Living a life of books

Published 17 December 2021 by Collins234

Living a life of books

This year the iconic Dymocks Melbourne store celebrates an amazing 20 years in its Collins234 location, right in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD!

When the Traverso family – a PhD Chemist, an accountant, a secretary and an academic publishing representative amongst them – decided to establish a literary landmark on Collins Street (just as the uncertain times heralded by the events of September 11, 2001 occurred) they had no idea what lay ahead.

2021 marks a marvellous two decades for the store, and the Dymocks Melbourne team is joyously celebrating those 20 years of welcoming Melbourne’s city dwellers, workers and visitors through their doors.

Dymocks Melbourne Cafe & Kids Section

‘There has been significant change in the CBD through the past two decades, but we have risen to the challenges, always wanting to be able to welcome the reading and writing community, be a destination for lovers of all things literary and an important part of this UNESCO City of Literature.’
says owner Dino Traverso.

‘We are proud to be continuing a long-lived tradition for bookselling excellence in this location – Howey Place (at the rear of the Collins 234 building) marks the space where bookseller and publisher E.W. Cole established the remarkable Coles Book Arcade in the late 1800’s, and we think we’ve honoured that tradition by creating the biggest and (in our admittedly biased opinion!) best bookshop in Melbourne. Our store takes up the entire lower ground floor of the Collins 234 building and we have over 150 thousand items in stock at any given time – that’s a LOT of books to choose from!’

‘In 2017 we added something that had been the particular dream of one of our owners, Melissa Traverso, a beautiful gift shop called Dymocks Art of Giving. This is a wonderful space on the ground floor of Collins234 with a carefully curated range of gifts for women, men and children. It really is a wonderland that is the perfect accompaniment to the bookstore and provides our customers with a one-stop shopping experience. We’ve got it all!’

‘In 2018, we invested in a major renovation of the store, and we are still thrilled with the result. The entry into the store has always been stunning, descending down the escalator into a sweeping universe of books and gifts, but now the vista is just mind-blowing. Customers tell us that the store is a browsing pleasure – not just for the selection of products, but also a feast for the senses. We love to hear that, as the team works hard on the range and the presentation.’

‘And while we’re very proud of the store itself, what’s a shop without the right service and dedication to our customer’s needs? We have a great team of booksellers with literally hundreds of years of experience in the field between them. Our category managers are specialists in their field and ensure a diverse and relevant selection of titles in their section. Our Orders and Information staff are extremely knowledgeable and keen to locate that hard-to-find book. We have a Corporate and Schools team that assist and produce resources for businesses, schools and libraries. Our Non-book team ensure an inspiring selection of gifts that complement and enhance the reading experience.’

‘Of course, while it’s admittedly very hard work, it’s made easier by the fact that the bookselling and publishing industry is a wonderful place to be – the people you deal with are a special breed and make every day interesting. The excitement of seeing new books arrive never ceases – a bit like Christmas all year round. It’s a pretty special feeling being a part of that, and we think that over the past 20 years we’ve built something in Dymocks Melbourne that forms a pretty special piece of it. That’s definitely worth celebrating!


If we were to recommend three books that we wish we had all read before going into our own business, it would be:

  1. 7 habits of highly effective people by Stephen Covey
  2. How to win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
  3. The First 90 Days by Michael D. Watkins

All classics that would be good to read before doing anything in life!

Shop in person at Dymocks Melbourne on the Lower Ground Floor of Collins234, and Dymocks Art of Giving on the Ground Floor.

Contact the Dymocks Melbourne team on (03) 96630900 or at

Click & Collect from the store is available via

Shop Dymocks Art if Giving online at

Read more about E.W. Cole at