We did it all in November: a gin pop-up bar in the Botanical Gardens; book and magazine launches; an Indian festival of colours; and of course, we managed to stuff our faces with some delicious food while we were at it. It is Melbourne, after all. Read on for our adventures.
Gin Pop-Up at the Botanical Gardens
The National Trust‘s series of pop-up bars are some of our favourite events. I was super excited to check out Domain House which I have never ventured into before. It’s located just behind the Shrine of Remembrance outside gate F. (It’s always handy to mark down locations around the Royal Botanical Gardens…I have walked around aimlessly for hours on end on occasion.) At $40 you receive entry, two very well-made cocktails, and a delightful setting. We love the events the National Trust puts on, so keep an eye out on our calendar for the next ones.
Co-founder of The Plus Ones
Dumbo Feather Magazine Launch Party
1: Do you like inspiring stories?
2: Do you worship Espresso martinis?
3: Are you a Collingwood hipster?
If you answered yes to at least two of these questions, the launch party of the 45th issue of Dumbo Feather magazine was the place to be. Hosted at Allpress Studio (the hyperlink is for whoever didn’t tick question 3) long-time readers and magazine supporters (including yours truly) braved the lunatic Mebourne weather and were treated to an espresso martini (or three), a chill DJ set, and delicious nibbles from Iv’s Burritos while previewing the latest issue.
The 45th edition features an in-depth and insightful article about Lauren Hill and Dave Ratovich, both surfers and ecological activists, and is well worth a read. Go get your hands on a copy in all good retailers.
Erwan B. is a French/Australian video editor but mostly waiter, avid reader, and wanna-be writer who tends to go out too much for his own good. As a French person, he does walk around with croissants and baguettes.
Shouts of ‘Happy Diwali!’ spread across Federation Square on 7 November, the last day of Diwali, or ‘The Festival of Lights’. Squished in with thousands of others, I watched the mesmerising belly dancers, heard inspiring speeches about the importance of family, and cheered along with everyone else as jets of green and red flames blasted out the top of the stage, followed by an explosion of confetti. Melbourne MP Daniel Andrews even got up on stage to be fitted with a traditional Indian headdress and garland. He looked positively dashing.
Diwali’s first two days were dedicated to showing traditional Indian and Bollywood films, while the second two celebrated the culture of India with performances, fireworks and a henna tattoo stall. It gave me an infectious sense of joy to hear the kids saying ‘Happy Diwali!’ and dancing around, their faces lit up with colourful face paints. Diwali Festival showed what a beautiful venue Fed Square is, and what a cultural city we live in.
Tom Bensley is a freelance writer in Melbourne who reviews anything he attends, watches, or reads. It’s a compulsion, really. Follow him @TomAliceBensley.
Night Noodle Markets
In its second year, the Night Noodle Markets — part of Good Food Month — atop Birrarung Marr’s grassy knoll is a knock-out Melbourne event. The layout is spectacular and the breadth of offerings extends well beyond the humble noodle. Entertainment and designer bars abound, as do world-class chefs (Diego Munoz from Astrid y Gastón – the world’s #14 restaurant – anyone?). I think the markets make for the perfect kickstart to a night and on a warm summer’s night can’t really be beat!
Co-founder of The Plus Ones
Sportsgirl Book Launch
It’s a brand known and loved by young women Australia-wide, but how many of us know the story behind Sportsgirl?
In a packed out launch party, former Chief Executive David Bardas launched his new book Anything Can Happen: Sportsgirl – The Bardas Years and talked to an eager crowd of fashion-forward Melburnians (and of course, die-hard Sportsgirl fans) about highs and lows of the business and creation of what is now a flourishing Australian brand. The book, which is of course easily recognisable in the iconic Sportsgirl colours, details the birth of the brand and its journey through the years as one of Australia’s most popular and influential brands for young women. The best bit? No shortage of killer retro-style snaps!
Anoosha is a blogger, writer, and obsessive tea-drinker.
Anything Can Happen: Sportsgirl is currently available online and in bookstores, and is a must read for lovers of fashion and those interested in learning about the industry.
So there you have it. A wonderful month in the most liveable city in the world. There’s always more where that came from, so be sure to check out our picks for the best events of December, sign up for our weekly newsletter, and check back on our ever-updated calendar.
– Team TPO