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SPRING 2015 PHOTOGRAPHY AN ART FOR THE AGES THE PERFECT SPRING FLOWER FLORIADE LOOKING TO THE FUTURE GETTING OUTDOORS A FAMILY AFFAIR


the Museum experience

Enjoy the ultimate Museum experience at the National Museum of Australia, Canberra, with a guided tour, a main meal and glass of wine from our stunning waterfront cafe, plus 10% o purchases at our beautiful Museum Shop #.

$35 per person* Tickets are available from the Museum or online at nma.gov.au/tours #The

Museum Shop discount applies to full-priced items, single transaction only, and cannot be redeemed for cash.

*Valid until 31 March 2016. Image: Adam McGrath, Hcreations.

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nma.gov.au A+


Welcome to Abode And welcome to Spring in Canberra.

GENERAL MANAGER’S WELCOME

While anytime is a great time to visit Canberra, there’s no better time than now. Sunny days and warmer nights are perfect to get out and about and sample the best of what our fair city has to offer. Wherever you go, you will always return back to a warm welcome at your home away from home at Abode where you can enjoy some downtime with our A+ magazine. Rien Donkin General Manager, Abode Hotels

CONTENTS

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HUSTLE&SCOUT A MARKET REVOLUTION

24 32 37 49

STREET ART: ART OR VANDALISM?

A SPRING ADVENTURE

HISTORY LESSON: HOW CANBERRA BECAME OUR CAPITAL

IT’S MARKET TIME

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PHOTOGRAPHY AN ART FOR THE AGES

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FLORIADE LOOKING TO THE FUTURE

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GETTING OUTDOORS A FAMILY AFFAIR

CANBERRA VINEYARDS WINE IN THE SPRINGTIME

NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK

IT AIN’T EASY BEING GREEN

Editor Jimi Bostock

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THE PERFECT SPRING FLOWER

LOCAL BAND: SIGNS & SYMBOLS

WHAT MAKES THE PERFECT DATE

SPORT A GAME OF FAVOURITES

KIDSPOT

NATIONAL TREASURES QUESTACON

PUBLISHED BY:

Creative Direction Amy Brosnan & Andrew Sanchez Words by Amy Brosnan Art Direction Andrew Sanchez Advertising and Marketing Inquiries Sean Smith sean.smith@abodehotels.com.au

abodehotels.com.au


(Martin Ollman)

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“You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.” - Ansel Adams

Renowned local Canberra photographer, Martin Ollman, knows all too well about the art of photography and what it takes to capture a perfect moment. What kind of photography are you involved in? I’m an independent freelance photographer, which boils down to me being able to say yes to everything. If I had a style it would be photo journalism. Versatility is key to photography, something I picked up as a press photographer. You need to be able to interact and move through people, whilst keeping your eye on the action – capturing the essence of something, and using all the tricks and tactics not just with the fancy camera in your hand but with your feet and body, eyes and brain. What made you want to get into photography? The freedom to create. It’s an art-form so early on it was a hobby, which then formalised into a career starting at The Canberra Times running the darkroom at the age of 20. I got the bug pretty quick, it’s an exciting adventure most of the time. Being a darkroom technician allowed me to have a day job and on evenings and weekends I would shoot sport and music for the paper. The freedom from not having a nine-tofive job has been a great advantage for my creativity, allowing me to be flexible with shoots and available when the light is nice. It’s mainly the weather that gets in the way. Grey skies are great for flat light but not for a tourism advertisement, so my schedule needs to be flexible, particularly when several jobs are all running at once.

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The origins of photography can be traced back thousands of years to Aristotle’s musings around a pinhole camera. Photography today has become a mainstream activity as technology allows the masses easy access to a range of camera devices. But, it still takes a true artist to capture the magic of an event, landscape or person – despite the amount of Instagram ‘likes’ convincing you otherwise.

What are your favourite parts about it? Getting to be in a position that allows you to experience something from a different perspective, I used to cringe at the thought of facing 20,000+ people to take a photo from a stage, now it’s just fun. In your opinion, what makes the best photos? The ones that are either greatly considered or luckily captured. Being in the right place at the right time is a bit of a decoy, sometimes the light is nice everywhere and you just need to tune into that. I often find the best photos are the ones that make you stop and explore the image. Depth, leading lines, the rule of thirds [are] all good ways to give a photo impact. Mixing these rules up or at times ignoring them completely makes some photos stand out. Processing the negative out of the camera is still the fun part for me. At times the processing stage can be the most exciting. Occasionally I shoot all day and into the night, up to 2000 images per day and you do not get long to linger or see them in any great detail. So processing is a bit like discovering photos that either work straight away or could work with additional processing. Discovering the properties of the digital RAW images most modern DSLR’s (digital single-lens reflex) produce was an eyeopener for me. Combining it with a tool I had used every day for the past 20 years, Photoshop, was the combination that enabled me to transition from a traditional film photographer to a modern digital one and transfer the darkroom and printing skills I had acquired to a digital medium. Excited and inspired would be an understatement!

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Samples of Martin Ollman’s photography.

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What is the best shoot you’ve been a part of?

What is great about being a photographer in Canberra?

Can I have two?

You only have to look around really to answer that question. It’s a planned city surrounded by natural beauty. The lake [Lake Burley Griffin] adds a great dimension to photography, as do the rising Brindabellas. It’s not hard to get to the coast or alpine regions which make it central for broader exploration. If I drive an hour south – I can almost eliminate light pollution and get a spectacular view of the Milky Way and explore the Namadgi National Park at the same time. It’s the freedom that allows you to explore without getting stressed by life.

Woodford Folk Festival for me is the best fun you can have as a photographer. It’s like condensing six months’ worth of shoots or gigs into six days in a perfect environment setting. It is as challenging as it is rewarding and always entertaining. Shooting for the #CBR brand (encapsulating and coverage for – Events ACT, Study CBR, Invest ACT, Visit Canberra, and the ACT Chief Minister’s Office) has taken me all over Canberra and the region looking for the visual gold. I have met hundreds of people in my travels and have made many new friends both professionally and personally. It’s also great knowing that the work you are creating is changing opinions and mindsets regarding Canberra. For the last few years, my main focus has been to show the Canberra that the mainstream does not get to see. Who are the most interesting and/or wellknown characters you have met through your work? Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Michael Palin, Alice Cooper, Bob Hawke and many others. I have very fond memories of being in awe most of the time. At the local level, collaborating and shooting the talented folk of Canberra has been the most rewarding socially and visually. As you get to know the city, photo options are everywhere and collaborators are much more likely to share a vision. What do you love about Canberra and the culture? Canberra is small enough not to get drowned out by the population size. There are enough spaces and people who want to experience new things so anything that is creative receives a warm reception then eventually a following. The level of appreciation for art and its creation is moving out into the streets which adds to the vibrancy of the city. The culture is also spilling out into the suburbs. I love the crispness of everything. No advertising pollution and proximity to interesting things makes Canberra a vastly liveable city. Going for a drive in any direction takes you to something new and interesting that I have not photographed before, and when that runs out you just drive a little further, or wait (not too long) for some dramatic weather.

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How does Canberra’s landscape and culture compare to other places and what makes it special? Canberra is young compared to many of the cities I have lived in. Celebrating its centenary and documenting it for the ACT government felt like I was documenting a great milestone and that made me feel very proud of Canberra and very much a part of it. I was raised in Canberra and left for the UK at age 20, so returning back to Canberra was not an obvious choice. Looking back on the last decade and particularity the last few years, photography has certainly made me appreciate it much more! What do you see happening with photography in the future? Photography is becoming a much more common pastime for people. They are actively taking photos to share socially. Mobile phones have changed the way we engage with photography, so that just means [there is] lots more of it. The platforms in place now that enable you to distribute and publish photographs are growing rapidly and people are engaging visually, not with words but with pictures. The demand for a trained professional photographer will always be required. Specialising in any form of photography takes years of experience and practice, which cannot be reproduced or replicated by technology. Personally, I would not change a thing about my current passion – something I didn’t do professionally for 20 years and has been life-changing to come back to. Not thinking like a photographer is something I did for a long time. Not taking time to notice the little things and stop to appreciate the planet. That all changes when your only motivation is to learn and explore which I plan on doing a lot more of in the coming years.

Martin Ollman • Martin moved to Canberra from Bath in the United Kingdom at a young age for his father’s job in the Air Force • He left traditional film photography 20 years ago and went into desktop publishing and eventually the Internet and never looked back • Martin initially moved back to Canberra from Bath for IT work and ended up in Federal Government IT for a decade • It wasn’t until a few years ago he submerged himself in digital photography revolution and re-established himself as a professional photographer • His discovery of the ‘digital negative’ was a great revelation and sparked a unique understanding of digital tools and software to perfect his photographs • Martin has over 2500+ published photographs, including in The Canberra Times, The Australian, Grey Worldwide, Edge Magazine, Getty Images • Some of the amazing people he has photographed whilst on the job include Michael Palin, Joey Ramone, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Nicholas Negroponte, John Gage, Gordon Brown, Arthur Scargill, Kylie Minogue, The Bee Gees, Cyndi Lauper, Perry Farrell, Peter Garrett, Nelson Mandela, Beth Orton and Julian Marley Fast facts • Facebook followers - 250K • Klout - 72+ (social influence) • Google Plus - 21K people / 5.3 million views • 500PX - 110K views • Twitter - 3,430 followers • Photography Exposure 30 Million + views since July 2011 on Facebook, Flickr, 500px, Google+ and Pinterest

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DOS & DON’TS OF TRAVEL

We can all forget things in the excitement of planning for a trip. It takes careful thought for you to be sure you have everything you need and understand what you need to know about your destination. From packing to cultural etiquette, there’s a lot to be sure of before you go.

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DON’T

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make a list of the must-sees. This way you can work out a precise plan to hit the places you most want to see and the time to fit it all in.

re-pack your bags after the first pack. There is always something you can take out to free up space, leaving you room for treasures found on the road or save you money in extra baggage fees.

skip the insurance. Whether it is all-inclusive travel insurance or rental car insurance, if you’re out of town it’s important to be prepared as accidents do happen, luggage can be lost and cars can be damaged!

make copies of important documents before you leave. Making copies of your passports, licence, flight details, emergency contacts and even basic itineraries for domestic travellers is helpful and you won’t be stuck if something unforeseen should happen.

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leave home without a basic first aid kit. Especially if you’re overseas and don’t speak the language. The contents of a basic first aid kit will come as a great relief if you’ve had a nasty fall, tasted some questionable food or need a little pick me up after a big night on the town.

take cues from the locals. Ask the hotel staff or locals on the street where the best places to eat, shop and have the best experiences – they are the experts after all.

be an ignorant traveller. Customs and cultures can change every time you move from one city to the next. Prepare yourself by doing some research and understand what may be considered as polite, rude or downright offensive.

be open. Experiencing new things is the best part of travelling. Step outside your comfort zone and try as many new foods, tours and excursions as you can. You may live to regret some but at least you will have a fantastic story to tell upon your return.

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THINGS TO DO IN YOUR ROOM

Raining outside? Too tired to leave the room? Feeling a little under the weather? When travelling, there can be a lot of waiting time; waiting for a meeting, the right time to leave for a flight or waiting for someone to return from a shopping trip or tour of the city. There is no need to leave your hotel or your room while you wait when you have the perfect lazy day activities.

+ Cook

+ Reading

Luckily for you, there’s a fantastic kitchen in every room at all Abode hotels which means you can release your inner master chef, bust out the cooking utensils and create something delicious all in the comfort of your room. With the Abode Pantry just one elevator ride away, it has never been easier to find the ingredients you need. Check out some of our recipes on page 47 to try!

Read this magazine! You will find a range of topics and discussion points, interviews with locals and places to visit while in Canberra to inform and excite you while reading in your downtime.

+ Television There’s no shame in taking a day to sit in front of the television and catch up on bad soap operas or critically acclaimed movies and television shows. With a television right in front of you, why not kick back with the Foxtel remote and relax? + Games/Work Every room has a Wi-Fi connection so you can download apps, access computer games and play the day away. Or, catch up on some work if you happen to be in a productive mood or have a deadline. If you don’t have a smartphone, tablet or laptop, our business centres have computers for you to use at your leisure. Just ask Reception.

