Get us in your inbox

Emma Joyce

Emma Joyce

Emma Joyce is Time Out's former Sydney Editor.

Articles (82)

The best trampoline parks in Sydney

The best trampoline parks in Sydney

Looking for the most amazing trampoline park in Sydney? You're not alone. The joy of jumping around is universal, and to get to do it in a gigantic room that is covered entirely in bouncy trampolines is something that dreams are made of.  Whether you're looking for an epic kids birthday party location, want somewhere to go and practice your maddest flips, or are training for the Olympics and want to do it in style, we have you covered with our pick of the five best trampolining parks all across Sydney. So, if you're feeling bored, restless and a wee bit jumpy on a rainy day (or otherwise) think about hitting up one of these fabulous locations. You won't regret it.  Keep the indoor action going at one of Sydney's best indoor climbing centres.  Keen on staying indoors somewhere a little less active? Here are all the coolest things you can do in Sydney when the sun isn't shining. 

The 18 best playgrounds in Sydney

The 18 best playgrounds in Sydney

Got a wriggly little one with energy to burn? You could take them to one of these fun activities during the school hols. But when you just need to let them run it off, these are the parks and playgrounds that know how to entertain the real bosses of the household.  Looking for more space to run around? These are the best parks in Sydney. 

The 15 best day spas in Sydney

The 15 best day spas in Sydney

Whether you want to go all-in for transformative results or you're just in the market for brief spot of me-time, Sydney's palaces of self-rejuvenation have you covered. Spend a full day treating yo'self to the glow-up of a lifetime, or just duck in for a quick but life-giving massage. Either way, a much-needed dose of de-stressing bliss is your reward. If you feel the need to earn your extravagant spa day with some physical activity, sweat it out on Sydney's best walks or swim a few laps of the city's coolest ocean pools.Stay in the loop: sign up for our free Time Out Sydney newsletter for tips on making the most of the city, straight to your inbox. Take your day of pampering out bush at one of the best day spas in the Blue Mountains.

The 21 best Sydney attractions for tourists, visitors and even the locals

The 21 best Sydney attractions for tourists, visitors and even the locals

Sydney has plenty to offer aside from, y’know that bridge and that very, very famous opera house. The city is packed full of thrilling things to do, whether you’re a long-time resident (and fancy seeing what all the tourists see) or fresh off the flight. Below is a tried and tested checklist of Sydney’s finest attractions that no one, resident or day-tripper, should overlook. Looking for somewhere to eat? Here are the 50 best restaurants in Sydney. Make sure that hotel view is one to 'gram with our guide to the best hotels in Sydney.  RECOMMENDED:📍10 Sydney sightseeing spots to check off your bucket list.  This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

Sydney's best spa hotels

Sydney's best spa hotels

Whether you’re stopping in Sydney for the night or staying for the summer, the city has a select number of spa hotels that have underground whirlpools, invigorating hammams and steamy saunas to help you feel fresh, revived and relaxed. Each spa hotel offers specialist treatments from hot stone massages to tailored facials, and most offer the steam, swim and spa facilities to non hotel guests as part of day-visit packages. Take a look at the list of the best spa hotels in Sydney to help you make up your mind. RECOMMENDED:The best hotels in SydneyThe most romantic hotelsThe best boutique hotels Who makes the cut? While we might not stay in every hotel featured below, we've based our list on top reviews and amenities to find you the best stays. This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, see our affiliate guidelines.

The best hotels in Sydney

The best hotels in Sydney

The Emerald City is peppered with a whole host of stellar hotels that each individually carry their own little sparkly slice of je ne sais quoi. Whether you’re in town for one night, want a longer stay, are flitting through for business, or are travelling to Sydney for the very first time and want to make sure you’re in the best possible spot to properly explore the city, we have you covered. Having earned our stripes reviewing hotels across the country, our team of writers (including Lifestyle Writer Winnie Stubbs and our Travel and News Editor Melissa Woodley) have shared their top picks – along with top tips on how to make the most of your stay. From five-star luxury to boutique boltholes, this list is our edit of the best hotels in Sydney (in no particular order). Warning: it'll be hard for you to choose just one to stay at! Sorry, not sorry. Rather stay under canvas? Find the best glamping sites in NSW or the best camping near Sydney. This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

27 cool things to do this winter in Sydney

27 cool things to do this winter in Sydney

1. Step into the light at Vivid Sydney. The annual event will be lighting up Sydney from May 26 until June 15 – with luminous highlights including Lightscape (the epic immersive event in the Botanic Gardens) and Dark Spectrum (transforming the tunnels under Wynyard)  2. Go for a dip without the crowds. Prince Alfred Park Pool’s 50-metre, nine-lane pool is heated and open all year round. 3. Winter is the only time of year when you can walk under the romantic Japanese cherry blossom trees at full bloom. Auburn Botanic Gardens' Cherry Blossom Festival celebrates the season with an epic festival (you'll have to wait until August – and exact dates for this year are yet to be released). Photograph: Cumberland Council 4. We certainly don’t get the snow fall of our European cousins, but New South Wales has some beautiful alpine resorts that makes going to the snow a lot cheaper. Head to Perisher, Thredbo or Charlotte Pass to hit the powder. Check their websites for sweet deals on ski and snowboarding during winter. 5. Warm up by an open fire at one of the city’s historic pubs, like the British-accented Lord Dudley in Woollahra. Here are the best pubs with fireplaces in Sydney. 6. With shorter days and longer nights, it’s the best time of year to spook yourself silly with one of Q Station’s Ghostly Encounters. This one is scary enough that it's only available for people aged 15 and over, and people under age 18 must be accompanied by a responsible adult. 7. Warm your hands and belly

