For Roasters & Retailers

Cafe serves up Christmas spirit

A big-hearted Perth cafe owner is opening his doors to anyone who is spending Christmas alone this year.

Al Fresco’s coffee shop, on Scott Street, will welcome anyone and everyone who would otherwise be spending Christmas Day alone in to celebrate the holiday.

Owner Al Sans was inspired to open for the occasion after being in a horrible accident and, as a result, having to spend Christmas by himself.

He said: “Last year I was in a car crash and if it hadn’t been for the ambulance driving along behind me, I wouldn’t be here today.

“I was taken to hospital and I had to spend Christmas by myself, which was horrible.

“I shouldn’t have come through, and they say everybody gets one chance like this, so I’m really grateful.

“I don’t want anybody in Perth to spend Christmas by themselves.”

Al, who has called Perth home for a decade now, only opened the cafe less than a year ago, but he has been delighted by the widespread support he has received, from Perth and beyond.

He added: “I’ve had loads of people getting in touch and wanting to get involved.

“There are lots of Perth businesses and charities who are helping me out with hampers and other donations.

“I’ve been keeping a donation bucket in the cafe as well since last week to help cover the costs, and it’s already filling up quickly.

“When I posted on Facebook that I was opening on Christmas, loads of my friends from down in Essex, where I’m originally from, saw it and wanted to help me.

“There is a group sending up parcels that they’ve wrapped themselves, which is really nice.

“It’s going to be an international effort in the kitchen, as one of my friends from Germany is coming over to help out.

“He’s been a close friend to me ever since I first moved out there and he recently lost his father, so he’s keen to come over and help out.

“I’m so touched that so many people want to help.”

It will be nothing short of the best on December 25 for Al, who is putting on a full spread for free.

He added: “It’ll be the complete three courses.

“I’m going to make a great big pot of soup for the starter and turkey with all the trimmings. Of course, there will be dessert as well.

“There is nothing worse than spending Christmas alone.

“Anyone who is at home, sitting by themselves: come down, and we’ll have a great time.”

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