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We sat down with local photographer, content creator, and coffee enthusiast, Quay Hu, who is the founder of Qreate, a local coffee + studio spot in downtown Orlando! Below is what he had to say about his business and how he made it successful!

WHAT MAKES QREATE DIFFERENT FROM OTHER COFFEE SHOPS?

“The biggest factor is that we’re a small, boutique innovative business. We specialize in exotic drinks and photography, and we provide a unique space for networking and building community. We are more creativity based compared to other coffee shops, so rather than just targeting your average coffee drinker, we target creatives. Our digital marketing has also helped us stand out. We use it as a platform to showcase not only our speciality drinks through video and high quality photography, but also our merchandise and shoots that we’ve done with clients in our studio.”  

HOW HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO STAY OPEN DURING COVID?

“Much like everyone else, COVID did have an impact on our business, but getting creative with out digital marketing, menu selections, and in person accomodations helped us to remain successful. We created videos to blast on our social media platforms, put out positive messages such as “keep grinding” and “Orlando strong,” to keep people positive about COVID, created tik toks, and really made sure that our followers and community knew that it was safe to come here. We took extra precautionary measures to keep everyone safe, had hand sanitizer on every table, required masks, and overall obeyed CDC guildlines. Our high ceilings also gives the space better airflow and makes it appear less congested, so that helped make people feel more secure. We also implemented some new things, such as having outside tables for customers that felt more comfortable sitting outdoors.”

WHAT INSPIRED SOME OF YOUR MENU SELECTIONS?

“We were inspired by the goal to be different, and present unique options for people. We designated time to brainstorm and come up with out of the box drink ideas, such as our Purple Pearl, a taro milk tea with coffee, or our Midnight Mocha, which is an activated charcoal espresso drink. We also do holiday drink campaigns, where we offer themed seasonal drinks for a limited time, based on the holiday. In our brainstorming process, we also decided which drinks would be our signature items and for seasonal drinks, we just rotate different items.”

WHAT WAS YOUR GOAL WHEN YOU OPENED QREATE?

“One of the reasons I built this place was to create a space that breeds community, be a safe space to network, link models with photographers and videographers, and link products and servicessuch as photographers with their corporate clients. We wanted to build a useful and creative community where people can have an outlet to go to and be able to say “I know a place that has great recommendations for photographers and videographers” and be able to rent the space here, while also getting the opportunity to enjoy a nice hot or cold beverage while they edit and network.”

So are you looking to network with other creatives, or try some innovative coffee and colorful drinks? Make sure to stop by Qreate Coffee to try them out now!

-Adriana Nelson