10 Darug words for Sydneysiders to add to their vocabulary

10 Darug words for Sydneysiders to add to their vocabulary

Before colonisation, there were more than 250 distinct languages spoken by Indigenous communities. Darug (also spelt Dharug) is one of the dialects (encompassing smaller language groups) spoken in Sydney, which Joel Davison teaches. “Hopefully, over the years, I’ll learn more about my own language,” says Davison, a Gadigal and Dunghutti man. Like many people his age, Davison learnt European languages as part of his school education and there have been limited opportunities for him to engage with the language of his people. He now knows around 100 words in Darug and educating others in the diversity of culture is part of the reason he wants to continue sharing that knowledge. “I’ve seen the value people can get out of learning a language that others classify as dead or dying. The Darug language isn’t a dead language: when you learn the language it’s like you carry an ember so that you can light a fire to the kinderling.” Davison says the demand for language classes has shown that it’s a positive way to connect with Aboriginal culture in a modern society. “For a lot of people, they are missing that connection to the earth, and to history.” ALSO RECOMMENDED:  The best Indigenous walks and tours in Sydney The best spots to see Aboriginal art in Sydney

The best school holiday activities in Sydney

The best school holiday activities in Sydney

Believe it or not, we're already back at the school holidays, and if the thought of keeping the kiddos entertained for two weeks sends you into a spiral, we have you covered this summer with an ultimate list of the best activities and experiences happening in Sydney these school holidays. Check out something for the explorers, the budding scientists, the mini-athletes, the musical prodigies and just about everyone in between. No sun? No worries. We've also included some indoor activities in the mix for those wet-weather days.  Looking for somewhere affordable to eat out with the kids? Check out our guide to the best cheap eats in Sydney. Or visit the best kid-friendly restaurants in Sydney.

The 48 best rooftop bars in Sydney

The 48 best rooftop bars in Sydney

We're all about a secret underground dive bar or two – but in a city as beautiful as Sydney, it seems like a damn shame to retreat into the depths for every tipple. From a sundowner by the harbour to a sunny rooftop in the Inner West, our town is awash with sky-high watering holes. So we've rounded up the best spots in the city to sip a cold one under a gorgeous open sky. But drinkers beware: Sydney's rooftop bars play host to some of the most contested seats in the city, so get in early for a spot in the sun.  For more al fresco drinking try one of Sydney's best beer gardens. Looking for another top-notch watering hole? Check out the best bars in Sydney.

54 fun things to do indoors in Sydney

54 fun things to do indoors in Sydney

Sydney: the city of blue skies, alfresco living and fabulous times in the great outdoors, right? Well, hold on a second. That may the case for a majority of the year thanks to our sunny Aussie climate but the Harbour City has its gloomy days too. Who said that hunkering down indoors was reserved for home? Take shelter in style with our guide to the most fun things to do indoors in Sydney. Whether you're in search of a crafternoon, a cultural adventure, or a cocktail with a view, there's something for everyone on our list of fun venues and activities where you can stay warm (or cool) and dry, all year round. Or why not wait out the rain in one of Sydney's most luxurious staycation locations?

The best kid-friendly pubs in Sydney

The best kid-friendly pubs in Sydney

From rock climbing to giant Scrabble, these pubs in Sydney have all bases covered for both parents and kids to have a fun night out. The days of your local watering hole being an exclusive, blokey hideout are long gone. Not only are there pubs embracing inclusivity and actively welcome families with kids, but they're broadening their appeal across the board with delciious food, and more diverse entertainment. These are our favourite local pubs that don’t shun families for bringing toddlers or tweens in tow. Need to burn off some steam? Check out the best playgrounds in Sydney here. Want to have a nice sit-down lunch with kiddos in tow? Check out the best kid-friendly restaurants in Sydney.  

