Newcastle's hidden gem bringing you a traditional experience
As soon as you walk inside, you feel like you’re at Grandma's house.See our handpicked guides to Newcastle
BY ANNABEL ROBINSON
Ever so cute and quaint, tucked away behind the magnolia trees in Lambton Park, lies a very warm and welcoming Tea Room.
What was once a War Widows Refugee, turned Memorial Baby Health Clinic, Tea Room Manager Nevine Adlam saw some potential in the rundown, vacant space and wanted to make it her own. The restoring process took around 6 months to get it up to standards.
"When we first came to have a look at the space it was completely dilapidated. It was bad, but I could really see some potential if we knocked some walls down. I didn’t want to completely gut it and make it look all modern- we wanted to leave some character."
Nevine wanted to restore the historic building whilst keeping to its original roots. She wanted to captivate visitors as soon as they arrived and really create that ‘blast from the past’ ambiance. The traditional Art Deco styled door truly adds to the early 90’s atmosphere she has successfully carried out throughout the entirety of the café.
"I wanted to refurbish the building into a café where people would come in and say oh this is beautiful and think that this is how it has always looked."
The Tea Room has been opened for almost two years now and is Nevine’s third business on Elder Street. After relocating to Newcastle from Sydney, Nevine opened up an Memory Lane Antiques & Decor 13 years ago.
"I would always look at this cottage from my store and think what a lovely setting."
There is plenty of seating both inside and out. If the sun is shining, having a cuppa and a cake is most enjoyable out in the garden. But if you're chasing
that real 1950’s vibe, sitting inside the quaint little tea rooms really take you back in time with hanging chandeliers and traditional paintings decorating
It’s not all classic sweet treats and cake though. Nevine successfully juggles two hats by both managing and cooking. Being Head Chef allows her to provide the community with a more home-style cooked meals.
"I like to keep it traditional and continental. There is always a gluten free option and a chicken option. We sell quiches and salads, a really fresh approach to simple meals."
From light grab and go salad meals in the summer, to home cooked soups in the winter, Nevine is always selling something that will hit the spot.
"We want to cater for everybody’s pocket. You can get a bite to eat and a coffee for $10."
Opening the Tea Rooms not only allowed her to thrive in a setting filled with her beloved antiques, yet also gave her the opportunity to help disadvantaged youths. Coming from a nursing background has embedded such a caring nature into Nevine and she has always wanted to help others.
"It can get difficult sometimes, but I am committed to training kids that haven’t had any opportunities. I want to give them a start so they have experience and can move on."
"I really just want to build this place up and make it a fantastic place for the community. I want the kids to come here with their grandparents and just love the flash back to the past feel and enjoy the 50/60’s music."