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The Resident, Hiroko Prado

By Kyrenia Blanshard

This month’s Cammeray resident, Hiroko Prado is a passionate Ikebana Artist and Instructor. Ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arrangement and she’s been spreading the joy and beauty of this wonderful art form since 1998, when she became a teacher. She shares her local favourites with us, why she loves living in Cammeray and teaching Ikebana.

How long have you lived here and why did you choose Cammeray?
Five years and a few months. My family and I moved from overseas and Cammeray ticked all the boxes; close to some of the best schools in the country, a convenient commute to the city and still so close to beautiful nature.

Best thing about the area?
A great sense of community. Even though we are relatively new to the area, we have built wonderful relationships with our neighbours. They too have a global mindset because of their experiences abroad.

Worst thing?
It’s great that so many homes are being renovated however, it does make it hard to find a car space and it’s quite noisy.

What’s your favourite café/restaurant in Cammeray?
I would say Jizakana but there are a few other Japanese restaurants which are also great!

Best coffee in the area?
All the coffee shops in Cammeray are amazing! I think the most popular one would be Maggio’s, it’s always packed!

Where do you like to have a drink?
My front deck isn’t too bad for having a drink, however, if I go out, I like to go to Catalina’s in Rose Bay. It is always nice watching seaplanes come and go especially at sunset.

Any local hidden gems you’d be kind enough to share with us?
Perhaps not “hidden”, but my favourite walk would be from just behind the Tunks Park boat ramp to Northbridge. The trail mostly goes along by the water and whenever I have time, I like to sit on the rocks overlooking the sunken ship and listen to the sound of the birds. I often find interesting natural materials that I can use for my arrangements!

What’s your favourite room at home and why?
The sitting room at the front of the house. It is north facing and hence sun-drenched. With views over Tunks Park, it’s a serene setting.

What’s your perfect weekend?
Wake up to a nice cup of coffee, have my husband’s famous breakfast, then go for a leisurely walk. Later on, have people over to our home and chat over some delicious cheese, a nice glass of wine or single malt whiskey!

And can you tell us a bit more about what you do?
I am the Director of Sogetsu School of Ikebana Sydney/NSW as well as the next President of Ikebana International Sydney chapter. They are both international organisations headquartered in Tokyo. I teach Ikebana from home and other venues as well as performing demonstrations and leading workshops. I do corporate team building and offer reception or restaurant Ikebana displays. I am trying my utmost to promote this traditional art of Japanese flower arrangement in Sydney and beyond!

Hiroko and a team from Sogetsu Ikebana will be holding an Ikebana exhibition and running a demonstration and workshop in The Royal Botanic Gardens from Jun 26 to July 4. This is a free event.

To view the details, please visit the Royal Botanic Sydney Website, www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au

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