What to expect when celebrity chef Neil Perry is the special guest at opening of the new David Jones, food hall and 10 new specialty shops

Celebrity chef visit: Antony Keenan announces Neil Perry, of Rockpool, is the special guest at the opening of the new world class David Jones store and food hall in the redeveloped Gateway Centre. Picture: Robert Peet.
Celebrity chef visit: Antony Keenan announces Neil Perry, of Rockpool, is the special guest at the opening of the new world class David Jones store and food hall in the redeveloped Gateway Centre. Picture: Robert Peet.

Celebrity chef Neil Perry, of Rockpool, is the special guest at the opening of a new world class David Jones and 10 news specialty stores at in the redeveloped Gateway Centre on Thursday.

Wollongong Central's Antony Keenan is excited about what is happening with the opening of the new world class David Jones and new DJ's food hall next week. Video: Greg Ellis.

Wollongong Central's Antony Keenan is excited about what is happening with the opening of the new world class David Jones and new DJ's food hall next week. Video: Greg Ellis.

Wollongong Central’s Antony Keenan said Perry has played an instrumental role in the development of the menu for the new David Jones Food Hall which can accessed on the bottom level of the Gateway Centre as well as from a new entrance off Globe Lane.

Read more: All you need to know about the new David Jones and the 10 new speciality shops 

Mr Keenan said the official ribbon cutting would take place at 8.45am on the top level of the Gateway Centre on Thursday and that will signal the start of a four day grand opening celebration.

Read more: First look at new Wollongong Central hair salon

“We are fortunate to have Neil Perry with us for the ribbon cutting. David Jones has started a $100 million transformation rolling out its new food concept in partnership with Neil Perry. It is great to have somebody of his calibre to really help with the design of the menu choices for David Jones. And we are expecting a big crowd for the opening of Mecca Maxima at 9.30 as well. They are the number specialty beauty retailer in Australia and New Zealand.”

Celebrity chef visit: Neil Perry, of Rockpool, is the special guest at the opening of the new world class David Jones story and David Jones Food Hall in the redeveloped Gateway Centre at Wollongong Central on Thursday, October 5.

Celebrity chef visit: Neil Perry, of Rockpool, is the special guest at the opening of the new world class David Jones story and David Jones Food Hall in the redeveloped Gateway Centre at Wollongong Central on Thursday, October 5.

Mr Keenan said there were many activities planned for the day that he thinks will really kick off Christmas shopping early this year. “There is a fashion and beauty hub and a virtual fashion show”.

Read more: Free mammograms at David Jones Rose Clinic Wollongong 

David Jones has started a $100 million transformation rolling out its new food concept in partnership with Neil Perry

Antony Keenan

Mr Keenan said David Jones and Wollongong Central wanted to bring back some of the old charm the department store had when the original food hall was open in the 70’s and early 80’s. “We have a pianist who is going to be playing here for the launch as well and you are going to see some great concierge helping people to navigate through all the new brands arriving. The Grand Piano will be on the top level under one of our new skylights”. 

Mr Keenan said many of the retailers throughout the whole shopping centre had refreshed their look and will have opening weekend offers. He said it was a really exciting time for the whole city centre as he showed off the new children’s room which is now open. “This is such a big project and I am really proud of everyone involved and what we have been able to deliver”.

Read more:David Jones to open world class store on October 5

David Jones has put on 200 additional staff and many jobs have been created in other retail outlets. Around 200 jobs were created during construction.

Read more: New mural for Globe Lane entry to DJs Food Hall

Read more:Myer closes its Wollongong store: David Jones to relocate