Sydney, Australia’s premier International city, is located on one of the world’s most breathtaking harbours, formally known at Port Jackson. It is actually one of a number of sunken river valleys in the area and covers 55 square kilometres of magnificent waterways with a seemingly endless number of coves and beaches and some of the best deep-water anchorages in the world.
The picturesque Sydney Harbour is a magnificent backdrop to the glittering phenomenon that is Sydney during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia and makes April the perfect time to visit. The heat of summer has subsided and autumn’s rustic winsomeness offers a pleasant temperature to enjoy the harbour, beaches, cuisine and local attractions.
Celebrating 20 years since its inception, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA) takes effect 12-16th of April 2015.
This is Australia’s only international fashion extravaganza providing Australian designers with a platform to connect to a global audience of international buyers, press and consumers. All eyes will be on Sydney, as it swells into a fashion mecca with a week-long schedule of shows, presentations and key industry events.
To be held at Carriageworks performing arts precinct in Redfern, where the distinctive 19th century industrial aesthetic has been kept after the extensive renovations that turned this incredible old building into one of Sydney’s avant-garde performance spaces. Carriageworks is the perfect backdrop for the cutting edge designs being showcased during Fashion Week.
Following the trade event, MBFWA will open it’s doors for a consumer event, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weekend Edition. This will take place April 18-19, 2015 and will be showing the very best of #MBFWA. This is the perfect opportunity to experience world-class fashion at it’s best with an easy-to-navigate teared ticket option.
Of course Fashion Week Australia and the Weekend Edition are not the only attraction in Sydney. Make sure you book soon to enjoy a week either side to absorb all that makes Sydney the most exciting city in Australasia.
Woollahra is one of Sydney’s exclusive ‘eastern suburbs’ only five kilometres from CBD with a distinct village feel about its leafy streets. It has Double Bay and Point Piper to the north, Paddington to the west, and Bondi Junction to the east and the magnificent Centennial Park to the south and is only a short trip away from the world-famous Bondi Beach. The streets, lined with rows of Victorian era terrace houses and many heritage listed buildings give a unique vibe and has some of the best shopping in town in the elegant shopping strip known as Woollahra Village located around Queen Street where you will find fine food stores, cafes, boutiques and much more.
Sydney Villa 5043 is a grand two story, French-inspired villa right in the middle of this magnificent suburb. The two front verandas are decorated with heritage style cast iron ‘lacework’ and the grounds include an in-ground lap pool, gym, and impeccably maintained formal gardens.
The beautifully decorated interiors feature marble fireplaces in the living areas and main bedroom, formal dinning and a relaxed outdoor dining area by the pool. The ‘working rooms’ – the modern high-spec kitchen and bathroom – will have you in the lap of luxury for all your entertaining and pampering needs, but the true gem is the less formal sitting room stunningly decorated with French blue walls and an eye catching yet comfortable mix of modern and classic furniture in elegant modern grey with crisp white woodwork.
Head down to the heart of Woollahra to Queen and Moncur Streets where you will find all the best shopping. Start off at Wholefoods House to stock up on 100% organic fruit and vegetables and ‘supermarket’ lines sourced from ethical sustainable suppliers.
Further along Moncur Street you’ll find the Eva Breuer Gallery where for the last 20 years you have been able to see and purchase works from renown Australian artists such as Judy Cassab, Brett Whitely and Sydney Nolan.
Australia in general, and Sydney in particular, has long been known for its pub (hotel) culture. In recent years many of the inner city hotels have been undergoing a revival as the ‘gastro pub’ craze from the UK has hit.
Woollahra is no exception to this and some of the best dining in the suburb is to be had is at the best-known local pub, the recently renovated art deco designed Woollahra Hotel.
Here you can have a fine dining experience in a relaxed space while enjoying modern Australian cuisine at its best.
For a completely different dining experience, why not head a little further afield and explore Chinatown, especially the Chinatown Night Markets ‘Little Eat Street’ which runs every Friday from 4-11pm.
Or, for something a little more decadent why not treat yourself to the Chocolate Walking Tour tours where you will get to visit – and sample the wares of – six of Sydney’s best chocolatiers.
It’s almost impossible to think of Sydney without the image of the world famous Sydney Opera House coming to mind. There are a number of tour options with something to interest every member of the family.
