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The Deck @ Regatta Point – it’s not me, it’s you…

By ma7trlb - 11 October 2011 19

Dear Deck,

I’ve agonised over writing this letter for some time.  I’ve got such conflicted feelings about our tortured relationship, I just don’t know what to do.

You’re ideally situated, perfect for kids, and offer some not too bad menu offerings.  I just can’t take your attitude. You’re never open when I want you to be, and when you are, its as if you’re somewhere else.

You’re the kind of place I want to show off to my interstate friends, but am afraid to because I don’t know which you will turn up – will it be the “no service at any cost” you, or the “I’m here, just stop bothering me” you, if indeed you turn up at all.

I wanted you to be a part of our wedding, but were put off at our unannounced trial lunch, I also tried to share our son’s first birthday with you (which you let us enjoy in total peace and quiet, without nary an interruption).

Today I have reached a momentous decision.  We turned to you post-Floriade for a nice family lunch.  But of course, it being a public holiday (albeit a somewhat feeble one), in the middle of Canberra’s peak tourist season, you decided it wasn’t worth opening (despite the 3 metre sign saying otherwise placed to entice the masses that flock to Floriade).  It was kind of you not to tidy up after Sunday though, as the orphaned tables and chairs provided a good location for people to picnic.

I’m fed up of being the only one trying in this relationship.  I wish you well, I really do – I hope you manage to find the right balance between good customer service and shockingly bad business sense (or indeed any balance).  I’ve gone over everything, trying to work out what I’ve done wrong and whilst I’m sorry that it didn’t work, it really isn’t me, it’s you…

All the best.

us.x

What’s Your opinion?


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19 Responses to
The Deck @ Regatta Point – it’s not me, it’s you…
TheDancingDjinn 11:09 am 03 Nov 11

captkirk said :

Alas, my experience here too was very negative. Thinking of wedding reception there. Went on Sun, 23rd Oct. 10.30 am. Signs indicated it was open. There were tables reserved, and people came and went. 20 minutes after arriving and sitting down, I beckoned a waitress (they had been coming and going, completely ignoring me) asked for a menu which she gave me. Some people arrived at reserved table nearby…..they got menus. And then a few minutes later, a waitress took their order. I was ready and miffed at being ignored. beckoned a waitress to take my order “o sorry, the kitchen is close”. Huh? I thgought. When I mentioned the table next to me had just, less than a minute previous, had their orders taken, so why is it closed for me and not for them ? reply “sorry, the kitchen is closed, “. What the #$%#$%#$# ????????….steam bellowing out of my ears as I walked out……

I am not usually a violent human but in that perticular instance , i might be forced to punch someone. Or at least give a grand performace about my displeasure at the service.

captkirk 10:33 am 03 Nov 11

Alas, my experience here too was very negative. Thinking of wedding reception there. Went on Sun, 23rd Oct. 10.30 am. Signs indicated it was open. There were tables reserved, and people came and went. 20 minutes after arriving and sitting down, I beckoned a waitress (they had been coming and going, completely ignoring me) asked for a menu which she gave me. Some people arrived at reserved table nearby…..they got menus. And then a few minutes later, a waitress took their order. I was ready and miffed at being ignored. beckoned a waitress to take my order “o sorry, the kitchen is close”. Huh? I thgought. When I mentioned the table next to me had just, less than a minute previous, had their orders taken, so why is it closed for me and not for them ? reply “sorry, the kitchen is closed, “. What the #$%#$%#$# ????????….steam bellowing out of my ears as I walked out……

Sideshowmatt123 9:36 pm 12 Oct 11

That place is a heinous tourist trap. The kind of place where each new owner gives it a makeover that drags it back into the 1980s. A lookout with the hospitality finesse of a truckstop.

Waiting For Godot 5:29 pm 12 Oct 11

Gee, things have obviously changed since my late uncle ran that place in the 1980s and ’90s. Back then it was a class act.

kezzafezza 3:18 pm 12 Oct 11

I also have had different experiences. I went there for the first time and the service was great. I went back, and the service was almost non-existent. I thought I was being ignored as I had a profoundly disabled man with me, but no, I went back another time and discovered that the service can be non-existent at any time

Gungahlin Al 2:56 pm 12 Oct 11

LOL!

