• August 10, 2014

The World Class West

Melbourne has retained its status as the world’s most liveable city for a fourth consecutive year. What makes it a winner? I am definitely pointing my finger to The Wild West. I may be biased as it’s my homeground and I have gypsied around living in many of the suburbs. However, there’s valid reasoning…


Throw your worries away instantly when walking along The Pier at sunset. As cliche as this may sound, this is the best possible ‘thinking spot’ in Melbourne. This is Julia Gillard’s hometown and the best part about this suburb is the relaxed holiday vibe. The Esplanade is a very long road so if you’re seeking to get fit there’s no better way to start than here. It’s only approximately 20 minutes from the CBD yet feels like a world of its own. There’s also a weekly colourful and festive Altona Beach Market which is worth checking out.

Venture over to the ‘Scray’ and discover a bustling cultural hub! This foodie hot spot excitingly strikes the balance between international culture, the best Vietnamese pork rolls, incredible Pho and if you’re a football supporter, it’s homeground to the red, white & blue (Bulldogs.) It also has the cheapest kilo of avocados in Melbourne. Have you had an Olympic donut or experienced the multicultural hibe of Footscray Market which is a dream for foodies on an adventure?

Cram into tight cafes where a constant stream of locals greet each other by name. There’s an undeniable community feel with school mums socialising at every turn! I particularly love a micro cafe, ‘Helter Skelter’ on Somerville Road. Quirky trinkets, classic soundtracks and various lighting comes into play – you could be forgiven for thinking you were on a buzzing film. Last time I popped in they had amazing specialty jaffles.

What’s not to love about postcode 3015? Whether you’re a keen fisherman, seeking a gorgeous period home, looking for a hairdresser or every day conveniences, this area has it all. It’s like a repetitive story, I constantly hear locals raving about Newport Lakes! This was once the site of a bluestone quarry and has been transformed into a 33-hectare hidden bushland oasis with walking trails and picnic spots. The Substation is another talking point as an artists market is held here on the first Saturday of each month from 10am. There’s always something to see here from circus shows to visual art to live music performances.



This area has heart and soul. When you walk down the main street, it feels like everyone is dawdling because the locals are on slow time and it’s truly pleasant suburbia. Eyes are darting across to all of the cafes where the only hard decision anyone seems to make is where will the next caffeine fix be? Many of the cafes even cater for your furry friends such as Seddon Deadly Sins which have puppycino’s! I can’t really give out my favourite cafe because there’s too many to choose from. When driving through the tree-lined streets, the foot constantly seems to touch the brakes because there’s so many beautiful period beauties to glance at.

Where else can you go into the heavens and into space?
Other suburbs may sneer with jealousy because we host one of Australia’s more renowned museums, “Scienceworks.” Then there’s the Duchess of Spotswood which is a homely British cafe in the shadow of the West Gate Bridge. If you’re into black pudding, seared ox tongues and offal (yet to try it!) then this is for the meat eaters.

It’s all about the views. There’s no better way to spend a day off. I love sunbaking along The Strand Waterfront and taking in the photogenic vistas of the city skyline! Established in 1837 as Melbourne’s first port, once a month you can sail on the Enterprize, the first vessel to carry European settlers up the Yarra. There’s even Lantern Ghost Tours which have received rave reviews from The Age (this is next on the list to try.) If you’re looking for the best breakfast around town head to Crowded House cafe and try out their Smashed Avocado, Poached Egg, Macadamia and Lime Dukkah on Toast – it’s to die for!

Note to self: Always drive slowly through Yarraville Village because only one car can fit through otherwise you will be the target of road rage!
Whenever people need a description about this suburb, the long response tends to go on but when a short response is needed? “It’s like an old fashioned movie set.” Step into the charm-filled atmosphere of a suburb where the iconic Sun Theatre stands still in time. Back in the day there was a pram room where babies in their prams were placed and given a number, if your baby started crying, your number flashed on the screen. Enter into the unassuming world of the bar, Acqua e Vino and peruse through a telephone book thick wine list.





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