The aspiring performer will enjoy the Backstage tour that starts at 7:00am to ensure full access to every backstage area including the gantry where you can look down on the famous performing space. This tour is followed by a delicious cooked breakfast. For those more interested in the building itself there is a tour that unlocks the stories and histories of this remarkable building and it’s equally remarkable designer Danish architect Jørn Utzon, or you could take the Tour and Tasting plate option that finishes with a gourmet tasting plate from the Opera Kitchen restaurant.
This year, Opera Australia is presenting Aida Verdi’s four act Egyptian masterpiece as part of its Opera on Sydney Harbour series. Aida is one of the most performed worldwide demands grand scale and nothing could be a better backdrop for the set than the magnificent waters of Sydney Harbour. Book now for a perfect opportunity to showcase one of your designer garments snapped up at Fashion Weekend event to wear while enjoying the best of that Sydney has to offer – opera, champagne and fine dining and champagne on the harbour at night.
Bronte Beach, one of Sydney’s southern beaches just south of the city and a world away from the hype and hurry-up of modern urban dwelling. Only eight kilometres from the CBD, Bronte is one of Sydney’s premier beachside locations just that little bit removed from the glitz and glamour of Bondi its more famous cousin to the north. The beach itself faces due east and picks up swell from all directions making it one of the best southern beach locations for board surfing.
The rocks forming the southern headland create a sheltered pool suitable for less confident swimmers and younger children, and there is also a saltwater pool for the serious exercise types. Bronte really does have something for everyone but still within easy distance to all the excitement and activities of Sydney Fashion Weekend Edition .
Designed by preeminent architect Alex Popov, four bedroom, three bathroom Villa 549 sits high on the hill behind Bronte Beach making the most of the magnificent views out over the Pacific Ocean. Alongside the living area is a lap pool for those days when you just don’t have the time to head down to the salt-water swimming pool at the beach for your morning exercise before heading out to Fashion Week consumer event.
The living areas open out to the pool and the beautifully landscaped sub-tropical garden. The gleaming, modern, gourmet kitchen is big enough for catering a grand party you’re sure to throw and has views out to the surrounding trees and the beach. Also on the ground level are a formal living area and a large media room. The internal timber staircase leads up to the master bedroom suite with soaring glass walls that appears to float out over the surrounding area with breathtaking views out over the ocean. The other bedrooms on this level also take advantage of their tree top location with floor to ceiling windows.
Along with all the festivities of Fashion Week, be sure to book some extra time before and after to take advantage of all that Bronte has to offer. One of the best ways to take in the beauty of Bronte’s beachside location is the Bondi to Coogee Coast Walk. This easy, six kilometre walk will take you past five of Sydney’s most recognisable southern beaches – Bondi, Tamarama, Bronte, Clovelly and Coogee. Along the way you will see some of Sydney’s famous Aboriginal rock art. There are carvings of a whale and shark at Mackenzie’s Point and more millennia old art at North Bondi near the Bondi Beach Golf Course. Along with fashion and the beach, Sydney is known for it’s vibrant coffee culture, and Bronte is no exception with its many café’s to for you to choose from to soak up the beachside atmosphere while sampling the quintessential Australian coffee experience the Flat White.
Just before the start of Fashion Week is the Sydney Autumn Racing carnival at Royal Randwick racecourse. Randwick is just west of Bondi and Bronte and is home to the elegant four-level Queen Elizabeth II grandstand a perfect place to watch the race programs on the days when you are not attending a Fashion Weekend Edition event.
There are a number of dining options available including the Centennial Room, the Centennial Terrace on level three of the grandstand, and there are also the options for private suites and or maybe you’d prefer to order a deluxe picnic hamper to be enjoyed trackside in the warm autumn sunshine.
After all the excitement of Fashion Week consumer event and the autumn racing carnival, why not schedule a relaxing night and head off to see the latest release films at the Ritz Cinema. The Ritz is a beautiful heritage listed art deco style cinema built in 1937 and is still independently family owned. It is fully licenced – you can take your drink into the auditorium with you – and shows all the latest releases.