Listings and reviews (107)

Paramount Recreation Club

Paramount Recreation Club

Multidisciplinary designer Bob Barton, who owns the 60-seat Golden Age Cinema in the heritage-listed Paramount Building, transformed the seldom used, sundrenched rooftop of the same Surry Hills landmark into a bright, LA-inspired, multi-purpose gym that’s open to the elements, high up above Commonwealth Street. Paramount Recreation Club is aims to provide a well-rounded health and fitness experience that takes physical but also mental and social health into account. It’d be a prime spot for a rooftop pool, but the building restrictions on the roof don't allow for that – instead, the space is designed to look like you’re poolside, without the water. White painted walls, green succulents and blue parasols give the space a holiday vibe. “We wanted to create something that helped people in the ways that they needed,” says fitness and health director Jordan Ponder. “People need to be strong, posturally; they need to be fit; they need mobility; and they need stability. We have specialists in each different area – an ex-long jumper for conditioning, an ex-dancer with military experience for building strength.” Their daily program caters to early risers, but there are lunchtime and evening classes for the commuting crowd. You can book online into yoga, pilates, boxing, skipping or meditation – as well as their signature class, the Paramount Workout, which is a program designed to combine three of the four pillars Ponder mentions into an hour-long session. “In the Paramount Workout,

The Barber Shop Barangaroo

The Barber Shop Barangaroo

The owners of York Street’s gin palace behind a barber shop have flipped the concept on its head for their second venue: the Barber Shop at Barangaroo is a gentlemen’s playpen of grooming products, luxury shaving treatments and three shelves of hard liquor. Director Mikey Enright says he didn’t want a carbon copy of their first venture, but instead to create a blokes’ hangout space, where you can get a trim and socialise with mates. “We’ve got a vinyl record player, we’ve got Wi-Fi so you can do a bit of work, have a cocktail, have your haircut and off you go.” Enright tells Time Out they’re licensed until 10pm every day, but the area is still a bit of a ghost town. “It’s only 25 per cent occupied at the moment. Lend Lease approached us because they loved the concept and we’ve got exclusivity in Barangaroo South for the next seven years, so to us it was just a smart business move.” The streets of Barangaroo still feel fresh-out-of-the-packet, but when the 20,000-or-so residents to move in Mikey and his team will be ready. The Barber Shop team have brought with them an old-world feel that’s as slick as the hair gel on the shop’s shelves. There’s no blood and bandages outside, but indoors there are black-and-white framed photos of musicians and sportsmen on the bare-brick walls, and six traditional barber shop chairs on the ivory-white tiled floor.  They’ve got a small, fully functioning bar in the far right corner stocked with Four Pillars and Archie Rose gins, as well as bott

Unyoked

Unyoked

Tiny homes have caused something of a revolution in Instagram travel porn. Cosy yet wild, compact but open to the elements, each small cabin in the countryside sparks a sense of adventure with just enough comfort for your average Joe City Mouse – and hundreds of people are booking into the remote getaways across the country. We stayed at one of Unyoked’s three wilderness hideouts in NSW to see what #cabinporn is all about (and to see if we could hack the ‘spiciness’ of this off-the-grid style of aspirational travel). Coralie, the name of our weatherboard cabin in the Kangaroo Valley region, is rated ‘mild level of spice’ on the Unyoked website – a grading system that cofounders Cam and Chris Grant use to prepare their guests for the level of adventure they will encounter during their stay: dirt roads, possible wildlife sightings, distance from the nearest town, for example. And we admit the first time we felt outside our comfort zone was when we set out on foot, car parked between a vineyard and a creek, across two fields with a loose sense of direction. We’ve followed GPS coordinates to get here, a two-hour drive from home, but with hills of dense bush surrounding us, it starts to feel like we’re very far from Sydney. We spot the tiny house in the distance, and there’s no other sign of human life – it’s idyllic, peaceful, and a little unnerving. Inside the cabin is cosy AF. Coralie’s plywood walls, cute pot plants, and elevated, plump bed, framed by two large glass windo

Paddington Markets

Paddington Markets

Every Saturday, more than 100 stalls line the grounds of Paddington Uniting Church and the neighbouring public school selling Australian-made fashion, handmade crockery and metal costume jewellery. The market has been operating on the same day since 1973, and the all-weather event is a profitable fundraiser for the church. Many of the stallholders return week on week, like the elderly Japanese couple selling Bonsai trees and the Spanish shoemakers selling espadrilles. It’s predominantly an art, clothing and design market – and alongside the kitsch bric-à-brac and Australiana-print tea towels you’ll find straw hats from local milliners and soft Tunisian-made ‘Turkish’ towels from young Eastern Suburb entrepreneurs. Antique, vinyl and vintage stalls are few and far between, but leather satchels, beach photography prints and patterned baby rompers are two a penny. On a hot day locals gather at the shaded tables and stools by the snack stalls. Turkish women hand roll yufka dough at the gözleme tent and vegetables are blitzed in a blender at the fresh juice stand. Chin’s Laksa stall, proudly MSG and gluten free, is a popular choice – as are the vegan cookies and sourdough scones on offer at the bakery stalls. It has a bohemian flair compared to its Oxford Street location and customers joyfully take up fortune readings, as well as reiki and Japanese massage. It’s an oddball mix, but one that works strangely well in an area known for its designer boutiques and gentrified pubs. Ou

