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Welcome to your free BNE magazine, brought to you by Brisbane Airport


Brisbane Airport News

Eco initiatives; where’s Benny; Rugby World Cup action, and more

Brisbane Insider

Happy in mud; give your views on new city park; soft side of firies, and more

Brisbane River, heart of the city

The river has been at the heart of life for centuries and it still is for some locals



STYLE 14 Spring preview

16 Discover Queensland’s volcanic history

Venture underground to view one of the state’s most unusual attractions


Eat, stay and play in Eumundi It may be famous for its markets but it has so much more to offer

I QUEENSLAND 24 Ben Southall

Why the ‘Best Job in the World’ adventurer has made his home in SEQ

Ruby Rose, Superhero

The world is watching as the Aussie star takes the lead in the new series, Batwoman

TASTE 30 Brisbane’s next gen celebrity chefs

Alice McCall launches her latest collection hot off the MBFF runway

They’re learning from the best but already dishing up top class food of their own

ESCAPE 16 Navigate Ireland by boat

WHAT’S ON 32 Muriel’s new musical



Pubs, castles, locks and loughs are all on course during a river boat holiday


ith a quick hit of snow flurries the only real sign there had been any winter at all in the Sunshine State, we have already moved on and it is officially spring – time to shed some layers and spend more time outdoors. It’s easy to do when a river runs through the heart of the city, and we meet some locals whose lives are shaped by the river a little more than most (p8). Then, to get a preview of what spring might look like, we showcase some new season fashion hot off the runway from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Festival (p14) and take off on holiday adventures that explore nature in all its glory, from the waterways of Ireland to Queensland’s unusual lava tubes (p16-29)… To kick start your own adventure, enter our competition to win $4000 worth of travel (p19).

WIN a $4000 travel voucher Enter for a chance to win a dream holiday

Girl power rocks; Agent Carter at Comic-Con; films galore at BIFF


Still wild about Kangaroo Island

Award-winning wineries and luxury lodgings among remarkable nature on a holiday to remember

Brisbane Festival Top 10

From fangirls to fire in the gardens, these are the hot tickets

Events calendar What’s on in the city

GALLERY 37 Day in the Life

People in transit at Brisbane Airport


NEED TO KNOW 38 Helpful information for

visitors to Brisbane Airport

40 43

Destination map

30 BNE magazine is published bi-monthly by Brisbane Airport Corporation. Brisbane Airport Corporation Head of Media and Corporate Communications: Leonie Vandeven Managing Editor: Heather McWhinnie ( Advertising sales: Designers: Leanne Thompson and Mhari Hughes, PrintPublish ©2019 Brisbane Airport Corporation The contents of this publication are not for reproduction, redistribution or reuse by any means whatsoever or in any form whatsoever without express permission of the publisher. Advertising: all advertisements in BNE magazine are the responsibility of advertisers. Advertising is accepted on the understanding that it does not contravene the Trade Practices Act. Responsibility is not accepted by BNE magazine for statements made or the failure of any product or service to give satisfaction. The publication of any material or editorial does not necessarily constitute endorsement of views or opinions expressed. While every effort is made to avoid errors, some information contained in the publication may be superceded.

Brisbane region map

BNE September/October 2019 | 3


Sweet treat

If you’re still wondering what the buzz is about honeybees, and why hives are popping up in backyards, on rooftops and even on apartment balconies, it’s all about the future of food. Honeybees contribute to more than one third of the global food supply through pollination but colonies around the world have been disappearing at an alarming rate. Without them we would miss out on at least 90 varieties of fresh food, according to beekeeper Jack Stone of Bee One Third (pictured left ) who has raised more than 100 new hives in the Brisbane area alone. In partnership with Stone, Brisbane Airport set up a few hives in the 285-hectare wetlands biodiversity zone it set aside for protecting local wildlife and the habitat has proved so successful for attracting bees the number of hives has been doubled in the past 18 months, producing as much as 400kg of honey. Now passengers travelling through BNE International Terminal will be able to get a taste of that honey as it is offered as a gift with purchase at the Australian Produce Store, Australian Way, Merino Collection and Lotte Duty Free from 24 September to 14 October. Minimum spends apply.

Plane spotters take note: EVA Air lands its first Dreamliner

in Brisbane on 9 October (ETA 10.20am) as it begins regular services between BNE and Taipei


COMMUNITY GIVING FUND APPLICATIONS OPEN Schools, sports clubs, a suburban theatre, environment groups, community health and wellbeing projects, and more, have received grants from Brisbane Airport’s Community Giving Fund this year and applications are open for the next round of funds until 30 September. Since it began, the Giving Fund has provided grants totalling $356,000 to organisations needing assistance with projects that benefit their community. For application information search Community Giving Fund at

LOVE FOOD, hate waste Brisbane Airport has partnered with enrich360 to turn food waste into non-chemical fertiliser that can go back to farmers to grow more healthy produce. So far the scheme has removed more than three tonnes of food waste from the airport’s cafés and restaurants which is converted to fertiliser using a special dehydration technology. The process not only reduces food waste going to landfill (which adds to the creation of methane, bad for the environment), the new fertiliser helps reverse soil degradation (when nutrients are stripped from the soil, also bad) and helps produce tastier, more nutritious food, mimicking the cycle of nature. Good for everyone. In nine months since the scheme began, more than 500kg of fertiliser has been created to be returned to farmers who grow the food that is supplied to the restaurants and cafés … and the cycle continues. 4 | BNE September/October 2019


Virgin Australia opens its new passenger lounge in Brisbane Airport’s International Terminal in September in partnership with UK operator No1 Lounges. Entry is free to eligible Virgin Australia Business Class guests, Platinum and Gold members of the Velocity Frequent Flyer Program, as well as Virgin Australia Lounge Members travelling to New Zealand. The lounge is open 6am-12pm and 3pm-10pm, providing a hot and cold grazing menu from the kitchen, curated wine list and cocktail station, TV and games room, unlimited WiFi, tech charging points and shower facilities. Located near Gate 77 after security.

