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An exciting blend of dining experiences has emerged with the revitalisation of central Geelong, earning the area a reputation as one of Victoria’s most exciting new foodie hubs.

Yeti and Dee Kumbukage, owners of Rook: Sri Lankan Fusion “jumped at the opportunity” to open their restaurant in central Geelong.

“We’re in the hub of Geelong,“ Yeti said.

“Geelong is growing and with the Deakin University students here Geelong is being exposed to a younger generation, and at the same time the older generation is getting to experience something new.”

The trees are Yeti’s favourite feature of the new Green Spine outside his restaurant, and he loves to see families sitting amongst the greenery enjoying lunch and coffees. In fact, he starts every day outside on the Green Spine with a coffee and the paper.

Their coffee has become so popular, they have opened a coffee window to make service more convenient for passing pedestrians.

The added benefit is the window takes the Rook experience to the street as people hear the music and smell the aromatic spices.

The recent Easter trade was so busy, Yeti said by Sunday they had nothing left to sell.

He encourages people to continue to support the traders in Malop Street.

“While change is often spoken about negatively, this change is ultimately going to benefit Geelong,” he said.

With Caruggi meaning Little Laneway in Genovese, Geelong’s laneways precinct is the perfect location for Amanda and Massimiliano Magnanis’ northern-Italian restaurant.

Amanda says the precinct has completely changed since their arrival, but that’s one of the benefits of their location, as well as being so close to the arts precinct – including the revitalised GPAC, the gallery and the award-winning library.

“We have a lot of people coming pre-theatre or after as well, when there’s one of the many great exhibitions at the gallery, and talks the library host … so I see the whole area as being quite vibrant in the arts sector.”

Amanda says people are excited to visit the precinct and she shares their enthusiasm.

“I like that it’s small and quite funky and unique.

“It’s also very friendly amongst the traders and people are very excited about visiting it because it’s a new feature for Geelong … it’s something that’s a little bit different and quirky, so people seem to really welcome the transition that (the Laneways Project) has brought,” she said.

Amanda also encourages people to visit many times.

“Go to an exhibition, come and have a coffee, go to a show, have dinner before, have a cocktail afterwards – it’s an all day and all night experience, so you can definitely fill a day or fill a night just in this little area, which has a huge amount of offerings, really quality offerings too,” she added.

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