The razors have been blunted in Sydney’s former centre of sex, drugs and crime. Now, lanes where you once dared not walk are home to bars you’d kill to get into – shady little places at the forefront of the city’s small bar movement like Love Tilley Devine and the hidden-if-not-very-small Shady Pines and Cliff Dive. And there’s always old favourites like the Darlo.
There's also a huge range of small commercial art galleries, high end furniture shops and a very respectable theatre.
Food in the blocks between Oxford Street and the Cross has also picked up – Victoria Street is choc-a-block with great eats and home to Sydney’s most popular ice cream shop in Messina – and you’ll find one of Sydney’s thinnest, most perfectly crisp (and ruthlessly authentic) pizzas at Lucio.
Despite lockout laws causing venues to close their doors at 1.30am, Oxford Street is still home to plenty of gay bars, and hipster gig venue of choice, Oxford Art Factory. Darlo can still be as shady as it ever was. The difference now is, you can do it with a bit of style... and get the best pork roll going when you need that 4am stomach-filler.
The best bars in Darlinghurst
In Darlinghurst you're spoiled for choice when it comes to excellent boozing options. Maybe you feel like nautical cocktails and a lobster burger? Or would a Boilermaker and a bowl of monkey nuts suit you better? The one thing we can all agree on, surely, is that when top notch cocktails are the order of the day, you want a five star bar with the best in the business mixing your drinks. You can find in all in this boozy pocket of the East.
Gelato Messina - Darlinghurst
If you're used to ordering a misto plate and receiving cured meats, think again before you try Messina. In fact, think of a completely different part of the cow. Here, the only language they speak is ice cream, and with five scoops for $12 it makes for quite the delicious dialect. Don't limit yourself to the usual suspects (although a scoop each of white and malted chocolate makes a good alternative to plain old chocolate and vanilla). Instead choose from flavours like apple pie, yoghurt, cassata and blood orange. Hey, it's hard to go wrong when you get five attempts at a good scoop.
The best restaurants in Darlinghurst
The best bars in Darlinghurst
Shopping in Darlinghurst
What's on in Darlinghurst
Janet Laurence: Deep Breathing (Resuscitation for the Reef)
The acclaimed Australian artist is bringing her immersive installation from the Paris Climate Summit to the Australian Museum
A Heavenly Pairing of Beer and Cheese
Be sure to get tickets to this delicious combo at the Local Taphouse
Arts and culture in Darlinghurst
Established in 1964, this Sydney institution maintains a loyal following among some of Australia’s most significant artists. Among the notables are late...
Liverpool Street Gallery
Gallery director James Erksine opened this gallery in 2003, beneath the offices of his sports management company. Artists on the books include sculptor Peter...
Black Eye Gallery
Photographer Tom Evangelidis is the director of this gallery dedicated to contemporary photography from established and emerging artists from...
Stanley Street Gallery
This multidisciplinary gallery is owned and curated by artist pals and former SCA students Liza Feeney and Merilyn Bailey – who also run their jewellery...
ALASKA Projects [William St]
This artist-run-initiatve opened in March 2016, and is the sister space to ALASKA Projects [Carpark], also established by curator/gallerist Sebastian Goldspink.
Australian Design Centre
New name, new face, new vision – Object is looking better than ever at 50
SBW Stables Theatre - Griffin Theatre Company
This former stables is the home of new Australian writing