A fairly new resident to Hawthorn, having just purchased an apartment with his wife over a year ago, Naman Thakar is enjoying the neighbourhood.
Moving from India to Australia in 2011, Naman has lived in Hoppers Crossing, St. Kilda and has now settled here in Hawthorn.
Naman saw Hawthorn as “a great suburb for living and investing.” The choice of schools around the area was another draw card, as well as Hawthorn being “a sweet spot where you’re not too close to the city but not too far.”
Naman has a PhD in augmented/virtual reality but has since moved to a career as a business analyst at Monash University city office. Living just a short walk or tram ride to the Hawthorn train station makes it an easy commute. Naman’s wife Chini, on the other hand, works in childcare at Hawthorn Early Years, located next to the Hawthorn library, making her commute a breezy four-minute cycle.
Naman comes to Glenferrie Hawthorn an average of four to five times a week, regularly visiting Woolworths, Hawthorn Aquatic and Leisure Centre (HALC) and different restaurants along Glenferrie and Burwood Road. To him Glenferrie feels like a small community where it has “everything you need, especially with the awesome gym at HALC.”
Living so close it’s easy for Naman to get to Glenferrie Hawthorn. Depending on the time of day he cycles, drives or rides his Vespa scooter. The scooter makes it easy to park and Naman jokes that it feels like cheating being able to park his Vespa almost anywhere.
Naman remembers when he lived in St. Kilda and a small section of Acland Street removed on-street parking, giving more space for pedestrians and cyclists. He imagines if Glenferrie were like this and how that would change the shopping environment, encouraging more people to walk, cycle or use public transport in the area. It also could help to create a community feeling similar to the Glenferrie Festival earlier this year. “The festival was great, I felt like I was really connecting with the suburb.”
Naman would love to become more involved with the community, he feels that in this day and age we don’t connect as easily and openly with people on the street or in our neighbourhood. He’d like to see something like a meet up event to build community connections where you are able to meet people in your neighbourhood who come from different backgrounds, allowing individuals to gain new perspectives and see the world from outside their regular social circle.
In Naman’s spare time he does archery - practicing in Moorabbin, he enjoys walks around the local Hawthorn area with his dog Jackie Brown, and cycling along the beautiful Yarra River trails.