Since opening the doors to their first store on the Gold Coast, the team at Rise Bakery has been the subject of much fascination and excitement among the Gold Coast crowd. This year, the brand threw open the doors of a new store, this time in Brisbane, and the levels of enthusiasm have been just as high, if not higher. Baking Business sat down with Harry Ohayon, the director of Rise Bakery, to have a chat about the brand’s legacy, the opening of the new store, and any plans that Rise might have in the future.
Rise Bakery, in both its Gold Coast and Brisbane iterations, is unmistakeably French. From the artisan baked goods to the chic aesthetic, it is very clear where the inspiration has come from for the venue. This all ties in with the backgrounds of the founding owners Maxime Bournazel and Adrien Marcinowski.
Both were born and grew up in France, experiencing the local French culture of picking up fresh bread daily from the bakery down the road. This was something they wanted to encapsulate when they embarked on the Rise Bakery journey.
“Rise Bakery was born from the friendship of Chef Maxime Bournazel and Pastry Chef Adrien Marcinowski,” says Harry Ohayon, Rise Bakery’s director.
“They share the same passion for French treats and culture, and wanted to create a bakery that would remind them of the local bakeries down south of France, with an amazing array of freshly baked goods in a cosy and upscale atmosphere.”
Since opening, Rise Bakery has become known for its buttery French pastries, all of which are prepared in house, fresh every day in the French way. This resonated with Sanctuary Cove locals and prompted the huge increase in popularity since the bakery’s opening.
The decision to expand the brand into Brisbane came in late 2022, after the team was more able to appreciate the success of the first Rise Bakery store on the Gold Coast.
“After the successful launch of our flagship store on the Gold Coast’s iconic Sanctuary cove, we were ready to expand and open our flagship store in Brisbane,” says Harry.
“Both locations have similar traits, such as a strong community feel—close to the water and nice outdoor settings.”
The new flagship store is located in Portside Wharf, which has recently undergone a major redevelopment and has introduced a wide variety of new, upscale businesses. Rise Bakery fits in perfectly with the atmosphere in the precinct.
And the community have been behind the new Rise Bakery store, as they were behind the first location on the Gold Coast.
“The bakery was well received by the local communities,” says Harry.
“Our mission is to provide quality baked goods to local communities, using the French traditions and techniques. As we would do when we were kids, it’s about recreating those memories of going to buy fresh bread and pastries at our local bakery.”
Something else that Rise has become known for in the time since its first store opened is having a beautiful and serene atmosphere, reminiscent of the charm of the cafes and bakeries located along the French riviera. All of this links back to the experience that Maxime and Adrien intended on creating when they opened the business.
“We’ve tried to have a contemporary design, incorporating some elements of our typical French bakeries such as the photo frames, the mouldings on the walls, and the chandeliers,” says Harry.
“[It’s a] sophisticated setting, with the chandeliers and soft colours. We always keep the food displayed as the hero.”
And the large glass cases that feature in the stores ensure that the baked goods on display remain the heroes of both locations.
This isn’t the only thing in the new Portside Wharf bakery that echoes the tones and themes of the first. The second location is an extension of the first in terms of tone and style, clad in soft pinks and creams and trimmed with accents of gold.
The entire experience at both the Sanctuary Cove and Portside Wharf locations of Rise is rooted in the name of the business. Although this might seem to have come from the concept of the rising of bread dough (something Rise Bakery is very accomplished in), Harry says that this is only part of the inspiration.
“It’s also from the John F. Kennedy quote: ‘A rising tide lifts all boats’,” he says.
“This quote resonates with us, as we are very people focused. The ‘rising tide’ is the business; it ‘lifts all boats’—our people.”
As for the future of the brand, Harry says that the current two locations are the main focus of the whole team behind Rise Bakery; however, future expansion is also something that is still at the forefront of the team’s thinking.
“For now, we will be focusing on our existing business and ensure we strengthen our bond with our guests, and continuously improve our products and services,” he says.
“We have plans to continue to grow, and hopefully be able to service other areas, other communities in need of freshly baked goods!”
Main image: (L to R) Adrien Marcinowski and Maxime Bournazel standing outside Rise Bakery