This Concierge Knows Exactly Where to Go In Melbourne

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Apr 23, 2018

by KATE PHILLIPS, Digital Producer

Take a fresh look at Melbourne with these insider recommendations from Laila Franklinguest experience supervisor at The Cullen.

When my friends are in town, I take them for a drink at…

Jungle Boy in Windsor. Melbourne has lots of hidden bars and I like to show them off. This one is actually inside a takeaway shop. You go through the fridge and come out at the bar. They will pretend to be oblivious to this, like there’s no bar behind there, but you just have to tell them that you want to go through to the bar. It’s really cool and there’s even a courtyard at the back where you can sit around and have a drink.

The restaurant that best shows off Melbourne is…

Vue de Monde in the city. It’s spectacular and fine dining at its best. If you want the ultimate experience, opt for the chef’s tasting menu with matching wines.

And a restaurant that’s a real hotspot for locals is…

Mr. Miyagi in Windsor. Waiting is mandatory [for groups of fewer than six] so get there and put your name down then head to one of the nearby bars for a drink while you wait for your table. Everyone raves about the tacos. They have great music but be warned – it can be quite loud. 

For a business meeting, I book a table at…

Abacus Bar & Kitchen on Chapel Street. It’s spacious, with high ceilings and plenty of windows for light, and if you’re sitting in a booth you feel secluded. It’s open for breakfast and lunch [and dinner Wednesday to Sunday].

If you want to kick on after dinner, I’d recommend…

The Emerson in South Yarra. It’s one of the best clubs in Melbourne. To get in, you have to be dressed nicely.

My favourite breakfast spot is…

Fourth Chapter in Prahran. They do the best turmeric lattes and the most amazing food: vegan raspberry pancakes with coconut ice-cream on top – they are so fluffy – and incredible Paleo muffins.

For my caffeine fix, I go to…

Market Lane Coffee at Prahran Market. It’s got it all. You can dine in or take away.

The city’s best market is…

Prahran Market, which sells fresh produce such as vegetables, bread, cheese, meat and seafood. And on the outskirts of the market there are lots of little cafés and food carts.

For designer fashion, make your way to…

Emporium in the city. There are loads of national and international designers there – it’s a one-stop shop. I’d recommend spending half a day there.

And for vintage shopping, you can’t go past

Fitzroy, where Brunswick Street is lined with vintage stores. Armadale has some great antique stores, too.

For a romantic experience, head to…

St Kilda cheese and wine bar Milk the Cow. There’s also an outlet in Carlton. Both have wonderful wines and cabinets full of cheese. It’s really cosy with dim lighting and candles.

SEE ALSO: The Melbourne Neighbourhood You Haven’t Explored Yet