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+ Washing You might be on holiday or away for work but what better time than now to catch up on a much-needed load of washing. You can also dry and iron your clothes with washing and drying facilities right at your fingertips! + Be creative Use the hotel stationery to write letters to friends, to-do lists, create the next Harry Potter series or get a jump on writing your memoirs. Another in-room option is to take a page from cruise line employees and create animals and fancy shapes out of your towels (make sure to take some pictures and share on social media). Test out the complimentary amenities and begin planning your own line to triumph over Abode’s go-to man, Peter Morrissey. The possibilities are endless.

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THE PERFECT SPRING FLOWER

Without a doubt, one of the best things about spring is the re-emergence of the flowers, the vibrancy of the shrubberies and the returning green of the tree leaves. Local experts on the topic, LouLou Moxom and Belinda Whitney, Canberra’s premier florists behind the Moxom + Whitney brand, share their knowledge on terrariums and flowers, how to best take care of your plants and what to look forward to in spring.

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What flowers are in season this spring? When we think Canberra spring flowers, we generally think Floriade. Beautiful bulbs, very European displays; tulips, hyacinths, anemones, ranunculus and don’t forget all that amazing blossom and one of our favourites – waratahs! What are your favourites? We constantly get asked this and it’s the hardest question ever! We are all partial to big beautiful garden roses, incredible orchids, peonies and Gloriosa lilies and then huge glossy tropical leaves and blossom sticks and….you see why this is hard? What is the best thing about Canberra’s flowers in spring? The whole city looks green and lush and inviting and smiley – everything about flowers makes you smiley, smiley is a word right? The city is warming up, coats are getting left at home and there is just a lovely feeling of fun and sunshine about the place. How did you both get started in the florist business and why open up shop in Canberra? (LouLou) I started in floristry many years ago simply because I love flowers and wanted a new career path. Belinda was in the medical industry, working alongside her gorgeous husband but wanted a change and we had always dreamed of opening a business together. Fast forward to 2012 and that dream became a reality. Canberra is our home so opening here was a no-brainer but the concept we had – banning certain flowers and products, creating amazing terrariums, turning away work that we felt didn’t represent our aesthetic – was a new one.

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We knew we would ostracise a certain type of customer but we also knew that we would be welcomed by another. We have an absolute vision of our product and our space and we never lose sight of that. We are incredibly proud of our beautiful city and feel blessed to be as welcomed as we have been. What do you love most about the work? Every day is different. We never know who or what will walk through the door or email or call. Our staff are hands down some of the most beautiful humans we’ve ever had the pleasure to work alongside and the freedom to be creative each and every day is just awesome. The people we have met and worked with, the beyond-beautiful weddings and events, the general vibe of Braddon and the surrounding suburbs, it really doesn’t get any better. Besides that, working with your best friend is just the icing on top!

“It’s all about what you love, not about what that interiors magazine or blog says you should do. Your creations should reflect you, your style and your love of nature. ” How do you decide on your arrangements and designs? For both Belinda (terrariums) and me (flowers) it’s all about the product. I don’t think either of us has a vision of what we are going to create until we are amongst it – picking up plants or foliage and just generally seeing what happens as we add stuff into the mix. It’s a naturally organic process, we don’t try to make our products look like anything other than how Mother Nature intended them to look. What are your best tips for caring for your plants. In the garden, it’s feed and mulch, then sit back and enjoy. If it’s a terrarium, then it’s time to move it closer to a sunny window and remember to not over love them with water. Fun fact – we are about to start planning and planting our own product for the shop. We have grown succulents and the odd flower or two previously, but sustainability is a massive part of our business, as is trying to get our product to our customers at the cheapest possible price so we are about to add ‘farmer’ to our job titles!

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What are your top tips for flower arranging and terrarium making? Always think about how your flowers or plants would look out in an open field. You’re dealing with nature, never over complicate things. Know when to stop adding but be free of too many rules when you are creating. It’s all about what YOU love, not about what that interiors magazine or blog says you should do. Your creations should reflect you, your style and your love of nature. If you need help getting started perhaps a flower arranging or terrarium making class is for you. They are held in store weekly OR we can put a private class on for you and your mates if there are ten of you all wanting to get your creative juices flowing. Call our little shop for details. If it’s a special occasion or you just feel like picking up something beautiful, the incredibly friendly staff at Moxom + Whitney are happy to help you find the perfect arrangement.

Moxom + Whitney are located on the ground floor of the ORI Building at 55/30 Lonsdale Street in Braddon and make deliveries to Canberra. For further details, visit moxomandwhitney.com.au A+

LouLou Moxom

Belinda Whitney

• LouLou was born in the UK and her family immigrated to Australia in the late seventies via her father’s posting from the Royal Navy to the Australian Navy • As she’d finished her schooling she was back in London. From here Lou’s life reads like a Mills and Boon novel but she’s happily settled back in Canberra, has two beautiful children and is married to a former British Military man who is now a builder • Lou loves to garden and potter about her house and cherishes times with her children – a son in the army and daughter who is studying nursing • Lou also believes she is part mermaid, part professional dancer…Bin let’s her believe that without question • This year both of them are looking forward to holidays overseas to recharge their batteries and catch some rays

• Belinda Whitney - Bin (as she is called) grew up in the country with her mum, dad and two brothers • She studied nursing at university (where she met her husband who was studying accounting) and on completion of her degree joined the Air Force • Her final posting was to Canberra where the Whitney’s thought their three beautiful children would benefit from setting down roots in the nation’s capital • Fast forward a few years and the couple were running a hugely successful business and enjoying the spoils of a Canberra life. But, a ‘sea change’ was in the works and Bin’s husband followed his dream of joining the AFP and she made the most excellent decision of opening up a florist with her bestie! • Bin is a passionate reader and loves to travel and spend time with her children whilst they are all living at home

Owner

Owner

• Lou and Belinda are equal owners of Moxom + Whitney • Lou and Bin have been best friends for nearly 18 years, their bond is sister-like and believe it or not (other than one nasty incident in the ‘90’s that is rarely spoken about!) rarely quarrel or disagree with each other • They are yin and yang – Bin is the quiet thinker and Lou is the excitable loud one • They plan on travelling around Australia in a big rig for their 50th birthdays (they are happy to say that’s several years away)

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HUSTLE&SCOUT A MARKET REVOLUTION

Photo by Rebecca Doyle Photography

Every fashion lover’s happy place is a fantastic fashion market. Especially one that has teamed up with one of the greatest food markets you’ve ever had the pleasure to taste your way through. Hustle&Scout creator and director, Tegan McAuley, has perfected the modern day market by bringing authenticity, local brands and talents and an overall great vibe to the stage. Pairing with much-loved food market, The Forage, this is an event you won’t want to miss. Hustle&Scout has garnered significant and well-deserved attention leading to its latest market location taking up an entire airport hangar. In creating Hustle&Scout, Tegan knew exactly what she wanted to begin in Canberra; a market revolution.

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What gave you the idea for Hustle&Scout? I am a bit of a fashion-freak. I have always seen clothing as an art form and a means for self-expression and after observing Canberra’s design scene take-off in 2013, particularly after attending fashion events like Fashfest, I realised that our city already harboured an incredible community of fashion designers. It can be difficult for emerging designers to get their collections into boutiques and to have the opportunity to talk to their buyers face-to-face, so I decided to launch a new fashion market that would connect the buyer and designer. For me, it is important to focus on showcasing quality, higher-end Australian labels and to stray from the ‘traditional’ market format. I worked to curate an event packed with atmosphere that provides people with an immersive experience.

How did you get the project off the ground? I was lucky enough to have Julie Nichols, the founder of Handmade Canberra, as a mentor in the early stages. She helped me to develop my mission, get the bare bones of the business up and running and was there to answer any questions I had. I learnt how to build my own website and once I launched this along with my social media channels, the buzz seemed to grow throughout the local community and I started meeting with people around Canberra who had an interest in what I was doing. I have also been lucky enough to work with some great event partners who have provided invaluable support such as HAUS Models, Palace Electric Cinema and the ACT Government.

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Having a fulltime job, how do you fit it all in?! With a lot of coffee and list-writing! I work at the National Portrait Gallery in exhibition coordination, so I feel lucky to be working across the creative industries. I basically run Hustle&Scout out of my bedroom and I do a lot of the work on weekends and at night. What is your favourite thing about the market? Since The Forage came on board to fuse food and fashion, Hustle&Scout has grown exponentially (the first event attracted 2,500 people and now we get over 7,000 people in five hours). We see a very broad demographic of people attend because there is something for everyone at this event. It truly is a feast for the senses and that’s what I love about it most. Photo by Rebecca Doyle Photography

Photo by Rebecca Doyle Photography

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What does Hustle&Scout mean to you and to the Canberra market as a whole? Hustle&Scout is about connecting and nurturing our creative community. I feel proud to have created an event that brings people together to support small businesses, and to give emerging designers a platform from which they can promote their labels and engage with their buyers face-to-face”

“I feel proud to have created an event that brings people together to support small businesses, and to give emerging designers a platform from which they can promote their labels and engage with their buyers face-to-face.” It also allows buyers to speak directly with designers who; a) have personally designed and made their collections; b) can tell you about how the garments were made and where they drew their inspiration from and; c) assist in fitting the garment to you or exploring different ways of wearing their designs. I think Canberrans really value these sorts of interactions, and I’m glad I can help to facilitate this. What do you envisage for the future of Hustle&Scout?

Photo by Rebecca Doyle Photography

There are many exciting possibilities for Hustle&Scout moving forwards. The response to the event has far exceeded my expectations and I have already taken the event on tour to Hobart in June after being approached by some Tasmanian designers. I see Hustle&Scout continuing to grow and diversify in Canberra, becoming a destination event and one which continues to showcase and support new and emerging designers. Hustle&Scout will be returning to Canberra on September 12 at the Old Bus Depot Building in Kingston. Make sure you stop by if you’re in town and see for yourself the hard work and vision from this talented young lady!

Tegan McAuley • Born and raised in Canberra, Tegan left after college to backpack around Europe before settling in Brisbane for five years where she studied Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Queensland. Her majors included French, Psychology and Development Studies • During her studies she taught at a school in Siem Reap, Cambodia

For more details, visit hustleandscout.com.au. 16

• She worked at the Department for the Environment before landing the Exhibitions Project Officer position at The National Portrait Gallery where she has been for five years • Being immersed in a creative environment kick-started her quest for more creative projects and the beginnings of Hustle&Scout! • She finds herself away every other weekend visiting friends interstate, and it’s unusual for her not to head overseas at least once a year – this year Indonesia is on the list • You will see Tegan at the Woodford Folk Festival in Queensland which has been an annual trip for nearly eight years. • Tegan is working on another exciting business project with Julie Nichols from Handmade Canberra – a beautiful, new event due to hit Canberra in October. Keep your eyes peeled… Photo credit: Mavis Jean Photography

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ABODE HOTELS BALLOON PACKAGE Hot air ballooning is without a doubt one of the best ways to take in the stunning landscape of Canberra. In celebration of the Abode Hotel balloon landing we are proud to present you our balloon package. Feel the magic of soaring over a changing landscape at sunrise, suspended in a basket under a glorious hot air balloon. Take in the panorama view below; from the lush greenery of Lake Burley Griffin and its famed landmarks to the rugged Australian landscape over the Arboretum, Canberra’s numerous tourist attractions are available for soaring over! Prices start from $630 per night in a Premium Studio or $660 per night in an Executive Studio for 2 adults and includes flights for 2. Call 1300 1 ABODE (22633) today to check availability and take the flight of your life. *Bookings must be made minimum 7 days in advance. If the flight is cancelled it can be either rebooked or refunded. All flights include champagne and fruit juice. Offer only available at Abode Woden.

BOOK DIRECT AND SAVE!


FLORIADE LOOKING TO THE FUTURE

Photo - VisitCanberra

Floriade is Australia’s largest flower festival and one of Canberra’s proudest achievements full of food, fun, entertainment and of course thousands upon thousands of those beautiful flowers. Floriade brings in a significant number of guests each year and is a major boost for the Canberra tourism industry, but where does its future lie?

