I don’t know about you but I venture into the city because there is nothing more magical (well, perhaps the new Cinderella movie, which I have already previously praised on here) than hopping on the train, getting off at Flinders Street Station and then embarking on a day filled with shopping, chai lattes, the NGV, South Wharf and South Bank.
We are so lucky here in Melbourne to have the culture that we do. When I’m feeling down all I have to do is walk through Degraves Laneway and watch the diversity of latte drinkers and French toast eaters dining on their lunches, to feel happy. I feel happiest when I feel I am home. And Melbourne is my home.
My inner happiness comes from a culmination of things Melbourne has on offer – the culinary delights at the numerous and forever-multiplying cafes, bakeries and eateries (gotta love those lemon tarts and shiraz infused chocolates), the Victorian architecture peeking out from underneath art deco and colourful Avant garde facades, the second-hand bookstores and vintage clothing boutiques, the more pricier places that do sophistication, class and elegance oh so well, and the little coteries of women who dot themselves in this laneway and that laneway to talk fashion, art and politics.
I admire Melbourne for her people. The fashionistas and the elite, the bankers and the buskers, the protestors and the students. Myer’s advertising department certainly hit the nail on the head with their TV advertisement telling us that within the walls of Myer, we women will find wonderful. When I am in the heart of Bourke Street I know I am home as I stare up at the entrances to Myer and David Jones.
Do not mistake me – I am not overly material – my true joy comes not in always making purchases, but in meandering through these department stores and then on to the Emporium all the while drinking in these surrounds, for how beautiful they are. I have not lost the zest for a magical world. Sure, we live in a harsh and cruel society but the dreamer in me still feels giddy walking past the Hopetoun Tearooms – which are over one hundred years old mind you, and business is still going so strong, there is always a queue at the door – and through the Block Arcade and the Royal Arcade. I can’t help but feel euphoric seeing women admiring shoes in Mountfords and tourist groups clamouring for the best vantage points when tour guides point out various attractions. The joy I feel when greeted by salespeople inside Peter Sheppard Shoes has me feeling grateful that Melbourne is so full of such wonderful human beings, and such high-tier customer service, and the dark chocolate hot chocolate inside the Lindt café nextdoor is so decadent, rich and smooth, I’m always walking away wondering why I only ordered one for myself, when I should have been greedy and ordered two. But then again, they are pretty rich….. so maybe not.
Please do go and visit the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition at the NGV whilst it is still here – the projections are like nothing we have ever seen; why use mannequins when people need faces? Do see the Lion King and Dirty Dancing – those tickets will be money extremely well-spent and unlike Fifty Shades of Grey at Hoyts inside Melbourne Central, Dirty Dancing is really not that dirty at all – very tasteful in fact. For this modern day and age.
Do pop into Hoyts at Melbourne Central and buy a ticket to see Cinderella. Magical Melbourne plus a magical film equals the best kind of magical! There is always something happening in Melbourne – she will not disappoint. Forgive me, for now I am momentarily distracted by the delicious shoes in Zomp and Cinori and I must go in and have a look! No finer leatherwork will you find than in the shoes at Zomp!
The fragrances and scents dancing around the room inside Crabtree and Evelyn has me craving a nice hot bath with some nice delicate bath salts and body lotion for afterward. I have purchased many gifts for friends from Crabtree and Evelyn and they haven’t failed to be well-received. The cranberry and white chocolate scones inside the Tea Salon inside the Emporium have me wishing the Tea Salon was my own personal kitchen where I could devour lovely, scrumptious, fluffy things every morning for breakfast. Alas – I cannot. I’m not Marie Antoinette.
You will not find better sushi than inside the Emporium’s food hall. Sushi is always affordable, from anywhere, so it’s that perfect lunchtime choice if you’ve only thirty minutes and you’re after something tasty and healthy. And, I might add, it’s my favourite food! Be careful with all of the escalators inside the Emporium though – if you haven’t been there yet it’s best that you know that you can’t always depart the complex via the escalator that you entered it in on. Which is actually ok in a way because trying to find a way out allows we women to pass more stores such as Karen Millen and Alannah Hill. Which girl or woman doesn’t want that? Try not to get lost!
I love Melbourne. I really truly do. This blog does not and cannot sum up just how much I adore her. If I was a tourist I would award Melbourne five stars. But I’m just a biased local, so best you go and explore her for yourself.