Glebe is full of eclectic businesses, some that have been around for decades and others that are new to the strip. In the lead up to the 30th Annual Glebe Street Fair, we take a look at some of the best, oldest and most interesting businesses on Glebe Point Road.
A true Inner West success story, Glee Books remains one of Sydney’s most popular independent bookshop after over 30 years in business. They have expanded to open five bookstores and have also been named Australian Bookseller of the Year four times. This place deserves some serious respect in an increasingly digital age.
Alfie & Hetty
This is one of Glebe’s more mysterious businesses, with plenty of history behind it and even whispers of a couple of resident ghosts. The story goes that a pair of unlikely friends named Alfie and Hetty (although that probably wasn’t their real names) lived in these terraces in the 1920s. Hetty was an upstanding member of the community known for cooking for her working class neighbours, and was especially famous for her Sunday roasts. Alfie on the other hand was a gangster who ran a Speakeasy out of his house.
Today the owners of the business honour these characters by running Hetty’s courtyard restaurant downstairs – where they still do a Sunday roast – and Alfie’s bar upstairs.
This is one of Glebe’s most innovative businesses – a multipurpose organisation with a double level retail space, shared industrial offices and an upcycling workshop. While The Works is a newcomer to the strip, the building it’s housed in has a rich history; having been built in 1870, it has functioned as everything from a bakery to stables to a service station. It’s current embodiment is the the brainchild of hotel industry legend David Milton.
Inner City Cycles
This long-standing business has been at home in Glebe for over 25 years now and their dedication to bringing the latest and greatest in bike technology to the Inner West has never waned. Owners, Ainsley and Robyn are avid riders, Robyn even competed in the 2013 World Age Group Sprint Distance Triathlon held in London (she was the fifth Aussie over the line).
Galluzzo and Sons Fruit Shop.
This fruit and vegie shop is the oldest retail shop in Glebe and stocks such a broad range of fresh produce that there is stuff you may not even recognise on the shelf! Originally opened as Galluzzo’s Fruit Market in 1934 by Salvatore Galluzzo, today the shop is run by Sal’s grandsons Damian and Joe, who took over the store from their late father Frank Galluzzo. The third generation owners have continued to maintain Galluzzo’s strong reputation since inheriting it, winning the 2011 Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Shopping Guide’s award for best greengrocer in Sydney.
Glass Artist Gallery
This gallery has been established for over 30 years and came to Glebe in 1987. The owner, Maureen Cahill, loves the eclectic environment and says, “The area has kept its ‘village’ feel and to walk up Glebe Point Road with beautiful parks at either end yet be so close to the city makes it a real treasure. I love walking my beautiful pharaoh hound, Zena (who is very well known in the district) in these surroundings…”
Look out for Glass Flameworking Demonstrations by Mark Eliott at the front of the Gallery during Glebe Street Fair.