Halls Carpet Court
Updated: Sep 29, 2020
786 Glenferrie Road
From the family business to his current career, it has always been carpets for Paul Mifsud, business manager of Halls Carpet Court, Hawthorn.
As a kid, Paul lived in Camberwell and attended the original Marcellin College on Canterbury Road. “Growing up in the area was great,” said Paul, who spent his childhood at the local sports fields, playing hockey, and taking the train into town. He still indulges in his love of sports through his school-age sons in local competitive sports, their big German Shepherd, and barracking for the Hawthorn Football Club.
After high school, Paul completed a degree in business management at Deakin University. At 21, Paul went straight into his parent’s business: carpets. He has been in the industry ever since - besides travelling around the world during his early twenties, even living in Germany for a few years.
In 2000, Paul moved to the Northern Beaches of Sydney and helped start a Carpet Right business. It was in Sydney that he met his wife Elissa, also a Melbournian, and they had two children. A change in work circumstances meant the family could move back home to Melbourne in 2011. These days, the Mifsuds live in Burwood and send their sons to the same school Paul attended as a boy.
Before James Makronis became the owner of Halls Carpet Court 30 years ago, he worked for Paul's father. Upon returning to Melbourne, it was only fitting for Paul to join the Hawthorn store, where he has worked now for nine years. Halls Carpet Court itself has occupied Glenferrie Road for over 70 years. At one stage, the store was across the road where Chemist Warehouse is now. The business was originally started by Fred Hall as Halls Carpets before it joined with Carpet Court, a retail conglomerate formed in 1973. Paul sees the store as “almost part of an institution, it’s been here so long. We’ve seen generations of families come through here, which is important."
Paul’s favourite part of the job is “meeting and greeting people and helping them design colour for their home”. He is often working with the same clients for long periods, establishing good local relationships. While he never has any trouble driving to work, parking can be a nightmare in Glenferrie. With no dedicated trader parking and long in-store consultations with customers, staff are not always able to move their cars every two hours. “We’re always getting fines,” said Paul. “We need a trader car sticker with some leniency, even just an extra half hour.”
Paul has seen Glenferrie change over the years but believes it has always been vibrant. “A lot of history has been lost, but I think it’s progressed well," he said. These days, Paul is more appreciative of the Glenferrie community than ever. “Even in hard times, the Glenferrie community come together to support each other. Buying local is really coming to the fore recently”.
He frequents local businesses such as Miss Gourmet and Co and Japanese restaurant Hakata Gensuke. “Glenferrie is my shopping strip,” said Paul, particularly excited to check out the new Coles Local and Leaf Store.
In the context of COVID-19, Paul and his team have had to adapt to a range of regulations such as physical distancing. Despite the circumstances, "people still need renovations, developments finished, and jobs done”. Paul sees the community heading toward a “very cautious future” but believes “we will get out of this tough situation and support our area to build it up to its former glory, what it should be: a bustling little precinct filled with good people.”