My Auckland: Onehunga

Quijing Wong and Dean Easterbrook at Tin Tacks Park, Onehunga. Photo / Paul Estcourt
Quijing Wong and Dean Easterbrook at Tin Tacks Park, Onehunga. Photo / Paul Estcourt

Qiujing Wong and Dean Easterbrook moved to Onehunga in search of an interesting place to live. Four years later, they tell Rebecca Kamm why it's everything they wanted and more.

Come September, we'll have lived in Onehunga for four years. We have a little cottage that's part of a whole row of other little cottages just like ours; they're all about 100 years old and heritage listed. Onehunga's slogan is "something old, something new" and there's a lot of that going on, especially when it comes to the buildings.

My husband Dean and I run a production company. People can't believe that we work together as well as live together, but we've never found it a problem.

We chose to live in Onehunga because we wanted to be somewhere culturally diverse. Plus, it's more affordable than the inner city. But it also has an up-and-coming feel about it, which we love.

The lifestyle here is great, too. We have One Tree Hill, which is like a local park, and then there's the water at the bottom.

I take my niece and nephew to swim at Jellicoe Park, which has a little gym and a cute heritage house, as well.

I go to the Hard to Find bookstore quite a lot, especially when I'm gift-buying - it's so unique. There are biographies, books on artists, cool old spirituality texts; really unusual stuff you just couldn't find in a mainstream bookshop.

We often eat out at the Bramble Bar on Onehunga Mall. It's unassuming from the outside but they make great cocktails and mulled wine. That's the thing about Onehunga; there are lots of hidden surprises you just wouldn't know about unless you spent some time in the area.

Like the Curry Leaf, a great Indian restaurant we eat at every week. Or The Library cafe, where we take our friends with kids. It used to be a big old library building but then it was restored and turned into a cafe with award-winning organic food.

But my favourite of all is a cute little cafe called Brick by Brick, which is new. It's around the corner from Tin Tacks Park and right across from Yoga in Daily Life - where I go for group classes. It has the best coffee.

If you're after something sweet, Luscious cafe is the place to go. It has mini cheesecakes, louise cakes and heaps of little coffee treats to choose from.

We work in Britomart, and we either catch the train into the city in the morning or drive. It takes about 25 minutes to drive in and just 26 minutes on the train straight from Onehunga to Britomart - which is pretty cool.

Onehunga is such a mixed bag; that's what makes it interesting. We'll be here for the long term.

Qiujing and Dean's picks
* Curry Leaf Indian Restaurant, 237 Onehunga Mall. "Try the saag paneer, chicken tikka masala or lamb korma."

* Jellicoe Park, 131 Trafalgar St. A great place for kids.

* Library Cafe, 55 Princes St. Take little ones here for a treat.

* Brick by Brick Cafe, 359 Onehunga Mall. Qiujing's favourite.

* Luscious Cafe, 165 Onehunga Mall. Satisfy your sweet tooth here.

- NZ Herald

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