Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Rooting for the Blues Festival

If you’re heading to Sydney between the 24 – 26 October on business or for a social visit, you must check out the Sydney Blues and Roots Festival. As now one of the city’s most prominent events in the music scene, the stunning village-like historic town of Windsor to the festival is only an hour drive from Sydney.

The lineup is pretty hefty and includes headliners such as Busby Marou, The Black Sorrows, The Flood and The Radiators alongside another 32 national and local bands.
Unlike San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park ‘Hardly Strictly Festival’ with freebie access, you do need to pay for tickets yet there are early bird passes and consider the 3 day weekender at $149.00 AUD. Alternatively, you can submit an application through the website to volunteer and then you’ll have free access to the venue. Do note that applications for this close 3 October and only 50 volunteers are needed.
 
The beauty of this festival is that, unlike Golden Gate Park’s no-camping rule, the Blues and Roots Festival encourage you to tap into your inner eco meets nature traits. With that in mind, there is a Tent City that’s walking distance to the venue. In this camping ground, you can bring your own tent or camper and for all fabulous glampers, well you’ll probably bring along champagne with your designer rain boots and Burberry hat, and make it a long weekend, right?
Take into account there will be a cyclone of food and drink vendors but you can bring your own picnics in the public areas, if you’re looking to keep to a budget.
Regarding the lay of the land, the website has a map you can download but for easy understanding, there are various locations that bands will be playing so keep an eye on the schedule and you can plan which band & stage you want to pitch a seat at:  Trentino’s is a bar in Windsor, hosting some of the performances yet the Main Stage is in the Oval, where all the action will take place by the big name artists. Then there’s the Roc Boots Stage at the Fitzroy Hotel, at the Inside Stage area. All within easy distance of each other, the shows run from 6pm to 2am on Thursday and 4pm to 2am on Friday. Obviously on Saturday and Sunday the shows start at 10am so you have a full run of music till 2am on Saturday and 10pm on Sunday.
Since the ticket prices may have dented your credit card a tad and you’re planning to head back to the city on a business or personal trip, check out one of the most affordable Sydney boutique hotels. If the Festival’s inspired you, take a look at Cremorne Point Manor’s home page video, where the hotel overlooks the Sydney Harbour. It’s a sure bet to blow away your blues now the festival’s over!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Gallop to Royal Randwick For Champion Stakes

On Saturday 11th October, one of the most glamorous events of the season takes place – the Moët & Chandon Spring Champion Stakes Day. This ‘carnival’ style trackside event is where all the ladies have the opportunity to parade with their most outrageous hats (Ascot style), everyone’s dressed up to the nines and famous faces are in abundance.

With the Moët & Chandon listed races, there’s the famous $400,000 Champion race featuring the country’s best jockeys, horses and trainers. Fashion, fillies and hospitality is a must if you want to mingle with the who’s who of high society.
This is a fantastic event for wining and dining clients so remember to bring your picnic hampers, bar platters and flutes for a glass of bubbly.
 
For $20 a ticket, this includes the Myer Fashions on the Field competition, with a prize pool over $100,000. The prizes include a share of the $10,000 in Myer Shopping Spree alongside return economy Emirates flights to Europe, Nicholas Haywood Diamond Set Collection, Longines watches and a cruise sponsored by Celebrity Cruises.  
Live music is in abundance and only 20 minutes drive from Sydney, there are free buses transporting you to and from the official post race venue within the grounds.  Also remember to check out the Clinique Lounge with complimentary make up tips and touch ups!
The first race starts at 1.10pm but the doors open nearly a couple of hours earlier so you can get familiar with the lay of the land. As the last race is 530pm, this is a full packed day of socializing at its finest.
As the event has a minimum 18 years old age restriction, maybe if you’re a NSW resident, leave the kids at home and pamper yourself for a few hours at the races.
After a long day of cheering on the horses, you’ll need a relaxing and inspiring view of the Harbour as the sun settles. At one of the most affordable, boutique hotels in Sydney, check out the aerial video on Cremorne Point Manor’s home page and get racing to the reservations page as rooms book quickly.   

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

New Year, Resolution, Booking…

Do we sound premature in talking about New Year’s Eve? Our rooms are usually fully booked two to three months before 31st December so we wanted to ensure you don’t miss the boat this year.