Meet Benny

Brisbane Airport’s mobile information centre, ‘Benny’ (pictured right), is on the road to share fascinating facts about BNE’s new runway and what it means to the city and nearby suburbs before it opens to air traffic in 2020. Inside the mini-tech centre visitors can look back at 45 years of runway planning in videos, images and audio presentations, view the runway operations in a Virtual Reality experience, flight paths on a digital map and see an architectural model of the entire airport site. To find locations search Benny at

Go Wallabies As the Rugby World Cup kicks off in Tokyo passengers travelling through the International Terminal will be able to watch the action in themed lounges from 17 September at Brisbane River Grill, Windmill and Co (both Level 3 after security), The Botanist and Coretto Café and Bar (both Level 4, Departures before security). Themed merchandise will be available from Australian Way with special offers from 1 October to 3 November.

To the

stars and back

Why wait for space travel to get a close-up view of the Milky Way when you can see it clearly from Charleville less than 800km west of Brisbane. With no city lights or pollution to cloud the starry skies it’s a top spot to view our celestial neighbours – and possibly the officially recognised ‘Asteroid Charleville’ as it floats through space. A visit to the town’s Cosmos Centre and Observatory is just one of the unique adventures to explore in Outback Queensland while Regional Express (Rex) offers its discounted ‘Community Fares’ for travel until January next year. Savings up to 25 per cent are being offered on one-way fares between Brisbane and 10 Outback destinations as well as from Cairns, Townsville and Mt Isa. For Community Fare deals see

Careers in Science and infrastructure IN THE SPOTLIGHT

If there’s a sign the gender gap may be closing in once male-dominated professions it may be in the students who attended the annual Science and Infrastructure Development School recently, a five-day residential camp for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students from years 10 through 12, hosted by QUT and supported by organisations in the field, including Brisbane Airport. More than 90 per cent of the class of 26 were female, attending from high schools from Katherine in the Northern Territory to Port Macquarie across the border in NSW. During their visit to Brisbane Airport students were given rare access to the operations centre of Airbus Australia, an assembly and maintenance centre for helicopters and aircraft used by Australia’s defence forces, as well operations at the airport itself, from the work of the sniffer dogs team to its sustainability practices. For student Holly Summers (pictured below), a highlight of the day was getting up close to the dogs in a demonstration of their skills in sniffing out contraband. “It was impressive to see the level of their skills and to learn about how they are trained to reach that level and to see the mutually respective bond between the handlers and their dogs,’ says Summers, who has been completing a TAFE course in animal studies and volunteering at an Animal Welfare League shelter alongside her school subjects. It’s clearly a topic she is already passionate about. “The contribution that animals are able to make is incredible. They are so intelligent and I think people often don’t realise the full extent of their capabilities. That’s something I’d like to implement in the future, using dogs to help conservation efforts,” she says. Summers is an example of just the sort of student the SID school hopes to encourage as she maps out her plan for the future, in her case a journey of further study combined with more volunteer work and experience in the field boosted by a gap year travelling overseas. “By working hard and being as qualified as possible, and having as much work experience in the field as possible is going to give me the best opportunities to get into positions where I can make a difference,” she says.

A colourful journey

Brisbane artist Adam Busby’s graphic murals have coloured walls, construction fencing and bridge pylons and his new installation on the Skywalk between the car park and Domestic Terminal at Brisbane Airport is hard to miss (pictured left). At more than two metres high and consisting of eight coloured panels of painted wood that stretch almost two metres deep the new work, called Space Between, has been created to celebrate Brisbane Festival (on until 28 September). The installation represents a journey, says Busby, who hopes the artwork will cause people passing by to stop, reflect and allow their minds to be transported to a new place and new perspective with each layer. “The diversity of shapes and colours aims to bring forward the multitude of unique cultures and backgrounds represented in Brisbane,” says Busby. A similar installation is on display at the festival hub at South Bank. For more about what’s on at Brisbane Festival see page 34. BNE September/October 2019 | 5



Theatre in the home

Jeffrey Tan was a student at QUT so he’s no stranger to Brisbane but in the last six months the Singapore-based theatre director, producer and educator has seen a more intimate side of the city than most locals might experience in a lifetime. Tan is the lead artist behind Open Homes, a unique initiative that brought people together in the living rooms of real homes to hear the stories of the resident families. It was so successful a second series was commissioned in Singapore and in October it will have its Australian premiere in Brisbane. In a collaboration with La Boite and Backbone theatre companies Tan has spent the last six months working with 15 families who will share their real-life stories over three weekends of almost hour-long encounters, hosting audiences of around 16 at a time in their living rooms. As he travelled to meet with families from Upper Kedron in the north to Mt Gravatt in the south and inner city suburbs in between Tan says he saw more of Brisbane than ever before. “What struck me about Brisbane [since the last time I was here] is how diverse the city has become,” he says. The team sent out the call for families to participate earlier this year and Tan and a team of facilitators have been working with the final 15 taking part to prepare for their audience. “They have been very generous in sharing their personal journeys and reflections on life. It’s not a lecture. They are all sharing something that is close to their heart,” says Tan. The events will take place in an assortment of residences, from traditional Queenslanders to apartments, some owned, some rented, and social housing. The themes are intriguing, with titles such as ‘The Secret of Kissing for 40 years’, ‘An Essential Guide to Becoming Fab’, ‘Open Closed Doors’ and ‘Rennie’s Mansion’ and they are full of surprises. Valerie Ferdinands (pictured) weaves a tale of emigration with her love of cooking, favourite recipes, music and humour in ‘Life’s Recipes’. “What we saw in Singapore was that the audience came as strangers but they leave as friends,” says Tan. Open Homes is on from 25 October to 10 November, various locations. Tickets from $24, plus booking fees at 6 | BNE September/October 2019

They look buff, they have trained for 12 weeks to be in their best possible shape, not to mention the workout they get in their day job as firefighters around Australia, but if you look at this picture from the annual Australian Firefighters Calendar and think it’s all about them, well, you’d be wrong! Richard McCluskey, 35, is a full-time firie in Brisbane’s bayside who has been in the calendars for five years, and he can tell you a thing or two about working with animals. “At the shoot we’re told ‘make sure everyone remembers you are not the stars of the calendar, the animals are’. Yes, it’s true. In some of the photos the firies are just a blur in the background. It turns out that since the firies have been paired with all sorts of cute, cuddly and sometimes more edgy animals (McCluskey was paired with a dingo one year and this year takes a blurry back seat to Turtle, an echidna), the calendars have been an even bigger success. Last year copies were shipped to 91 countries and in some places, such as Taiwan, the firefighters are treated like superstars when they visit on promotional tours. Instead of shooting just one annual calendar the firies now turn up to multi-day photo shoots for six calendars, one each with dogs, cats, horses, farm animals and wildlife, as well as the firie-only

Buildings around Brisbane will be open for rare public inspection during

Open House 12-13 October.

