Larissa Fuller
Sydney, Australia

A Day in the Life: Exploring New South Wales Palm Beach Like a local

Unlocking the secrets of Palm Beach: A European jet-setters guide to bringing colour and culture home.

Palm Beach, or 'Palmy' according to the locals, is a Northern Beaches suburb that offers much more than just stunning scenery. It's the perfect place to experience exclusivity, style, calm, and a slow pace of life. The narrow peninsular is bordered on three sides by water, giving it a truly exclusive feel to the views that sweep the coast from celebrity owned estates and designer homes. Just over 1 hour from Sydney City by car, the area delivers one of the easiest city escapes to breath in the true essence of Australian seaside living.

Nearby Avalon Beach is home to Avalon Village, a lively hub of entertainment and dining that is much loved by the locals. This accessible neighbourhood houses some of the greatest selection of cafes, alfresco dining, and boutique shopping in the area, all of which are perfectly juxtaposed alongside the exclusive and stylish extension of Palm Beach. Whilst you will easily be kept busy exploring the main thoroughfares of Avalon Parade and Old Barrenjoey Road, what really comes into its own come Summer is the world-class Avalon surf beach; renowned for its rich, orange-coloured sand.

As a regular visitor to the area, it's impossible to overlook the presence of a unique store and vibrant team that have curated one of the most thrilling additions to the neighbourhood. Blending fashion, music, art, and culture, this omni-channel concept store creates an immersive experience that goes beyond the ordinary shopping excursion. The Peggy Concept Store is far from your run-of-the-mill retail space.

Named after the original curator, Peggy Guggenheim, this store has an unmistakable European jet-set vibe with a laidback, Australian twist.

But Peggy is more than just a store - it's a hub where creativity flourishes and community is fostered. As a conscious company, Peggy prioritises sustainability and reducing its social and environmental impact. This store is breathing new life into Northern Beaches neighbourhoods, and inspiring locals to reimagine the retail experience.

We caught up with the effervescent creator, business owner and mother Evelyn Broughton of Peggy Concept Store to get a little more insight into this beachside mecca so many are lucky enough to call home.

@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
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@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
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When did Peggy Concept Store officially open its doors to the Avalon community?

We opened our doors beginning of December 2022.

You have created quite the local instalment in Avalon Beach. It is an absolute stand-out.

Can you tell us what motivated you to open your Euro inspired boutique within a quaint (and very beautiful) coastal community?

I have always been inspired by the concept stores in Europe like Corso Como 10 in Milan, Colette in Paris or the beach side boutiques in Ibiza and dreamt about opening my own in Sydney one day. I loved how curated and personal the shopping experience was in these boutiques, they really made you feel something, like you were investing in a counterculture rather than just shopping.  It was far more interesting than shopping in a store with just one brand or one product.

Prior to covid it felt like a store had to be in Sydney's city or Paddington neighbourhoods to get traction but after covid things changed and people spent more time focusing on their community and the areas in which they lived. As a result, the sense of loyalty grew even stronger especially in local areas like Avalon/ Palm Beach.  

We know you have had an incredible career globally in buying luxury fashion, but why Peggy? What triggered the concept, the pivot from a global scale to something more niche and localised?    

I was travelling a lot for my job which was amazing and I loved dearly but it was proving difficult to juggle with a young family. I needed to shift gears to be around my family more and I could see the local community was thriving so when I saw the space was available for lease, it felt like a sign that it was time to take the leap and make my vision a reality.

@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
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"The relationship you form with your customer and community is everything. This is what inspired me to open my own store and cultivate that sense of counter-culture and community"

Since opening, what has surprised you most about the area?

How friendly and loyal the locals are. When I opened the store so many people came in to congratulate me and my first few customers were local business owners who wanted me to feel welcome. It was the most heart-warming feeling knowing people wanted you to succeed.

How would you describe Avalon and Palm Beach to one of your many overseas friends planning a visit?

A creative beach side community with a long history in the arts and strong community culture. How many beach side towns can claim David Bowie performed there live!?

@ Pittwater, NSW
@ Palm Beach, NSW
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We thought it would be a bit of fun to get your top tips in Palm Beach…  straight from a local source. Here goes…

Best dining experience
Bar Elvina in Avalon and Bert’s in Newport.

Best weekend activity amongst the locals
A morning swim in the ocean followed by a  coffee while you wander the Avalon shops. Finish the day with a drink and some snacks in the sun at Randy’s Wine Bar, it has such a great vibe and selection of wines.

Best pub for a group event
The Newport.

Best takeaway coffee
I have 3 espresso’s a day. I cannot function without one from Classic coffee on the south headland overlooking Avalon Beach, then I take my son to Sammy’s on Careel bay wharf overlooking Pittwater and while at work I always go to Peggy’s neighbour Bookacino.

Best morning walk
Bangalley bush walk.

Best local snack enjoyed beachside
Fish taco’s from Oceana Traders.

Best view
From Classic coffee on the South Avalon Beach headland.

Best breakfast
A croissant from La Banette. They are better than you will find in Paris... big call but it’s true.

Best locals secret… we won’t tell anyone… 😉
Paradise Beach at King Tide… it is truly magic.

When friends and family come to visit, is there any local tips on sourcing reliable accommodation that you would give our readers? Any favourites?

The plethora of luxury homes or smaller boutique hotels that are all beautifully styled and have breath-taking ocean views. When you stay in a home you really get to understand what it feels like to live in this beautiful area.

@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
@ Peggy Concept Store, Newport NSW
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