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loriade began when two friends, horticulturist Peter Sutton and his colleague, landscaper Chris De Bruine, decided to put together a floral display to celebrate Australia’s Bicentenary and Canberra’s 75th birthday. The inaugural Floriade was held in 1988 and was a smashing success. It was then decided Floriade would become Canberra’s yearly celebration of spring. As we forge our way into Floriade’s 28th year, the festival’s future is unclear as rumours are swirling around the familiar venue host, Commonwealth Park, reclaiming the space to host more events throughout the year. An understandable move as preparations for Floriade, in particular the planting of the flowers, happens months before festival goers step foot on its soil. So, what does this potentially mean for

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Canberra’s beloved celebration of almighty flower power? An idea put forward by the ACT Government was to split the festival across several venues to spread the love (and the wealth) brought in from Floriade visitors, giving other venues a chance to know the joys of hosting and to promote more Canberra areas to the rest of the country. In business, it can be said that evolving and changing is what keeps you current and interesting. The Floriade we have grown to know and love has, at times, been thought of as slightly stale and headed in a dull direction despite its popularity. Perhaps getting the boot from Commonwealth Park operators could mean Floriade receives the revival it just might need! ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr expressed his love for Floriade of past and present and what the future may hold.

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“Floriade 2014 was the most successful on record, attracting the largestever crowd of 481,854 visitors and contributing $47 million to the ACT economy.” “Floriade has become one of the capital’s most successful major events, making a significant contribution to the ACT’s tourism industry. Floriade 2014 was the most successful on record, attracting the largest-ever crowd of 481,854 visitors and contributing $47 million to the ACT economy. “This year it will pay tribute to the 100th anniversary of the ANZAC landings at Gallipoli through the theme of Reflection. The garden beds will depict iconic symbols such as the poppy, the Southern Cross, twoup and the famous slouch hat. “However, Reflection is about more than just looking back – it is about celebrating our proud past and our vibrant, exciting present, while embracing a future full of brilliant possibilities.

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“As always, visitors to Floriade will be able to pick up gardening tips, watch cooking demonstrations, enjoy musical performances and keep the kids entertained with an exciting line up of entertainment. To ensure there is something new and different to see each week, the 30 days of activity will be programmed into four themed weeks: Stories, Pride, Connections and Harmony.

For more details, visit floriadeaustralia.com

“NightFest will also return with comedy, music, night markets, spectacular new lighting and an array of exciting activities guaranteed to keep crowds entertained. “Moving forward I’d like to see Floriade spread across the city. There are other areas of the city, such as Civic and Glebe Park that could also be part of Floriade in addition to the festival’s home at Commonwealth Park.” If the Chief Minister is hoping for a change, there might be a good chance we will see it happen in the coming years. But, what will happen next year? You will have to come back and find out. Canberra and Abode will be waiting with open arms. Floriade will return to Commonwealth Park this year from Saturday 12 September until Sunday 11 October.

Chief Minister

Andrew Barr MLA • Born in Lismore New South Wales and raised in Canberra • When he is not busy being Chief Minister, Andrew enjoys watching any of Canberra’s sporting teams including the Brumbies, the Capitals and the Raiders • He is a self-described Hawthorn FC tragic and enjoys watching the Hawks when he can find the time • Andrew attended numerous schools throughout the capital including Holt Preschool, the Association of Modern Education (AME) School, Turner Primary School, Lyneham High School and Lake Ginninderra College • After high school, Andrew enrolled at the Australian National University (ANU), graduating with a Bachelor of Arts (Policy Studies) • While at university, Andrew worked as the ANU student treasurer • Upon graduation, Andrew worked for Federal parliamentarian Annette Ellis and later future Chief Minister Jon Stanhope, before moving to the private sector to work for former media company Rehame • Andrew has been a member of the ACT Legislative Assembly since April 2006, and Chief Minister of the ACT since December 2014 • He is also the ACT Treasurer, as well as the Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Urban Renewal and Minister for Tourism and Events • His priorities include promoting Canberra’s economic development and investing in public infrastructure such as hospitals, public transport, schools and sport facilities

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LOCAL BAND: SIGNS & SYMBOLS Canberra’s music scene is thriving with new talent blasting through our radios via Triple J Unearthed and a bustling live music scene representing all genres, sub-genres and scores of professionals that love making music.

Brent Brosnan Lead vocals and guitar 20

Matt Madsen Lead guitar

Brodie Heidtmann Bass guitar and vocals A+


Local band, Signs & Symbols, are enjoying their ride and all that comes with the privilege of getting to do what they love – create and perform music. Individual roles and instruments have been decided but the enormous talent across the board means the instruments can be shared and diverse sounds created.

How did the band come together? Brent: Officially in 2009. When I was younger, I liked to write songs and they were awful and then I wrote one of our songs ‘Stay for the Sunrise’ and played it to Matt and he said ‘yeah, that’s not completely awful.’ Then in our music class, Callum joined us and we played Chasing Cars (by Snow Patrol) together and made a girl in our class cry and thought ‘this is cool, we should do something with this’. Callum: We made her cry because she thought it was good, not because it was awful and wanted us to stop… Brent: Then we entered Battle of the Bands at our high school and won it. After that, our music teacher asked if we wanted to play to schools in Tasmania and we were asked if Brodie could play with us and that’s how this all came together. Callum: I was the guitarist in the band at first, we had a different drummer. Matt and I played guitar. Our roles have switched up a lot. At first it was just, ‘okay, I’ll play drums until we find another drummer…’ Matt: And we’re still looking… Why Signs & Symbols? Brent: We were all hanging out on a secret beach when suddenly lightning struck the sand. We looked down upon the singed shore and it spelt out ‘Signs & Symbols’. How would you describe your genre of music, if definable? Callum: Invigorating… Brent: I think just straight up rock and roll – that’s our base, everything we do starts there. We might play around with other sounds that are not too crazy or different at the moment but it all starts with good ‘ole rock and roll. Callum: We like having beers and having a good time and playing loud music. I think loud is the word to define us. Brodie: As well as a few quiet songs here and there. Who are your major influences?

Callum McDonald Drums and vocals A+

Brent: Foo Figthers, Biffy Clyro, classics like Nirvana, The Beatles, Michael Jackson and newer bands like Violent Soho and Arctic Monkeys. There are sounds that will influence what we write and as corny as this will sound, there are bands that influence us as people. Callum: A lot of local acts and down to earth bands influence us pretty strongly because it hits us at home and we can see it firsthand a lot easier. Every Thursday or Friday night we

Sitting in on a practice session, we chatted with this group of friends and discovered their humble beginnings in a high school music room and their natural love for jamming, entertaining and sharing their creativity with the world. A new generation of rock and roll, Signs & Symbols take to every stage with enthusiasm, talent and a goal to electrify the crowd.

can see these bands and we can take what we like from those gigs and practice that and mould it in our own ways.

“The feeling of jamming with each other and hearing your songs taking shape or playing a gig on stage and getting to scream and get all of your aggression out – nothing feels as good as that does.” What does music mean to you? Why do you love it? Brodie: ‘To begin with…everything.’ I don’t have a good answer apart from that quote from [movie] Almost Famous. For me, it’s a release, it’s something to do. It keeps us entertained, we make new friends. Brent: It’s one of those things that nothing else feels like. The feeling of jamming with each other and hearing your songs taking shape or playing a gig on stage and getting to scream and get all of your aggression out – nothing feels as good as that does. Matt: I like that we’re creating something that people enjoy and that it’s an expression of our creativity and the fact that people enjoy it on a recording or at a live show really helps. It’s sustaining our attitude [towards making music]. How did you get your first gig? Brent: Our first gig was at Belconnen Community Centre. It was with a band we went to high school with. Brodie: They called us two days prior to the gig. Brent: They remembered us and knew that we liked them and they said they were playing a gig there in two days for free and did we want to come play? And we thought, yeah definitely. Besides school, we’d never really played anywhere. Matt: I came straight from Melbourne for the gig so we didn’t really get to practice. Brodie: We ended up having a quick practice in the car park beforehand. It was pretty good.

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Tell us about some of the gigs you’ve had – the good, the bad, the interesting.

What is it like being an up and coming band in Canberra?

Brodie: All of the Transit (Bar) ones have been great. I’d put the Roxbury in Sydney up there as the best because we’d never played in Sydney before and the two bands that were headlining had a pretty crowded house. When we were setting up people started leaving and as soon as we started playing one of the guys from the previous bands left the room and we thought, ‘oh okay, I guess we weren’t that good’ and then we look up again and he’s back, shoving people into the room and you hear him yelling out to his guys telling them to bring more people in and by the end we had a room half full with people that didn’t stop moving and it was great because it went from nothing to something so quickly. We can never pinpoint or guess how many people are going to turn up, but for us, no matter how many people show up, we’re always going to play as if to one thousand people. But we’ve had some shockers.

Brodie: For us it’s always been challenging. We don’t have a scene where we 100% fit in to so we always stand alone. Callum: But we’ve always got a gig coming up. Brent: It’s like a circle block and a square hole, we still get in there and are accepted but we don’t quite fit. Brodie: We’re always interested in diverse shows, it was never that we needed to have two other rock bands playing with us. When we play with an acoustic group and a metal band, that’s cool because it’s a diverse show.

“...no matter how many people show up, we’re always going to play as if to one thousand people.” Brent: We played with a glam rock band at The Basement once and it was very strange. Callum: They really looked the part, like Motley Crue with the hair and makeup and the outfits and confetti canons. Brent: Fake candles, strobe lights, all of that. Brodie: Our worst gig was a ‘90’s tribute night at The Basement. Brent: We had a lot of technical difficulties which happens but it’s something that I love about these guys; everyone just rolls with it. Instead of cancelling or panicking, we do something. If I’ve broken a string, the guys save my a** and give me time to fix the string. Callum: We’ve had some long beer jams doing that. Brodie: There was one gig where we just didn’t work well at all. We can be optimistic and say, ‘well we need to work on that and practice this’, but this one we were all quite off. Matt: We had stopped practicing and it was more like jamming and drinking. Brent: We were just off and out of sync with each other but it was good because it was like a slap in the face and we went back and practiced our songs, tightened up the screws then went on to play a gig at The Phoenix and it was certainly one of my favourites and we got redemption from the previous gig. So you learn from your mistakes? Brent: Definitely. Matt: If you keep anything from this interview, keep that in.

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Would you say it’s still a good scene to be a part of? Matt: I definitely think it’s great. Brent: There is awesome music out there, there’s so many great Canberra bands. Brodie: Canberra does have a big interest in live shows and live music and there are always bands playing and gigs happening and venues are constantly booking new bands and bigger bands. It’s great that this exists. Matt: Venues like us and I think people like us and that’s because there’s a good music scene in Canberra. So it’s good to stand alone and have something others don’t. Callum: It’s a good following as well. It’s not just about the people making the music but the people that go and see it. Like Brodie said, there’s a lot of people in Canberra that love live music. Brodie: As challenging as it has been for us not to have that scene, the kind of band that we are, we’re kind of the wildcard but we can just fit in there and play a diverse range of venues. Brent: We were booked in with four heavy metal bands once and two or three of them were from interstate and had a pretty big following and the thing that made it so powerful was that the poster was in the style that a lot of metal bands like to write in, so you had these four band names written in that style and then right down the bottom probably in Comic Sans or Times New Roman is ‘Signs & Symbols’, and it just didn’t fit but therefore stood out. And people that didn’t come to see us still enjoyed us and that’s what’s great about Canberra’s music scene; we might not all like the same type of music but we all like music. Callum: The funniest thing that I constantly hear people say about us is, ‘I don’t normally like this kind of stuff but ‘blank’…’ or, ‘I’ve never head banged that much’ or, ‘I’ve never mellowed out that much’ – to our slower songs. So it’s good because you stand out as well as being able to fit in? Matt: Yeah, when we don’t fit in, it means we get to stand out. Callum: I mean who wants to go and see three of the same bands in one night? Except if it’s the Foo Fighters, then you’d definitely want to see that.

