George McRae is credited as the designer of the now famous Queen Victoria Building, popularly known as QVB. The building, completed in 1898, was constructed as a tribute to the ruling monarch when Sydney was undergoing a ruthless economic slump.
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The complex structural design of the project was sketched in a manner such that the government could be able to hire jobless craftsmen such as plasterers, stonemasons, and stained window artistes to enable them make a decent income.
After its completion, the building initially hosted offices, coffee shops, showrooms, warehouses, and a recital hall. QVB also provided accommodation for a number of individuals engaged in commercial activities for example florists, mercers, tailors and hairdressers (IPOH, 2011, p.1). As time went by, the concert arena was modified to adopt new roles.
For example, a library and other offices were established and more occupants such as palmists, piano tuners, and clairvoyant moved in. Later on, the Sydney City Council occupied QVB after it underwent a major restructuring in 1930s.
Although the building was almost pulled down in 1959, it has emerged as a glorious building that reflects the initial dream of its designer and the excellent artistry of the artisans who worked tirelessly to construct it again (ibid. p.2).
QVB hosts over 148 boutiques, shops, restaurants, and cafes on the entire levels of the building (Sydney, 2011, p.1). The major parts of the building are made of magnificent stained glass windows and fabulous designs. The Sydney’s coat of arm, found on the cartwheel stained window, reflects the commercial activities sailing ships and the dolphins.
The symbols on the left side of the first panel symbolize architecture and the Sidney City Council whereas Ipoh Gardens Berhad, the company that renovated the building is represented on the third panel by letters IGB It is worth to note that several symbols were used to recognize those people who took part in the restoration of the building (IPOH, 2011, p.4).
There are also several symbols constructed outside the building. For example, there are statues representing Queen Victoria and the Royal Wishing Well erected on Town Hall Palace, outside the building (TravelOnline, 2011, p.4).
The building boasts of two huge mechanical clocks, the Royal Clock and the Great Australian Clock. Thus the Great Australian Clock is a symbol of social harmony among different cultural groups of people visiting the Queen Victoria Building (Sydney, 2011, p.5).
The building has a number of attractive restaurants that offer special services. For example, The Tea Room is one of the attractive places that one can visit to take tea. The restaurant boasts of highly qualified chefs that make delicious dishes served throughout the day under stained glass and towering ceilings.
The place can also be leased to people who plan to have private celebration at the place. Thus the Room has a limited number of seats (200). The Tearoom also has a pub that serves alcoholic drinks (Restaurant Information, 2011, p.1).
People visiting QVB are encouraged to tour the basement to learn about migration policies adopted by the city. The basement has a room where visitors are learn why Australia has been successful in promoting social integration between the native residents and immigrants.
Also part of the basement has food outlets that sell Asian delicacies. Commuter services are run by the government. The city has a broad network of bus services. For example, the white and blue buses are new and clean. The route number is prominently displayed in front and at the rear parts of the bus.
The major terminal points of these buses are located at Wynyard Park, Circular Quay, the rear side of the QVB and central Railway Station. Car rental services are also available at QVB. Operators such as Europcar, Budget, Hertz and Budget offer such services.
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During my tour, I observed that majority of the visitors preferred to use public transport because it costs less compared to private means. I noted that car-parking services run by QVB are very expensive despite the fact that the fee varies with time.
For example, you can park his car for $17 as long as you do it before 10AM and exit the parking bay before 7PM. For those who leave a minute late, they pay the daily rate, pegged at $43. However, the parking fee is usually lower (between $14 and $24) during weekends and evenings (Perica, 2005, p.5).
The Queen Victoria Building is regarded among the culturally famous sites that are visited my people from all over the world. I visited the building on one Sunday afternoon and got first-hand experience about the significance of QVB to the City and those who visited it.
For example, I went to Paddy’s Market and counted over 100 people from all walks of life trying to buy souvenirs to take home.
However, I discovered that many of the visitors went there to window shop rather than buy because most of the genuine Aboriginal sculptures, hand-made traditional paintings and Aboriginal didgeridoos are very costly and limited in supply. A few of them were however able to buy several cheaper souvenirs to take home as memento (Sydney, 2011, p.4).
I also learned that QVB is home to several major calendar and festival events that take place every year. Family celebrations such as wedding anniversaries and birthdays are usually common phenomena at QVB. There also several outlets within and around QVB that sell multicultural delicacies that are affordable and in plenty of supply (Sydney, 2011, p.5).
QVB has an ample road infrastructure that facilitates easy movements of the visitors to the site and other major commercial and recreational centers within the Sydney City.
There are two shopping malls, Westfield and Myer to the north, and Gallery Victoria on the eastern part of the east, linked to the building through the underground pedestrian passageway. There is also a bridge than enables pedestrian to enter any of the four doorways of the QVB from the Sydney Hilton.
The building was erected in late 19th century. After its completion, the building was assigned the name Queen Victoria Markets in 1897 as an honour to Queen Victoria who was commemorating her Diamond Jubilee. However, the name of the building was later changed in 1918 to Queen Victoria Building (Perica, 2005, p.6).
The other day I was observing the customers of Salvatore Ferragamo and counted the number of people who did window shopping and real shopping, I saw a mother and her teen daughter who were moving around, doing some window shopping.