See This year the festival celebrates 10 years of showcasing Brisbane architecture with a series of free behind-the-scenes tours, Brisbane Airport included, and a photography competition that invites visitors to submit images taken at participating buildings (where allowed) for a chance to win a cash prize. Look out for the program from 13 September.

for a good cause ‘classic’. This year McCluskey appears with George the cat (December), Ace the horse (May) and Turtle (September) in three different calendars. The dingo might have been one animal everyone was most careful around but kittens, horses and piglets have so far earned a reputation from their ‘co-stars’ for being the most difficult to work with. “The beauty of it is we come in the best shape possible, they take 1000 photos, but if the cat’s not playing the game or the horses ears aren’t up and they’re not looking really happy they bin all the photos. It’s a lot of fun. We just laugh it off. Gone are the days when it’s just the biggest and strongest guys in the photos,” McCluskey says. While the wildlife ‘models’ come from Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary on the Gold Coast, most of the other animals come from rescue or welfare shelters which can also benefit from a share of the profits. So far the calendars have raised more than $3 million for charities, including the burns units of major children’s hospitals and, this year, profits will be donated to Youngcare, Kids with Cancer Foundation, Healing Hooves, Safe Haven Animal Rescue and many more smaller charities. The 2020 Australian Firefighters Calendar, photographed by Brett Cunliffe from Jobaprophoto, is for sale online now, $20 each, at


Richard McCluskey and George

Brisbane is going to get a new city park. The council has announced its plan to convert Victoria Park Golf Course at Herston into parkland three times the size of popular inner city New Farm Park, more than double the size of the City Botanic Gardens and as big as about 45 football fields. Victoria Park has operated as a golf course since 1931. According to Brisbane City Council Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner it will be the city’s biggest new park in 50 years and the public is being invited to have their say in the planning before 29 September. People will be able to fill out a survey, make written submissions, submit photographs or design ideas, and meet the council project team at pop-up information days. And if you need further inspiration, there will be an open day at the park on 22 September, when the golf course will be temporarily closed, so that locals can explore the entire site while enjoying live music, food trucks and family activities. Victoria Park was established in 1875 and it was used for temporary housing for soldiers during World War II. When Brisbane celebrated its centenary in 1959, the Centenary Pool was built, and now the site is also home to a function centre and putt putt course. Work on the new park is expected to begin in 2021. For more information, search Victoria Park at or call council on 3403 8888.

It’s a mud, mud, mud, Mud World Hot Tomato breakfast radio host Emily Jade O’Keeffe and daughter Millie Valentine (pictured left) sure are having fun in the mud. In today’s hi-tech digitised world it seems amazing that something as simple as dirt and water can be the source of so much joy, but there’s a concerted movement afoot to bring back mud play. “Some of my fondest childhood memories saw me covered in the stuff, head to toe,” says Hyahno Moser, program manager of Nature Play Queensland. “Now that I am a grown-up, and a parent, I realised that I no longer played in the mud, but I am changing that. Over the past few years I have rediscovered my love for playing in the mud and with the Nature Play Queensland team we are on a mission to bring mud play back!” For the last three years Nature Play Queensland has run many Mud World events and Moser says they have learnt a lot from children about the art of mud play. “And, those childhood feelings I had about mud having magical powers? Turns out they were correct! “Our kids are becoming increasingly sedentary which is why Nature Play Queensland was created to find ways to get our kids engaged in healthy, active outdoor play,” says Moser.

“This type of play, called Nature Play, not only benefits a child’s physical and emotional health, but also encourages creativity, risk assessment and improves their self-esteem. “Research shows when it comes to raising healthy children, there is such a thing as being too clean and exposing children to dirt can help develop a healthy immune system.” The benefits, according to the research, range from stimulated brain activity and creativity to a reduced risk of allergies, anxiety and depression. “But the real focus for Mud World is showing children and their parents why playing outside in the mud is so much fun,” says Moser. Mud World features five play areas suitable for different age groups, from Muddy Monsterland and The Great Muddy Mountain Range to a giant Mud Slide.

Mud World is on at Samford, 30 minutes from the city, on 5 and 6 October. Tickets $27.50 per child per session and $5.50 per adult, plus booking fees, at BNE September/October 2019 | 7


Brisbane River Heart of the city

While most of us enjoy a temporary connection with the river that snakes through the heart of the city – perhaps as a picnic spot, a kayak course, commute or even a party cruise – others are bound to it in very different ways, as Tonya Turner discovers


HANNON RUSKA, TOORABUL AND YUGGERA ELDER, TRADITIONAL OWNER, STORYTELLER When he gathers with family and friends by the Brisbane River to celebrate they make music, dance, swim and fish, catching freshwater mullet “as long as your arm”, hunt for witchetty grubs in the gum trees and use river rocks and river water to cook freshly caught fish and food wrapped in paperbark or lemon myrtle leaf – although these days they often use banana leaves or alfoil. “We move with the times,” Ruska says with a laugh. Ruska says he couldn’t live anywhere else but the land of his ancestors. “I did move up to Mackay once but I moved back because this is my home both physically and spiritually. I can’t go away for more than a month before I need to be on Brisbane soil again.” While the social gatherings by the river are a great get-together for the tribe they are also an opportunity to pass on traditions and keep their language alive, which Ruska has also been sharing with a much wider audience for the last 25 years as a storyteller for his people and, more recently, as managing director of corporate event company Tribal Experiences. He estimates he has shared the story of Brisbane River and his homeland through music, dance and storytelling to at least 15 million people around the world.