Overlooking the Harbour, guests at Cremorne Point have the most incredible, prime view of the skyline which is a double bonus – our home page video shows the views from the hotel so check it out. Our Sydney boutique hotel attracts visitors from around the world and with the most affordable rates in the area, you’ll have more cash to spend on bubbly, bringing in 2015 in style!
Instead of scrambling around at the last minute of what to do when the clock strikes midnight, we’ve created some tips for you to start mulling over. Being organised for this New Year may be a decent resolution to put you in good stead for 2015, correct? So let us get started…
Countdown to the Gong:
6.00pm:  There will be air displays above the Harbour so start rehearsing your ohhs and ahhs.
7.00pm: A fire tug water display will take place as the Ports Corporation fire tug blast tones of water, into the skies. The spray creates an incredible image against the sunset.
8.00pm: Not wanting to be outdone by the water display, the air show rears its head for a second time.
8.30pm: Get ready to be wowed by the Pylon Projections over the Harbour Bridge. Just after sunset, the images project on the surface; a Sydney tradition and well worth putting your canapés down for.
8.40pm: Celebrating the country, the city honours past cultures (Aboriginal and Torres) with red flares fired into the sky from the Harbour Bridge and firework barges.
9:00pm: The Family Firework displays kick into high gear from the Harbour. Eight minutes of up-in-the-air colourful drama...just before the kids are sent to bed.
9:15pm: The sensational Harbour of Lights Parade follow suit with an illuminated flotilla, skimming the water with coloured rope lights.
10:30pm: Get ready for the Inspire Moment with this show stopper, blasting from the Harbour.
0:00am: At the stroke of midnight, the firework displays run for 12 minutes. The firework design is a notoriously well kept secret which is why millions head to the Harbour, Cremorne Point and tune in around the world on TV, smart phones and tablets.
Now you understand why we’re suggesting you book your room at Cremorne Point Manor early? Winning a Certificate of Excellence, four years in a row by TripAdvisor, it’s the best spot in the city to bring in the New Year!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Get Out, Art & About in Sydney

With a long stretch from 19th September to the 12th October, the City of Sydney presents….Art & About 2014. For all tourists heading to the city, this is a must-see collaboration of art festivals in streets, alleys, building sites and intersections. Not one to be shy about creativity, there are theatre performances in private living rooms (!) and Sydney’s largest ‘backyard party’ in Martin Place, adding to the buzzing scene.

From quirky to flamboyant, quintessential to glam-cam it up, local and international artists present this year’s theme ‘Endangered.’
Reverting back to Martin Place for a minute, as the first night opener, there will be a quarter acre block party. Yep, the Place will be transformed into a huge backyard with entertainment, amazing food & drinks, a cricket lawn, garage bands, garden furniture and the list continues. For locals, bring your dogs because they’ll groove and bark to the vinyl records and wag their happy tails over a touch of BBQ.

 
Adding to the mix, the Little Sydney Lives photo competition will be back by popular demand, with images displayed in Sandringham Gardens. Also, the Australian Life Exhibition & Prize will have a new $5000 Instagram competition (#australianlife) and entries are now open.
For Neon Nomads, ten three-metre-high tepees in Hyde Park will be the backdrop for showcasing the world’s most hyped and respected graphic artists from Brett Chan to Wendy Red Star and Phil James.
Also consider the Queen Victoria Building where you can join strangers for old school style group photos. And not forgetting the kids: the Walking Neighbourhood give rugrats the opportunity to take adults on a guided tour for 90 minutes through Kings Cross and Redfern.  
Think it can’t get any more creative? Well since the City’s sponsoring this, the Festival is free. Yes, keep that cash safely tucked away so you can spend more during the events.
Talking about free, how about staying at one of Sydney’s affordable boutique hotels that overlooks the Harbour so you can enjoy a freebie skyline view after attending the festival? At Cremorne Point Manor, it’s extremely obvious why Tripadvisor’s awarded the hotel a Certificate of Excellence, for the fourth consecutive year. Need more inspiration? Take a look at the hotel’s tour video on the home page. It’s enough to make you burst with NSW creativity!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Dance Like No One’s Watching

From the 12th – 14th September, the Australian Dance Festival takes place at Sydney Olympic Park Sports Centre.  If you’re heading to Sydney next weekend or a local, your timing is perfect, a bit like the two step.

There will be a multitude of dance workshops, performance dance competitions and showcasing the best of Australia’s dancers.  You don’t need to be a professional dancer or a dance student, you can simply swing on by and get your groove on with the crowd.

Last year’s event was such a success that the Festival organisers are hosting the auditions for 10 of the country’s most prestigious full time dance schools. So if you’re maybe thinking you can jive talk your way through this, alongside a hint of talent, here’s the link with all the details. 



Now back to the festival, the doors open for registration at 12pm on Friday and by 7pm, the doors are bursting for the country’s Best Dance Crew Competition heat. Within 3 hours, the venue closes but wait… there’s more!  On Saturday, at an excruciatingly early weekend start of 7am, the open stage performers rehearse for their showcase. Around 7pm, it’s a great time to show up with your two left feet as the Saturday Performances take place, followed by the Open Stage and Solo Competitions. Twenty four hours later, the Sunday activities including Q&A with Industry Greats, Workshops and Sunday Performances are reaching a crescendo. The finale is set to be outstanding – the Finals Best Dance Crew, Finals Dance Around the World Solo and the Open Stage kicks off at 730pm.
Reverting back to the workshops, the schedule has been acclaimed as a ‘who’s who’ of the country’s dance industry. This is where you get to put your Fred & Ginger into action and see if you have pure talent, or a talent for stepping on toes. Either way, the ticket prices for the workshops include seats for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening Competitions. If you’re also traveling to Sydney with kids, there’s a special under 12’s workshop session based on prior years popularity. That’ll ensure the kids are exercised and you’ll be pretty much guaranteed they’ll sleep well that night.
The tickets range from $30 AUD for evening shows to a full weekend pass (adults) up to $260. This latter price may seem hefty yet it includes all events. And there’s no price on exercise or fun, right?
After a long day of trotting around on your feet and cheering on the dancers, what better way to relax than 30 minutes drive away at Sydney’s affordable boutique hotel, Cremorne Point Manor. Winning a certificate of Excellence Award by Tripadvisor, fourth year in a row, it’s enough to make a song and dance about.

