24 Hours in Melbourne
When it came to planning the perfect Melbourne getaway, we turned to local guides Kylie Dorotic and Alicia McKimm of the award-winning interior design studio GOLDEN. Their recommendations on where to eat, drink, shop and stay did not disappoint, with each place as aesthetically pleasing as it was immersive to experience. Read below to find out how the talented duo would spend a day in this buzzing city.
Since 2008, this Flinders Lane institution has captured the city’s culinary zeitgeist, introducing Melburnians to the concept of all-dining. Chef Andrew McConnell’s menu is even more enjoyable against the pared-back, Parisian-inspired interior. Alicia’s pick for brunch are the house made crumpets, served with whipped ricotta and honey harvested from a rooftop beehive.
It’s a big call but according to Alicia, Tipo 00 serves “the most delicious pasta in Melbourne!” Known for its unfussy take on Italian fare – think fresh rosemary focaccia, poached ox tongue and brown butter tortellini – the intimate locale also boasts an impressive wine list. The space is modern, with a geometric pattern painted onto the concrete floor for a tiled effect.
Located on the Windsor end of Chapel Street, Journeyman is Kylie’s go-to for connoisseur coffee. Designed by local architect Chris Connell, the industrial fit-out is as sophisticated as the brew, featuring red brick walls, untreated timber panelling and terrazzo tiled floors. Expert baristas are on hand in case you’re tempted to take home the Dukes Espresso house blend.
A St Kilda fixture for 26 years, this low-key bar is tucked away in an alley behind the restaurant. It’s the perfect spot to meet before dinner but “with a moody and intimate environment, you can easily lose track of time drinking wine and cocktails,” warn Alicia and Kylie. Their beverage of choice? An espresso martini.
More akin to a New York art gallery than a furniture showroom, this hidden gem is sure to delight design enthusiasts. Conceived as a place for emerging and established designers to showcase their creativity, the GOLDEN designers frequent CRITERIA to source edgy furniture, lighting and artwork for their projects.
With outposts in Albert Park, Richmond and Elsternwick, this independent bookstore is Alicia’s favourite bricks-and-mortar destination for stocking up on the newest art and design tomes. Floor-to-ceiling shelves create a maze-like labyrinth for booklovers to wander through, while the ever-helpful staff members are experts at sourcing hard-to-find titles.
South Melbourne Market
In a city teeming with produce markets, the 150-odd stalls housed under this Victorian-style building are some of freshest and best stocked, drawing locals and tourists alike. In addition to picking up your weekly groceries, Alicia recommends grabbing a bite to eat at one of the restaurants, like “the pastries from Clement Coffee or the odd cheeky dim sum.”
Australia’s oldest, largest and most-visited museum is the first place Alicia and Kylie bring out-of-town visitors, as much for its blockbuster art collection as its imposing modernist architecture. In addition to the 70,000 ancient and contemporary works, there is a rotation of exhibitions on loan from other art institutions which have included Van Goh, Christian Dior and Salvador Dalí.
Royal Botanic Gardens
With 36 hectares of breathtaking landscapes, it’s easy to see why this is Kylie’s favourite spot for a weekend stroll. Established in 1846 and attracting over 1.9 million visitors each year, the Gardens include rare plants, tranquil lakes and historic buildings – as well as the most stunning view of the Melbourne city skyline.