Melbourne - Shopping, Cafes , Bars & Restaurant Tips & my personal thoughts...

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July 7th 2014
Published: July 6th 2014
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️ My Travel bLug

Destination: #Melbourne - (#BonWasHere on 29June-07June)

If I summed up Melbourne ... My personal thoughts are super arty , quirky , cozy and funky Cafés & Bars...Chic boutiques style shopping almost everywhere ... Cafés & boutique shops on narrow & almost hidden like alleyways... The sky are usually grey , almost gloomy & definitely a lot colder than Sydney during winter however all the locals alike do not mind this "London like weather " at all. I was told by my cousin who lives in Melbourne that locals actually LOVE & are BIG on their Winter Fashion . After just spending a week in Melbourne I couldn't help noticing & looking at the people around me from head to toe and up & down to secretly admire their Winter Fashion sense . Melbourne is definitely a "mecca" for "shopaholics" and even myself who would usually rather go on grocery shopping than actually clothes/shoe/bags etc shopping . I don't keep myself up to date with the ever changing fashion trends at all as I who would rather spend my money on food & travelling than shopping .

I've been in Melbourne a few times now. Every time I come over here I suddenly become like a "shopaholic " myself. So far I have spent more than I would like to , so basically have blown out my budget out of proportion . In Sydney, I can go on with my life without buying any new clothes , shoes , bags etc for at least 6 months to a year or so. Well, actually if I'm overseas I do enjoy my shopping here and there . In Melbourne, I just LOVE love shopping till I drop and oh how I wish I had a limitless credit card where I don't have to pay it back . I love the shops here in particular because of the boutique shops and the things that they have that you can't get in Sydney really. Also, I love how the stores are heaps artistic & have that funky or quirky decor. Most things in Melbourne are affordable & it's never ending shopping options .

There's something about Melbs that other cities in Australia don't have . I have lived in Sydney for over 10 years , have been to the Gold Coast , Adelaide , Brisbane , Cairns...and I reckon Melbs for shopping , cafés , entertainment & sports have the best of the best . The city has a character feel to it . They have not completely converted to modern or cosmopolitan city like infrastructures but rather have chosen to remain their Victorian style houses, buildings and even kept their vintage looking trams . I have walked through Universities that actually looked like "Hogwarts School of Magic " in Harry Potter & went to Royal Exhibition centre that looks like a castle/church .

I must share my favorite spots and really the places I had the privileged to explore & experience ... These places were recommended by my workmates in Melbs ( Lorrie , Aaron & Adam) , a couple of good mates from Sydney ( Roberta & Dylan) who enjoyed Melbs as much as myself & my relatives (Aby & Shane ) ... who I think highly of them in terms of knowing their stuff .

For hardcore boutique style shopping ( & apparently bars & restaurants too ) head to Brunswick St in Flinders, Lygon St in Carlton & Chapel St. Get lost in the city and find yourself on almost hidden like and narrow alley ways for some crazy cafés & boutique shopping again. My favorite one is on Degraves St & Flinders Lane in the city . If you don't fancy the boutique shops you will never run out of other options. There are plenty of shopping complexes - GPO, Myer, David Jones, QV & the newly built Emporium shopping complex . If shopping is really your mission ? Prepare to maximise your budget when you walk through Chapel St ( this is high end shopping apparently ) , Collins St , Swanston St & the main one is on Bourke St Mall in the city , Sydney road in Brunswick, Harbour Town & Queen Victoria Market ( this is like Paddy's market in Sydney but it's one of the must see in Melbs ).

- Go to Madame Brussels (it's on a rooftop & a must see in Melbs as considered an icon )
- Father’s office ( $5.00 happy hour /this is right next to the State to library )on Swanston St
- Section 8 bar
- Touché Hombre next to section 8
- Next door to roofbar section 8 "Ferdyduke "
- Mamasita's for Friday night after work hangout, their sangria and tapas and meals are excellent
- Ponyfish island ( right next to Crowne Plaza Hotel )
- Naked Four Season rooftop bar on Brunswick Road in Fitzroy.
- Bimboes in Fitzroy
- Lui Bar ( at the Rialto Hotel )
- Kinobi Bar
- Sahara Bar
- Howla Bar
- Pubs around Sydney Rd such as Brunswick Hotel, Spotted Mallard, Cornish Arms Hotel, Penny Black, The Snug Hotel and Bridie O'Reilly for some classic Irish pub bar and meal