The daughter spent over two hours trying on shoes, only to inform the salesclerk, “Thanks, but no thanks.” She told the salesclerk she was leaving the store and that she was going to buy similar shoes at Amazon and spent $22 less on the pair (Kirkwood, 2010, p.3).
The mother remained silent but when they left the store, she went ballistic. She felt her daughter had wasted a lot of time sampling shoes, then not buying anything. The mother believed that the time wasted on window shopping by her daughter could have been used by the stores clerk assist someone who was willing to buy one of the Salvatore Ferragamo products.
It is apparent that the daughter refused to buy the shoes because it is much cheaper procuring the same pair from online sites such as eBay than from a shop (Kirkwood, 2010, p.4). This incident reveals that majority of young people in this age are techno savvy.
Online shopping has not only emerged as the most ideal way to procure goods but also goods and services cost less. From my observation, it is window shopping is a tiresome and time consuming activity and a shopper may end up not getting what he intended to buy.
Moreover, stores clerks sometimes do not help shoppers to locate what they want to buy. On the other hand, online shopping sites such as eBay offer a variety of services that satisfy the needs of shoppers.
Besides, online shopping enables a shopper to compare prices tags of the same product offered by different online shops from the comfort of a chair. Also, online shopping enables a buyer to purchase products from any region in the world (Kirkwood, 2010, p.5).
I also observed a number of shoppers using their mobile phones to communicate with their friends. Majority of them were either sending text message or surfing the internet. A few of them made calls. The advent of modern technology could be the reason why most people prefer to text and surf using their advanced phones as opposed to calling.
Since their inception, mobile phones have evolved tremendously since the turn of the century. Nowadays, individuals can used their sophisticated gadgets to text, surf the web, navigate using the GPS function, and interest with their peers through social networking sites such as face book and twitter.
Smartphone such as the iPhone are currently playing the lead role in this aspect. These phones have computer-like operating system that can manage all sorts of applications such as games applications, Twitter, Facebook, shopping assistants, restaurant guides, and more.
Traditional mobile phones are not accumulating dust, though. Scores of of the newest models have large displays, keyboards, and Internet capabilities. Their applications and e-mail and are not as developed when compared to smart phones, but they’re easy to use (Consumer Report, 2010, p.5).
There are several things to be considered before buying a phone. For example, you may consider the service provider because they help to ascertain the type of the cell phone that is compatible with the local network.
So when you’re swapping your cell phone, make use of this cell phone guide to aid you make a decision on whether to keep your present mobile service provider or switch to a new one. Main carriers rely greatly on two irreconcilable digital networks.
Verizon and Sprint networks employ mainly Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) platform, whereas AT&T and T-Mobile use Global System for Mobile communication (GSM) platform. In addition, all of these providers sustain high-speed data networks. The network plays an important role with respect to performance and abilities that your handset will have (Consumer Report, 2010, p.6).
Before acquiring a smart phone, one must make a decision on which of the two kinds, conventional phone or smart, meets your budget and requirements. Select a conventional model if you only need a phone with text-messaging functions, and perhaps a camera.
Smart phones, with their superior operating systems, superior displays, QWERTY keyboards, and other computer-related attributes, are a better choice for individuals who are in need of regular access to several e-mail accounts, a complicated organizer for contacts and appointments, the capability to open Internet-based services and Office documents.
One convincing advantage of many smart phones is their capability to access a multitude of applications made up of shopping, productivity tools, multimedia, travel, games news, social, finance, weather, and references.
Helpful features for example GPS navigation, support for wireless Bluetooth headsets, and high-speed data access can greatly augment user contentment (Consumer Report, 2010, p.7).
Bluetooth technology enables the phone to operate with wireless headsets and various hands-free car systems for tangle-free calls. A number of phones sustain stereo Bluetooth headsets for music and other multimedia while others can swap pictures, contacts, and other files with other compatible Bluetooth devices, for example mobile phone, computer or PDA.
Majority of smart phones have in-built cameras with higher resolutions that are able to produce high quality snapshots.
However, most of these phones do not have a flash, which is very important when taking pictures in shadowy environments. Also, enables the user to assess documents. Some phones also have an option to create, delete or edit a document (Consumer Report, 2010, p.8).
All smart phones have several forms of location-based technology to assist emergency responders locate the user when you call 911. Most of these phones have GPS navigation features that can acquire information wirelessly from the carrier network.
They incorporate GPS with maps and search engines to offer the user up to date, vocal, turn-by-turn guidelines to an entered address.
A handset that has a navigation feature eradicate the need to carry an extra navigation devise since the phone can locate any direction needed by the user. Some network providers offer GPS services for free, however, a number of them may charge an extra cost for the service (Consumer Report, 2010, p.9)
Consumer Report. (2010). Smart Shopping: Cell Phones. Web.
Kirkwood, K. (2010) An Ethic Question. Web.
IPOH. (2011) About QVB. Web.
Perica, J. (2005) Development Application: 429-481 George Street, Sydney (Queen Victoria Building). Web.
Restaurant Information. (2011) The Tea Room QVB. Web.
Sydney. (2011) Queen Victoria Building (QVB). Web.
TravelOnline. (2011). Sydney Travel and Visitor Information. Web.