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One of his favourite stories to tell from the Dreamtime and one that is featured at almost all of the cultural events performed by Tribal Experiences here and overseas is about the creation of Maiwar (Brisbane River). According to tribal lore the story of the river begins with a battle between land creatures led by Yowogurra (a goanna) and water creatures led by Gowonda (a dolphin) which carves dry gullies into the landscape and, years later when Kaboora-gan (the rainbow serpent) wriggles her way into a tight gully and gets stuck, she calls upon her brothers, Yaro (the rain) and Ngalan (the clouds) to help free her. “When Moogera (the big storm) comes down Kaboora-gan is able to slither free and the gully is opened up to become Brisbane River, which became our life source,” says Ruska. Significant places to the Toorabul and Yuggera people along the river include Kangaroo Point Cliffs, where battle terms were once negotiated by tribal leaders, and City Botanic Gardens, where tribal women once gathered to welcome new life into the world at their birthing place. For Ruska and his mob their celebrations at spots along the river, from Fisherman Island to Colleges Crossing at Chuwar, are a time-out from the city to reconnect with culture. “At the fast pace we live in modern society it’s easy to lose touch. It’s important to keep our ancestors’ ways as you learn a lot from the old ways, no matter what culture you come from.”


Photography by Mark Turner

Living on a houseboat wasn’t something Jonathan Sri, 31, ever imagined he’d do but, tired of renting in the city, the high-profile Greens councillor decided to buy a boat and make it his home instead. Two years later, he has no plans of moving anytime soon. The 30ft bay cruiser he and his partner Anna share is moored in a tranquil tributary of the Brisbane River where the water is calm, but the sandflies come out in force. “It’s a trade off,” he says. The cabin is just five metres long by four metres wide with a small but well-equipped kitchen, compost toilet, shower cubicle, dining table and a bed that doubles as a couch where they can watch their little TV. Books are stacked on shelves filling every available space on the boat. “It’s really cosy,” Sri says. “It’s very compact inside but then we have a bit of extra space on the roof and on the deck. It makes you think a lot about material possessions and how much you really need to live a comfortable life.” While he admits boat life isn’t for everyone, Sri says there is a strong sense of community among river dwellers. “We all keep an eye out for each other,” he says. Learning how to live sustainably and practise what he preaches was another big reason for deciding to live on a houseboat. “It’s been cool to live a lower impact, smaller footprint life living off rainwater and solar panels and composting all our waste. We have to be conscious of our waste and the impact we’re having because it’s a really sensitive environmental corridor,” he says. Sri, who donates just over half his pay to charity and advocacy groups because “politicians are paid too much” and therefore “lose touch with the people they represent” is more than happy with his humble abode, purchased for $35,000, and about as close to nature as you can get in the middle of the city. “It’s a really beautiful and relaxing spot to live. We wake up each day and we’re surrounded by a lot of wildlife, we see fish jumping in the afternoons and different waterbirds moving along the corridor. I think a lot of people don’t realise how many of Brisbane River’s tributaries are still in quite good condition considering how much abuse they’ve been subjected to. We see all sorts of beautiful birds from tiny little bright blue kingfishers to giant pelicans that splash when they land on the water near the boat. Brisbane’s waterways are a big part of what makes this city special. It’s quite magical,” he says.

BNE September/October 2019 | 9

FEATURE DAMIAN HAYES, WATER POLICE OFFICER As the countdown begins to Sunsuper Riverfire on 28 September, the climax of Brisbane Festival when 500,000 people flock to the riverside to watch low flying military aircraft, tonnes of fireworks and stunning laser light shows, water police officer Sergeant Damian Hayes, 50, and his colleagues prepare for their busiest night of the year. Hayes has seen people do some pretty silly things on the river in his time. Many of them, unsurprisingly, while under the influence of alcohol, jumping off small bridges into the water for fun or swimming from one side to the other for kicks. “People in the water are by far our biggest risk. It happens more regularly than you’d think. Just with the level of intoxication, they don’t weigh up the risks,” he says. And clearly they haven’t seen the shark warning signs! A former detective, Hayes moved to the water police two-andhalf-years-ago. Generally it’s a specialist option available to police officers who have served for at least five years and can apply through a merit-based process. Although he grew up in the country, he’s always felt at home on the water, riding boats and water-skiing at inland dams from a young age. It’s a hobby he now shares with his wife and two daughters. “My association with the water has never wavered. If it’s a nice day we get in the boat and go up to Caloundra and have lunch then head back to Bribie. Living near the water allows me to do

10 | BNE September/October 2019

that a lot more. It’s how I spend time with my family and time with colleagues at work – I’m just attracted to the water and always have been,” he says. Every day on the job is different, from checking and maintaining their boats, patrolling the Brisbane River and waterways up and down the coast, enforcing marine laws, conducting search and rescue operations or working with partner agencies. And by night, the river is at its most dangerous. “Once the sun goes down the risk level is elevated. There could be obstacles in the water, back scatter, unlit vessels, floating debris, sand banks – you haven’t got the benefit of sight,” he says. On the night of Riverfire the river traffic swells with more than 100 private and commercial boats carrying partying passengers to view the fireworks and celebrations. “A lot of vessels don’t travel the Brisbane River any other day of the year bar that one night for Riverfire. There are literally hundreds of them that don’t have that same level of boating knowledge or experience,” he says. Good management prior to the event helps the night go smoothly. “We send out people through the day in our boats and try and get a good start to the event and have people in the right places and the right exclusion zone set up for the fireworks barges. It’s a busy night,” he says.

