in the family kitchen. A mix of food and fun times is intrinsic to that cosy setting… and Agostinis at East Hotel aims to replicate this warmth. Named after the mother of owners Dion and Dan Bisa, the restaurant builds on the heritage of Australia’s immigrant Italian community and brings many classic dishes into a contemporary setting designed by Kelly Ross’ sharp, yet meaningful eye for detail. Dion has fond memories of watching her grandmother, (or nonna) cook, and much of that experience forms part of this exciting new restaurant. At...

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Cool, calm and caffeinated: Sasa Sestic’s global vision

Sasa Sestic is known for two things: ONA Coffee and winning the World Barista Championship.  However, there’s a lot more to Canberra’s mild-mannered (though intensely-focussed) king of caffeine. It’s only some time after we managed to tear Sasa away from his rapidly expanding business that the real long-term vision for ONA Coffee emerges. What was revealed during half an hour of conversation says a lot about his dedication to perfection, and the holistic approach Sestic takes to the pleasure of a simple cup of coffee. To get an understanding of where Sasa Sestic sees himself, it’s important to go...

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Canberra student creates his own like of wristwatches

So, you want to start your own business? In about five minutes you’ll realise there is no excuse for diving into your own venture. Are you ready? Riley Tanton became an entrepreneur in Grade 6 – selling drinks out of his locker at school. Today he’s Managing Founder of an online watch business…. and Riley is 17 years old. ‘I’ve always had a passion for business,’ says Riley. ‘Millennial Watches started after I looked for six months to buy a quality watch for myself. I wanted something that was a decent size but light, minimalist in design, and affordable....

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In the family: Dion Bisa from East Hotel

Canberra can be a transient city. However, there are plenty of people who have arrived in the region to put down roots that have achieved great success. One such story is that of the Bisas. The owner/operators of East Hotel in Kingston have come a long way since leaving northern Italy in the ’60s to work, like so many Europeans, on the Snowy Mountains Hydro project. Dion and her older brother Dan, represent the third generation of the Bisa family, and the tradition of building remains with Dan running a successful property development company from Canberra. The Shaker sat...

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