It was the summer of love, Elvis married Pricilla, the Beatles released Sgt. Pepper's and in 1967 the original Melbourne homeware store, Minimax, first opened the doors. Whilst Melbourne is inundated with them today, Minimax was the first to create the point of difference of presenting its curated product range with a style and service that gave inspiration to its generation of customers.
Minimax has always lived up to its tagline of providing ‘Entertaining Ideas for your life’. It has played a part in some of Melbourne’s best parties. If you live near this village and think back to all those dinner parties, every chink of a champagne glass, every platter you have picked up a chicken sandwich from, chances are they were bought from here. Our products have been there with our customers for the most important moments of their lives, so it seemed appropriate to raise a glass on this special occasion.
Ray and Gene Harrrison originally set up a small local hardware store selling such items as hose fittings and light bulbs, the Minimax name was even a play on the brand name of the dominate Hardware chain of the day, of the store being a Mini ‘McEwans’.
1967 was a time of change for Australia, we were shaking off our colonial past and maturing to form our own identity, confidence and style. Other cultural institutions such as The National Gallery of Victoria of which Minimax is a strong supporter also opened that year.
And whilst the opening both the NGV and the Minimax store were significant moments for Melbourne in 1967, they were probably overshadowed in a cultural sense by the Richmond Tigers winning the Grand Final – something that we also celebrate 50 years later.
Since opening, Minimax has done and continues to do what any good retail business must do and that is evolve. Over the journey, 2 generations of the Harrison family moved with the times and transformed that little hardware store to the stores we see today. They recognised that there was a better business to be had appealing to the real decision makers of the district, the well-heeled woman with a keen eye for style and quality. As Minimax remains a great family business today with the Blythe family at the helm it continues to grow and take its keen sense of style to other states across the country.
Minimax transformed its business by ranging a collection of European sourced kitchenware and homewares, introducing some of the top brands into the Australian market and elevating the Minimax Brand to be Australia’s premiere homewares retailer. It still sets the standard for store presentation and customer service, something we have become famous for and something we are very proud of.
This culture is driven by the team. With staff who have been in the business up to an amazing 26 years! Our staff are the reason the business is still flourishing today...over 50 years later.