KEITH STRATFORD, FISHERMAN Camping trips with his dad and brother at South Stradbroke Island, pumping yabbies and catching bream, fill Keith Stratford’s childhood memories and now he shares his passion with others as a columnist for Bush ‘n Beach Fishing Magazine. He’s been fishing since he was about four years old and is passing on everything he knows to his two young children aged four and eight. Although Stratford, 38, fished almost every day before he had kids, he still gets out several times a week. On any given morning he’ll likely be found zigzagging up and down the river to some of his favourite spots around the Port of Brisbane, Fisherman Island and “pretty much anywhere between the Gateway and the mouth of the river – it’s where a lot of the fish congregate and you get different species at different times of year.” Lure fishing (which uses artificial bait resembling the type of food different fish like to eat) is his sport of choice. “Once you work it out you start catching a lot more fish, and good quality fish too. It’s a very active way to fish. You’re not just sitting there waiting for fish to come to you, you go hunting for fish,” he says.

Depending on the time of year, he catches mulloway, threadfin salmon, snapper, flathead, estuary cod and javelin fish out of the river and takes it home to cook for dinner. Sharks often follow his boat around and bite the fish in half as he’s pulling them in, but he’s not bothered by them. “There’s lots of them out there, big too, they’re pretty smart,” he says. While he’s happy to fish on the beach with his wife while the kids play and build sandcastles, he prefers being out on the boat with them. “It gets you to places you can’t get to by foot and allows you to cover a lot of different areas,” he says. “There’s no stress out there, it’s just relaxed and it’s always fun. Even when you’re not catching fish it’s still fun. There’s no point getting cranky when you’re out on the water, there could be worse places to be,” he says.


Image: JSquared Photography/Contour/Getty Images


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ver since she appeared as Batwoman in an Arrowverse crossover special that screened almost a year ago, hype has been building around Ruby Rose becoming the star of her own superhero series – and not just any superhero but the first out-and-proud lesbian, openly gay superhero on television. While it was no secret a spin-off was likely, when the official announcement finally was made it was still an emotional one for Rose. Just days later she told late night talk show host Jimmy Fallon she was trying hard not to start spontaneously crying every time anyone asked her about it, including him. “I think the reason I kept getting so emotional is that when I was growing up and watching TV I never saw somebody I could identify with on TV, let alone a superhero,” she said, choking up as she was speaking. Instead Rose found affirmation growing up in a quote by Oscar Wilde, “be yourself because everybody else is taken”, and later, when she started to find fame in entertainment, “be the person you needed when you were younger”. Rose, 33, was born in Melbourne and raised by her single mother in a turbulent childhood which included moving often – at one point she lived in Surfers Paradise – and the two are close. “My mum raised me in a way that allowed me to always be myself and to believe in who I was,” Rose says. Early on there were signs perhaps of her destiny to come when, inspired by pet bats her mum kept at home, she made her own bat wings out of recycled cardboard to play in, wearing them everywhere and jumping off high things. When she was 12 Rose came out as lesbian and throughout high school she was bullied, ending up in hospital after one particularly brutal attack. At a recent press conference for Batwoman Rose was asked if she thought life for teens was any easier now. “No. Social media is terrifying. I do think that we are coming a long way in acceptance, people are becoming more progressive and we are getting much more representation on television. In a way, social media is great because you can find communities and you can find people that are like yourself and you can find these people that will help support you and you can talk to, but at the same time it’s a whole portal of people who are able to attack you when you are in your bedroom at home. “At least, with me, I didn’t get a mobile phone until I was probably 16, and maybe I could get a text message that cost someone, like, $1.50 to send.



Ruby Rose knows what it’s like to be thrust out of her comfort zone but she’s overcome her fears to land one of the most coveted roles in Hollywood, and her growing legion of fans is loving it

“Now I feel like there’s a lot of pressure on kids, and that’s why making this show is so important to me and to everybody (behind it), because we do want everyone to watch it, but especially young people can watch it and feel like they can identify and they can relate to the people that they are watching on the screen and hopefully be empowered by that.” Rose had a successful career as a presenter on a range of programs, from MTV to The 7pm Project – she was their entertainment reporter and panellist in the original line-up when the show began 10 years ago – before leaving to pursue her own hosting projects and try to crack the US. But by the time she got her breakthrough role in the Netflix hit Orange is the New Black (OITNB) she was about as low as she had ever been. On social media she shared with her followers just how close she had come to giving up. “I had packed my bags and left everything I knew behind, for a dream. I left my friends, family, career and comfort zone to attempt to break into Hollywood. After two years of trying to get a manager or an agent I had spent every last cent I’d made in over a decade of ‘showbiz’. “I was living on a blow-up mattress from Target and I had only six months left on my visa to prove I could contribute to the industry abroad.” She poured what she had into making a short film called Break Free, about breaking free from gender stereotypes, which she had put off making for years because she was so fearful of how people would react, that she might lose her job or that brands would pull advertising from her shows, or brands she represented would not want to be associated with her anymore. “When I was stripped of those things, I had nothing to lose and no one to answer to and I realised I was getting depressed over rejection from others when I should have been focused on whether I believed in me and, if I did, what did I stand for and what really mattered to me.” Break Free did change her life, but not in the

When I was stripped of those things, I had nothing to lose and no one to answer to and I realised I was getting depressed over rejection from others when I should have been focused on if I believed in me and if I did, what did I stand for and what really mattered to me.

way she had imagined. The film immediately went viral (to date it has had more than 50 million views) and found its way to the creators of OITNB. “The film, and the struggle of those years, will forever be the time I’m most proud of,” she says. “The film ended up circulating around the world; it made an impact bigger than myself and it started a bigger conversation.” Her career has only skyrocketed from there. By the time Rose auditioned for the role of Kate Kane (Bruce Wayne’s cousin) in Batwoman, she had a fistful of action roles behind her in films such as Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, XXX: Return of Xander Cage, alongside Vin Diesel, John Wick: Chapter 2, alongside Keanu Reeves and monster movie The Meg, with Jason Statham. Off screen too, Rose has shown she has the credentials to seriously kick butt. Boxing is a regular part of her workout and in an amateur bout once she easily emerged the winner. More recently in a skills training session for her upcoming new role, she was shown effortlessly going through some smooth fight moves. “Auditioning for the part, I felt like it was a perfect fit. But there’s lots of differences between Kate and myself, although I can also understand and relate to her a lot. Batwoman, not as much. I haven’t been fighting crime lately but, you know, I’m learning,” she says with a smile. And the suit, it seems, helps a lot. “I still remember putting it on for the first time and it’s just a magical feeling. This thing fits me like a glove. Every single part of it has been designed for my body so it moves with me, and I move with it, and it feels like a second skin for the most part, and it’s an incredible feeling. I feel the transformation unlike any costume I’ve ever put on in any role in my life. You feel fast and stronger and bulletproof, and you’re like, “but I’m not, am I?” Batwoman will stream on Foxtel and screen on FOX8 from 8 October at 8:30pm (AEDT), express from the US

