Calls to stop bagging Tauranga city centre

Moh Sawroop, left and Billy Emery. Supplied photo.

Tauranga restauranteur Billy Emeny is proof of the growing confidence in Tauranga’s city centre with his latest new joint venture.

Billy and business partner Moh Sawroop have opened Norris & Bell on The Strand, and Billy says they’re proud to be adding to the unique offerings in the CBD.

“I’ve been a restauranteur in the city centre for several years. I love it. I believe in it and I get sick of people bagging it.

“We have some of the best dining options in the region and tonight we’ve just added to the mix with our latest venture.”

With a beautifully crafted interior fitout, Norris & Bell is appealing to those looking for a stunning spot to catch up with friends for a drink or for a top-level dining experience.

It will be the first wood fired eatery in the city centre that focusses on meat and seafood.

“We wanted to do something unique. Often people think pizza’s when they hear a restaurant is offering wood fired flavour,” says Moh.

“We wanted to do something unique so instead we have created a new dining experience featuring selected steak cuts, oysters, prawns … a beautiful combination of meats, seafoods and vegetarian offerings.”

Both Billy and Moh are no newcomers to the restaurant business.

Billy owns CBK Craft Bar & Kitchen Tauranga and Moh owns CBK and Leonardo’s, both on Eat Street in Rotorua.

Both are strong believers in the Tauranga CBD and Billy says it’s time for the public to take a fresh look at the city centre.

“There are a heap of business owners here, like me, who are immensely proud of what we do.

“There are exclusive shopping options and great dining experiences. Yep, there’s a lot of transformation going on and we have a lot of vacancies.

“Covid hasn’t exactly helped either.

“But we just want to continue to create unique experiences for people who come to the city centre so that they have a great time.”

Billy has a simple final message that he wants to share with the community.

“You can find fault with anything if you look hard enough. But hey we’re hard-working business owners who believe in this city centre,” says Billy.

“We’ve got stuff in the city centre that you can’t get anywhere else and in the hospitality sector I get to work alongside some of the most incredible restaurants.”

Moh agrees.

“When you stop and think about it we have better and more dining options in the CBD than anywhere else in the region,” says Moh

“We’re pretty proud of that and excited for the future…so come and join us, you might just have some fun.”


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Disabled parking

Posted on 23-03-2021 06:27 | By

Next time I am down town in the evening I will check for the disabled card on the dash of the cars using those parks and photograph if necessary

Good on ya

Posted on 22-03-2021 20:01 | By

Great effort lads. Look forward to giving it a try. Shame to see the usual complaints in the comments, even when hard working people are doing there best to move the city forward.

Been better in Greerton.

Posted on 22-03-2021 19:52 | By Cynical Me

Call back in 6 months. Obviously haven’t been here long. didn’t do their due diligence very well. The CBD is dead.

Private Development

Posted on 22-03-2021 15:40 | By gincat

Private development kneecapped the CBD with their shopping malls etc in the suburbs. Private money need to drag people back to the CBD. Council future proofing Cameron road will not help. Is anyone listening?


Posted on 22-03-2021 14:29 | By Told you

Agree with SML, I have a mobility card and find the same, there is few parks for us, maybe it needs policing at night and a fine imposed on those that restrict compromised people.


Posted on 22-03-2021 14:23 | By Told you

What kills a lot of restaurants is the prices, I don’t mind people making a profit but sometimes it is just too costly to eat out, a good hard look at what they charge and adjust their prices accordingly.

Would love to come

Posted on 22-03-2021 13:43 | By SML

and sample 9especially seafood), but it’s hopeless trying to get a mobility park in the CBD at night - those who DON’T need a mobility park seem to think people in wheelchairs shouldn’t go out at night and enjoy a meal, and the selfish able-bodied take up the very few mobility parks after 6 pm. So those of us who love to dine out have to go to other areas, where we CAN park close to the venue.

Good On You Guys

Posted on 22-03-2021 13:29 | By Mommatum

I love your attitude and couldn’t agree more. While retailers have exited in droves there are alternative uses to which all those empty spaces can be put. Pop ups and “workshop” space spring to mind. After all the Bay is home to a thriving Arts and Creative community. Perhaps also it’s time to revive Tauranga’s night life. No I’m not a “party animal”, but it’s ridiculous that a city this size shuts down eateries/bars aside at 5pm. When I first moved to my inner city flat I could hear the sounds of a happy nightlife wafting up of an evening. Now it’s like a morgue, and how shameful having to tell a recent visitor wanting a Thursday “night in the town” that in a city this size that wasn’t possible. So let’s change that by getting behind alternatives instead of jusr “bagging.”

Great improvement

Posted on 22-03-2021 13:02 | By Angels

This is a great improvement and a great way to get tourist to the Tge side of town. The lights at night are nicely done as well. Something that everyone can use.

We can move on

Posted on 22-03-2021 12:33 | By Johnney

We have got rid of the biggest negative, our councillors. They have systematically ruined CBD. There can only be a brighter future moving forward.


Posted on 22-03-2021 12:27 | By dumbkof2

sounds nice but will it be affordable for the average family