Manly Markets

Manly Markets

Off the main drag, but still central enough to attract the tourists, Manly’s weekend markets brings together organic food stalls with souvenir sellers that makes for an easy one-stop-shop for a bite to eat and a quick browse before you hit the beach. Sydney Road has market stalls on either side, which can get stiflingly busy in summer sunshine. On a Sunday morning you’ll find Patrick’s Farm and Rita’s Farm proudly selling certified organic produce from the Hawkesbury and Wallacia. You can pick up Hass avocados, lush green veggies like broccoli, leeks, fennel and spinach, plus earthy Dutch cream potatoes and butternut, and boxes of free range eggs.  Alongside the two main produce stalls at the church end of the street, there are fresh-cut flowers for sale, as well as a variety of stalls peddling coffee, baked goods and fresh breads.  Though the food stalls pack up around 2pm, the bulk of the market’s clothing and gift stalls are there till 5pm. The range is hit-and-miss, from backpacker chic yak wool cardigans, natural skincare products and silver jewellery to the truly excellent retro haul at the tent occupied by Redfern’s Queen Justine Vintage. In the market for a loud Hawaiian shirt? You’re in luck. Looking for an acid wash denim mini? They’ll have heaps.  At the end of the day, this seaside locale is a perfectly breezy place to search for obscure and handmade gifts on a sunny weekend morning, with the beach a very sweet 50 metre walk away.   

Sydney Seaplanes

Sydney Seaplanes

Sydney Seaplanes operates from the site of Australia’s first international airport, where Catalina flying boats would take off for a ten-day journey to London in the early ’40s, stopping 30 times on the way. Now, they run approximately 15 flights a day, all year round, taking passengers over Sydney’s sandstone coastline for short scenic tours or fly-and-dine experiences to Cottage Point Inn on the Hawkesbury or Jonah’s at Whale Beach. Recently, the terminal has undergone a transformation from shabby shed by the water to a high-end waterside dining spot where Rose Bay residents can stop in for a coffee and pastry or Champagne and oysters. There’s a mini museum on site where visitors can drop in and discover the terminal’s history as a destination for luxury aviation.  Inside the six-seater aircraft you feel every bump of turbulence, but our friendly pilot Tim is quick to ease our nerves by pointing out the landmark beaches from Camp Cove to Shelly Beach, Avalon to Palm Beach. We land at Pittwater to drop off two passengers who are staying the night at Jonah’s – they’re picked up by a small boat complete with canine sailors. Back in the sky, we spot a pod of 20 dolphins frolicking around Barrenjoey Lighthouse. Tim tilts the plane so we can get the best photos possible as we cruise back to the inner harbour at 1,000 feet. The Manly Ferry looks like a tiny toy boat from up here. And as we thought it couldn’t get better, we circle the fortress island of Fort Denison for the finale

Dive Centre Manly

Dive Centre Manly

You don’t need to travel to the Great Barrier Reef to discover Australia’s marine life – you can see cockatoo fish, leatherjackets, sea urchin (so much sea urchin) and teeny tiny pomfrets right here, in Manly. Dive Centre Manly runs Snorkel Safaris of three popular spots in the area, and they take visitors on underwater adventures every day. Today we’re heading to Fairlight (the wind isn’t in our favour to snorkel at Shelly Beach) and our guide Ana explains the route we’ll take and what we’re likely to see before we arrive at the beach. In a 40-minute swim, we navigate over the kelp and seagrass in the quiet bay and Ana points out a school of goatfish, pygmy leatherjackets and crimson banded wrasse. Snorkelling is a social sport and having Ana to guide us means more eyes for spotting sea creatures as we concentrate on breathing and swimming. Before our eyes can adjust, Ana spots a pair of smooth cornetfish in the deep. We swim round to the boulders and the drop goes from three metres to 12, suddenly we’re surrounded by tennis ball-sized jellyfish that we scoop up with our hands to see the currents of light travelling through them. Already a snorkelling pro? Hire a mask, snorkel, fins and floaty for the day for $25.

Bungarribee Park

Bungarribee Park

Western Sydney Parklands' 200-hectare park has a fantastic playground for kids and one of the largest off-leash dog areas in Sydney. The $15-million development was completed in March 2017. Bungarribee Park’s playground has a giant sand pit with a colourful, geometric climbing tower that has slides and nets at various exits. Plus, there’s a flying fox, swings and balance beams in partially shaded spots that kids can clamber over and explore. The development also includes walking and cycling tracks, 20 barbecues and 13 picnic shelters, in addition to car parking and vehicle access from Doonside Road. Plus, if it’s a really hot day, you can cool off at Wet ‘n’ Wild.

