Nadir and Negin Shakoor, owners of Afghan Marcopolo restaurant in Mornington invite customers into their restaurant the same way they would welcome guests into their home. “You become family when you visit an Afghan home for dinner. That’s the Afghani way. It’s our culture. We want every customer to have that same authentic experience. We want them to feel like they’re at home,” Nadir says.
Nadir’s parents left Afghanistan with their four children in 1983 during the Soviet invasion. They fled as refugees, first to Pakistan, and then to Italy before making their way to Australia. They made social connections through cooking food for the local Afghan community at social gatherings. Word got around. The Shakoors opened the first Marcopolo restaurant in Beach Street, Frankston in 1995.