 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Read All About It

If you’re a proud book worm, then this weekend you need to be in Sydney. On the 30-31 August, the Book Expo Australia will ensure your nose is knee deep in volumes of hard and paper backs. The nation’s largest dedicated event for authors and publishers attracts around 10,000 visitors so if reading is your vice, your timing is perfect. Attendees are a mix of bookshop owners, book reviewers & bloggers, booktubers, families, individuals, teachers, librarians and journalists so enjoy being in educational company.

With over 100 exhibitors, you can check out the Guinness Book of Records attempt for the Longest Chain of Paper Dolls. Yes, you read correctly. Paper Dolls! There are also 6 breakout activity rooms, performance areas including reading and interactive illustrator skills, and a treasure hunt.


Everyone receives a show bag upon arrival and there’s a multitude of food, drinks and entertainment to keep all book lovers involved. Just to keep your energy levels up as the venue is vast and skimming booths may cause you to miss out on hidden gems and limited editions.
Taking place at Exhibition Hall 5 at Sydney Olympic Park, tickets are incredibly reasonable. From $5 AUD for teachers, kids (12-18 years old) librarians, to $20 for family tickets, $8.50 for adults and free passes for children under 12.
At this prime event where die hard readers come to meet well known and favourite authors, you can also hunt for up and coming novelists. The genres are extensive from crime, fantasy, childrens, thriller, action and contemporary to appease all minds. So if you’re really into the rom-com style whodunit with pop up visuals tapping into a modern day thespian theme (is there such a thing?), there may be an exhibiting author who makes your wish come true.
This could also be the time that you explore new innovative learning methods to help yourself or someone with challenged reading. Possibly you have dyslexia; there’s bound to be a book created for you in mind. Or you know a child who just doesn’t get the importance of reading, so is delayed in learning abilities? Snoop around and maybe you’ll find books for the reluctant rugrat.
This is also a great place to buy preview books and with a slight elbow twist, maybe the author will sign the book for you. A great, surprise gift for someone who is a huge fan of the author.
And only 30 minutes drive from the Park, you can then unwind, open your new books and start reading, overlooking the Harbour and downtown skyline. Staying at one of Sydney’s affordable, boutique hotels is the best way to put up your feet with a good novel. At Cremorne Point Manor, you can read between the lines why Tripadvisor gave the Manor a 4th annual, consecutive Certificate of Excellence Award.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Wheat All About It!

On the 29th and 30th August, Sydney Olympic Park (Exhibition Hall 4) will be hosting the Gluten Free Expo. For everyone who can’t even look at wheat, rye and barley without symptoms kicking into high speed gear; this is the event for you!

Now in its 10th successful year, from 9am to 4pm both days, you can snack through the booth display food samples galore. There will also be some stage presenters showcasing tips, cooking ideas and facts about foods to avoid and new foods on the market to indulge in.
This is also the time to grab a copy of Australian Gluten Free Life at the expo, the country’s first fully dedicated gluten free magazine that launched on newsstands early June.
 
Since around 330,000 Aussies have no idea they need a gluten free diet, this is the expo that will answer questions and give you a day of sampling delicious bites by exhibitors. The booths include chocolate croissants as a showcase piece by Simply Wize and don’t forget to ‘test’ their Potato Pastries.  The latter is not only gluten free but has zero trace of fructose or dairy, which is a mild miracle in itself. This is the same culinary team behind the national treasure ‘Crusty Bread Mix,’ the first national mix that takes bread to new heights and maybe the best invention since…sliced bread.
If you’re a no meat, fish, shellfish, poultry, eggs or peanut type of person, a must visit is to Amy’s Kitchen booth. Here you will find (amongst a flurry of items) gluten free cheddar and gluten free rice mac & cheese. Yep, gluten’less cheese.
Needing kosher, vegan, organic and GMO free foods? Nature’s Path Organic will be a really popular booth for anyone that has a wide range of dietary requirements.  With your taste buds running at a rate of knots, don’t forget to sample from Genius Gluten Free, the UK’s leading bakery who will be wowing you with double chocolate muffins, fruit loaf and in true British style…crumpets.
Think it can’t get any better? It just did. The Expo is FREE so just swing on by and consider purchasing some items for yourself, friends and family as healthy gifts. Or maybe for business clients who will appreciate foods they can actually eat without side effects.
After a long day (or two days) of snacking your way through this event, you can prop your feet at a boutique Sydney hotel, no more than 30 minutes away from the Park. Take a look at Cremorne Point Manor’s aerial video on the home page and see why TripAdvisor gave it a 4th consecutive Certificate of Excellence Award. Sometimes the best things in life come (gluten) free with a bonus freebie view of the famous Harbour and downtown skyline.