Punnet cafe seeks longer hours


Punnet Cafe owners Gary and Pam McMahon have applied for resource consent to extend the opening hours of their Newell Rd eatery.

Submissions on the application, available here on the Waikato District Council website, close on Friday, August 6.

Currently, the popular cafe is open seven days a week from 8am to 4pm. In the application, the extended hours sought are Wednesday to Saturday, 8am to 12am, with no change for Sunday to Tuesday. However, confusion has been caused by conflicting statements between different documents related to the application. The executive summary indicates that extended hours would be sought for Sunday to Tuesday from 8am to 10pm.

McMahon told Tamahere Forum errors had been made in the documents. The hours the cafe sought to open are Sunday, 8am to 7pm; Monday to Tuesday, 8am to 4pm (as now); and Wednesday to Saturday, 8am to 12am.

According to the application, the McMahon’s “do not want to operate as a restaurant opening every night, rather we want flexibility to hold functions when we decide to, and we are happy to limit that to 120 nights a year.”

They hope to have consent to open from “early October, in time for the pre-Christmas demand.”

According to the application the McMahons believe the existing opening hours are limiting their earning potential “considerably, and also our viability.”

“We are a destination location and we need to have something different to attract our clientele.”

They also believe the proposed closure of Newell Rd at Airport Rd would “have a huge impact on our business and its viability.”

“Thirdly, we are getting huge inquiry from our local clients who would like a venue to hold various night functions. Please note, we have made a huge investment in buildings and business, and we have a first rate venue which people would like to utilise more.”

The application and a submission form are here on the Waikato District Council website. Submission forms are also available at Punnet Cafe, 337 Newell Rd.

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