Time In: The best things to do at home
The coronavirus pandemic means those of us who can are spending a lot more time at home. But that doesn't mean it's just you and the couch forever. Our beloved restaurants, bars, breweries, artists, comedians, creatives and entrepreneurs are figuring out ways for you to experience the best of the city while still staying safe. We've collected the best ways for you to experience Melbourne while staying at home here into this hub, so you can stay sane, comfortable, fed, watered and entertained at home – while helping small business owners, hospitality workers and creative people who desperately need your business. You'll find everything from comprehensive roundups of the best films on streaming services to creative ways Melbourne's institutions are making their offerings available to those doing their bit and staying home. We've also got plenty of inspo for you to read to start planning your days for when you do get back out there. Read on for great tips for Time In, as recommended by Time Out editors.
Melbourne’s Gnoccheria is now offering home delivery
When pasta and gnocchi-devoted bar Gnoccheria opened in Coburg last year, people were lining up to purchase its 20 different variations of the famous potato dumpling. Now, in the age of physical distancing, Gnoccheria is offering delivery of its wares to those around Melbourne. That way no one will be without pasta – even during a crisis. You’ll be able to choose from a variety of items – precooked gnocchi packs, fresh pasta, lasagnes, pizza bases, sauces, cheeses, salts, olives, olive oil, anchovies, butter, porcini mushrooms, housemade passata and caperberries. Orders can be made by calling the store on 03 9354 9985. Orders over $50 are free otherwise there’s a $5 delivery fee. Gnoccheria is delivering to Coburg, Coburg North, Brunswick, Brunswick East, Brunswick West, Reservoir, Preston, Pascoe Vale, Carlton North, Essendon and Richmond. If you’re in a neighbouring suburb please call the store to check if they can deliver to you. The store will be adding Wednesday, Thursday and Friday delivery as of next week, so make sure you get your order in by noon the previous day. Support local: these Melbourne restaurants and bars are now doing delivery, too.
Audible has just released hundreds of free audiobooks
We’ve spoken about zoo livestreams, virtual film clubs and even more things you can do from home, but now there’s something new. Audible, the audiobook platform, has just made hundreds of audiobook titles available for free during the Covid-19 pandemic. Yes, free! The platform decided to release numerous titles to the general public in order to help those stuck at home in self-isolation, or students staying home from school or university. The majority of the audiobooks available are for younger readers, including Winnie the Pooh and Beatrix Potter books. But there are young adult books and a section on literary classics which includes Moby Dick, Romeo & Juliet, Wuthering Heights, Frankenstein and even Jane Eyre (as read by Westworld’s Thandie Newton). There are hundreds of books to choose from. All you need to do is head to the Audible website from your web browser to start. Rather watch a movie? These are the best escapist films on Netflix right now. Find more Melbourne experiences that you can have from home here.
Melbourne Museum is now online
You might not be able to physically visit museums in Melbourne anymore, but as of today, you can visit them virtually. Today Museums Victoria launched Museum at Home; an initiative that allows you to engage and explore Melbourne Museum, Scienceworks and the Immigration Museum online. The online project will allow guests to go behind the scenes, take virtual tours (hosted by hilarious kidult comedy team the Listies), learn about STEM, experience livestreamed virtual events and watch Q and A sessions hosted by experts. There will be plenty of educational content made available (perfect since Victoria’s school holidays kick off early on Tuesday, March 24) as well. Museum at Home is live now with additional content to be added over the coming weeks. The NGV is also going to start streaming virtual tours of blockbuster exhibitions. You can donate directly to the comedians affected by the cancellation of MICF.
Indoor activities to do with kids right now
Many performances, museums and venues have been closed and cancelled due to coronavirus so we've come up with a list of fun things to do with kids while you're self quarantining or physically distancing. Check out more ideas below on our list of the best things to do these school holidays (and beyond).
