Opening doors to less abled

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Inspired by the cosmopolitan atmosphere and leisurely pace of restaurants in Thessaloniki, a new Mediterranean tapas bar called Upps of Ivanhoe launched on October 29.Owner, architect and former Northcote deputy mayor, Mr Peter Tsitas saw a growing demand in the suburb for a sophisticated and trendy place to catch up with friends, wanting to bring something new to the area that would be accessible to all residents. “I believe in providing access to everyone, and to those with limited mobility,” Mr Tsitas told Neos Kosmos. “Why shouldn’t disabled people or people with limited mobility be able to go everywhere? That’s my philosophy.” To make this possible, Mr Tsitas remodelled his late father’s fish and chip shop and fitted it with a chair lift, giving access to the upper area of the restaurant to those less mobile. Located in the heart of Ivanhoe shopping centre, the upper area of the restaurant boasts the centre’s first rooftop garden, with views of the city skyline, the Dandenongs, and on a clear day even the You Yangs. The venue was bursting at the seams with over 150 people attending the opening, launched by local member and shadow minister for families and payments and disability reform, MP Jenny Macklin. The art deco building retains references to its past, but also brings an updated industrial style, complete with steampunk-style copper lighting and a bespoke mechanical dumbwaiter to the first floor.“Ivanhoe is a suburb synonymous with art deco architecture, and Upps embraces its own 1920s history as well as that of Upper Heidelberg Road and the art deco history of the suburb,” Mr Tsitas said. In its short couple of days of operation, locals have already embraced the new addition to the centre and look forward to using the rooftop bar in the warmer months. “What we emphasised is the contribution this will make to the local community. It’s one of its kind here and hopefully it will be something that filters through.”last_img read more