Tired of the classic movie and dinner date night combo? Us too. That's why we're always on the hunt for new things to do, scouring the city for not-boring Sydney activities — ones that are guaranteed to take your next date way beyond done-before beers at the pub. Whether you're taking someone on a second date or doing your 100th with your significant other, we've got some killer (and, yes, cute) ideas for dates to go on this week, no matter how much money you've got to spend. Just think of us as your cultural wingman. You're welcome.
WANDER AROUND GALLERIES IN WATERLOO AND GREEN SQUARE
Art Month Sydney has kept the city pulsing with Art Month Precinct Nights for weeks and now its Waterloo and Green Square's turn on Thursday, March 22. The increasingly rich arts precinct will host a collection of awesome exhibitions, including Present Exhibition at Darren Knight Gallery (showcasing exciting emerging artists working in Sydney without gallery representation) and the infamous Collectors' Space exhibition at MAY SPACE, where viewers get to have a sticky beak at works from the personal collection of artists, curators and cultural leaders (think Daniel Mudie Cunningham, Emma Price, Tony Albert and Abdul Abdullah) in a show exploring the relationship each collector has to both the works and the artists who created them.
Puppers. Woofers. Doggos. Pooch. It doesn't matter what you call your four-legged friend, dress them up and bring them — and your date — down to the Easter Party hosted by Super Furry Festival on Saturday, March 24.
This isn't just a celebration of canines, however. Taking place at Shannon Reserve between 9am to 2pm, the shindig's activities and stalls will be open for all pets. There'll be a photobooth for you and your pupper to dress up, get snapped and take two polaroids home with you afterwards afterwards, plus an Easter egg hunt for humans and animals. And of course, even if you don't bring your pup down (or you don't have one), you can indulge in some pup-watching and patting, then make a beeline to both the kitty cuddle tent and the bunny snuggle tent.
Entry is free, but registration is required — and everyone will receive a goodie bag upon arrival. If you'd like to take part in the Easter egg hunt or snap a pic at the photobooth, they'll set you back $10 a pop.
EAT YOUR WAY THROUGH A BURGER-FUELED BLOCK PARTY
Barangaroo's Ume Burger is harking back to its fan-crazed pop-up days, this time heading out to Rhodes to join forces with beloved local cafe Left of Field. The pair's one-night block party will take over Gauthorpe Street next to the cafe on Friday, March 23 from 5.30pm.
Unsurprisingly, it's all about the food at this party, with a brand new yet-to-be-revealed collab burger on offer, along with Ume classics and sides — we hope this means the Menchi burger with pork katsu and tonkatstu sauce will make an appearance, or the Japanese fried chicken with curry mayo. Left of Field will also serve up its signature pavlova hotcakes while Australian Brewery slings ice-cold brews and DJ Levins sorts the tunes.
Great if you live in the area or you both want to explore a new one.
SNAG SOME NEW THREADS ON THE CHEAP
If your loved one loves fashion, this is one shopping opportunity you cannot miss. The Big Fashion Sale is coming back to Sydney for four days this week from March 22 to 25.
The name pretty much says it all. This thing is big. You'll find thousands of lush items from past collections, samples and one-offs from over 50 cult Australian and international designers, both well-known and emerging, including Kenzo, Marni, Phillip Lim, Karla Špetić, Adidas, Kowtow, Macgraw, Thursday Sunday and more.
With discounts of up to 80 percent off, this is one way to up your count of designer while leaving your bank balance sitting pretty too. Prices this low tend to inspire a certain level of ruthlessness in all of us, though, so practise that grabbing reflex in advance. This is every person for themselves.
CHECK OUT PYRMONT'S NEW PUB
Well, it's sort of new. For the past 30 years, the Terminus Hotel, a 177-year-old pub in Pyrmont, has been an enigma to passersby, its facade overgrown with vines, its windows boarded up and its doors bolted. But now it's been brought back to life. Downstairs, drop an elbow on the marble-topped Tram Bar and order a craft beer, such as a signature Terminus Lager or a French sparkling wine. Alternatively, head into the cosy courtyard. Either way, you'll be able to watch the open glass-walled kitchen in full flight.
Upstairs, there's a classy cocktail bar named after Vera Dempsey, a tough, buxom woman who ran the Terminus in the 1930s. The light-filled space spills out onto a roomy, sun-dappled terrace — perfect for an after-work date.