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MICF’s biggest Australian comedians will stream their comedy specials online
COVID-19 quite literally killed the laughter this month after the threat of the virus caused Melbourne International Comedy Festival to cancel just over a week before it was due to start. Since then an increasing number of us have been encouraged to social distance – a term that is surely a frontrunner for the Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year. Luckily this pandemic has hit in the 21st century, a time marked by online streaming services available without having to interact with a single human. Ten of the biggest Australian names that had been booked for MICF 2020 have just announced stand-up specials streaming via Amazon Prime. The line-up of Aussie comedians includes Zoë Coombs Marr, Judith Lucy, Celia Pacquola, Anne Edmonds, Tom Walker, Tommy Little, Lano and Woodley, Dilruk Jayasinha, Alice Fraser and Tom Gleeson. Two specials will be released every week starting Friday, April 10. The comedy specials were even filmed right here in Melbourne at Malthouse Theatre so you can pretend, for a bright, shining moment, that everything is back to normal. Here's our current list of venue closures and event cancellations across Melbourne. Plus Melbourne's restaurants are getting innovative to cope with COVID-19 restrictions.
Lentil As Anything is now delivering its pay-as-you-feel vegan meals
Lentil As Anything has been providing tasty, healthy, affordable meals across Melbourne and Sydney for around two decades. The 100 per cent vegan restaurant is famous for offering a pay-as-you-feel system. Put simply, diners pay what they can afford for their meal. Well now you can pay-as-you-feel for Lentil As Anything’s meals and have them delivered to your door. The restaurant’s Thornbury and Newtown venues now let you order online or on the phone, pay-as-you-feel for the meal, and have it delivered to your door. Lentil As Anything’s delivery service is only available if you live within two kilometres from the venue, but if you live further afield you may be able to order through UberEats. For those of us who haven’t established a healthy relationship with our kitchens, the restaurant is also making vacuum-packed vegan meals to eat later. There are four-meal or eight-meal options, with dishes like Moroccan vegetable tagines, spiced tofu rendang and pumpkin, chickpea and spinach curry to choose from. The team will also donate a meal to someone in need for every meal you order. As part of this “Together As Anything” initiative, the restaurant is also looking for volunteers to help deliver the meals. So if you’re healthy and well with some free time on your hands, this might be a way for you to help your community. Here are more ways you can help out during the Covid-19 crisis. Or check out the quarantine-friendly deals these restaurants are running.
Hospitality begs for government relief as venues lay off staff
As the government further limits the number of people who can be in a venue at one time, the hospitality industry has banded together to ask for financial support and certainty to save the industry. Australian hospitality lobbying group the Night Time Industries Association (whose chairperson, Michael Rodrigues, is also the managing director of Time Out) is calling on the government to provide some certainty to the more than 900,000 Australians who work on the hospitality industry. The NTIA has launched the Keep Our Venues Alive campaign and is pushing the federal government to: Work with councils to suspend business rates on venues for at least three months; Make financial provision for all venue staff (including casual staff) and self-employed people who cannot work for at least three months; Provide tax relief to the hospitality, arts, culture and recreational sectors for at least three months; Encourage and support landlords to provide rent holidays to such businesses for at least three months; Create a fund to support businesses that are forced to close or cease trading; and Force insurers to cover closures of businesses and cancellations of festivals and events due to the pandemic. Rodrigues says the government must act urgently to save Australia's hospitality and culture sector: “Inaction will result in some of our best-loved pubs, restaurants, cafés, theatres and music venues closing down. The impact on the Australian economy and our local communities will be disa
You can explore this dreamy Melbourne art installation online
Covid has really done a number on Melbourne’s arts industry, but the city’s creative folk are finding, well, creative ways to cope with shutdown restrictions. As part of Melbourne Design Week, artist Yan Huang, furniture designer Danielle Storm and Techne Architecture + Interior Design collaborated to create ‘Daydream’ – a pop-up sensory installation that merged nature with human design. Unfortunately, ‘Daydream’ only ran from March 20-22, but anyone who missed it can now explore the work online. ‘Daydream’ features a luridly purple-lit space with a whiff of David Lynch to it. The installation is filled with fog, fragrances, plants, light and water used to complement the custom design elements, some of which translate better than others across the web (you’ll have to imagine the fragrances we’re afraid). ‘Daydream’ was predominantly made from recycled and sustainable materials, further strengthening the work’s desire to show the connection between design and nature. The collaborating artists and designers have put a virtual tour of the art installation online (take a peek here). The tour takes you through the installation pretty quickly, so don’t be afraid to hit the pause button (bottom left-hand corner) if you want to pause and examine the space in more detail. A guy's tattooed back is currently being livestreamed at MONA... because it's MONA.