And while we’re talking about places to avoid – Rydges Lakeside for Christmas Day. Don’t do it.

Worst. Christmas. Ever.

Kath 2:35 pm 12 Oct 11

borizuka said :

There is a small cafe up at Mt Stromlo, don’t recall its name at the moment.
Not as centrally based, but the small deck does have a nice view of the Brindabellas.

You’re thinking of Scope – quite small but it should be able to do 12 if you book. I wasn’t astounded by the food, but the staff were nice and the coffee wasn’t horrible (maybe a bit on the weak side). Great views, though.

The Deck has some of the worst coffee I’ve had in ages, and both times I’ve been there the staff had a lot of trouble operating the till.

borizuka 1:12 pm 12 Oct 11

There is a small cafe up at Mt Stromlo, don’t recall its name at the moment.
Not as centrally based, but the small deck does have a nice view of the Brindabellas.

And if your a mountain biker you can take your bike up and get your misses to meet you at the bottom when you are done!

Gerry-Built 12:47 pm 12 Oct 11

pptvb said :

WOW ….talk about timing!
I’ll have to look around me thinks!

Maybe try Bookplate at the National Library?

dpm 11:47 am 12 Oct 11

🙂 Gold! I’ve had a similar experience there..
I might have to print this (and the previous RA post in 2008) and mail it to them, in case they don’t read RA. Then again, I assume they wouldn’t care.
Maybe i’ll have to send it to their Melb headquarters..!

nanzan 4:11 pm 11 Oct 11

What a great post…loved it.

You’re right…given the location, and the views…this should be one of Canberra’s showcase eateries.

Instead, it’s run more like a cafeteria. And not a very reliable one at that.

Why on Earth is it being run out of a catering firm in Melbourne. Let some can-do Canberrans run the joint…people who are in tune with what’s going on around them (like Floriade!).

creative_canberran 2:24 pm 11 Oct 11

I can’t say too much on this for fear of venturing into Commercial-in-confidence matters, but suffice to say the problem with this place is not so much the staff (who are variable) as the management.

The owner is a company in Melbourne who are basically a catering business with a very large portfolio of locations across Australia. The problem is at least in Canberra, they seem to be very hands off, sending in a rotating roster of managers and events managers who last I kept track of, never bother to stay longer than 6 mths.

Finding decent staff in Canberra for hospitality is difficult, though not impossible. Several well regarded local restaurants have staff, often very young, who are well trained and attentive. It’s obvious that not only do they retain staff (you can see the hierarchy of older staff being promoted to more senior roles) but the managers also work hard to ensure they have quality staff.

The greater bulk of cafes though seem to take whatever scraps apply, who come in and work for a short while then leave. I won’t name the place but a certain pricey cafe at one of Canberra’s national institutions is guilty of this, with wait staff looking overtly glum and at times rude.
Add to that management that is constantly rotating and you have very little corporate knowledge and very little opportunity to build a solid team. It becomes more like a Maccas franchise.

Ex Warrior 12:40 pm 11 Oct 11

Yep I agree it’s a debacle. I tried to book us in there for Chrissy lunch (work) and ended up having to call somebody in Melbourne where I left a message and nil response. Ended up getting the menus sent and $45 for a BBQ not really value so it’s back to the drawing board.
Did have a couple of beers up there on a Sunday late last year and found it to be pretty good though.

Classified 12:18 pm 11 Oct 11

Interesting. I’ve been there a few times over the past couple of years, and the service is indeed highly variable, even across an afternoon. It’s a superb location just crying out for an owner that knows how to run an upmarket cafe.

pptvb 12:08 pm 11 Oct 11

WOW ….talk about timing!
I was just on their website. I’m looking for a lunch venue for 12 or so people, somewhere central, and thought this would be perfect.
I’ll have to look around me thinks!

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