- Vue du Monde and PM 24, Classic French fine dining
- Cumulus Inc. Flinders Lane's hidden gem, modern Australian restaurant
- Chin chin (bar slash restaurant, very famous and always packed )
- Longrain Restaurant in Bourke St for Thai fine dining, they have amazing selection of cocktails and cosy ambiance
- Tom Phat on Sydney Road ( their pork belly is to die for )
- Movida for amazing Mexican tapas and bar
- G2 for some tasty Korean BBQ perfect for big groups
- Alisha Turkish Restaurant in Brunswick (Saturday is the best )
- Ti Amo on Lygon St ( the lamb shanks & the pasta were next to perfections )
- Cargo Bar in Harbor Town ( really nice water views and decor )
- Bopha Devi, Cambodian restaurant in Harbour Town )

For Cafés
- Code Black ( try their Milfuile )
- Wide Open Road ( try the wild boars sausages or their turtle beans mushroom ??? )
- Lux ( try their crispy eggs )
- A1 Bakery ( try their cheese pie or zeta )

Getting around ...
- Trams ( It's almost like Melbourne moving icons in the city . They're everywhere and super convenient . ) - You will need to buy a Myki Card from 7/11 stores or News agencies before boarding the trams . Fares start from $3 per way per destination. Only touch on as you're only traveling around the city (Zone 1)

- From the Airport to the city and back , a 25 min bus ride only cost $18.50 one way. If you do not mind the cost taxi fare is from approx $50.00.

What I also love in Melbs is the people . They are friendly & cool . I have worked in Melbs for a week and they have made me feel like I belong here. They were so easy to talk to & I could talk to them with anything and everything without that feelings that I have taken their time out . Talking to them felt like I've been friends and have known them for a while and not just for the week I have been here. The locals on the shops , bars & restaurants were genuinely nice , helpful & gracious . If I think of Melbs people I thought of these words " effortlessly cool " & awesome tattoos & get ups .

The best thing about Melbourne .... is having a super awesome cousin and her husband who was born and breed in Melbs and of course he is as awesome as my cousin .

From this entry , you have gathered by now that I have the passion for Melbourne but I could not live here . I am more than happy to come and visit anytime however I have more reasons to come down and enjoy Melbs even more because I can spend quality time with my cousin & her hubbie & now that they have just bought a 3 bedroom house.
In saying this I would still prefer living in Sydney over any other cities .... because ...well that would be another story to tell.... To be continue ....

On another note ,
I am always curious & it's my way or encouraging and preserving the highlights of someone's have asked my brother's thoughts for his best top 3 things that happened to him in Melbourne ...

1. Having the opportunity to experience Melbourne culture through living in our cousin, Mabelle's place & her husband, Shane's house and for them to take us & show us around .

2. Spent a day at the OZ Comic-con exhibition for the first time.

3. Experiencing the culture in Melbourne by eating , drinking & shopping !!!

As for myself .... I have enjoyed my time in Melbourne almost every second second but these were my highlights :
1. Did not pay anything on my airfare as Virgin Australia Airline has kindly given everyone at work a free domestic return flight.

2. Spent quality time and have made great memories with my cousin and her hubbie .

4. Have stayed at my cousin's vintage house (Ye Olde!) & filled with entertainment, gadgets and cool stuffs .

3. I felt grateful & humbled that I can afford anything (almost) that I want.

4 . Having the privileged to work with and get to know my workmates in Melbourne.

5. Working at the most exclusive buildings in Melbourne (apparently !) also called the Dome. I was just heaps amazed of the lay out and became overly curious of this lobby at work.

6. Had an awesome time at the Oz Comic-Con Exhibition for the very first time and being amazed at the Royal Exhibition Centre .

7. All the restaurants and bars we went to .

8. We were healthy and well the whole time .

9. Stayed optimistic and enthusiastic.

10. Safe & everything went in smoothly .

PS. if you have read through all the way here...THANK YOU so much for your time. Would love to hear your feedback and also additional tips & reccommendations if you have any when travelling to Melbourne.


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