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Basset hound near a Christmas tree
Photograph: Creative Commons / Maximiliano Ignacio / Pexels

The ultimate Melbourne Christmas gift guide

Need a little inspiration? We've put together a list of our favourite Melbourne gifts

Written by
Time Out editors
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Whether you've got a spreadsheet full of present ideas finalised in October, or you're the type to be hanging out waiting for inspiration to strike on December 24, we've got a gift guide to suit all your gift-giving, stocking stuffing needs. 

Want some more Christmastime sparkle? Here are the best boozy advent calendars. 

Unwrap these goodies

Bliss Baskets Emporio curates luxurious, bespoke and personalised gift hampers that are meaningful and thoughtful. The Christmas hamper collection features premium alcohol – Moët & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot or Penfolds – paired with an extravagant selection of handcrafted gourmet food. As a bonus, each hamper is personalised to include your own photos, handwritten cards and flowers. Bath salts, fragrant soy candles and holistic healing products such as crystal trees make their hampers stand out. Hampers come with Christmas decorations and tabletop Christmas trees to ignite that festive spirit. To brighten the spirit of Christmas and celebrate the end of lockdown, they are providing free shipping and a big 20 per cent discount on their Christmas hampers. Use the code ‘CHRISTMAS20’ at checkout to avail this offer.  

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Treat your loved ones (or yourself!) to a truly unforgettable hot air balloon flight with Global Ballooning AustraliaThere are three different locations to choose from: Melbourne CBD, the Yarra Valley and Mansfield. If you’re after scenic views of misty vineyards, alpine peaks and rolling green pastures it’s hard to go past the two regional sites, but if soaring over Melbourne’s most famous landmarks and waving to office workers in high-rise skyscrapers sounds like your jam, the CBD it is. These sky-high rides depart 364 days a year – weather permitting, of course – and the adventure kicks off about 90 minutes before sunrise (yes, we know that’s early, but trust us when we say it’s totally worth it). When you purchase a gift voucher you can have it emailed instantly, or posted in a Christmas-themed envelope. Just be sure to use the code TIMEOUT15 to score your 15 per cent discount – which equates to a saving of up to $80 per person. 

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Anyone who’s whipped up something messy in the kitchen before knows just how important a good apron can be. Thank goodness then, for Cargo Crew. These purveyors of premium, ethically made hospitality uniforms know a thing or two about crafting the ultimate apron for cooking enthusiasts. Available for both adults and children, and combining high-quality fabrics with fashion-forward designs, the Cargo Crew range is super stylish and comes in a number of on-trend colours, including mustard, sweet pea and rose pink. Best of all, you can even add your own personalised details. Keep it chic and get a name or initials embroidered on, or (and this is a great option for the kids) add an emoji. Cute!

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Second Stitch empowers migrant and refugee women from diverse backgrounds through the medium of textiles. This social enterprise hand manufactures a quirky and beautiful range of homewares, accessories and custom products. For Christmas, they're doing these stylish bum bags in a range of fabrics (they use donated fabrics so the pictured corduroy may not be available). You can order one online or drop by their store and studio and meet the friendly members of their seamstress community. Check out Second Stitch's tea towels, napkin sets, cushions and scrunchies too.

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The Aussie Christmas needs summery drinks to help a celebration along, and the Reeftip Drinks Co offers premixed tinnies that contain hints of pineapple, lime... and positive change. By buying these vibrant and flavoursome drinks you can also help regenerate the Great Barrier Reef, because ten per cent of Reeftip's profits are going to the Coral Nurture Program, a world-first partnership of coral scientists with reef tourism operators who grow and plant coral alongside removal of harmful coral predators. The Reeftip range also includes Mango Coconut and Ginger Lime, and all will go down a treat at your giftee's next barbecue – order here.  

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Skip the waiting list for the mission to Mars and teleport your imagination straight to the cosmos with the Big Bold Planet series from Swatch. The affordably luxe timepieces are inspired by galactic dreams, alien worlds and astronomical technology. Choose from one of four Big Bold Planet colourways and styles Embodying fearlessness is the boldly orange Oops!, a watch that symbolises the energy and tenacity of interstellar exploration. This model can spark convos about the nature of time with the face's chaotically structured numbering. Each of the Big Bold Planet watches comes with two options for the wristband. Change up the colour according to your mood and express yourself through the sci-fi-like encrypted text on each different band.

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Catching up with mates in the park or having a celebratory picnic is the newest (and safest) craze in socialising. Make your gift recipient's outdoor hang special with this bamboo set of plates, cups and bowls from Yarn Marketplace. You'll be elevating their al fresco grazing experience while also giving your dosh to an online store that collates products made and designed by First Nations businesses. This picnic set features artwork from Bundjalung woman Holly Saunders, and there are three designs to choose from, all demonstrating stories about women's connection to country and culture. Hit up Yarn Marketplace for more of your Chrissie shopping while you're at it. You'll find beauty products, apparel, homewares and more all created by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island makers.

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Australia’s leading craft beer and liquor merchant, Craft Cartel, is no ordinary bottle shop and online store – the retailer stocks over 700 curated craft beers. Craft Cartel has teamed up with Australian designer Ian Tran of Domus Vim to craft the Christmas Tinnie Tree, a sustainable timber tree that resembles a traditional pine (just without the irksome pine tree needles). It’s the perfect gift for craft beer lovers and is definitely easier to put up than a traditional Christmas tree. The Craft Cartel Christmas Tinnie Tree comes flat-packed and ready to assemble, accompanied by 48 handpicked Australian craft beers, including Stockade The Mountie Maple Imperial Stout, Akasha Korben Double IPA, Bright Mystery Beer Batch-04, and more. Craft Cartel also include a beer glass guide and five $20 vouchers so that you can top up the tree with your top favourite tinnies.

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You'd be hard pressed to find someone who doesn't need a massage after the year we've all had. Give the gift of self-administered relief with the covetable Homedics handheld physio massage gun. Available online from Australia's go-to department store for grooming and self-care, the Shaver Shop, this device is bound to impress your recipient in a "didn't know I needed this and now I can't imagine my life without it" way. The massage gun uses electric pulses to go deep into muscle tissue and is ideal before or after exercise. With five attachments, the gun's pulses can be utilised on different acupressure trigger points and work a soothing warmth into weary bods in a customisable way. The Homedics handheld physio massage gun is so effective you'll have to hide it from a sleigh-weary Santa.

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