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“...that’s what’s great about Canberra’s music scene; we might not all like the same type of music but we all like music.” So, what are your plans for the future? Brodie: We’ve been trying to put out an album for two, three years and this is the only one that’s starting to make sense and proper things are happening. Brent: It’s an itch that needs to be scratched at this point. We recorded a demo when we were about 17 and it was cool but we were young, we didn’t really know what we were doing. Then in 2012 we tried recording an album but we paid too much, I know I mucked around more than I should have and it all just fell apart and I think that’s left somewhat of a negative stigma on the band. We wanted to make something that we’d spent a little more time on, put a bit more effort in, work on the songs a bit more and add new things that you can’t really do in a live recording. We invested so much in that album and basically had nothing to show for it. That’s why with this new album, we just want it to be released and once it is I think we’re going to feel really good about it. To finally have something that’s

out there and we can play if asked. Brodie: We don’t have any recordings [out now] that we have as much pride in as we should. As much as you really want people to hear your stuff, you kind of grit your teeth because even though they might not know what they’re listening to is terrible, we do. Brent: This is us being open and trying to create something and it becomes pretty personal and if people don’t like it, as much as you can be resilient and understand, there’s part of you that always thinks, ‘well that sucks’. You have that in the back of your mind and you work to make it the best album so that’s why it has taken us so long to get the new one out.* And after the album is released? Brodie: After it’s out, we’ll just keep gigging, we’d love to do a tour – that’s a bit of a dream. Brent: Immediate future is to release the album and get it to as many people as we can, through various social media outlets, selling them at gigs and playing gigs interstate so we can physically give it to people around the country. The gigs are important to us because as good as a CD or recording is, it doesn’t compare to a live show and the feel of it. Brodie: As cocky as it sounds, I don’t think you can quite get our energy onto a CD. On stage it’s really loud and the fact that we don’t write out a set list, it’s all quite spontaneous and trying to put that on a CD, while it sounds great, I think our live energy can’t be matched. Brent: It’s like taking a picture of a bullet train. Brodie: Unless it’s a live album. Brent: Like taking two pictures of a bullet train. And quickly flashing them back and forth. But all great analogies aside, [the plan is to] keep playing gigs, getting the album out and figuring it out from there. Matt: The immediate plan for the future is to plan for the future. Brodie: You know, get health insurance, I’ve got to go to the dentist. Probably have a shower… Where can people look for you next? Brent: Nothing booked at the moment but we’re always doing regular gigs. Callum: You can look out for us at The Basement, Transit Bar, The Pot Belly and The Phoenix. Brent: It’s one of those things that just comes up. Best place to contact you/find more information? Brent: Our Facebook page is the best. We do have a Triple J Unearthed page but we’re not on that as much as we should be but will be working on it soon. Brodie: We also have an Instagram page that isn’t that active but it’s there. Callum: Our email address is signsandsymbols.band@gmail.com and I’m free on Friday nights ladies… Brent: And that’s Signs & Symbols signing off.

*Signs & Symbols’ self-titled album is out now and can be downloaded at signsandsymbols.bandcamp.com.

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Signs & Symbols’ Facebook page: facebook.com/signsandsymbolsband 23


STREET ART: ART OR VANDALISM?

A question posed often in the 21st century, should ‘graffiti’ be considered art or vandalism?

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break free from the oppressive nature of its former purpose. In doing so, the artists and the artworks have eradicated the wall’s original intention to supress and control and now stands as one of the greatest representations of free will and expression. Known as the longest open air gallery in the world, this former prison wall is now celebrated daily as a positive expression of triumph and the human spirit and also happens to be categorised as ‘graffiti’. Some may say that street art encourages foul language, distasteful images and negativity that stems from use by gang members to mark their territory. This polarised ownership of graffiti can be left in the past as modern artists take it over and turn it into something positive.

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raditionally, graffiti has been sanctioned as an act of criminality but in today’s society it is accepted in more places as an expressive form of art, especially for teens and young adults with no link to criminality. Governments are now handing over walls to street artists, resulting in fantastic works of art that showcases talent no less than that of the ‘classical’ artist. Graffiti’s origins can be traced back to the walls of ancient Rome but the urban street art style we most recognise today, dates back to New York City’s subway trains in the 1960’s, making its way to walls and buildings as security within subway stations increased. At this point in time, graffiti was deemed a criminal act of vandalism and anyone caught leaving their mark would be prosecuted. For the kids who started it, it was a way of expressing themselves creatively in a society that told them they didn’t have the talent or the drive to make something of themselves because of their background and socioeconomic status. This was based on the attitudes society had towards the ‘lower income class’, claiming they were devoid of culture or talent of any kind – something that still proves to be a problem today. Authority figures influenced by this attitude, made it clear that graffiti needed to be stopped. The world has seemingly changed as appointed authority figures today are now offering up the same walls these artists were banned from years ago, to reinvigorate the city, liven up dull buildings and save on cleaning costs in rundown areas. It has been found to create an incredibly positive outcome as more people visit the areas to take a look at the artworks and in turn spend money at nearby cafes, stores or bars, as humans tend to do. Street artworks are displayed in exclusive galleries and have had a significant influence

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on the world of graphic design appearing on CD covers, t-shirts, posters, advertising and more. Canberra’s own site at 1 Bunda Street in Civic was recently transformed from a decaying building into an expressive artistic space where a high school teacher brought his students to teach them art in a not-sotraditional setting. The activity became a fun event that included music and food stalls, creating a new ‘market’ or social gathering, welcoming all. This street art is now a permanent fixture for the community and visitors to wander passed and has been well received by both. Surveys and studies have shown the positive impact street art activities can have, especially on young people. For children struggling in school due to lack of interest or particular talent in academia or sports, another option to excel in is needed and it has been proven that art is the perfect alternative. It allows them to express their aggression, frustration or any emotion in a positive way. Troubled teens across Australia have said that excelling in something and being accepted for their talents instead of being criminalised, has given them the confidence to realise other dreams and go forward into new careers based on the simple act of being appreciated and celebrated for something they have created.

Street art can at times be provocative and offensive but this also makes it thoughtprovoking and can bring important societal issues to the forefront of our minds and force society to face problems we may not have known existed or found too easy to ignore. It also shows us beauty in a newer form of art that breaks away from the traditional. Its bad reputation caused by the few are now being outweighed by the benefits presented by the many. The question still remains, do you believe graffiti is art or vandalism? We will all decide and have the answer exhibited (or not) around our cities in years to come. Take a look at Canberra’s street art throughout the town centres, we won’t tell you where they are; go on an adventure and find them tucked away in tiny street corners and alleyways or out in the open and make your decision.

These positive effects don’t just stop at young people, they can affect entire cities and nations. The Berlin Wall is a prime example of ‘graffiti ‘ as a positive form of art and free expression. The artists represented here were mainly locals, along with input from revered artists around the world from some 21 different countries. The wall coming down and its remnants being decorated, proves how graffiti turned an extremely negative part of history into a platform for great expression that helped residents

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GETTING OUTDOORS A FAMILY AFFAIR The Reynolds

Justine Matt

Abbey

Harrison

Coco

In a world consumed by technology, it’s important to remember what is outside the four walls of our living rooms and the benefits that come with getting out in the open. It is especially important to remind our children to step away from the computer or video game and get a breath or two of fresh air.

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Local Canberra family, The Reynolds, know all about the value of getting outdoors and the best places to go in Canberra for families. This family of five made up of parents, Matthew – a police officer, Justine – a Curves fitness instructor and kids Elly, 18, Harrison, 12 and Abbey, 9, are well versed in the call of the outdoors and making Canberra their personal playground.

What do you all love about Canberra in spring?

Elly

Justine: I love Floriade, the flowers, walking my dog around the lakes, Burley Griffin and Ginninderra, getting out on the weekends to Tidbinbilla and the Cotter, going to barbecues and just coming out of hibernation after winter. Matt: Going for bike rides, camping at Namadgi (National Park), hiking, going to the footy, riding my motorbike and being with the kids. Harrison: I like coming out from winter and going outside, playing football and just hanging out with friends. Abbey: Floriade and all the rides there and the flowers. I like going camping with dad, no matter where we go. I like being away from the cold weather and going for some walks, not big ones though. Also, picnics and going to all the playgrounds and motorbike rides with dad. I love how it’s closer to Christmas and my birthday too! Elly: The weather. You get to wear nice clothes – shorts and a top in the day and just jeans and a singlet top at night, I like going on picnics and the fruit that comes in spring and just being outside. Plus, the smell of all the flowers. Justine: We like going to the [Capital Region] Farmers Market and getting all the seasonal fruits and vegetables that come out. And it not being freezing when you get there. What makes Canberra a fantastic place for family outings? Justine: There’s lots of options in Canberra for outings. There’s a lot of different playgrounds and parks, lakes, bike tracks, walking tracks. It’s very kid friendly – we love to go to the national parks around Canberra and do bushwalks and day trips to places. It’s close to the coast and the snow. There’s lots of sporting events on like the Raiders and the Brumbies and free events like concerts. Canberra offers a lot for families. Elly: There’s a lot more events on in spring because it’s daylight savings and more people want to go outside and it’s still warm. There’s a lot of variety. What types of activities do you get up to in spring? Elly: We like to get outside a lot. Justine: We walk the dog, go for walks a lot more because it’s lighter for longer. We tend to do more outdoors during the day than we

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“In an age where there is so much processed food and sugar in just about everything we eat, it’s important to make sure we’re at least working that off and then teaching our kids the importance of being healthy, eating right and getting exercise.” would in winter. We love getting involved in all the events around Canberra and supporting the community. Abbey: I have a lot of playdates and sleepovers with my friends and we can hang out in the backyard because it’s warmer. I also like playing outside with our dog Coco and I like to eat cold things because in winter you can’t. In spring you can eat ice blocks and that’s what I love doing. Justine: The Kingston Markets have all the food stalls and we do the food tasting. Abbey: There’s so much food tasting there and you can taste every single food. Justine: We’re very food orientated but very into exercise. Abbey plays soccer, Harrison plays Rugby Union and Matt, Elly and I do fun runs and similar events. Abbey: I absolutely love playing soccer. And I do Zumba on Mondays. It’s a kids Zumba class in Page (North Canberra). I do that on Mondays then Wednesdays is soccer training, then games on Saturday. What would you recommend for visiting families? Kids Harrison: Football games, go to the football ovals just to play, Questacon, the National Museum, game stores and arcades – the malls are close and full of those. There’s paintball and the [Australian] War Memorial is pretty cool. Abbey: I would tell the kids, there’s a lot of places to see movies. There’s also two trampoline places called Flipout (Phillip) and Skyzone (Belconnen). There’s nice cafes like Ricardo’s in Jamison, Urban Roast in

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Belconnen where my big sister works, you should go check that out. And if you like lollies there’s a lot of lolly stores. I love ice cream and there’s Yogurtland, Goodberry’s and Cold Rock everywhere and they’re yum. We go there for special occasions. There’s a lot of parks where you can play, John Knight Memorial at Lake Ginninderra, Weston Park and the park near where we live that we call Wombat Park. Teenagers Elly: The free events that you can go to for under 18’s – like music concerts and Floriade. There’s plenty of nice cafes to go to. Gus’ in civic or Black Pepper in Belconnen or Max Brenner and San Churro in Woden are some of my favourites. There’s so many shops around Canberra – Canberra Outlet Centre, the two Westfields and the Canberra Centre. There’s places you can easily drive to like rivers and mountains that aren’t very far away. It’s really easy to get around and see something pretty, even if you just go for a bike ride. Parents Justine: For nights out, I love the NewActon precinct and Palace Electric Cinema and all the restaurants around there. Dickson is great, especially the Dumpling House because it’s kid-friendly and delicious. When we do go out, that’s where we go. Federation Square is also great for shopping. Siren Bar is really nice to spend a night out at too. Matt: We like the George Harcourt Inn – there’s good drinks and great food as well as being kid-friendly. The sports clubs around Canberra are all really good. They always do good family meals. Harrison and I love Smoque – good American barbecue, especially the ribs.

“I feel very safe living here with my family and being out with my family at night.” What is your favourite thing about Canberra? Elly: It’s just friendly, everyone knows everyone and is friendly to them. Justine: I love the changing of the seasons and how each season seems to bring a different character to Canberra and a different feel and I like that. It’s always changing and never stays the same. Harrison: I like that no matter what season it is you can’t predict the weather, that it could be different every day and all in one day! That’s exciting. Abbey: I love the different holidays in Canberra because the place goes crazy but it’s a good crazy because you see lots of people and Canberra celebrates all of the holidays really well. I love how everyone is

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just so nice. They’ve got a good attitude. Justine: I feel very safe living here with my family and being out with my family at night. There’s a good police force – Matt’s in the police force and it’s just great! Abbey: In spring, if you’re feeling bored, you can just go outside and play with the flowers and make daisy chains and even in the backyard you can have so much fun. Anywhere you go in Canberra, there’s a lot of stuff you can do. And if you’re older, you can go for a bike ride. It’s just a nice place to live and we’re very lucky because we have no earthquakes or bad storms or anything. So come to Canberra and take a break. Why is getting outdoors important to you and incorporating exercise into your weekly routine? Justine: In an age where there is so much processed food and sugar in just about everything we eat, it’s important to make sure we’re at least working that off and then teaching our kids the importance of being healthy, eating right and getting exercise. Being outdoors is also just good for the soul. To be outside your house and enjoying nature, getting fresh air, it’s nice. Abbey: And it’s just fun. So, if you’re coming to visit then that’s a good plan because I think Canberra is a beautiful place and you will love it.

