As one of the world’s most livable cities, there’s no end to what you can discover in Melbourne.
Somerset on Elizabeth
Located at the heart of Melbourne’s Central Business District, the serviced apartments can be easily reached via public transportation and are surrounded by fine restaurants, cafés, shops and malls such as GPO, Bourke Street Mall, The Strand and the new Melbourne Emporium. The residences offer comfortable accommodation with a separate living and dining area, fully equipped kitchens and modern amenities. There are one and two-bedrooms available to choose from that cater to both business and leisure travelers.
The city’s new retail hub is a fusion of every lifestyle element, combining international with Australian and designers such as Zimmermann and Alannah Hill, innovative concepts and flagship stores, and tantalizing culinary spots. Make sure to try the authentic, fresh Vietnamese flavors at Pho Nam run by chef Jerry Mai and her brother. When you’re done shopping, pamper yourself at Goddess of Nails & Beauty to end the day on a fantastic note.
Queen Victoria Market
The vast and historic Queen Victoria Market offers everything you could possibly ask for, from daily necessities to souvenirs. The recently initiated NEW CRAFT @ Queen Victoria Market is a monthly art and craft market, featuring Australian-made goodies curated by the Craft organization. Cassia Essentiels is one of the up-and-coming design labels discovered by the organization, supplying modern lifestyle essentials such as phone sleeves and laptop bags with colorful patterns.
St. Kilda Esplanade
The popular beachside esplanade is more like an open-air gallery, established as an outlet for the local creative community. Currently, hundreds of Victoria’s best artists and craftspeople display and sell their works including handmade collectibles, original artwork and quality gifts. But its true charm lies in the opportunity to meet and chat directly with the makers, learn about the creative process and the inspiration behind it.
Serving Australian dishes heavily influenced by Asian – particularly Japanese – cuisine, Executive Chef Tony Twitchett aims for generous and simple but playful food with a big emphasis on sharing. Dishes are created with the highest quality produce and complimented by a casual but concise wine list. Adding to the dining experience are the restaurant’s cutting-edge design and fantastic location boasting unrivalled views of the river, Flinders Street Station and the ever-lively Federation Square.
This place obviously doesn’t take coffee lightly – it’s more than just an espresso bar. Celebrating authentic Italian dining and age-old simplicity refreshed with contemporary flair, D.O.C Espresso brings premium antipasti, pasta specials and lunchtime foccacias to the table with enough surprises to keep you hooked. The authentic taste naturally attracts Italian diners, and you can almost forget you’re in Melbourne as you listen to their lively chatter.
Reflecting Melbourne’s Spanish food culture, Bar Naçional’s vibrant atmosphere is topped off with its quality ingredients, careful preparation, and variety of flavors with creative combinations. The sense of community is strong in that the food is served in small bites (tapas) and on large plates far sharing (raciones). From the traditional 36-month-cured jamónbellotapuro, to a unique take on the cremacatalana, the menu reinterprets a range of Spanish classics in new and exciting ways.
Despite its location inside a converted warehouse in Melbourne’s China Town, the contemporary restaurant and bar brings together Southeast Asian influences with the best Victorian produce, balancing hot, sour, salty and sweet flavors. The dishes are created for sharing, allowing for a comprehensive tasting experience, and served on long communal tables and round banquet tables to encourage the spirit of eating together. Don’t miss out on the wine and cocktail list created by restaurateur Sam Christie.
The Meat & Wine Co
Modern and sophisticated, there’s nothing quite like the steakhouse dining experience at The Meat & Wine Co. As its name suggests, meat and wine lovers won’t be disappointed by the variety of dishes dedicated to African heritage with references to unique Australia. The restaurant has its own Monte Beef brand sourced from the premium breeders of Angus cattle. There are also menus for those with allergies and special dietary needs.
Experience the bird’s-eye view of Melbourne from a hot air balloon, the Eureka Skydeck, or the sensational Melbourne Star Observation Wheel. Each of the Melbourne Star’s fully enclosed floor-to-ceiling glass cabins accommodates up to 20 guests and provides 360-degree panoramic views of the city, Port Phillip Bay and the surrounding area. Try the Day and Night Flight Ticket to see Melbourne by day and at dusk or evening.
Coffee Culture Tour
Walking down the lanes of Melbourne, you are bound to notice the flourishing cafés emitting the inviting scent of coffee. Learn more about the city’s internationally recognized café culture through a historical and sensory trek with Melbourne Coffee Tour guided by coffee tour professional Maria Paoli. Discover the latest café trends and popular spots from the small and quirky Switchboard Café to the trendy Krimper.
Meet the continent’s wildlife and more right here at Melbourne Zoo – from koalas to Tasmanian devils, wombats, emus, platypuses and penguins. Consider yourself lucky if you find your path blocked by loitering kangaroos as you stroll through their open area. The Wild Encounter programs also allow behind-the-scenes experiences and zoo sleepovers – plus you can even get up close and personal with captivating animal species such as meerkats, coatis and the giant tortoise.
Tourism Victoria, timothyburgess.net, CitaArsitaFarani