Sydney’s northern beaches are justifiably the jewels in the crown of Sydney. Stretching from Manly in the south to Palm Beach in the north the northern beaches – Manly, Freshwater, Curl Curl, Dee Why, Collaroy, Narrabeen, Mona Vale, Bilgola, Avalon, Whale Beach, Newport and Palm Beach are world famous and for good reason. Home and Away, the long running Australian soap opera set in the fictional town of Summer Bay has for the last nearly 20 years been filming its outdoor scenes at Palm Beach. Palm Beach is the last or the northern beaches and leads to Barrenjoey Headland that is part of the Ku-ring-ai Chase National Park. The national park was named for the Kuringgai aboriginal people, and gives spectacular views of the Hawkesbury River and the scenic Pittwater.
Villa 540’s Infinity pool displays the true meaning of this architectural device. As you sit in the living area looing out over the blue of the pool to the deeper blue of the Pacific Ocean ending only at the horizon you are truly gazing to infinity.
The villa is the epitome of elegant but relaxed décor in crisp white with touches of blue and yellow and fine pieces of modern art. The timber picnic table in the casual dining area tops off the beachy sensibility and puts you straight into holiday mode.
The kitchen, overlooking the beach and Barrenjoey Headland, leads out onto a suntrap outdoor area perfect for your morning yoga practice followed by breakfast. Upstairs, the master bedroom, complete with a telescope, soars out to the northwest with views to the headland and further up the coast to Broken Bay and the central coast beyond.
This villa is the perfect option for the family as there are nanny quarters available for use on application. The bunkroom with double deck bunk beds and a toddler bed is perfect for your children, as is the large safe back yard complete with trampoline. You can be sure that the kids are going to have a wonderful Australian beach and backyard holiday while you are enjoying the glittering social calendar of Fashion Week.
In addition to the delights that await you to the south in the city during Fashion Week, the northern beaches and Pittwater offers plenty of unique holiday opportunities and adventures.
There are outdoor activities with something for everyone in Palm Beach or nearby. Try a round of golf at the Palm Beach Golf Club, situated on the western side of the isthmus connecting Palm Beach to the Barrenjoey Headland.
For a change of pace there is yoga by the ocean at Warriewood Surf Club just down the road at Narrabeen, or for the more active there is tennis on offer at the Collaroy Tennis Club with courts and equipment to suit every member of the family. One of the most popular outdoor activities on the north shore is cycling with a number of options available.
Try the Narrabeen Lakes to Manly Lagoon ride which rates as easy to medium on the difficulty scale and is a 12 kilometre ride taking you from the lagoon foreshore to the beach and north along Narrabeen and Collaroy beaches which are the longest stretch of sand on the northern beaches. If this is still not adventurous enough for you have a go at the ultimate Australian beach pastime – surfing.
It was at Freshwater Beach just south of Palm Beach where Australians fell in love with surfing when Hawaiian Duke Kahanamoku visited in January 2015. Australia took to this new sport and has never looked back producing more world champion surfers than any other country. If you’ve ever wanted to learn to surf, you could not do better than to contact Surf Skool They are based at Freshwater Beach, one of the safest of all the Sydney surf beaches, they offer surfing classes for all levels from kids to adults and also offers girls only classes.
Just to the north and west of Palm Beach is the aquatic playground that is Pittwater. This area is another of the drowned river valleys that area geological feature of the Sydney region and is 18 square kilometres of calm waterway bounded on the west by the Ku-ring-ai Chase National Park. There are an almost endless number of calm water activities to take advantage of on the Pittwater such as learn to sail at the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club. If you just want the ultimate on the water luxury getaway then cruising the Pittwater on a houseboat is the very thing.
Even though Palm Beach is some 25 kilometres north of Sydney it is still very much in touch with the vibrant Sydney restaurant and café culture with a number of restaurants in Palm Beach and on Pittwater.
A great example is to be found at The Waterfront Store which sits right on the edge of the Pittwater and offers a sumptuous variety of freshly caught local seafood and an modern Italian menu. A little further away up the Hawkesbury River is a restaurant that will take your breath away.
The only way to reach the Berowra Waters Inn is by boat, or arrive in true style by taking a seaplane that leave from Sydney Harbour and drop you right at the door to enjoy a meal in an location like nowhere else on earth.
With so much on offer, make sure that you book a week either side of 12-16 April when Fashion Week and Fashion Weekend Edition during April 18-19, 2015 is happening. No matter which villa you choose to stay in, there is an almost endless array of activities on and off the water, in and out of the city that could see you staying longer and falling completely in love with one of the great cities of the world.