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WHAT MAKES THE PERFECT DATE?

Date night. An important outing whether it is the first date, an anniversary date or a long overdue date without the kids! Such a night begs the age-old question, what to do? Sometimes it can be as simple as going for coffee for that exciting first date. Dating experts have found that women prefer going for coffee on the first date whereas men prefer dinner dates. Now, you can stick to that formula or abandon it altogether and go for something completely different! Especially if you are in an established relationship or just looking to do something a little fun and outside the box. It has been said that variety is the spice of life, so why not take a turn from the traditional?

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HOW TO MAKE IT MEMORABLE Document it As absurd as the teenagers of today can seem, being permanently attached to their smartphones, they may be on to something when it comes to documenting their adventures. As we create new memories, some of the old ones may be pushed out of our memory centre and we could forget the fun we’ve had with someone. Documenting it by taking photos or writing it down is a way to keep that memory long after the date is over.

Experts have said that an out of the ordinary date that includes trying something new and fun will more often than not encourage you and your date to open up and discuss topics you might not feel comfortable with when sitting in a stuffy restaurant. It also helps to avoid getting stuck in conversation and landing on topics such as past relationships – which those same dating experts have said is a big ‘no-no’ for the first few dates.

+ Learn to dance!

+ Exercise

The physical benefits of this alone are a great reason to give it a try but the benefits for your brain have also been proven. Several studies have shown that learning dance moves and memorising their complexities can be linked to improvements in brain function that will help when undertaking other tasks.

Not only is it good for your body but exercise releases endorphins making you happier and thus leaving you and your date in a happier mood! You never know, fun runs and fitness challenges may be the way to find your perfect match, discovering their endurance and openness to something you might be interested in.

+ Learn anything new

+ Wineries

+ Act like tourists in your own town

Whether it’s cooking, cross-stitching or karate, psychologists say that learning a new skill is a great way to keep your brain active and will bring you closer to that special someone as you learn to work with each other, help each other and see how the other person reacts to difficult situations.

A classic but a must-mention. What better way to spend the day than drinking fine wines and eating delicious Hors d’oeuvres against a stunning backdrop.

You may not appreciate the galleries, museums and memorials around you as they have become part of the background. So, get out there, take some pictures and perhaps you will learn something new and rediscover the love for your hometown (and your date).

+ Kick it old school Take a page from your childhood scrapbook and head to a nearby arcade and play the games from your youth or try and beat today’s kids at the new ones! Acting young and silly is a great way for you to stay young and silly on the inside.

+ Bird watching Not just for the older generations or passionate bird lovers. This type of activity gets you outdoors and you and your partner become a team with an end goal to tick as many off the list as you can and you will discover the unexpected joy that comes with it.

+ Tick something off the bucket list You are sure to feel triumphant in the fact that you’ve achieved a life goal and may have awoken a new love for the activity in your significant other!

+ Hit the open water

+ Long distance date night

A highly romantic activity as you hold hands and float around the ice with the soundtrack from Endless Love guaranteed to be playing in the background. What is more romantic than keeping each other warm and holding each other up when you’re about to fall (literally)?

There’s a peaceful tranquillity that comes from open water on a calm spring day. Weather permitting, get on a row boat or paddle boat and enjoy the open ocean (or open lake). If you’re interested in the more extreme, opt for a speedboat or Jet Ski and enjoy the feel of the water splashing your face after a long winter of avoiding such a thing.

In today’s world of technology, it has become easy to avoid seeing human beings in person if you really don’t want to. This fact is incredibly useful for those long distance relationships. To replicate a regular, romantic night in together, pick a movie you both love, hop on Skype and watch it together as you would if you were together in person.

+ Ignore the boundaries of your age

+ Stay in

+ Take a mini road trip

Sit in on a lecture, walk around campus and feel like an undergraduate. End your pretend student day or night at the local university hangout. Everyone is welcome here so just blend in and pretend you’re 20 years old again!

Stock up on cheese, wine and crackers and sit by the fireplace or fireplace app on your smartphone or tablet and play board games, watch a movie or lose yourselves in deep conversation. The best dates don’t need to happen outside your door.

Temporarily running away from home is always a thrill, even if it’s only half an hour out of town. Picnics, hikes and bike rides can be much more exciting if you’re in a place you have never been before. So, pack up the car or get on your bike and head out on a short-term adventure together.

+ Ice skating

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Canberra is well-known for being the government hub of Australia but it is so much more than a parliamentarian’s paradise. It’s everyone’s paradise. Canberra’s landscape changes with the seasons but keeps its beauty year round. It presents a bustling food and wine scene and town centres with unique stores, fitness areas, and a range of services for the everyday needs. We have put together a full day’s itinerary to make sure you see the best of Canberra in the spring.

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Begin your day with a relaxing stroll around one of Canberra’s beautiful lakesides; Lake Ginninderra, Burley Griffin or Lake Tuggeranong. Surrounded by Canberra’s familiar Eucalypt and pine trees, the lakes provide an extraordinary background to your fitness efforts.

Head in to the city for some seriously good coffee at Lonsdale Street Roasters in Braddon; the commotion you will find here is well deserved. Expertly sourced, ground and produced coffee is paired with a delectable breakfast menu and an outdoor area for you to take in the sunshine and watch passersby. Afterwards, make a quick stop at Sweet Bones Bakery at the top of Lonsdale Street for a vegan-friendly sweet treat for the road.

Take a turn slightly to the south arriving at Canberra’s museum and gallery precinct. Beginning at the National Museum of Australia (NMA) sitting at the edge of what appears to be its own island, you will find an eclectic mix of galleries for kids and adults alike. After NMA, make your way to King Edward Terrace and explore Questacon, the National Gallery or the National Portrait Gallery of Australia, discovering art and science excellence in many forms.

After absorbing the best of Canberra’s artistic culture, take a break at Me and Mrs Jones in Kingston for lunch. The Kingston area is well-known for its quirk, its community and its great food and Me and Mrs Jones is no exception. Named after the famous song and retaining the building’s original structure from the late 1920’s, the café’s design includes white picket fences, exposed brickwork and signage reminiscent of the time period. You can expect mainstream and gourmet food and drinks that will fully satisfy your tastebuds and stretch your stomach size as you ask for the dessert menu.

In spring, it would be crazy not to make the most of the great outdoors. Why not add some delicious wine to the mix while you enjoy the fresh air and a view? Take a drive through the Southern Tablelands, arriving at Hall and Murrumbateman. Here you will find a group of vineyards and wineries owned and operated by friendly winemakers promising an experience that will hold its own against the likes of the Barossa and Hunter Valleys.

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Once you’ve had your wine tasting fun, there’s still time to stop at the shopping centres for some souvenirs or find a fantastic outfit to wear to dinner and drinks tonight. Canberra has major shopping centres, Westfield in Belconnen and Woden, The Hyperdome in Tuggeranong and the Canberra Centre in the heart of the city.

On your way back to the hotel to prepare for dinner, take a drive up to the top of Mt. Ainslie in the suburb of Majura and witness Canberra’s beauty from a great height. You will quickly and clearly understand the precision and meticulous planning involved in its design.

It’s in to the city for dinner at Temporada, one of Canberra’s newest restaurants. Not even a year old, this exquisite dining option is already collecting awards and impressive reviews across the country as it keeps a strong focus on boutique artisanal wines to pair with its eclectic mix of perfected foods.

The best way to end a busy day of sightseeing is with the perfect cocktail, craft beer or vintage scotch at the ideal location. That place is Knightsbridge Penthouse. A short walk away in Braddon, Knightsbridge has the ability to provide an atmosphere appreciated by the party people, the beer garden people and those searching for a calming nightcap at the end of a long day. Self-proclaimed ‘purveyors of good times’, you won’t be disappointed stepping foot into this shabby chic establishment and savouring their delicious drinks.

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Enjoy your spring day out. We promise to have your room perfected by the time you return.

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CANBERRA VINEYARDS WINE IN THE SPRINGTIME

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pring means the blossoming of flowers, temperatures rise and the layers come off!

As the weather gets warmer there is nothing quite like a clean, crisp white wine to sip on as you watch life return to the surrounding plant life and see the animals and people emerging from hibernation as we all embrace spring. Riesling is widely regarded as the perfect springtime wine. This highly aromatic and fruity grape variety has been considered the best white wine across the globe for hundreds of years, presenting a range of styles from bone dry to lusciously sweet. Like all wines, the history of its origin can’t be clear. Some say it began in Germany in the late 800’s by order of a king but who can be sure. The only thing that matters is; it is delicious.

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Another standout to delight in throughout spring is the Pinot Gris. The background of the Pinot Gris is clearer and is said to have begun production in Burgundy, France. This distant relative of the hearty Pinot Noir was named after its colour following the veraison process where the white grape turns a pinkish-grey colour known as gris in French. Flavours and aromas vary with the Pinot Gris as you move across the globe, giving it ample opportunity to become your new favourite. The vibrant personalities and versatility of the two pair with a variety of foods and have the ability to keep for decades after production, making a good Riesling or Pinot Gris the perfect wines to enjoy in the spring. Top Canberra winemakers at Mount Majura Vineyard are experts at springtime wines among many others. A local brand growing local grapes on local soil, this charming

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little winery just minutes from Gungahlin is set amongst the sweeping hills of capital country and offers a wining and dining experience you won’t soon forget. Mount Majura Vineyard is owned and run by a partnership of wine enthusiasts. Among them, Fergus McGhie, speaks of their beloved vineyard and creating the perfect spring wine. “All of our wines are made only from the grapes we grow on our own vineyard at Mount Majura. We try to let the fruit we’ve grown shine through in the finished wines so all our winemaking is focused on styles with pure fruit expression and not too much influence from the winemaking. Our Riesling and Pinot Gris are delicious spring wines, both are crisp white styles that suit the lighter spring dishes that we tend to move towards as the weather warms up. Of course it’s still not too warm to drink reds either, our flagship Tempranillo is an amazing match with spring lamb.” In describing the vineyard, his pride is hard to hide and for valid reasons. “As a vineyard, we have some of the best features you could ask for in a site. Soils containing limestone give good structure for growing vines, we have a steep slope which is good for cold air drainage to mitigate frost risks, particularly late in spring when the new buds are shooting. We have the perfect east-north east aspect, minimising hot westerly sun exposure to the ripening fruit in summer. It’s always a pretty place to visit, the views from the top of the vineyard across the valley are stunning but of course in spring you get to see the new growth as the vineyard wakes up from its winter dormant period. “We are also known for our innovation, particularly in regards to pioneering new alternative varieties in the district. Among the more traditional varieties like Shiraz

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and Riesling, we also grow Tempranillo, Graciano, Mondeuse and Touriga.” Canberra winemakers love what they do and you won’t need to drive far to find award-winning wines, delicious food to match and an especially beautiful setting in the spring. Mount Majura Vineyard certainly aren’t resting on their laurels to provide you with a fantastic day out. As Fergus explains, “Aside from offering seated wine tastings, visitors can also take a self-guided tour of our vineyard with a map detailing some of the features of the vineyard and our growing methods. We call it the ‘Gumboot Tour’. We can even provide the gumboots, but any sturdy pair of shoes will do.” You won’t be disappointed making a quick pit stop at Mount Majura Vineyard. Pick up a bottle of Riesling or Pinot Gris and remember your spring trip to Canberra in the finest way.

For more details, visit mountmajura.com.au.