Manly Kayak Centre

Manly Kayak Centre

One of the best decisions we ever made was opting for the water booties and fleece-lined base layer tops that Manly Kayak Centre offers to all its visitors. Why? Because this was the wettest and wildest kayaking tour we experienced – all thanks to the enthusiasm of our guide Belinda who was raring to go ahead on a winder-than-usual Saturday. Launching off metres from the Manly ferry was a thrill in itself, but soon we were working up a sweat navigating moving boats, a rising tide and drenching sea spray. We buddy up on a double sea kayak for maximum power as we paddle out towards the ocean. Hugging the coastline as much as we can, we steer into the secluded Store Beach for a much-needed rest and refuel. As part of the tour, Manly Kayak Centre organises a picnic table, chairs and loungers as well as a platter of sandwiches, fruit and lamingtons for the salty kayakers. The beach is accessible only by boat, which makes it a popular spot for proposal picnics. Though they’ve packed a couple of stand-up paddle boards, we opt to get back in the kayak and scoot around to Q Station. As each tour is four hours long, there’s time for a scenic walk wherever you moor up. We take a stickybeak around the historical, and possibly haunted, buildings at the old Quarantine Station. It’s a good opportunity to stretch the hip flexors and flex the wrists after the challenging 40-minute paddle. When the seas are calmer, Belinda takes her tours across to Dobroyd Head, but we’re more than satisfie

Carrington Falls and Nellie’s Glen

Carrington Falls and Nellie’s Glen

The Carrington Falls walking track is supremely popular, but Budderoo National Park has another gem up its sleeve: Nellie's Glen. The lesser-known picnic spot connects the top of Carrington Falls with a secluded rock pool and smaller waterfall that you can swim to, shower in, and take a seat under. Park your car and first take a look at Carrington Falls from its flat top. You can walk over the mossy bedrock and sit in the plunge pool, or just stand in the small slipstreams and look out at the treetops of the Southern Highlands. There are warning signs, but it’s worryingly easy to walk to the edge of the waterfall and peer over the edge – don’t. Walk round to Nellie’s Glen – around 100 metres up the hill. There's a natural rockpool that's deep enough for laps and people take turns in the shower, including young kids. Bring towels and settle in for the afternoon, watching the dragonflies and butterflies that skim the water.

Pirrama Park Playground

Pirrama Park Playground

Once little eyeballs spot this park’s giant sandpit, they won't want to leave. Pirrama means ‘rocking stone’ in Gadigal, and the 1.8 hectare park in Pyrmont has cafés, free barbecues, public toilets, and covered picnic areas that all overlook the harbour waters. It also has an excellent playground with a sandpit so large it’s like a mini fossil-excavation site. Toddlers scrape away at the sand, digging for buried treasure – and parents are busy keeping it out of their mouths/ears. But the true gem of this waterside playground is the wide-open pathway of water fountains – soaking all the rudey nudey kidlets running around and screaming at the top of their lungs. It’s heaps of fun in the summer (just remember to bring a change of clothes). If your little one doesn’t love to get wet, there are two baby swings, a small slide, and spinning-gravitational-rotators that are fun to cling onto. Bigger kids (and adults) can clamber over the giant net, or simply run off steam around the expansive grassed park. Careful: it’s not fenced, and there’s lots of access points to the water.

Prince Alfred Park Playground

Prince Alfred Park Playground

Prince Alfred Park has a lot going for it: city skyline views, an outdoor swimming pool, basketball and tennis courts, wildflower regeneration meadows, and one of the best playgrounds in Sydney. There’s a giant yellow balloon structure that’s inspired by a historical moment when Thomas Gale took a balloon ride from Prince Alfred Park to Redfern in 1870. Kids can climb up and hang off the play equipment, before flinging themselves towards the big see-saw and the swings, which face towards the city’s most interesting buildings. There’s a small elephant slide for little ones, plus one extra wide one with a shade, and as you’re right by the entrance to Prince Alfred Park Pool, make sure you pack your swimmers.

News (243)

18 work Christmas party dos and don’ts

18 work Christmas party dos and don’ts

Here at Time Out, we make recommendations based on first-hand experience. Please don’t make the same mistakes we have. Here's some solid advice from Slater and Gordon lawyers: What happens at the work party does not stay at the work party, and it may leave you searching for a job in the new year.  Slater and Gordon Senior Associate in Industrial and Employment law El Leverington says that while some cases of dismissal are obvious – like the man in Fremantle who was fired after drunkenly pushing his fully clothed manager into a pool during the office Christmas party before swearing at the GM and starting a physical fight – other examples of bad behaviour that have led to lawful termination of employment are less obvious. Like the kick-boxing trainer in Melbourne, who was dismissed after lying about his sick wife as an excuse to leave his work’s end-of-year awards night early, to attend a competitor’s Christmas function. “In the eyes of the law, there is a connection between the workplace and end-of-year celebrations, so legal obligations around discrimination, sexual harassment and workplace health and safety apply and have been enforced in a broad array of situations,” says Leverington. Their key advice: treat the end-of-year party like any other day at work and behave accordingly – and always pause for thought before posting from the party on social media.  And our advice: Don't become so mesmerised by your own hair in the bathroom mirrors they send a search party. Don't

