While the rest of Sydney spends its summer on the white sands of Bondi Beach, do one better, and slip away to The Pacific Club on Campbell Parade for kombucha coladas in the sun and freshly shucked rockies from the dedicated raw bar.
The art deco 'sandcastle', propped just opposite Bondi's golden shores, has made the most of its million-dollar waterfront space with a luxe fit-out by Michael McCann from Dreamtime Australia Design, the studio behind Mr Wong, The Argyle and Felix.
Cash has well and truly been splashed ($2 million, to be exact) with grand timber columns, marble slabs and shiny brass fixtures brightening up the soft, cream-coloured space. We wouldn't recommend waltzing in with a surfboard, sandy feet and dripping natural dreads.
Heading up the kitchen is executive chef Bret Cameron (ex-Four in Hand and Harvest Newrybar) who has put together an outback-inspired menu, peppered with bush foods and native goodies.
Breakfast impresses, even in this part of town, with woodfired crumpets ($15) — their bubbly, burnished centres just begging to be spread with the house-churned wattleseed butter, whipped white chocolate and a drizzle of bush honey.
The campfire theme continues with an upmarket egg in a hole ($23), paired with smoked belly bacon and a kangaroo and bush tomato banger.
A serve of smashed avo ($15) is given an eastern suburbs makeover, starting with a feathery crumbed charcoal bread lathered with a luscious macadamia ricotta, avocado slices and zesty pops of finger lime caviar. Just one slice feels a little stingy, but that's the seaside surcharge for you.
As the sun moves further across the sky, The Pacific Club's raw bar comes to life with freshly shucked oysters ($4.50 each) and ceviche bathed in buttermilk, fresh apple and dill fronds ($23). Sourced from Ballina, giant prawns are torched on the open hearth, their white bellies basted with kelp butter and picked sea lettuce.
Still here? In the evening, a brass fire pit at the entrance is lit up, Survivor-style, the flames fuel the night time party vibes. Pretty young things gather around the floating bar, clutching kombucha coladas, native strawberry gum spritz and other alcoholic tonics.
All that's needed is an outdoor area to truly bring the beach club theme to life. From what we understand, council approval is already on the way.
Images: Caroline McCredie