Fergus McGhie • While studying for an Arts degree at ANU, Fergus survived by working in a number of Canberra’s top restaurants including the now closed Oak Room at the Hyatt and Atlantic Restaurant in Manuka • It was here that his previously casual interest in wine became more serious • A move to Wagga Wagga to study Wine Science followed and when he returned to Canberra he spent time at Silo Bakery in Kingston and then Vintage Cellars in Manuka • He has worked vintages as a cellar hand in the Hunter Valley, Cowra and Canberra but found he is better at talking about wine and selling it than making it • Fergus has been at Mount Majura Vineyard now for six years as the Sales and Marketing Manager • He is also a freelance wine writer, occasional wine judge and wine educator • Fergus rides, runs, snowboards and plays guitar poorly in his spare time • As a wine and food lover there’s always plenty of cooking and entertaining of friends most weeks • Fergus has lived in Canberra since he was seven years old and believes Sydney and Melbourne guests should be coming to see what’s happening and is strongly against the view that Canberra is just a boring government town

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SPORT A GAME OF FAVOURITES

Sport; arguably Australia’s favourite pastime as we continue to invest our time, money and effort in supporting the Australian Football League (AFL), The National Rugby League (NRL), Rugby Union, cricket, soccer, horse racing, motor sports and many more. But, what is Australia’s favourite sport?

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f we pay attention to statistics alone, then AFL wins the game with 7.83 million Australians in 2014 claiming to watch AFL on television almost always or on a regular basis, followed closely by cricket, tennis, NRL and horse racing, in that order. In terms of support at live games, AFL wins again with 2.8 million of Australians over the age of 15 attending games regularly, followed by the NRL and Rugby Union, horse racing and motor sports. Taking a look into history, cricket came to us with the first settlers bringing the game over from England and had such widespread popularity that it was taken to the other side of the country as the areas were settled. It was after many years that modern day AFL and other sports were created. Does the fact that cricket is the oldest sport and an internationally enjoyed game mean it should be our favourite? Should our history affect our choice?

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successes and the celebrity of its players. Surfing, hockey and netball also come under the notable sports for success and celebrity. Does success instil favouritism? Does the ability to proudly state that your country is the best in the world and perhaps on a regular basis mean it becomes the country’s favourite? Does having popular celebrities in the sport influence our choice? When it comes to the Olympics, the most watched sports on television are swimming and track and field events as Australia wins more medals in these sports. Television viewership of the Olympics also ranks above the AFL and other regulars such as rugby league and rugby union that put up high viewership numbers at other times of the year. Does this mean if these sports occurred more regularly, would they become our favourites? Are the Olympics still relevant in picking a favourite sport for the country? Google Insights shows us sport was a major search topic throughout 2014 and notable sport searches included tennis players, the NRL Grand Final and the search for State of Origin facts quadrupled from the year before. The Melbourne Cup ranked highly with ladies’ ‘fascinators’ searches spiking ten times’ the previous year. Australian netball team the Diamonds were the most searched throughout the year’s Commonwealth Games. In the end, it was the AFL again that was the most searched Australian sport of 2014, with over three times more searches than the World Cup and 11 times more than the Melbourne Cup. In terms of ball sports searches, the AFL was followed by the NRL,

Australian Open, A-League and State of Origin. AFL seems to be the clear winner of most watched, searched and games attended but perhaps it still comes down to personal preference and deciding on the favourite sport of the entire country is impossible. The statistics for each sport change per season and circumstance and the dominant AFL’s television viewership, regular game attendance and searches only amount for 40% of the country’s population. It can therefore hardly be confirmed as the definite favourite of the entire nation. Don’t feel bad if your favourite sport didn’t make the cut because at the end of the day, all sports are important and continue to contribute positively to our culture and economy, providing a sense of community, inclusion and mutuality from a young age right through to the end of adulthood.

*Statistics obtained from Roy Morgan Research, Australian Bureau of Statistics and Google Insights.

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HISTORY LESSON: HOW CANBERRA BECAME OUR CAPITAL

Photo - VisitCanberra

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anberra’s fascinating story begins with Aboriginal tribes, later European settlement and a heightened interest in a relatively unknown space of land that was chosen to become our capital as the fight for the title between Melbourne and Sydney finally came to an end. Aboriginal tribes, the Ngunnawal people and Walgalu tribes, have history and presence in the area dating back some 21,000 years. European exploration of the area began in the 1820’s with the first homestead settled in today’s Acton precinct by Joshua John Moore and formally named it Canberra. The name came from several derivatives including from the word Kambera said to have come from the Ngunnawal language meaning ‘meeting place’. As more explorers moved and settled in the area, influential families such as the Campbell’s and the Ainslie’s gained prominence through building and progressing the town, bringing attention to the now settled Canberra. In the newly federated Australia at the beginning of the 20th century, a large debate was brewing over which city should become the capital. As Melbourne was the largest city, the Melbournites and Western Australians believed it was the clear choice, while the Queenslanders and the New South Welshmen believed Sydney to be the obvious pick, as it was settled first. At last, a compromise was reached; Melbourne would be our capital until a new site evenly distanced between the two cities A+

was selected and built. The search was on. In 1908, explorers along with expert Surveyor, Charles Scrivener, decided on Canberra and a bid was put forward to the Commonwealth to create the Australian Capital Territory. The first step was finding the perfect design for this important city and only the best would do. A worldwide campaign, The Federal Capital Design Competition, was launched with entries coming in from across the globe. Some designs resembled longlost ancient cities or ones from mythical stories while others included exact replicas of existing towns reborn in a new place. The ultimate winners, Chicago architects Walter Burley Griffin and his wife Marion Mahoney Griffin were selected in 1911 and plans were made to bring their carefully organised, lined and drawn design to life. In 1913, prominent politician, King O’Malley, drove the first survey peg into the ground to mark the commencement of building the capital. *Fun fact – popular Irish pub King O’Malley’s in Civic is a tongue-in-cheek homage to the politician’s alcohol ban placed on Canberra in its early days as he deemed necessary for the ‘serious’ capital city.* Throughout the many struggles with construction, that ended in the Griffins’ resignation from the project, Canberra was built by the mid 1920’s with further additions made to the original design of the proposed North and South Canberra; resulting in new and expanded suburbs.

The Griffins’ meticulous planning and efforts that went into the design are what you see today as the strategically placed town centres that leave just enough space between one another for bushland to remain and wildlife to flourish. As a relatively small town surrounded by such bushland, Canberra has since been struggling to move away from its moniker of a ‘big country town’. After the Second World War, Canberra became more well-known and more people moved to the area with the help of the newly-opened Australian War Memorial and Canberra Airport, resulting in great development and further suburb creation. So, what’s next for this ‘big country town’? Well for starters, we won’t be called a ‘big country town’ for much longer. Construction across Canberra increases every year as more people make the move to the capital. Receiving great reviews as a city including the New York Times article naming Canberra the safest and best place to live in the world against a long list of criteria doesn’t hurt either! We were chosen for a reason. Projects such as City to the Lake, the light rail and innovative ideas like the container village along Commonwealth Avenue are putting Canberra on the map and into the eyes of the non-believers. With new homes, restaurant precincts, bars, parks and open spaces opening up regularly, we’ll soon be taking the title of the ‘coolest little capital’ right from under Wellington’s (New Zealand) nose!

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SUPPORTING OUR COMMUNITY There is arguably nothing more stressful than having a loved one in hospital. The Canberra Hospital Foundation supports families that find themselves away from home while they support a loved one receiving treatment at the Canberra Hospital. One important way the Foundation does this is through providing accommodation during such a difficult time. Abode is proud to support the Foundation with the donation of a two-bedroom family room for that purpose. We like to think we are helping by ensuring that families have one less thing to worry about as they concentrate on their loved one’s recovery.


NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK

Keeping up with the latest store, restaurant or bar opening can be next to impossible, especially in a place like Canberra where we are in a state of rapid expansion. New to the Canberra scene and making waves are the latest hotspots; 54 Benjamin – Belconnen’s hippest new watering hole, Rebel Muse – the boutique our most fashionable have been waiting for and 332 Manhattan – the fresh and wholesome café at the edge of Glebe Park. We found out how they came to be and why Canberra is the perfect fit.

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33 2 Manhattan

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et amongst the trees, this local cafe sources and creates meals only from Canberra and its surrounding regions, providing the freshest food from just a short drive away. Enjoy the spectacle of Glebe Park with a delicious brunch, coffee or sweet snack and admire the natural beauty of Canberra. Owners Tom and Dan Butt are passionate about providing fresh and organic food while offering a delightful and relaxing experience. “332 Manhattan is all about enjoying great food and great coffee while looking out across Glebe Park. We focus on using as much fresh, local produce as we possibly can and letting the flavours of great food speak for themselves. We also sell a lot of local products in store, so there’s an opportunity for people to browse around and pick up a gift or something for home while they’re having a coffee. Our coffee is roasted by Lonsdale Street Roasters who have been doing a fantastic job for us.” Canberra locals to the bone, Tom and Dan have owned other retail businesses in Canberra including Australian Choice which has been open in the Canberra Centre for over 25 years and the Bookshop at the National Botanic Gardens. Their city café was set up to become an extension of the philosophy behind their other businesses which is to support local suppliers and give customers access to great local product and a beautiful place to visit.

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“When we first saw the location, we thought it would be a fantastic spot for a café as the floor to ceiling windows give a beautiful aspect across Glebe Park and it’s the perfect spot to catch the morning sun over a coffee or breakfast. “We’ve worked hard to put together options that are different to anything else on offer in the City which we think people are really responding to in a positive way. Our house made pies are also currently a huge hit as are our fresh pastas.” When asked what he thought people loved about the café, Dan responded with a humble answer, giving praise to local coffee roasters, vendors and the natural allure of the capital. “I think people love the aspect across the park and the great natural light. They also love our great coffee from Lonsdale Street Roasters and the great range of fresh, different options available on our menu.” When it came to discuss Canberra in spring, Dan’s love of people and good food was clear. “One of my favourite things about Canberra in spring is the general excitement that’s in the air as everybody starts to re-emerge after the winter hibernation. There’s a great feeling around as people get out and about again.

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“One of the best things about 332 Manhattan in the spring is enjoying a fresh coffee on a crisp, clear spring morning as the sun comes up over leafy Glebe Park. “We haven’t been here for a spring [season] yet but already we’re looking forward to bringing some fresh spring fruits and vegetables into the menu to put into some great pies and quiches. We will also be looking to re-launch our dinner menu as things start to warm up, with a focus on simple foods with fresh flavours.”

332 Manhattan is located at 240 Bunda Street in the city and is open seven days a week for breakfast and lunch.

332manhattan.com.au

Tom Butt Owner

• Tom has been running retail businesses in the Canberra region for over 25 years including the wellknown Australian Choice in the Canberra Centre and the Botanical Bookshop up at the National Botanic Gardens • He has a long held belief in supporting local and Australian made products • Tom is a Director of the Ngurra Jirrama Foundation working to help with the education of young Indigenous Australians from remote regions of the country, visit ngurrajirrama.org.au for more information • He also loves working on his sheep farm outside Yass and relaxing in his large vegetable garden

Dan Butt Owner

• Dan recently returned to Canberra after a number of years living and working in Sydney • He previously worked across a range of industries including tourism development projects right around Australia • Dan is currently renovating so enjoys spending any free time working on the house • He loves surfing and fishing so enjoying Canberra’s proximity to the beautiful south coast where there’s also access to some of the best fresh seafood • Both believe strongly in the ideals behind the 332 Manhattan business in bringing great food and coffee to the city and are looking to become a long-term fixture in the location

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S NEW KIDOCK L B E ON TH

Rebel Muse

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orn and raised in Canberra’s backyard, Alicia Xyrakis made the big move to Sydney at a young age but the grand pull of the National Capital proved too strong as she made her way back this year opening Rebel Muse – Canberra’s latest and greatest in women’s fashion boutiques. A cosy and chic setting in Braddon’s trendiest locale, Lonsdale Street, Rebel Muse is gaining widespread attention as more people pick up on Alicia’s talent, drive and determination to make Canberra a fashion destination. With a deep-rooted love for fashion and the desire to open up a boutique for years, Alicia’s vision was to bring people back into the store and eliminate any feeling of having items pushed on to you for sales alone. The goal was to wipe the negative away and get people excited about shopping again. Quality over quantity is the philosophy behind this unique boutique, with a variety for your wardrobe, beginning with jewellery and simple t-shirts to the more stylish pieces, all from Australian designers except for Nicole Richie’s own House of Harlow jewellery collection.

and it’s such a great place but I knew this is what I wanted and I knew I wanted it fairly soon so I worked full-time and in a bar on weekends just to save up and get myself ready. I was scouting locations and rental prices trying to find a good spot. My dad said to me, ‘there’s this new spot in Braddon and I think you should come and have a look at it.’ I did and fell in love with the space straight away and started speaking with the real estate agents and it was just so affordable.” Noticing a major gap in the market for quality and affordable pieces, Alicia was quick to act and wanted to be the one to fill the gap and continuously bring new and fabulous pieces to Canberra. “I wasn’t paying much attention when I would come down here but now talking to other shop owners and seeing what’s going on, there’s a lot to look forward to. We’ve all got top secret things brewing and we all know what’s coming and work together to create a great experience; it’s very exciting. Especially in Braddon, it’s such a community and has such character and we all do things a bit different and against the rules. There’s a lot more to come.”