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Summer romance When Alice McCall previewed her Spring/Summer collection at MercedesBenz Fashion Festival in Brisbane she shared a vision of romance and modern femininity. “I wanted to design a collection that was both romantic and feminine whilst also displaying a bold confidence. I loved playing with fabrics that would catch the light beautifully on a spring afternoon. I wanted to create pieces that are sophisticated and youthful,” she said after the show. The romance blooms in roses on lurex that dances in the light, softly rustling shapes, printed silk and lace, teatime gowns and picnic-pretty ginghams – seen in boxy shortened blouses to be worn with shorts or fuller pants, the enlarged collars a hint of the 1970s – sweetheart necklines, flares and frills, puffed sleeves and body contouring. In McCall’s hands broderie anglaise is boldly enlarged, English garden florals are jolted from tradition to modernity and crochet, resurrected from the 1960s, is electrified in rich chartreuse and violet.

From left: Pink Moon dress $475; Pink Moon coat worn as a dress $550.

From left: Shadow Sun top $195 and pant $295; Shadow Sun dress $360.

Pink Moon top $260 and shorts $260. 14 | BNE September/October 2019

From left: La Javanaise crop top $225 and skirt $325 in Cloud; mini dress $395.

Baudelaire midi dress $550.

From left: Harvest Moon ruched top $260 and skirt $295 in French Vanilla; Harvest Moon playsuit $360.

All fashion from Alice McCall boutiques, Queens Plaza, Westfield Chermside, and Pacific Fair, Gold Coast. For details and to buy online see BNE September/October 2019 | 15


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IRELAND by boat

Amanda Woods and friends navigate their own adventure along the River Shannon and discover the heart of Ireland

“This is like a scene out of Disney’s Jungle Cruise!” Captain Zac was right. As we gently cruised along a narrow stretch of inky water surrounded by lush vegetation that was so very, very green it almost looked fake, it did feel like we were on a Disney ride. Or perhaps in a Disney film. Instead, we were on a self-drive boating holiday on the River Shannon in Ireland and we were all grinning at each other and the scenery around us. While I may have been on a few boats and ships over the years in the past they have always involved a professional captain and crew. So, what happens when a novice decides to go on a self-drive boating holiday with a group of fellow beginners? I’m glad you asked. After flying into Dublin with four friends and getting a bus transfer to Carrick-on-Shannon where we would be collecting our boat I’ll confess I had a moment of terror. Before booking, I’d read Le Boat’s ‘New to Boating’ advice and it had said that it was easy, you didn›t need a license or any experience and they’d show us how to drive the boat when we were there. When we arrived Zac reminded me that he knew his way around one and I was greatly relieved. We all quickly decided he would be Captain Zac but, here’s the thing, as the week went on we all took turns at the wheel and all thoroughly enjoyed it, so don’t let a lack of experience scare you off the idea.

INSTANT GUIDE TO BOATING We were given a book of large maps showing the different sections along the Shannon that was easy to follow, as well as a guide to the towns and villages we’d see along the way so we could decide where we’d stop to see some sights, have a bite to eat and spend the night. Before we were set free on the Shannon we were also given a manual and a mobile phone with the base numbers locked in so that we could call with any questions. Which is nice when there’s a strange beeping sound and you don’t know if it’s serious or not (turns out it was not, it was just to let us know the bilge pump was working after we crossed some choppy water). It may have all been very new to us but it was fun to figure things out as we went along. Within a few days it felt so natural to be living that boating life that we were already talking about where we’d do it again next year.

Cruising on Lough Key

Lock on River Shannon

HOME ABOARD While Le Boat has a range of different sized boats for different sized groups, ours was a Vision 4 which can sleep up to eight adults in four double/twin bedrooms with ensuite toilet and shower, a separate living area and a large deck above with space for lounging, eating and drinking with a view. The kitchen had a full-sized fridge with a freezer compartment so powerful it turned vodka into slushy ice, as well as an oven and cooktop, coffee machine, kettle and toaster and all of the plates and cutlery we needed. The showers had surprisingly great water pressure, even temperatures and were roomier than I’d expected. A plastic screen with press-studs helped keep the rest of the bathroom dry as we were splashing about. Towels, linen and blankets are provided, and the beds were so comfortable we all slept like logs. While a starter pack of groceries can be pre-arranged, we were very happy to discover that the lovely people at the Kelly’s grocery stores deliver to the boat. We first discovered this at Carrick-on-Shannon, the absolutely charming town with friendly people who can’t do enough for visitors. When one woman overheard us in Kelly’s debating how we should get to Tesco’s to buy a few extra things (oh, okay, drinks) that Kelly’s didn’t sell she insisted on driving us there and back. We then returned to Kelly’s with our extra bits, loaded them into their delivery vehicle with all of our Kelly’s groceries and then had them delivered to the boat. Within a couple of hours of arriving we’d had our introductory boating lessons and done enough shopping to feed us for days. So we did the sensible thing and headed straight to the pub. BNE September/October 2019 | 17


NEED TO KNOW • Le Boat rentals are by the boat not per person and often in packages of three nights or more making it a budgetfriendly option for families or friends travelling together. • Sound can travel between cabins so you might want to pack earplugs. • Slippers are also a good idea to wear on board and leave shoes at the door. • Check the cupboards before you shop as there may be supplies left from previous guests (such as toilet paper, dishwashing liquid). • Kelly’s grocery stores deliver to the boat. • Bikes can be hired as an option for further onshore exploration. • Hertz can deliver rental cars to the boat depot, so there’s no need to try to get a taxi to the nearest pick up point. We were then able to drop the car off at Dublin airport before jetting out.