INDULGE YOUR SWEET TOOTH AT MESSINA'S LATEST POP-UP
Everyone loves Gelato Messina's creative ice cream concoctions; however, believe it or not, there is a way to make their chilled sweet treats even better. You know how dessert takes oh-so-divine when it caps off an amazing meal? Yep, that's how to amplify your Messina experience.
As for your final course, Messina will be unleashing the Mortal Cookie Kombat — a milk choc chip cookie and milo crumble, topped with a scoop of dulce de leche gelato. And, it wouldn't be a burger feast without some milkshakes to sip on, which Messina is taking care of as well. The event will run in the carpark at Messina's Rosebery HQ, from noon until sold out. The full menu is available here.
CATCH A FLICK WITH THE SYDNEY HARBOUR AS YOUR BACKDROP
Just because we might have to have to whip out something other than Birkenstocks and t-shirts for autumn, doesn't mean we have to move our film watching indoors. So get ready to cosy up at the third season of Luna Park's rooftop cinema.
Running from March 22 to April 30, the pop-up cinema will be worth taking a chance on the weather — from the rooftop of Luna Park you'll have an unobstructed view of Sydney Harbour. For comfort, you can rent a Matt Blatt chair as your movie seat for the night, and you'll get a pair of noise-cancelling headphones so you can hear the film over the clamour of the Wild Mouse. The cinema comes complete with a rooftop bar serving up wine, burgers and, of course, popcorn.
Over the course of five weeks, the cinema will feature award-winners like The Post, and La La Land, cult favourites like My Neighbor Totoro and classics like Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Tickets are $22 each.
WATCH AN AWARD-WINNING INTERNATIONAL CHOREOGRAPHER AT WORK
American choreographer Meg Stuart will bring her showAn Evening of Solo Works to Carriageworks for two performances only this March 19 and 20.
As founder of Brussels dance company Damaged Goods, Stuart has created over 30 works in her career that cover a number of mediums — this has seen her collaborate with visual artists and musicians and dabbling in theatre as well as dance. She received the Gold Lion for Lifetime Achievement from La Biennale di Venezia this year.
This work showcases the oeuvre of the choreographer, and will have its Australian premiere in Sydney, where it will headline the public program for this year's Keir Choreographic Award. An Evening of Solo Works will incorporate both performance from her own body of work as well as excerpts from full-length pieces Stuart has performed in the past. It will demonstrate just how the choreographer has developed her own language and creation methods through her work.
DRINK BOMOTTOMLESS PROSECCO AT AN EUROPEAN-STYLE POP-UP
If there's one thing that's sure to cure those impending warm weather withdrawals, it's a taste of the European summer. So, from March 23 to 25, the Fizz Fellas are joining forces with Neutral Bay's Firefly to deliver a rather ingenious pop-up, featuring an extra refreshing Euro-inspired booze offering.
The Fizz Fellas' cute-as-a-button prosecco van will set up shop inside the bar for three delicious days, serving the label's signature prosecco alongside a variation on the Spanish classic, Tinto De Verano. Fittingly dubbed the F&F Cooler, this one's a unique blend of Fizz Fellas bubbly, red wine, orange liqueur and a few secret additions.
Both sips will be flowing from self-serve dispensers in the boys' repurposed three-wheeled Italian van, available to purchase individually, or as part of a two-hour bottomless package that'll set you back just $35 per person.
You can enjoy your European drinking session anytime across the weekend, though you'll want to book in advance to secure a spot.
ONE BIG BLOWOUT
GO GLAMPING WITHIN A 160-ACRE LUXURY GARDEN
Simple Pleasures Camping Co. is taking over the grounds of Oberon's Mayfield Garden for its next luxurious eco-friendly camping retreat. Glamping in the Garden will pop up from March 23 through April 30 in one of the world's largest privately owned cool climate gardens.
Located three hours west of Sydney's CBD, the gardens are seriously impressive and include an 80-metre waterfall, a walled kitchen garden, an Islamic-style pond and a six-acre water garden — plus a bluestone chapel, aviary and rose garden. Bookings include three-day passes to all 160-acres, with exclusive nighttime access for glamping guests. There's plenty to do apart from moseying around, including romantic canoe rides, interactive garden games, tours and workshops, with the garden's Autumn Festival also on during April.
Bookings also include a 'paddock and garden-to-plate' barbecue menu for two, with 80 percent of the produce sourced on-site and 20 percent handpicked from local suppliers. Each tent costs $290 per night, with the option of drinks ($45) and charcuterie ($26) on arrival. This is an extravagant option but worth it for an anniversary or milestone.