Reluctant to move back at first, Alicia’s eventual decision to open up shop in Canberra was quite a simple one.

Looking forward to spring, Alicia is excited for the store’s first spring collection and what it will hold.

“To begin with, I didn’t want to open in Canberra. I had all my friends in Sydney

“In spring it’s perfect; you can still layer lightly, I love layering but in winter no matter

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how much I layer, I’m still cold. “In spring you can wear leather pants and a thin top and a light denim shirt over that top and you don’t get cold but it’s also not too hot and it’s nice and pleasant. You can take a nice jacket out with you and pop it on in the evenings. It gives you more room to play around with more looks and styles and it’s so easy to dress for. And, of course the Spring Racing Carnival. Everyone gets a little bit more fun, they start dressing up and going out again, playing with colours and florals. “By spring we will have new collections in. I tend to stick with neutral colour palettes and coming into spring we’ll stick with that in nice blushes and a lot of lighter fabrics and drapes that we have coming that are a lot more fluid with bigger silhouettes, a little less structured and a lot prettier. Everything starts to get really pretty in spring which is really nice and seeing more pastel tones, even in denim as opposed to the heavier denims for winter. Lace is also coming in for spring – a lot to look forward to.” Since her return, Alicia is looking forward to her first Canberra spring in years. “There’s lots of things growing and by spring it will be so busy around, especially in the area of Braddon. A lot more will be open and I’m excited about there being more people in the streets at the beer gardens and cafes and I think that’s what I’ll love, just more people out enjoying the sun

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and being outside. People going down by the lake and going for walks. People really shut down in winter so it will be nice to see them emerge again.”

Rebel Muse is located at 56/30 Lonsdale Street in Braddon and is open Monday-Sunday

Alicia Xyrakis • Alicia’s family owns the Ainslie IGA and on weekends and during school holidays, along with her sisters and cousins, she would spend her days helping out around the shop, packing bags, helping in the office and packing shelves • Most of her childhood was spent at dance or gymnastic classes • At 17 she was accepted into the school for the Birmingham Royal Ballet company and made the move to England. On completion of her dance training in London, she was given several job offers but was unable to obtain a visa to continue working in the UK. so it was time to move back to Canberra • After no success finding dance work in Australia, she decided it was time to move onto her next venture, the fashion industry, so she made the move to Sydney to do her Certificate IV in Fashion Business at FBI Fashion College • During her time in Sydney, Alicia managed the White Suede boutique in Paddington, interned at Kirrily Johnstone, worked as a Merchandise Planner for Diva and Honey Birdette and then lastly as a Manager in the Bondi Junction Glue store • In her spare time, Alicia likes eating out and discovering new restaurants, bars and cafes • She also enjoys cooking at home and putting on dinner parties

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S NEW KIDOCK L B ON THE

54 Benjamin

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s owner and manager, friends Tom Reaby and Matt Nimmo, had been tossing up the idea of opening a bar in Belconnen for about two years. Matt worked for Tom at his many coffee shops and eventually at popular establishment HaHa Bar. From there, Matt worked at bars around the city for four years gaining the knowledge and experience it would take to eventually help run this new hotspot. Their idea in the early days was to add cocktails to one of Tom’s existing cafes, instead of opening a new bar, but fate had a different plan. The occupants of the space at 54 Benjamin stopped trading and the lease was finished. The two were looking at the space closely and finally it came through and a swift decision was made with Tom asking Matt to set it up, run it and 54 Benjamin was born. A little oasis tucked tightly away in the Belconnen Churches Centre that offers a welcoming environment with fantastic cocktails, great food and friendly hosts to sweeten the experience. On the decision to open up in Belconnen, the two recognised a gap in the market and knew that Belconnen was going to become ‘the place to be’. With new owners of the nearby Pot Belly pub and The Basement music spot, big things were starting to happen and cool new cafes like Remedy and Chatterbox had opened up and were doing well.

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Deciding on the style of drinking 54 Benjamin would offer its visitors, the boys drew upon opinions from those around them and knew it would be a great spot for the local workforce and residents. As Tom explained, “My wife works for the Attorney-General’s Office and often goes for drinks with the staff after work. There isn’t really anything close by for the people working in Belconnen unless they walk pretty far – not too far but long enough for it to be annoying so that was also the idea behind the location.” “We find a lot of people come through and say it’s so good to have somewhere close and not have to go in to the city,” Matt added. Their love for people and the experience a good bar can offer based on its diversity of customers got Matt excited about its prospects. “We’re starting to get this big community of both local residents and workers in the area and it just feels like an episode of a sitcom every day with people discussing their problems over the bar or they’re just meeting up with someone. I think the best part of this sort of place is that people feel comfortable coming here by themselves and knowing they’re not going to be judged and can just start chatting to the people around them. “I’ve worked in a lot of bars in the city and when I was asked to take this on, I was pretty excited to work in Belconnen because

that pretentiousness isn’t here and there’s no expectation. I think people are excited to have really good drinks but without the arrogance that a lot of other bartenders bring to the city bars. Everyone is drinking the same drinks so there’s no social hierarchy and I think that’s what people really love about it.” Heading into spring, the drink-making artists have their minds set on what to bring in and what they believe customers will love. As Matt explained, “For me, spring is all about, getting that first taste of warmth and you think, ‘yes summer’s coming’. You immediately jump to sparkling drinks and we use local sparkling here that goes really well in this venue. Things like Aperol Spritz and a lot of champagne cocktails and then a lot of floral drinks to match everything starting to regrow around town, so lots of elderflower and fun things to muck around with. “We’ve put a food cart in just outside the venue and I think 54 will start to get this street party vibe, especially when people get more confident about the weather and are willing to linger around the area a little bit longer. There’s going to be a real hype around this strip and we’d love to see some more bars and cafes move to the area just to get a bit more traction and hopefully see it develop into some kind of social hub in the future.” As to what’s in the food cart, Tom explained,

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54 Benjamin is aptly named as it sits at 4/54 Benjamin Way, Belconnen. The bar is open Wednesday-Saturday from 4.00pm-10.00pm.

*Note: Matt Nimmo recently resigned as manager of 54 Benjamin and has packed his bags and moved to Europe!

“At the moment it’s just basic stuff but done really well. We have ‘Piggies in Blankets’, which are prosciutto wrapped pork chipolatas fried with rosemary and then move up to your steak sandwich and pickled stuffed mushrooms. We’re not trying to do anything too crazy. [It’s] the same as the bar, we’re just offering real food to real people and not getting ridiculous tapas or deconstructions; it’s just a steak sandwich done well and smashed potatoes done well.” Order your food at the bar, grab your drink and stand outside with the other street partiers. You won’t be able to resist going back for more. As Matt put it, “The beauty and the beast of this place is that once you’re inside, you can’t help but to have a drink and once you’ve had one you find yourself staying for four or five.” That’s how good they are. A personal addition to his love of spring, avid cyclist, Matt, enjoys taking to the tracks in Canberra and seeing others do the same. “Canberra’s such a good place to be cycling around and as everything starts to grow again you get on the bike and get to watch it all week by week. And then you get Floriade come through and there’s just a real buzz around the city. When you’re in that in between (winter and summer), that’s when everyone is out and about.”

Thomas Reaby

Matt Nimmo

Director of 54 Benjamin

Manager and Consultant

• Thomas grew up in Canberra living in Belconnen for most of his life • He worked for a short period of time in the Australian Federal Police before purchasing his first Coffee Guru store in 2006 • Tom expanded his business purchasing three further Guru sites and opening an independent cafe in the city named Octane • Tom currently owns four cafes and 54 Benjamin and acts as managing director to all • He still pours coffee from 7.00am11.00am every weekday at Coffee Guru Belconnen and can be found shaking drinks on a Friday afternoon at 54 Benjamin • His interests outside of work include spending time with his wife and dog and recovering from his busy life at his family house on the south coast

• Matt also grew up in Belconnen • He has worked in several cafes and bars across Canberra over the past nine years • Matt’s first job was working with Tom at Coffee Guru in 2007 and worked alongside him for five years before starting university at ANU when he moved into working in cocktail bars • Matt worked at Hippo Co for two years and when finishing his degree in International Relations was approached by Tom to be the curator for 54 Benjamin • Matt will be moving on from 54B in August and heading to Europe! • Outside of work his interests include cycling and exploring Canberra’s rising dining scene

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DID YOU KNOW? You can create delicious meals in your room with the help of the Abode Pantry at reception, providing for your needs throughout your stay including food, beverages and other essentials.


RECIPES If you have the time and a love for cooking, below are some of our delectable dishes we’ve cooked up for you to try in your Abode kitchen!

Salt & pepper salmon Scrambled eggs with with lime butter ricotta & creamed corn - Serves 2

• 1 large garlic clove • ¼ cup fresh lime juice • 1 teaspoon salt • ½ teaspoon black pepper • ½ cup unsalted butter • 300g salmon fillets • 2 ½ tbs self-raising flour • 1 tbs cornflour • 1 tsp sea salt • 2 tsp mixed peppercorns • ¼ cup milk • Oil for shallow frying

- Serves 2

• 4 eggs • 1-2 teaspoons creamed corn • 80ml cream • 4 tsp grated parmesan cheese • Pinch of salt and pepper • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil • 25g butter • 100g ricotta cheese • Chives to garnish • Pinch truffle salt (optional) Crack 4 eggs into a bowl and cut the egg yolks with a fork, don’t whisk.

Puree garlic with lime juice, salt and pepper in a blender until smooth. With motor running, add melted butter and blend until combined. Place in refrigerator to harden.

Add 1-2 tsp creamed corn, cream and parmesan cheese, then season with salt.

Heat salt in a dry frying pan for two minutes and grind into a fine powder, repeat with pepper and combine both with flour.

Heat the pan with olive oil and butter, then add eggs and gently stir with a spatula. Once the eggs begin to scramble, remove them from the heat and add the ricotta cheese.

Lightly dust salmon, coat with milk and dust again. Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook salmon for 2-4 minutes on each side until golden.

Portion onto plates, garnish with chives and season with truffle salt.

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Chicken tagine with couscous - Serves 4

• 1 kg chicken thigh fillets (cut into bite size pieces) • Ground black pepper • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil • 3-4 cloves crushed garlic • 2-3 tsp grated ginger • 3-4 tsp tagine spice mix • 1-2 tsp ground long pepper • 1-2 tsp smoked paprika • 2 cups couscous • 2 tbs raisins • 2 tbs spring onions • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil • 1 cup onion, celery and carrot (finely diced) • 1 cup green olives (sliced) • 2-3 tsp preserved lemon • 1-2 tsp anchovies • 1 cup pitted dates • 1 cup crushed tomatoes • Chopped parsley to garnish Season chicken thighs with ground black pepper and mix through half a cup of olive oil. Add the crushed garlic, grated ginger, spice mix, long pepper and smoked paprika, mix thoroughly and reserve to marinate for 30 minutes. Put couscous into a bowl and evenly coat with 1/4 cup olive oil. Add two tablespoons of raisins and chopped spring onions then mix through. Pour 750ml (or just to cover) of boiling water and cover with glad wrap then set aside. Heat up a frying pan and add one teaspoon of olive oil. Add 1/3 cup each of onion, celery and carrot then sweat until onions are slightly translucent. Add the chicken to the pan and sear for approximately two minutes. Add sliced olives, preserved lemon, dates and mix through, adding one cup of crushed tomatoes. Reduce liquid until there is a slightly thick sauce; make sure it’s not too dry and remove from heat. Spoon couscous onto a plate serve tagine, then garnish with chopped parsley.

