Sydney, with its mild climate and beachy lifestyle, is home to a very wholesome health and wellness community. It may be easy to get caught up in the buzzing fine-dining scene and boutiques, but for your next trip to the city consider taking a more relaxing route.
Here are three Sydney businesses making waves with their approach to wellness, from wholefoods stores selling nourishing grub to holistic health centres.
Kirsten Shanks, a naturopath “with a deep reverence for the plant kingdom”, founded North Bondi business Orchard St in 2013. Now she has two more branches in Bronte and Paddington. Initially a juice cleanse program, Orchard St has expanded “to become an all-encompassing holistic health brand”, she says.
As well as juices, smoothies and elixirs, Orchard St offers herbal medicines, apothecary and lifestyle products, and plant-based edibles at its three stores in the eastern suburbs. “I try to weave plant medicines through every one of our creations so that they become part of a lifestyle – a daily ritual that honours health and celebrates nature,” she says.
It’s worked: five years ago, fresh nut milks and mushroom lattes were a novelty. These days, with the merits of plant-based diets widely accepted, “almost anyone is willing to try an elixir or raw treat,” she says.
Orchard St is one of many like-minded businesses in Paddington dedicated to health and wellness. Shanks recommends the nearby Flow Athletic for yoga “overlooking the flowering jacaranda trees” and Ovvio on Glenmore Road for naturopathic remedies. “Anthia [Ovvio owner] has the ultimate range of organic herbs and spices,” Shanks says.
For those looking for a more decadent day out, stop by Onda Beauty on Oxford Street for a manicure, pedicure and “the most divine facials”.
Bread and Circus Wholefoods Canteen
Bread and Circus has been a notable brunch spot since opening in 2012. The menu is all about “keeping it simple and letting produce speak for itself,” says cafe manager Maddy Taylor. “The only thing we have on the menu that’s processed is salami,” she says.
Bread and Circus’s breakfast menu features nourishing dishes such as the Breakfast Salad with cos leaves, avocado and cucumber and topped with a boiled biodynamic egg. And Breakfast with Gwyneth, which comes with two fried biodynamic eggs with white quinoa, kale and sautéed spinach. For lunch, choose from an array of salad plates, sandwich boxes, and soups.
Bread and Circus is in a complex on Fountain Street alongside a handful of other businesses including Campos Coffee, Pana Organic Chocolate and Nguyen Brothers Vietnamese Eatery. “They do really good banh mi,” Taylor says. “It’s a good cheap lunch.”
The building sits on the boundary between Alexandria, a once-industrial suburb in the city’s south, and Erskineville, an inner-west village teeming with top spots to eat and drink. The pubs are great, says Taylor. “And Cafe Sofia does really good pasta.”
Selph Health Studios
Selph is more than a holistic health centre, says co-founder Myles Sgammotta – it’s a philosophy. “We believe that a person whose mind and body is in balance becomes empowered both physically and mentally, [and] has a greater opportunity to accomplish more for themselves, and their community.”
A range of practitioners from numerous fields is on hand to help Selph’s clients achieve that balance. Acupuncture, naturopathy, massage and physiotherapy are just some of the services available at Selph, as well as yoga, Pilates and meditation classes. “Having a community of specialised practitioners under one roof means that the body can be treated in conjunction with the mind,” says Sgammotta
Sgammotta, with his brother Evan Sgammotta, a chiropractor, and friend Rupert Morrow, established Selph in 2018 to “educate people about how to create healthier, more sustainable habits – long term.”
Selph occupies a century-old warehouse in Rosebery, a former industrial area located 10 minutes from the city. It’s now a retail and hospitality hub that’s home to Black Star Pastry, Archie Rose Distillery and Gelato Messina.
“We’re part of The Cannery precinct, which has a range of amazing restaurants and stores within metres of us,” says Myles Sgammotta. “We love Welcome Dose for coffee, Banh Xeo for lunch and Koskela for all design, art and homewares.”
This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with City of Sydney.