The Canberran

A snobby (though tongue-in-cheek) look at the finer sides of the National Capital. Got a tip? Email editor@thecanberran.com

Category: Architecture

Great. There’s a hotel at the airport.

by The Editor

Vibe_BrettBoardman_BW

 

It’s been a long time coming, but last Thursday a collection Canberrans were wined-and-dined the Grand Opening of the Canberra Vibe Hotel at the airport.

So, should Canberrans get excited about a hotel at the airport?

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Design Canberra – The subtle propaganda that makes our city great.

by The Editor

Capital_of_Culture_GMB_03

 

At The Canberran we celebrate great design. We love the new Vibe hotel at the airport, and the gorgeous sweep of the Bowen Place Underpass. But sometimes we meander through life aimlessly, almost unconsciously … without even thinking about how our world is so enriched by others. So who are these people?

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In a Word: Traffic

by obalint

Canberra-Traffic-Lights-BW

“Canberra doesn’t have traffic.”

Bold statement. But one that gets more promotion than Pippa Middleton’s derriere. The city’s architect designed grand boulevards and ample space, low population and rambunctious roundabouts certainly afford Canberrans the unique luxury of having minimal traffic. But I wouldn’t say there’s no traffic. And there’s been a steady increase in recent years…

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Rant: Bunda Street Redevelopment

by The Editor

Bunda-Street-2

Anyone who has been into the city during the last six months or so could not fail to notice the construction work at Bunda Street. What you may fail to notice is what the point of all this disruption is, given the result of the ongoing roadwork.

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Walt & Burley Arrives at Kingston Foreshore

by The Editor

Walt-&-Burley-05

Well, it’s finally here. After 15 long years of Kingston Foreshore’s vision, we finally have the opening of Walt & Burley – a bar in such prime position down by the lake that you’ll wonder why it’s taken half a century to decide this is probably a good use of waterfront land.

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QT Hotel Lands in Canberra

by The Editor

QTlogo_300

Certainly there was a lot of hype and speculation leading up to the official launch of QT Canberra. Could the old, modernist structure standing sentinel over Canberra’s Lake Burley Griffin really receive a mega make-over in keeping with Australia’s most edgy hotel brand?

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A.Baker at New Acton – Lightning Review

by The Editor

A-Baker-Glass-Close-up

It seems like forever since our beloved Parlour and wine room suffered at the hands of an unruly pizza oven and burnt to the ground.  Not that it was in any way Parlour’s fault (the oven belonged to the restaurant next door), however since then, epicurean Canberrans have mourned their loss from the heart of the New Acton precinct.

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Hippo Co – A Lightning Review

by The Editor

Hippo Co

Last week we briefly previewed a refurbished and relaunched Hippo Co (formerly called Hippo Bar). We’d seen the interior during the build stage, but it was always going to be interesting to see what it all looked like once the finishing touches had been applied.

Anyway, last Friday night was the time to get frocked up and make our way back up the stairs from Garema Place to see what had become of the previously soft and sultry surrounds of the Hippo Bar.

Hippo Bar Shot

The firs thing you notice, particularly when the bar is not particularly full, is how sparse the bar now feels. Thanks to the removal of the heavy, vinyl ottomans and square low tables that previously dotted the bar, Hippo Co feels a lot bigger. Prohibition-era tables with fine wooden chairs dot the room, and the bench along the back wall is now covered in green leather that looks as though it was pulled from the Lower House of our old parliament.

And it is at this point that the old world Gentleman’s club feel kicks in. The ornamental trophies (not the kind you won playing netball, rather those that might return from a hunting trip) line the upper walls with vacant expressions.

The brickwork and wooden wall feature enforce the austere feel of the bar. When the lights go down the new lighting does well to soften the room, and it is then one notices the glittering, gold lettering of the extensive whiskey list. Made from an old notice-board style, with individual metallic letters pressed in the grid, the ad-hoc alignment of the names and prices add a more human feel.

The cocktail list has been updated and streamlined, now offering a more limited selection of tipples served in small, elegant stemware. Even Lonsdale Street Roasters is involved, supplying fresh coffee on a daily basis for the espresso drinks.

All in all, it’s a lovely experience. The biggest question will be whether Hippo Co will (or even wants to) be as attractive to groups of ladies who have for so long perched themselves elegantly around the bar. Hippo Mark II is indeed a different beast, and we’re fascinated to see how Canberra responds to Canberra’s latest addition.

Hippo Co
Upstairs, Garema Place
02 6257 9090
management@hippobar.com.au
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C Dine. Pioneers of the Kingston Foreshore

by The Editor

C-Dine

When we first heard of Canberra’s latest dining venture – C Dine – we were taken immediately back to a cheesy French revolving restaurant we visited during a trip to Perth last decade.  Fear not, for this is certainly much closer, and definitely more stationary. Importantly, C Dine is the first full blown restaurant to make it on to the water down at Kingston Foreshore.

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The Lodge 2013 – Designs for a New Lakeside Residence

by The Editor

Lodge 3

The Lodge is different to counterparts in the United Kingdom and United States. Immediately next door to its parliament, it has spent most of its time cloistered behind a high, stone wall. The Lodge is old, small and apparently falling apart. What should we do with what is affectionately known as ‘the cottage’?

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