Three new designers at the Big Design Market

Three new designers at the Big Design Market

Two hundred independent designers will showcase their products at the Big Design Market this spring, which is held at the Royal Hall of Industries. We speak to three designers who’ll be appearing at the Sydney markets for the first time to find out who they are, what flies off their virtual shelves and what to expect from their real-world stalls on November 24-26. 1. Kester Black Melbourne-based nail polish brand Kester Black says they’re Australia’s most innovative ethical beauty brand – and they’ve got certificates to prove it. Their polish is Australian made, accredited cruelty free, and vegan and founder Anna Ross commits two per cent of their revenue to charity. The five-year-old company recently created a water-based nail polish remover, which is non-flammable, safe for children, halal certified and smells like peaches. “Nail polish actually helps your nails become stronger, you just need to use great products,” says Ross. “One thing customers can do to is use a nail cleanser, which removes oils or cream from the nail before they apply their nail polish. If you use cuticle oil after your nail polish has already bonded to your nail that will also stop them from flaking.” Already a fan? Look out for a new line of lipsticks in the new year. $4-$28. Most popular? Nude shade ‘Petal’ is their bestselling polish, along with Hollywood red ‘Cherry Pie’. Make a beeline for… Their Christmas crackers. “We’re making bonbons for Christmas which are like a surprise lucky dip item.”

My Dad Wrote a Porno might just go out with a bang, according to host Jamie Morton

My Dad Wrote a Porno might just go out with a bang, according to host Jamie Morton

Jamie Morton once received an email from his dad containing one poorly written, not-sexy pornographic novel about a woman called Belinda rising to the top in the steamy world of the pots and pans industry. Instead of pushing that embarrassing reality deep down somewhere inside, Jamie and his friends, James Cooper and Alice Levine, started recording a weekly chapter reading – now 180 million of us tune in to listen to the cringeworthy world of Belinda Blinked.  “Am I in some sort of parallel universe where he’s a great writer and the joke’s on us?,” says Morton. “When my mum first listened to the first episode, she said: ‘Well, at least I know he’s never had an affair because he clearly wouldn’t know what to do.’” Morton’s dad – pen name Rocky Flintstone – is famously inept when it comes to writing about sex, or, for that matter, writing about anything at all. “I think he’s responsible for the drop in teenage pregnancy numbers,” says Morton. “STDs on the decrease.” But the big joke – the one we’re all in on, that Jamie’s dad is a bit crap at writing – is starting to take a turn.  “To this day, [Rocky is], genuinely, like ‘This work is brilliant and I’m amazing. What’s annoying is that he’s right. The show’s gone on a weird journey of oh-let’s-all-laugh-at-Rocky to now, suddenly, oh-my-god-is-he-actually-really-good?” If you laughed your way through series one, but forgot all about Belinda, Peter Rouse, Giselle, Tony and the one-and-only Duchess, don’t worry. “Welcome to Alice

My Dad Wrote a Porno might just go out with a bang, according to host Jamie Morton

My Dad Wrote a Porno might just go out with a bang, according to host Jamie Morton

Jamie Morton once received an email from his dad containing one poorly written, not-sexy pornographic novel about a woman called Belinda rising to the top in the steamy world of the pots and pans industry. Instead of pushing that embarrassing reality deep down somewhere inside, Jamie and his friends, James Cooper and Alice Levine, started recording a weekly chapter reading – now 180 million of us tune in to listen to the cringeworthy world of Belinda Blinked.  “Am I in some sort of parallel universe where he’s a great writer and the joke’s on us?,” says Morton. “When my mum first listened to the first episode, she said: ‘Well, at least I know he’s never had an affair because he clearly wouldn’t know what to do.’” Morton’s dad – pen name Rocky Flintstone – is famously inept when it comes to writing about sex, or, for that matter, writing about anything at all. “I think he’s responsible for the drop in teenage pregnancy numbers,” says Morton. “STDs on the decrease.” But the big joke – the one we’re all in on, that Jamie’s dad is a bit crap at writing – is starting to take a turn.  “To this day, [Rocky is], genuinely, like ‘This work is brilliant and I’m amazing. What’s annoying is that he’s right. The show’s gone on a weird journey of oh-let’s-all-laugh-at-Rocky to now, suddenly, oh-my-god-is-he-actually-really-good?” If you laughed your way through series one, but forgot all about Belinda, Peter Rouse, Giselle, Tony and the one-and-only Duchess, don’t worry. “Welcome to Alice

Normal people can now book into this exclusive floating villa in Sydney’s Palm Beach

Normal people can now book into this exclusive floating villa in Sydney’s Palm Beach

You may have spotted the extraordinarily fancy floating getaway off the shores of Palm Beach, complete with aperitivo deck, sun loungers and a dingy for nipping to the beach with a bottle of champers at sunset. Lilypad Palm Beach launched in December 2018 as an exclusive, members-only villa for overnight stays – and now the company has opened up its bookings to ordinary folk, like us. That’s if you can afford the $1,350-per night price tag. Owner and designer Chuck Anderson, a Northern Beaches local, says he created Lilypad as a space for true relaxation and out of respect for the environment it occupies. “The design and construction of Lilypad was a feat in engineering to ensure guests could experience luxury accommodation on an entirely stable surface, whilst drifting with the rhythmic sounds and movements of the ocean,” he says.  Photograph: Supplied The mini island retreat is a neat package of luxury living. Every overnight guest receives a private concierge, a self-drive personal vessel (posh dingy) to explore the local beaches, a complimentary onboard cellar of Veuve Clicquot, Cloudy Bay and Glenmorangie Whiskey, and a meal at Barrenjoey House to which you’ll receive private boat transfers.  Upping the ante, Lilypad has partnered with Sydney Seaplanes so you can jet off to Palmy from Rose Bay and land on the water beside your new pad for the night. Or, you can go big or go home on that extravagant proposal you’ve been planning and book onboard massages and beauty treatm