Ah yes, Irish pubs. Over the week we cooked quite a few of our own meals on board but those Irish pubs are so good you’d be crazy not to tuck into some of their food along the way. Two absolute standouts from the week were the Oarsman in Carrick-on-Shannon and Keenan’s Hotel at Tarmonbarry which both serve award-winning pub food. Then there was the unexpectedly outstanding Thai meal when we happened across the little Thai restaurant Kin Khao in Athlone. The biggest town between Carrick-on-Shannon and our destination at Portumna, Athlone is also home to the oldest pub in Europe according to the Guinness Book of Records. Sean’s Bar has been around since 900AD and has a beer named just that, which we popped in to try on the way back to the boat after our delicious Thai.

CASTLES AND CROSSES Over the week we had the chance to see the beautiful crosses at Clonmacnoise, the ancient monastery where people from all over Europe would come to be educated in the Middle Ages. Some of the High Kings of Ireland are buried in this old graveyard and, as I have always loved a Celtic cross, this was a special stop for me. Another highlight was Lough Key, which was technically a little bit north of where we were starting our south bound journey, but there was still plenty of time to head up for a visit before coming back down river again. At Lough Key there is a beautiful castle on an island in the middle of the lough, and you can spend the night moored with it in sight. A wonderfully dramatic backdrop to see last thing at night and wake up to. Lough Key is also home to some very unusual trees, like nothing we’d ever seen before, and well worth wandering around and admiring. There’s also all sorts of outdoor exercise equipment dotted around the walk for those who would like to get the blood pumping.

Europe’s oldest pub

50 SHADES OF GREEN As we explored the Irish countryside we kept being blown away by how beautiful it is, and how many shades of green you can have in one scene. The colours are so rich and vibrant with all of those greens against water that’s so dark and inky blue it’s almost black at times. As we travelled along we passed white swans and their little cygnets, the occasional horse and cow, and at one

Clonmacnoise Portumna Castle 18 | BNE September/October 2019

Text published under license by Images: Le Boat, Amanda Woods, Shutterstock

Stone House Cafe, Boyle

point we cruised alongside a golf course, so close that we could say hello and smile at the golfers out enjoying their day. Throughout the week the weather kept us on our toes, switching from blue skies and hot sun on our skins to rain so cold it almost felt like sleet. I’d go from putting on 30+ sunscreen one moment to covering up with a jacket, scarf and beanie the next. So it’s best to be prepared for all conditions. As well as meeting lovely locals it was fun to chat to fellow boating travellers along the way, and we soon discovered most of our fellow Le Boat-ers in Ireland were from Germany – which made the English and German translations for things along the way make more sense! That said Aussies like Zac and I are cottoning on to how much fun it is to see Ireland and other parts of Europe this way, and so the number of Australians is also increasing.

THE LONG GOODBYE When the trip sadly had to come to an end we returned our boat to Portumna and made one last meal on board. We had decided to pay the cleaning fee before we left which meant we could simply pack, straighten things up and enjoy our last hours on board. While two of our friends returned to Germany, Zac, Thomas and I stayed on a few extra days to see more of Ireland by land, including the fascinating Birr Castle which was just a half hour’s drive away. But as we farewelled our boat I said a little thank you to it for introducing me to a new way of travelling with friends, and remembered the words of a wise water rat who once told a mole (in the children’s book Wind in the Willows) that there is nothing, absolutely nothing, half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.

GETTING THERE Fly direct between Brisbane and Abu Dhabi with Etihad Airlines which has direct connections to Dublin.

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5 reasons to visit

KANGAROO ISLAND John Rosenthal returns to Kangaroo Island with fond memories and finds it even better the second time around

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I wasn’t sure I wanted to go back to Kangaroo Island. My first visit, nearly 20 years ago, was one of the highlights of my honeymoon. Engraved in my memory was an island of endless eucalyptus forests replete with koalas and rolling paddocks where wild kangaroos grazed morning and night. A rugged coastline made frequent accommodation for vast windswept white sand beaches, some populated by colonies of endangered seals, others left free to the devices of fewer than 5000 human residents. In the years since that magical trip, however, the island has been discovered. Like the islanders I befriended during that first visit, so many of whom displayed a sincere pride of ownership in their home, I feared that development might forever ruin what was so special about the place. “A lot has happened, but not much has changed,” says Craig Wickham, a naturalist who showed my wife and me around during our first visit and who has remained a mate ever since. In addition to raising two kids and growing his island touring business (Exceptional Kangaroo Island), he’s been active in the effort to keep Kangaroo Island the way it has long been. He’s been a relentless advocate for sustainable tourism and has gently enlisted visitors in the effort by showing them the beauty of this unspoiled place.

Clockwise from left: Southern Ocean Lodge, bathroom with a view; on the terrace of Cliff House; Seal Bay Conservation Park


REMARKABLE NATURE Two of Kangaroo Island’s premier attractions, Admiral’s Arch and Remarkable Rocks, are geological spectacles thousands of centuries in the making, so I didn’t expect much of a metamorphosis in just 20 short years but the Arch, a land bridge created by the erosion of a sea cliff, has been made all the more remarkable by the arrival of a colony of New Zealand Fur Seals. Between fishing expeditions out at sea they decamp in the sun along the more horizontal slabs of limestone surrounding the Arch where they’re occasionally joined by their lighter-coloured cousin, the Australian Fur Seals. The Arch is also the island’s foremost example of how even modest tourism infrastructure has increased access to wonders of nature while reducing human impact on them. Wooden boardwalks leading to the prime viewing spots have kept admirers off the rocks, allowing the seals to feel less vulnerable in this siesta spot. Boardwalks at Remarkable Rocks have produced similarly gratifying results. Visitors are still free to climb all over these massive, irregularly eroded granite boulders – they can’t cause a fraction of what the elements have already wrought over millennia – but thanks to a path from the expanded parking lot, gawkers no longer trample the surrounding vegetation in their rush to snap photographs.

