Altona property veteran joins Port Phillip Village & The Village Williamstown
The beach, the heritage, the coffee and the golf first enticed Tony Camera to make the move to Melbourne’s west more than 12 years ago. An Altona-local, he brings more than a decade of experience in the property industry to his new position as Sales Manager for Port Phillip Village and The Village Williamstown. Here, Tony shares what he loves about property, people and why the west has so much to offer:
So what brought you to Altona?
Altona and Williamstown are both established suburbs that are as proud today as they have ever been. I’m originally from Melbourne’s Northern Suburbs, but was attracted to the area because it’s so close to the CBD in one direction and Geelong and the Great Ocean Road in the other. The people here are extremely friendly and public transport is easy. I have lived in the area for around 12 years now and I love it! The cafés, beaches and cinemas are great. And of course, the golf.
Why property – how did you get into this game?
The bottom line is I enjoy meeting new people. Everyone has a unique story, and I love it when people share snippets of their story with me. Sales is about helping people transition to the next stage of their life, either by helping vendors sell their home or a buyer to find a new one – either way it’s a great feeling. I like retirement living because it feels good to help people make the right choices so they can enjoy the retirement stage of their lives. It’s a big change from my previous career – working in IT, which I did for more than 15 years for one of the big four banks. Now I have a lot less screen-time and a lot more people-time.
So what does a Sales Manager do?
If you’re interested in moving into one of our villages, I’m the person who’ll take your call, organise times for your inspections and take you through the village. But I also spend a lot of time talking to residents – I’ve really immersed myself in village life. It’s great because I can get to know the people who live here. I guess I centre my approach on helping people. So I treat my vendors like family and help people visiting the village feel a part of the community from the get-go.
What gives a retirement community its character?
It’s a combination of the people and the place. Both my villages have gorgeous grounds and buildings and are really close to golf courses and beaches. But I think the unique character of each village comes from the people who live there. I make sure when showing people around the villages that they get to experience the spirit of each one firsthand. I think that happy residents are the best sales tool I could possibly have. Happy residents share their joy and village pride with their family and friends, and visitors. They sell the place far better than I ever could! If you’re considering a change to retirement living, asking someone who already lives there is a great way to find out if this could be the right move for you.
How do both villages fit into their local communities in Altona and Williamstown?
Both villages have been around for many years and are deeply connected to the surrounding community. We currently have partnerships with the Kooringal Golf Club in Altona and the Williamstown Bowls Club – to name a few – and our residents are keen members. Locals love having the villages in their community, not only for business, but because the residents make up the ‘fabric’ of the area and its history. Most residents at my villages are locals and have family in the area, and I think every one of them has something to add that benefits the local community.