Antidote announces new speakers and a special panel on climate change

Antidote announces new speakers and a special panel on climate change

Responding to the urgent matters of our time has been a constant driver for Antidote festival, which announced its first speakers for the two-day talks and ideas event last month. We’ve already been blown away by the headline speakers coming to Sydney Opera House in August, including former Sonic Youth frontwoman Kim Gordon, Cambridge Analytica Whistleblower Christopher Wylie and Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson. Now Antidote has announced a brand-new panel talk calling attention to the urgent need to halt climate change. The panel features Climate Now co-founder Kyle Pope, conservationist Tim Flannery, and CNN Indonesia anchor Desi Anwar. Walkley award-winning journalist Kerry O’Brien is chairing the discussion, which will ask whether the media has failed in its reporting and how it should approach the topic of climate change now. More new names on the bill include Cantopop singer and LGBTQIA rights activist Denise Ho, who will appear in conversation with Vice UK editor Zing Tsjeng; American international attorney Kimberley Motley, the first foreign lawyer to practice law in Afghanistan; and Peter Greste, who will moderate the panel talk My Crime is Journalism.  There’s another new panel discussion that will focus on the economics of disability. Speakers include Worimi man and CEO of First Peoples Disability Network Damian Griffis, and disability and human rights activist Samantha Connor. City of Sydney councillor Jess Scully will address alternative models of hous

Sydney is home to the first ever Indigenous rooftop garden dedicated to native plants

Sydney is home to the first ever Indigenous rooftop garden dedicated to native plants

There are 70 finger limes planted into around 25-40 centimetres of soil on a rooftop of a new building in Eveleigh. Warrigal greens glisten under the weight of recent rainfall, two species of saltbush (‘old man’ and ‘ruby’) tussle for space, and we’re taking a deep inhale of the spearmint-like scent of a native rivermint (we’re told it’s very good in a Mojito). Christian Hampson, one of the founders of Sydney’s first native plant rooftop farm tells us, “We’ve got mountain species next to coastal species next to western desert species – and they’re all thriving in this environment.  “We started off with just over 30 species. The idea is that we create an ecosystem up here, attracting birds and insects that pollinate our food species.” Hampson and his co-founder Clarence Slockee have spent three months tending to their new garden, and almost two years on a bigger project that’s set to become a template for others who want to learn about the benefits of edible, medicinal and culturally relevant plants to Indigenous Australians.  “We wanted to disrupt not only the way that Indigenous business was done, but also environmentally conscious enterprise.”   Photograph: Cassandra Hannagan Hampson is a Woiwurrung and Maneroo man and Slockee is a Mindjingbal-Bundjalung man. They’ve named their operation Yerrabingin, which means ‘we walk together’ in Muktung, from Hampson’s grandparents’ language. “It’s about the time when the first people and the first spirits walked the earth and they we

Dating IRL: Martin and Tony

Dating IRL: Martin and Tony

Conscious Dating Co helped us find two Sydneysiders looking for love. We sent them on a date to Nour to see if sparks would fly… Ideal date Martin: “I like being in nature, so going on a bush walk and swimming in freshwater rivers or lakes, or finding a waterfall to swim under.”Tony: “I like activity-based dates, like paddle boarding, rock climbing, going to Holey Moley or something that takes you both out of your comfort zone.” First impressions Martin: “Tall. Handsome. Warm. Friendly. Open.”Tony: “He had a great beard and a great smile.” Chemistry  Martin: “There was chemistry on my part. I thought he was very attractive.”Tony: “Probably not. We have very similar beliefs, so from a friendship perspective: yes. I have quite a big personality; I was loud and he was shy. I need someone who’s a bit boisterous.” Awkward moment Martin: “I didn’t feel awkward. I thought we had good, comfortable communication. I was attracted to him, so I suppose I felt nervous about that. I felt a tension – in a good way.”Tony: “There were no awkward silences. But it would take a lot for me to feel awkward.” Afterward  Martin: “We said goodbye to each other, and he gave me a kiss on the cheek… I gave him a kiss on the cheek and we both went home. I thought it was a nice ending to the evening.”Tony: “I wanted to make sure he got home safe. I had plans to meet a friend’s new boyfriend, so I went to meet them afterwards.” Second date?  Martin: “I’m definitely open to a second date. I’d like to get

