A Cup of Tea with Robin San

Headline Date 05-04-2017

A Cup of Tea With… where we sit down and chat with those who make Victoria what it is. People with a passion for Victoria, who live or work here and know the area, its history and its future better than anyone else.

In this month, we talked to Robin San, owner of Coffee Geek and Friends on Cardinal Place.  Read the interview and find out what his favourite spot in Victoria is and his message to the people in Victoria.

How long have you worked in Victoria?

I would say since February 2015, that’s when we started setting up the Café. And I remember when we first saw the sight at that time as you can image it all looked quite differently to now.

What was the biggest change you have experienced in Victoria?

I think when we first came here and to a certain degree, it is still a construction site.  But the times when we launched it was before Nova opened and all the other places and people were asking me why you want to open a Café here, it is a construction side.

But now with all the things around opening, it is now becoming what the intended promise was. So the biggest change is and was probably the whole development.

What is your favourite spot in Victoria?

I would say, Little Ben, just up the road from here. Just because if you are staying next to it you can kind of see all parts of Victoria, the past the present and the future because it is so open and easily accessible for everyone, as it is basically in the middle of the road and it’s obviously very popular for photos as well.

If you could change one thing in Victoria, what would it be?

Maybe more public toilets [he laughs] no but seriously if that is the only thing, we have nothing to worry as Victoria is a pretty great place to be.

What is your favourite story?

There isn’t one specific story, because Victoria is such a historic area and especially working in the Café we meet people that work in The Buckingham Palace, Westminster Cathedral, so the people who come in and out every day they have their own story and when you meet them and get to know them they tell you their story and I guess those are my favourite ones.

What is your message for the people out there in Victoria?

I would say watch the space. What I mean by that is Victoria is great and constantly improving and there is still more to come over the next years and it will become a destination rather than just a train station.

It will become a much more attractive for people to eat, to work, be entertained and generally to spend time here.

What is the biggest issues/ challenge Victoria is facing?

Well I think probably shaking of that grey regulated, business focussed reputation, and getting more commercial, which it already does, but for example a few years ago no one expected to have a great gym, great restaurants, great bars and if you look now it is not only a great place to work but also great place to hang out after work, meet up with friends and go for dinner. So I would say the biggest challenge is to make Victoria a destination.

What is your favourite lunchtime spot?

I really like independent shops and stalls. There are two food markets in Victoria where I go to quite a lot. First one is near Cardinal Place every Thursday, which is a big and great food market with a lot of independent producers. The second one is Stratham ground near Scotland Yard, which is a great lunchtime market as well.

Our next Cup of Tea with….will be with John Moola from St James’ Court a Taj Hotel and be out next month. To stay up to date with everything going on in Victoria follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram or sign up to our newsletter here.

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