The last couple of years has seen a welcome rise in the number of independent businesses opening around Newport.
In fact, a recent report by research group Atos showed Newport as the Welsh city with the most business startups last year per capita.
Whether it’s a craft ale, skin lotion or a vintage leather jacket you’re looking for, there are plenty of brand new businesses around the city to pop into.
1. Red Fort
Located in nearby Caerleon, Red Fort has attracted rave reviews for its traditional and experimental takes on Indian cuisine.
Open since last year, the restaurant offers both the traditional Indian staples including kormas, tikka and biryani, but it’s worth checking out what’s on their always varied specials menu, which normally offers something a little different.
You can read our review, here.
Where: 2 Cross Street, Caerleon, Newport, NP18 1AF
Details: Red Fort
2. Bwrw Cwrw
Tucked away in Newport Arcade is Bwrw Cwrw, a shop stocking a range of craft beers and spirits both local and from around the world.
Opening its doors just last November, the shop has something for all drinkers, whether it’s a German lager, Belgian ale or something more niche – rocky road ice cream beer, anyone?
Where: 9 Newport Arcade, High Street, Newport, Wales NP20 1GD
3. Alpha Ops
This rather unique spot opened at the tail-end of last year, and claims to be the only “break-in” escape room in the UK.
Alpha Ops tasks players with orchestrating the perfect break in, with two hours to figure out the building layout and react to security measures and obstacles including laser grids and pressure-sensitive floors.
If that’s not your thing, you can try Raptor, an interactive target shooting experience, and realistic first-aid training from paramedics inside a custom-built training house.
There’s a junior version for kids and a more advanced version for the real adrenaline junkies, so there’s something for all the family.
Where: 4e Mariner Way, Newport NP19 4PQ
Details: Alpha Ops
4. The Cafe at Beechwood
Situated in Beechwood Park, The Cafe at Beechwood offers a mix of coffee, cakes and home-cooked food.
More than just a spot to grab a coffee to go, it’s a great dining option in a lovely location whether you’re looking for a snack, a cake, a tidy all-day breakfast or even a Sunday roast.
Where: The Stables Beechwood Park NP19 8AJ
Details: The Cafe at Beechwood
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5. My Generation Vintage
If you’re a fan of retro, look no further than this ‘60s-inspired spot on Charles Street.
Owner Paul Mansfield is a self-confessed lover of all things Mod, and here you’ll find relics of yesteryear including flared pinstripe suits, quality leather winklepickers and vinyl from the likes of the The Beatles, The Kinks and The Who (can you spot the reference in the name?).
Where: 24 Charles Street, Newport NP20 1JT
Details: My Generation Vintage
6. Bubble Bath and Bodyworks
Wander into this little shop on Commercial Street and you’ll be met with a colourful display of bath products courtesy of Teg Crathern, who opened the business last year.
Offering a range of handmade bath bombs, lip scrubs, candles, skin products and more, the shop even has a unique “pick ‘n’ mix” section, where you can mix and match your choices.
The shop is also environmentally conscious, with no plastic bags available and optional plastic packaging.
Where: 47 Commercial Street, Kingsway Centre, Newport NP20 1LP
Details:Bubble Bath and Bodyworks
7. COBRA Music Studios
Set up by students Jordan Day-Williams and Dean Richards, the choral, orchestral, brass and recording artistes moved into the spacious Riverfront Theatre last summer, giving bands and soloists alike a space to record and rehearse.
Artists renting the studios can avail of any of the spaces inside the Riverfront, including its theatre, studio and dance room – a musician’s paradise.
Where: Riverfront Theatre, Kingsway, Newport NP20 1HG
Details: COBRA Music Studios
How Friars Walk transformed Newport:
8. The Ridgeway Bistro Bar
This popular restaurant reopened under new management last year, and has since been given a spanking new exterior and a revamped menu offering a bistro dining experience.
Meat-eaters will love the early bird offerings featuring the likes of honey-glazed ham and smoked haddock, while there’s also veggie options available. There’s even a mouth-watering bumper steak night every Tuesday evening.
Where: Ridgeway Avenue, Newport NP20 5AJ
Details: The Ridgeway Bistro Bar
9. Charlotte’s Studio Beauty
Located on Corporation Road, Charlotte’s Studio Beauty will celebrate its first anniversary in business this month.
The beauty shop offers a range of beauty products and treatments including Hyaluron pen and PhiBrows microblading, two of the most popular beauty trends at the moment, while there’s also the usual pampering options like gel nails, facials and eyebrow extensions.
Where: 466 Corporation Road, Newport NP19 0GN
Details: Charlotte’s Studio Beauty