Sydney has a new rooftop sauna in Surry Hills

Sydney has a new rooftop sauna in Surry Hills

Sydney is overrun with novelty fun at this time of year – you can sit in your own snow globe at Igloos on the Pier, feast on cheese in a tent at the Winery, and play retro children’s games at a pop-up playground in the sky – so it was only a matter of time before someone thought to open a pop-up sauna on a rooftop.  Fortunately, those people are Surry Hills fancy-pants gym Paramount Recreation Club and the sexy wellness brand Nimbus + Co, who have studios in Bondi, Byron Bay and Melbourne.  Together they’ve created their Winter Sauna on the rooftop of Paramount Recreation Club that is available every day until the end of August – and you don’t need to be a member of the gym to use it.  Photograph: Supplied The private, infrared glasshouse uses mid, near and far infrared lighting to heat your body and help you relax. They’ve kitted it out with beautiful furniture, greenery and robes by Hay, the Plant Society, In Bed, and Armadillo & Co, and it’ll have built-in speakers so you can plug in your own tunes or meditation podcasts.  It’s open to the public and guests of the Rec Club and Paramount House Hotel. You can get sweaty on your own for $60, pair up with a pal for $80, or go in on a hot threesome (keep it clean, please) for $90.  The Winter Sauna is open from 7am-8pm from Monday to Friday and from 7am-2.30pm on Saturdays and Sundays until the end of August.  Heat up next to a roaring fire at the best pubs with fireplaces in Sydney.  Pamper yourself at the best spas in Sydne

Antidote has announced its first speakers for this year’s festival

Antidote has announced its first speakers for this year’s festival

The first guests at this year’s Antidote festival have been announced and the emerging themes of the program include data privacy, press freedom, and our creative response to a world in political and social turmoil. “The big underpinning idea for Antidote is how we can practically respond to our times,” says festival director Dr Edwina Throsby. “There are big thematic issues that we’re all struggling with, and a lot of them are to do with our online environments.” Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Chris Wylie, Sonic Youth co-founder Kim Gordon, and Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson are some of the headline speakers for Antidote, which takes place on Saturday, August 31 and Sunday, September 1. Throsby says the festival’s themes ask a lot of questions about our collective and individual freedoms, restrictions and rights to rally against injustices – but that Antidote is a festival that’s also very hopeful. “I think that hope comes through a lot in this session,” she says. “A lot of people in their work are holding others to account, bringing about change in their community – but the person who articulates the idea of hope the best is DeRay Mckesson.” Born in Baltimore to drug addict parents, the former teacher is now a prominent voice in the Black Lives Matter movement. “One of his really strong messages is to find hope in activism. People become activists because they’re angry and because they’re railing against injustices, but the fact that communities form arou

Six moments that moved us at this year’s TEDxSydney

Six moments that moved us at this year’s TEDxSydney

In TEDxSydney’s tenth year the theme ‘legacy’ took on many meanings. Not only did it stand for how far the event has come as one of the largest TEDx events around the world, but also what we as Australians would be leaving behind for future generations. We teared up when 99-year-old Holocaust survivor Eddie Jaku simply reminded us to make every moment count; we rose to our feet to scream like a teenage girl for Yve Blake, author of Fangirls, to try to reconnect with a sense of innocence and empowerment; and we listened with amazement as assistant professor of genetics Monkol Lek spoke of his resilience and determination to find a solution to his neuromuscular disease. We clapped and we laughed and we cried. Here were the six moments that moved us most at this year’s TEDxSydney. 1. When Australia’s celebrated journalist and writer became the first TEDxSydney speaker not to stand on the big red dot Iranian-Kurdish journalist and writer Behrouz Boochani, the man who was awarded the Victorian Prize for Literature for No Friend But the Mountains but is unable to set foot in Australia, became the first speaker at the Sydney event to prerecord his talk – not because he didn’t want to be there, but because he is still detained on Manus Island. “My story is the same as 2,000 other people,” says Boochani. “We found ourselves in a place that was worse than a prison.” Boochani spoke direct to camera, unable to know the reaction of the audience, urging everyone in the room to consider th

Ride the new Sydney Metro trains for free this Sunday

Ride the new Sydney Metro trains for free this Sunday

Put your Opal cards away! This weekend you can hop on one of the first Sydney Metro trains to Chatswood without paying a cent. On Sunday May 26, the new Metro North West Line will officially open, launching the huge NSW government project to develop Australia’s first driverless railway system. To mark the occasion, they’re throwing open the gates on all services between Tallawong and Chatswood – so you can test it out for yourself. All Sydney Metro stations will open around 11am on Sunday, with the final metros of the day leaving Chatswood at 10.05pm and Tallawong at 9.35pm. It’s also the start of Vivid Sydney this weekend (lights on between 6pm-midnight), so if you were planning to check out Chatswood’s lights (also free of charge) you can save yourself a hefty Uber fare home. Premier Gladys Berejiklian is pretty chuffed about the project, which has been delivered on time and more than $1 billion under budget. And if you’re concerned about the lack of humans in the drivers’ compartment, we hear the new driverless trains have completed more than 180,000 kilometres of testing.   Planning to mix your modes of transport? Remember to tap on and tap off for regular bus, train and light rail services. It’s just the shiny Metro North West Line that’s free to use. Planning your Vivid Sydney route? Here are the 11 best Vivid Lights to seek out.