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Six Exclusive Events in Surry Hills' Hollywood Quarter to Add to Your Bright Winter Lineup

During Vivid's takeover, this neighbourhood's got everything from exclusive set menus and rooftop hip hop parties, to arty installations and nightly live music.
By Grace MacKenzie
June 02, 2023
By Grace MacKenzie
June 02, 2023


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During Vivid's takeover, this neighbourhood's got everything from exclusive set menus and rooftop hip hop parties, to arty installations and nightly live music.

In the area surrounded by Central, Darlinghurst and Surry Hills sits Sydney's Hollywood Quarter, the locale home to some of our faves: Paramount House, Butter, Hotel Hollywood and Pellegrino 2000, at a glance. And while Vivid Sydney is here, there's a staggering lineup of events to warm up your winter. So, if you're overwhelmed by the vast number of light-powered events, listen up: Sydney's Hollywood Quarter has all you need for a brilliant time.

From Friday, May 26 till Saturday, June 17, a whole range of arty installations (curated by Arts-Matter), culinary pop-ups and live music performances will be taking over the micro-precinct — here are six of the best.

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    Surry Hills fried-chicken joint Butter is bringing the heat this winter with a rotating lineup of DJs throughout Vivid Sydney for ‘Butter Presents’, an event taking over the venue on Fridays and Saturdays until Saturday, June 17.

    There’ll be R&B and soul, disco and hip hop, and there will definitely be fried chicken. As well as all the tasty usuals, the team will be slinging exclusive Vivid-inspired cocktails and unveiling a window display celebrating the NBA playoffs — and there’s even talks of a light show.

    Image: @MIKI.MIKKA.

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    From Friday, May 26 till Saturday, June 17, a whole range of musos will be bringing live performances and art to the Foster Street corner spot — adding energy to an already loved venue.

    Multidisciplinary First Nations artist and poet Jazz Money is illuminating their words ‘Light Beyond Horizon’ across the walls until Saturday, June 17. It’s a nod to the rich feminist history of the classic pub, which was one of the rare safe spaces for women to drink in the 70s, with these three words reflecting this. “There is always a light beyond the horizon that motivates us forwards,” Money shares.

    The fun isn’t saved for the weekends here — there’s live music at 8pm every night from Wednesday through Saturday, and entry’s free.

    Image: James Schulz

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    The exceptional Alberto’s Lounge welcomes diners in via a narrow door beneath a neon glow. Here, warm knowledgeable staff will take you to Italian streets with plates of house-made ricotta, seasonal pastas and perfected mains. And on Sundays, Tempo della Musica brings talented musos in to serenade you as you dine.

    In celebration of Vivid Sydney, the team is taking it up a notch with Gusta della Musica, where a special food and drink menu will pair with the evening’s vinyl-only DJs. On Sunday, June 4, it’ll be Dan Lupica’s Afro Groove and on Sunday, June 11, Italo-disco will fill the seductive space courtesy of Marco Vella. Bookings are essential, so grab a table quick if you’re considering it.

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    Throughout Vivid, this inconspicuous Foster Street spot is serving up an exclusive set menu to ensure you’re deliciously fuelled before your dazzling city explorations.

    From Tuesday to Saturday, from 5pm, you and your party can dine from the bespoke offering, enjoying a lineup of favourites from the menu for $80 per person. You can expect all the oceanic influences across British-bistro style plates the spot’s known for. The Rover is less than five minutes on foot from Central Station, meaning if you want to venture further than the Hollywood Precinct, you’re fantastically placed to do so.

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    At Paramount House, multidisciplinary Sydney artist Aedan Lee is using sculpture, light and design to ponder the question ‘Can there be order in chaos?’ with UNION. The partially suspended dynamic piece brings lasers into the mix too, and will be on show every night from 6pm throughout Vivid’s 2023 run.

    Entry to see Lee’s work is free, but you should make a night of it and stay for a drink at the onsite subterranean cocktail lounge Golden Age Bar (and maybe catch a flick), or head to nearby Poly for a glass of vino and a few perfect plates.


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    The favoured Ace Hotel Sydney is set to host a stellar lineup of art-powered events between Friday, May 26 and Saturday, June 17 — spanning art, music and culinary creativity.

    There’ll be lobby parties (with Music in Exile on Wednesday, June 7 and Kids in the Cut on Wednesday, June 14), and a June-long residence in the lobby too (welcoming record label Finer Things and a yet-to-be-announced lineup of artists). The neon work of Rel Pham will project vivid technicolour onto the walls in Foy Lane at the rear of the hotel, as will Justin Ridler‘s multifaceted works, which will hit the venue on Saturday, June 17.

    On Saturday, June 17, the sleek rooftop spot Kiln will get in on the action. Joining forces with Jeremy Fox — of LA faves Birdie G’s and Rustic Canyon — the Kiln team will hero stunning-yet-simple plates over a five-course share-style dinner. Bookings are absolutely essential, so if you want one of the $150-a-head spots, you better be quick.

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Until Saturday, June 17, while Vivid Sydney takes over the city, the Hollywood Quarter is hosting heaps of spectacular events. To plan your visit to the standout locale, head to the website.

Top images: James Schulz (Jazz Money at Hotel Hollywood); @MIKI.MIKKA (Butter Presents).

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