Sydney – June 3rd-5th 2013
‘Oh yeah, by the way, I got that job with Google so I am going to Sydney on Monday for training, do you want to come?”
The moment the trip you have been desperate to plan all falls together – all thanks to my talented friend and Google.
The excitement that took over that Wednesday as I began to plan flights, a hotel and to meet with friends all within the next few days is what I live for. Spontaneity is key.
Monday came by in the blink of an eye; my alarm set for 3:55am rang as I just began to doze. ‘It’s Sydney girls,’ I text frantically only just half alert. After going through all the morning glitz and glam routine I waited patiently as my girlfriend Alexi ran a tad late. We like to keep on our toes so what is a quick panic at a check-in closure in 15mins as you get in the car to drive 10? Thank goodness for technology and Virgin Airline, last minute online check-in and a boarding pass to your phone were designed for us girls. So, with a quick caffeine stop and a location of our new trainee N-y, we got our seats and took to the sky.
Have you ever been flying at sunrise? It is possibly one of the most beautiful memories I have from my Australian experience. I think I took about 20 snaps of the wing and the lines of colour blending together in the distance before instantaneously the sun was up and below was the great ocean. As we began the decent to Sydney Airport the enormous architectures down below looked miniscule – the city like a small model.
When we arrived we realised we hadn’t thought the entire process through and had to be typical tourists finding out where out hotel was and how to get there. Nonetheless – the information kiosk girl was amazing – so within minutes we were on our $16 train trip to Museum Station. Our hotel was the Vibe on the corner of Elizabeth and Goulburn; an average size room with a queen bed, bright green décor and plenty mirrors to check every angle of our outfits (phenom for $113p/n).
That morning after check in we took to the streets and began to investigate the beautiful city for what it is. Walking through the Queen Victoria Building we looked at some shops – found the most gorgeous Salvatore Ferragamo bag (I will need to save for at least a year) and the cutest Karen Miller dress. Oh, how I wish I wasn’t a student at times!
In order to divert from maxing our credit cards we hit the Opera House and Harbour Bridge to take some snaps. I had only looked online and dreamed before of what I was about to witness – it was spectacular. I couldn’t stop staring out over the river to the enormous bridge that took over the landscape; stunning is an understatement.
Along the way we met with another friend – Sarah – who took us to Sydney’s answer to pancakes – The Pancake Parlour. Pretty average if I am honest; it was definitely price appropriate and is worth a taste (just avoid the chocolate pancakes).
In the afternoon we took back to the streets for some shopping: Topshop was a must along with some boutiques around The Ivy. Getting a playsuit for a steal from the cutest little original shop I was the happiest kid on the planet until I walked in to my beloved Toppy. There were at least 20 things I wanted to purchase, but the conversion from £ à $ is so overpriced. £35 à $70 doesn’t cut it in my books, so I left almost empty handed – almost… My favourite city Sydney store has got the be The Apartment. It is a little French inspired boutique with few collective items. Apart from the stunning materials and simplistic colours the sales assistant was quirky and polite making the shop a really fun experience – it was ‘fetch’.
‘Time flies when you are having fun,’ is an understatement. A quick check of the clock and it was nearly 6:30pm – with dinner reservations at 7pm at The Sheraton on the Park it was a mad dash back to the hotel to freshen and glam up before stuffing ourselves with amazing food and quite good wine. Thanks to the gentlemen we dined with – who are regulars – we got our meal for $45 a head rather than $85. Drinking Woodstock at $14 a glass washed the food down nicely (which also got an added discount, BONUS!) It is somewhere I would recommend if you are in a large group and torn with what to eat – it has a great selection from salad, seafood and meats; and the desserts – phenomenal.
After dinner we headed down Darling Harbour to meet up with our new Google friends. They were dining at the Braza Churrascaria, which is a lovely little Brazilian just off the water. After this we perched on the edge of the harbour ready to watch the 10pm Vivid Light Show (which is all free), it is a must see at this time of year in Sydney – you can not go outside without one fluorescent light or another shone in your direction.
Once this was over we took to the Monday night nightlife – which was not the busiest considering the city we were in (I think I just associate big city nights to NYC, huge misconception). Scary Canary had $4 spirits – which on a budget no one is complaining at. The music was R&B, but all pretty old school (there was nothing from this decade). If you have the right crowd it is a really fun night. This being our starting point meant the only other bar to attend was a backpackers venue – Scubar; it was tiny and crazy. Enough said. Day one ended on a happy note with exceptionally sore feet!
After a night of gossiping and minimal sleep we woke bright and early ready to hit day two hard. My first stop was to my beloved Starbucks – my obsession with it has been prevented living in Adelaide, Aussies just don’t get it.
For the morning we had lots of lovely plans – to head down to Bondi Beach and then for the afternoon we planned to visit Manley. However, two shopaholics on Oxford Street did not promise much sight seeing. By the time we wondered along to the Westfield at the Bondi Junction it was time to grab a quick lunch and buy our final wants of the trip. Thank you to the sales I got a steal with a pair of Jeffery Campbell’s – down to $50 and a dinky essential Michael Kors bag for just under $300. I was ecstatic and couldn’t wait to get back to the hotel to get a snap of my favourite 3 buys (the playsuit from day 1 included).
SO before we headed to meet our new fully qualified Google employe we decided for a coffee pick me up form Sourdough. Once there though we noticed $4 house wine – no-one turns down a taste. So coffee then wine was in order, starting the night as we meant to go on.
In the evening we dined at Mamak. It is a small restaurant the is queued down the street all night every night. We waited for over 30 minutes for a table, but it was worth it. The food is exceptionally priced and fills you up ‘no bother’. The Malaysian Iced Coffee was by far the best I have had since my trip to NY (although finding out it had condensed milk in it didn’t have me going back for seconds – calorie counting sucks at times).