26 October 2012

Brisbane: The Urban Village

Brisbane offers visitors a warm, golden welcome. And it’s not just the heart of the CBD that travellers flock to, but its neighbours in the surrounding precincts. Brisbane is comprised of numerous urban villages, all with different personalities, so pick one (or a few) and discover for yourself…


With the glorious sunshine Brisbane is graced with. It would be rude not to bask in it, and New Farm is a firm believer in this. They encourage an outdoor lifestyle. With copious tree lined streets, unique spaces such as Brisbane Powerhouse, and the heart of the suburb – New Farm Park – 37 Hectares of lush parkland which attracts visitors every day.

Enjoy riverside picnics spots, cycling tracks, but leave some time to use the tree house style adventure playground that sprawls through the branches of the giant fig trees. We are forever the big-kid.


The two things that ‘The Valley’ (as it’s known to locals) is most famous for are fashion and nightlife – which pretty much go hand in hand.

The boutiques in The Valley are really unique. With an impressive selection to choose from, you will be oozing individual style in a matter of minutes. As you look around you you’ll witness the rest of this inner-city suburb is full of fashion designers, artists and musicians all working locally in the area.

There is an abundance of boutique outlets and international labels mixed with designs from the city’s young and talented to choose from. Once your outfits in the bag, then where else to wear it other than in one of the countless bars and clubs. It’s the urban coolness about this district, which is why we come back time and time again.


Paddington is all hills, cottages and boutiques. Adorable shop fronts to gather your knick-knacks, restaurants with tables and chairs that spill out onto the pavement. Specs of houses can been seen when you gaze up to the rolling hills, a mixture of traditional tin and timber homes.

If high fashion is not your style, stroll down Latrobe Terrace and Given Terrace for a range of vintage collectables and absolutely fabulous garmentsyou didn’t even know you needed. Vintage is big business and beyond the second-hand stalls comes a fresh crop of used goods stores’, proving retro is right in and brand-new is old hat. Stores like Retro Metro and Adornments are crammed wall-to-wall with vintage gold and leave you feeling like you’ve been transported back to yesteryear. Browse through racks of 1950s prom dress, retro suits, shoes, stockings, jewellery, decorations, home furnishings and collectables.

It’s a lovely place to enjoy your breakfast, watching the locals catch up before work, or the start of a lazy weekend, before wandering the streets to find some retro goodies and artwork. The bars are a combination of boutique cocktail lounges and casual pubs, something to suit everyone and anyone.


Sometimes you just want a good coffee – well there is no better place than Park Road in Milton. And following suit, the restaurant culture here is electric; it’s like a little slice of Europe, with the La Dolce Vita taking centre stage.

A favourite destination for people watching, you’ll see expensive sports cars that jostle for the prime parking spot. There are countless gift shops, fashion houses, bars and restaurants that circle the replica Eiffel Tower (we did say it was a slice of Europe) which is now a symbol of Park Road’s cosmopolitan atmosphere.

Also – if it’s beer that tickles your taste buds, then you’re home. Actually you’re home to the XXXX Ale House and Brewery. The potent smell will invite you in with easy success. So head towards the river, and take a saunter along the riverside walkways to the famous Regatta Hotel – one of Brisbane’s old pubs and have a schooner of amber fluid (that’s a large glass of beer to you and me).

Words by Prudence Patterson