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KIDSPOT

As we move into spring and the sunshine sticks and temperatures rise, there’s no better way to spend your holiday than getting outdoors and exploring with the kids!

Canberra is the ultimate playground for children as it brings together exercise, learning and outdoor exploration. Your kids will be entertained for days!

+ Play

+ Learn

+ Explore

When looking for a place to play, why not start with the obvious; playgrounds? Canberra’s playgrounds can be found in just about every suburb. Some of the big ones include John Knight Memorial Park (Townsend Place, off Aikman Drive in Belconnen). The park has two main areas with slides, swings and rides spread across a gorgeous section of parkland next to Lake Ginninderra. Weston Park (side of Lake Burley Griffin, Yarralumla) known as the adventure playground, includes a swimming and beach area, picnic tables, electric barbecues and miniature train! You could spend a whole day with the kids here, getting some exercise or learning new tricks along the cycling tracks. Kambah District Park (Laidlaw Place, Kambah) brings the excitement with a treehouse, junior and senior flying foxes, a Tarzan swing and a space net. It also includes a wheelchair swing and barbecue and picnic areas so you can spend the day. On the outskirts of town lies the beautiful Cotter Reserve (Cotter Road, Canberra) and with it a long and challenging playground. The area has basketball hoops and playground areas for the younger and the older kids. There’s also fishing, swimming and bushwalking along the Discovery Trail for the adventurers.

The National Library of Australia (Parkes Place, Canberra), has a detective program just for kids. Grab your copy of the clues from Reception and make your way through the artworks and reading rooms to find the answers! For the budding scientists, Questacon (King Edward Terrace, Canberra) is the place to be. Chat to the expert gallery assistants that will take you through exhibitions custom-made for every budding scientist or fun lover. And if you’re the daredevil type, take a slide down the Free Fall! The Australian War Memorial (Treloar Crescent, Campbell) has fantastic kids programs to learn about those who gave up everything to safeguard their futures as they exist today. From the earliest wars in 1788 to most recent tours in the Middle East, passionate historians roam the grounds and are happy to tell you a story or two from what they have learnt or experienced firsthand. The National Museum of Australia (Lawson Crescent, Acton) has a new expedition waiting for you to take on. Pick up your Trailblazer expedition pack on the way in and find the objects throughout the many galleries to win the competition!

Tidbinbilla National Park (Tidbinbilla Ring Road, Paddys River) is the perfect place to see koalas, emus, Rock-wallabies and many more native animals. Ask about the guided tours at the Visitors Centre or head off on the marked trail and discover the flora and fauna for yourselves. The National Arboretum (Forest Drive, Canberra) is the place to learn all about native plants of Australia, as you roam through the gardens, ending the day at Pod Playground and exploring the cubby houses all sitting at different heights with a music making machine! If you’re interested in nature and a new experience, then Woodlands and Wetlands Trust are the people you want to contact as they promise to show you Australia’s natural habitat through a trip to Jerrabomberra Wetlands. Hosted by Bettong Buddies, these experts take on school groups regularly to teach kids about the animals and the importance of taking care of our environment. The National Zoo and Aquarium (999 Lady Denman Drive, Weston Creek) is where you can learn about animals from around the world. You can pet a shark, handfeed Australian animals and come face-to-face with the big cats!

Got a recommendation or question for our Kidspot activities? Tweet us @abode_hotels with the hashtag #kidspot.

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IT’S MARKET TIME

Markets bring people together. They bring an eclectic mix of talent that creates an exciting event to mingle, make money and make new friends.

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uccessful markets join urban and rural economies allowing them to benefit from each other and keep money flowing within the neighbourhood and nearby areas. It’s a fantastic opportunity for small businesses to get started in making a name for themselves by hosting a less expensive space that sees visitors in the thousands and the chance to stand out from the millions of stores and options that consumers are exposed to daily. Fresh food markets in particular are fantastic for finding healthier foods, moving away from hormone-filled and pesticideridden produce that can be found in supermarkets. Not only is there nutritional benefits buying fresh from the farm but it

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can become a social activity for families and friends as you taste-test your way through the stalls and find organic produce that contributes to the Australian-made effort, keeping our farmers in business. There is also a significantly decreased chance of contamination in local food compared to imported produce from relatively unknown areas. Markets join cultural communities, bringing together large numbers of people with various backgrounds, interests, products and ideas. People are mixing, discovering something new and making new friends and opening up the minds of rural and urban communities that paves the way for important values like multiculturalism. The positive social activity of getting together with friends to hunt for vintage treasures, second-hand books, jewellery, clothes and international foods has positive effects on how a person feels about their

hometown. Studies have shown that having activities to do on the weekend outside the house creates positive feelings based on a holistic offering. Canberra’s market scene came to life in its initial plans as Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahoney Griffin planned each town centre to be the shopping or ‘market’ hubs of that area for residents to find food, clothing, trinkets and all kinds of services for the home. There is a great sense of community in Canberra’s markets with the regulars opening every week, month or quarter presenting fresh food, arts and craft, jewellery, clothes and much more. Vendors from across the country and the globe flock to the capital bringing with them the end products of their great talent. Here’s three markets you should check out this spring.

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Handmade Market The award winning Handmade Market returns to Canberra this spring with the very best of Australian handcrafted designs. Think stylish, unique and exceptional quality. You will certainly find that special gift for someone special at the Handmade Market.

Handmade maket

handmadecanberra.com.au

Capital Region Farmers Market

Capital Region Farmers market

Local Farmers converge on Canberra’s favourite food market to offer the freshest of fresh produce for you to sample and buy. Held each Saturday from 7.30am to 11.30am, make sure to stop by for a delicious health fix your body will thank you for. capitalregionfarmersmarket.com.au

Photo - VisitCanberra

Old Bus Depot Markets The grand dame of the Canberra market scene, Old Bus Depot Markets have been welcoming locals and visitors since 1992. Open every Sunday, you will find antique treasures, handmade arts and crafts, gourmet foods and fun activities for the kids and adults.

Old Bus Depot Markets

obdm.com.au

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Canberra offers an exceptional opportunity for property investors. With a growing population, demand for rental properties remain high and returns on investment are excellent. If you are in the market for an investment property Canberra is an outstanding choice.

wayfarerapartments.com.au MIN EER7

ARTIST’S IMPRESSION

southportliving.com.au MIN EER5

ARTIST’S IMPRESSION

GEOCON.COM.AU A+

51


IT AIN’T EASY BEING GREEN

BOOK DIRECT AND SAVE! ABODE WODEN | FOYER 52

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ABODE WODEN | ROOM

Did you know that as a country, in the September 2014 quarter, we produced 546.7 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions?*

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hile fluctuations occur and we report decreases as much as increases, it is still safe to say that things needs to change. We are in a good position when compared to other parts of the world but we can always do better. Since the industrial revolution in the 18th century, the amount of fossil fuels used has increased significantly resulting in higher emissions of greenhouse gases. Thankfully, society is becoming more aware of Earth’s finite fossil fuels and the negative effects greenhouse gases will have on the planet over time. These effects include terrors such as global warming, climate change, ozone depletion, sea level rise, hostile effects on biodiversity and more. In an age where being green is slowly becoming the norm and easier to achieve, finding ways to be sustainable and environmentally friendly while still efficient is key for a successful reduction of emissions and will also become good business; saving on bills and maintenance. There are several ways to reduce greenhouse emissions that apply to homes, businesses and individuals:

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• Check the energy star rating when selecting appliances (the higher the number, the greater efficiency it has) • Research information on fuel-efficient vehicles (this may also help you save money in the long run) • Reducing personal energy use by turning off lights and electronics when not in use – this reduces electricity demand • Reducing distance travelled in vehicles reduces petrol consumption. Ride your bike or walk if you can! • Fuel switching – producing more energy from renewable sources and using fuels with lower carbon contents are ways to reduce carbon emissions

performance • We have widened thermal bands to reduce the heating and cooling requirements • We have incorporated heat recovery systems to capture and reuse waste heat from building services • We use efficient LED and compact fluorescent lights • We use energy efficient appliances. • A metering strategy has been developed to monitor the energy and water consumption within the building • Commissioning and building tuning has been and will be performed on all building services

Abode Hotels moved to make these reductions a main component in our daily operations. This was especially considered in the readaptation of office building, Juliana House, to Abode Woden.

As a society, we are looking at ways to bring our emissions down through alternative power sources and moving forward in finding new ways to do old tasks that benefit the environment and ultimately, human survival.

Abode Woden does its part for the sustainability cause in the following ways: • Each hotel room has a shut-down switch to minimise lighting, power, heating and cooling • The mechanical system will service each floor separately, and a management strategy is in place to shut down cooling and heating to unoccupied floors, ensuring the mechanical system operates on a floor only when rooms are occupied • We specify energy efficient mechanical system with a high coefficient of

Abode Woden has this year been named Australia’s greenest hotel with the highest NABERS rating of every hotel in the country! Read more about the NABERS Program at www.nabers.gov.au.

*Information obtained from Department of Environment’s Quarterly update of Australia’s National Greenhouse Gas Inventory: September 2014

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NATIONAL TREASURES: QUESTACON

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uestacon, Australia’s National Science and Technology Centre, has been engaging and teaching kids and families for years and is a major driver of tourism to Canberra through school trips and holiday visits. Questacon’s Acting Director, Kate Driver, speaks of the Centre’s importance to Canberra and Australia, and what makes Questacon a great place for interactive education and fun. “Questacon has been engaging people with science and technology for over 25 years now. Since the first centre opened in 1988, it has received more than 10 million visitors from all over Australia and the world. “We’re now reaching our second generation of students and children, whose parents visited the Centre when they were children themselves. We pride ourselves on offering a high quality visitor experience and regularly changing what’s on offer in the Centre.” The Acting Director discussed what makes Questacon so special and its appeal as the smarter way to have fun. “Questacon is also a popular attraction for school groups visiting Canberra— over 130,000 students visit the Centre in groups from around Australia.

The best thing about Questacon is that, with eight themed galleries, Questacon really does have something for people of all ages. We get regular feedback from our adult visitors who are surprised to find there’s just as much on offer for them as for their children. From the littlest scientists who can play and discover in MiniQ, through to the mind-boggling perception tests in Perception Deception, adults and children alike will find something to fascinate them. And of course, dropping yourself six metres down the Freefall slide is a thrill for everyone who is brave enough to try it!”

Spectacular Science Show. Let Questacon’s in-house theatre troupe, the Excited Particles, excite and engage you with rockets, spiders, electricity and the all-time favourite, sub-zero liquid nitrogen game show, ‘Will it Smash?’

There’s something for everyone as you experience science in extraordinary ways. See electrifying caged lightning, freeze your own shadow, experience an earthquake or challenge a robot to a game of air hockey.

Questacon is open daily between 9.00am and 5.00pm and features an onsite café, Megabites and the Q Shop (in the Centre and online) offers a range of sciencethemed toys, gifts and souvenirs so you can continue the Questacon experience after you leave.

Or visit Q Lab to catch an ever-changing collection of intriguing experiments, explosive demonstrations and interesting displays.

Engage your kids in the mystery and miracle of science through the disguise of fun!

The scientists and technologists of the future will enjoy MiniQ as they play, discover and learn in a gallery specifically designed for those aged between 0–6 years old. Questacon features over 200 hands-on exhibits, designed for visitors to touch, play and explore. No visit is complete without watching— and perhaps taking a starring role—in a

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Questacon is located in Canberra’s Parliamentary Zone, adjacent to several other national institutions within this premier tourist precinct. It is only a short walk from the centre of Canberra, and is in an ideal location for visitors to enjoy some of Canberra’s best tourist experiences.

Visit questacon.edu.au for more information.

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The wait is nearly over. Prepare to glimpse into the future with the all-new Audi Q7, coming soon to Audi Centre Canberra.

Register your interest by calling us on (02) 6281 1000 or visit audicentrecanberra.com.au

Audi Mark of Excellence Award

132 Melrose Drive, Phillip | Tel: (02) 6281 1000 audicentrecanberra.com.au

Dealer of the Year 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011

Profile for Abode Hotels

Abode Hotels - A+ Magazine  

A+ is a quarterly publication that features interviews with our locals, photography, a bit of history, great places to visit, activities for...

Abode Hotels - A+ Magazine  

A+ is a quarterly publication that features interviews with our locals, photography, a bit of history, great places to visit, activities for...