Every year we say the same thing: ‘This time. This time it’s gonna be epic.’ And every year we wind up drinking gin on somebody’s floor, eating Pringles out of the tube and wondering where the last 12 months went (just us?).
Well not this year, Melbourne. Not on our watch. This year you’re going to have a good NYE if it kills us. Presenting 13 ways to celebrate New Years that aren’t lame.
DJs At Campari House
A rooftop’s not to be sniffed at on NYE, especially if it comes with four levels of fun, 5-hours worth of drinks, pizzas and nibbles, plus DJs playing a mashup of commercial house. Campari’s pulling out all the stops this year. We recommend booking the Exclusive Soda Bar package—it comes with views of the fireworks.
Observatory At Garden State Hotel
Garden State has a few NYE packages available, depending on how deep your pockets are and how you feel about things like, you know, VIP lift access and drinking in the Observatory. DJs are kicking off from 8pm, and there’s gonna be a bunch of food stations in the beer garden. General admin starts from just $100. Not bad for all-inclusive.
Disco Amalfi Party At Neptune
A disco Amalfi party? What even is that? Turns out Neptune is running a Euro-style spritz session on NYE, which includes salami and disco tunes into the wee hours. Think free-flowing canapés, Negronis as far as the eye can see, Prosecco and plenty of coastal chic. It may not be Italy, but it’s about as close as you can get for $165.
Venetian Feast At Vaporetto
Speaking of Italy, Vaporetto in Hawthorn is throwing an epic Venetian feast, including a welcome Prosecco on arrival. Bring stretchy pants to this thing, and whatever you do, don’t miss the nettle rigatoni with beef, pork, porcini mushrooms, fennel and truffled pecorino. Molto bene.
Full Moon Party At Temperance Hotel
Ah, Full Moon parties. So many memories. So much we’d like to forget. The Temperance Hotel is trying to recreate some of that flame-twirling magic on New Years with its glow-in-the-dark Full Moon Party. Just buying a ticket puts you in the draw to win a trip to Thailand, and there’s gonna be drink specials, body painters and DJs running all night. Pass us the bucket.
Golden Age Of Hollywood At Lui Bar
Glitz, glam and one of the best views in town. Shannon Bennett's Lui Bar is throwing a Gatsby-esque night of debauchery on Lvl 55 of the Rialto for NYE. Trust us, this is one ticket you want to get your hands on asap. Entry gets your canapes and free-flowing booze throughout the night.
Japanese Pizza At Sash
Sash are running two dinner seatings on NYE (One at 5:30pm and one at 8pm). Chef Ken Tut is whipping up a special set menu (and when this guy says 'special', you can bet there's gonna be fireworks). Kyle Rose behind the bar will be slinging limited-edition cocktails all night too. This thing will book up fast.
Wine & Dine At Terindah Estate
Looking for something a little more classy? (Not that body paint and vodka isn’t classy) Terindah Estate is throwing a NYE party on the lawn, with views over Port Phillip Bay. The party’s starting at 8pm, so bring picnic rugs and blankets. Fresh-shucked oysters, canapés, and lotsa wine will be doing the rounds, plus there’s gonna be fireworks at midnight. Nice.
Carnival At Le Bon Ton
This one sounds really cool. Le Bon Ton is throwing a New Orleans-style Carnival party, including American BBQ, unlimited cocktails, plus two live bands: Andrew Nolte and his 10-piece orchestra, and Brookly ’86. After midnight the cash bar will be running till 4am (Le Bon Ton got a special extended license).
7-Course Japanese At Sake
Got midnight plans? You’re gonna need dinner first. How about a 7-course Japanese feast at Sake on Southbank? The set menu begins after 8:30pm, and includes a glass of champers on arrival. Good to see the ocean trout sashimi with truffle ponzu gel made the cut.
Cocktails At Fargo & Co
Richmond’s new bank-vault cocktail bar took Melbourne by storm this year. No surprise to see they’re celebrating NYE #1 with a big bash. The early bird tickets have sold out, but there’s still plenty of general admin. No inclusive packages here, but you do get a cocktail on arrival. DJs, chef’s menu and a cash bar—should be a cracking night.
Oscars Party At Taxi
Taxi already has one of the best NYE locations in town, but this year they’re pulling out all the stops with an Oscars-themed party. Entry gets you a five course feast, plus killer views of the Yarra fireworks. Dress to the nines (tuxedo t-shirts probably don’t count).
Rooftop Fireworks At QT
QT is one of our favourite rooftop bars in the CBD—there’s a reason it’s picked up a swag of awards. And they’re throwing one hell of a NYE party this year. Tickets are $265 (it’s cheaper if you’re staying in the hotel), and that gets you champagne on arrival, free-flowing bevvies, and tasty morsels cooked up by the QT culinary brigade.
Get the paddles—Melbourne's inflatable regatta is back.
Image credit: Griffin Simm | Fargo & Co