There also are a few more – and more upscale – lodgings than the simple motel-style accommodation I stayed in the last time and, to my unexpected delight, they’re in keeping with the island’s independent nature. The Cliff House, with its astounding perch over secluded Snelling’s Beach, is a perfect example. It’s one of just three villas in the family-run LifeTime Private Retreats collection. Another, Southern Ocean Lodge, is a super-luxurious resort on the island’s south coast, not too far from the landmark Flinders Chase National Park. You can’t see a single other building from the hotel, whose minimal footprint practically burrows into the surrounding eucalyptus forest. Twenty-one rooms slope down a single corridor cleft from a headland, each with a full-frontal view of a stunningly gorgeous but wild beach. The building is designed to maximise heat flow in winter, cooling breezes in summer, and rainfall capture year-round. Desalinated well-water supplements whatever nature doesn’t deposit onto the tin roof, and diesel generators power whatever the solar panels can’t. A report in the lobby details the day’s water and energy usage.

LOCAL TALENT The hotel sources most of its food from island farms and dairies – everything from grain-fed beef and free-range geese to artisan Manchego and fruits drizzled with Kangaroo Island’s own Ligurian honey. Entrepreneurial local farmers have shifted land into production of tomatoes, wheat, canola oil, and even some excellent pinot noir grapes, and Southern Ocean Lodge’s choice to purchase these products has lent an

imprimatur of quality that encourages retailers throughout Australia to do likewise. Kangaroo Island wines, for example, now attract attention that previously might have been limited to the Barossa Valley. More importantly, however, an island that has long been a poster child for environmental biodiversity is becoming more economically diverse as well. Original art in each of the Lodge’s spacious guest rooms, for example, has planted the seeds of a burgeoning arts community. The most striking pieces are from Janine Mackintosh, who skillfully arranges hundreds of found objects like eucalyptus leaves and seashells into beautiful patterns.

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ESCAPE Left: the family-owned Dudley Wines has an award-winning cellar door. Below: swimming with dolphins

Yet in so many ways, Kangaroo Island remains the same. Often dubbed the ‘Galapagos of Australia’ for the uniqueness of its fauna, it’s still a place where you don’t have to go far to spy a koala or a kangaroo in the wild. “Just find some place with a few shade trees and you’re bound to flush a kangaroo,” says Ron Swan, one of Craig Wickham’s mates. To prove his point, he drives maybe five minutes off the main highway into a land of rolling brown hills, pocked by eucalyptus trees, and stops the car near a thick copse. Kangaroos typically make themselves scarce in the midday heat but we gradually discover that we’ve happened upon a mob cooling their heels beneath the canopy of flora. First, one becomes visible through the branches, then another, and as we approach the stand, three or four more come into view. Finally, there are six of them, and their ringleader calls for a quick exodus. They bound down the landscape, one behind another, in no particular hurry, knowing that they can escape us without much effort. Still, they don’t disappear from view; rather, they stare back at us from a safe distance, wondering whether those yahoos in the car are going to leave their resting place, or whether they have to choose another from the millions available on the island. Over the course of just one day, I was privileged to see Tamar Wallabies (extinct on mainland Australia), endangered Australian Sea Lions, endangered Rosenberg sand goannas, and rare white-bellied sea eagles. Oh, and I almost forgot koalas, which are plentiful.

Text published under license from Images: South Australian Tourism Commission


SWIMMING WITH DOLPHINS If anything, I’m the one who has changed. I’ve seen plenty of wild kangaroos since that first visit, including one in Adelaide the day before on a hike to the top of Mount Lofty. But the sight of six ’roos in a row, hopping in formation, still had the power to move me. I’ve witnessed scores of coastlines just as beautiful as those found here, and stretched out on dozens of beaches no less secluded. On the strand not 800km from my house I routinely see dolphins but never have I swum among them the way I did on this most recent trip. This was no commercialised petting zoo but rather a pod of about 20 bottlenose dolphins who didn’t seem to mind a few humans, trying futilely to keep up with them as they dart around the water. These are animals that outsmart sharks, so they weren’t worried about some pale finless creatures flailing about in their midst. When I first travelled to Kangaroo Island it felt like a once-in-a-lifetime destination, a mythical faraway place where I’d never be privileged to return but for a destination this exceptional, I see no reason to limit myself to one trip per lifetime. I was wrong to worry about Kangaroo Island changing. It’s not the same as it was; it’s better.

NEED TO KNOW • Avoid the cruise ships by visiting from late March to late October. • Cape Jervis is less than two hours drive south of Adelaide. • The ferry journey from Cape Jervis to Penneshaw on Kangaroo Island takes about 45 minutes. • Hire a car in Adelaide to enjoy the scenic drive to Cape Jervis and take the vehicle ferry across to Kangaroo Island, or rental cars are available on the island. • The Island Intrigue CD, available at the Visitor Information Centre at Penneshaw, provides an audio tour for self-guided travel around the island. • For insider knowledge and tailored experiences book a hosted tour with Exceptional Kangaroo Island. • With food, wines, wildlife encounters, including swimming with dolphins, and 23 hikes to try across the island, you will need to stay several days to do it justice.

GETTING THERE Fly direct between Brisbane and Adelaide with Jetstar, Qantas, Tigerair and Virgin Australia. Fly between Adelaide and Kangaroo Island with QantasLink and Rex or there is a passenger and vehicle ferry connection between Kangaroo Island and Cape Jervis about 90 minutes drive south of Adelaide. 22 | BNE September/October 2019

Hotels with




Great Scotland Yard Hotel, occupying the landmark building that was once home to the iconic London Metropolitan Police Service, is now taking reservations ahead of its official opening in October. The historical character of the building has been preserved and the original façade retained while inside it has become a luxury 152-room Hyatt branded hotel. Prolific chef and local star Robin Gill oversees signature restaurant The Yard, tea room The Parlour and bars Forty Elephants and whisky-centric Sibin, and it’s walking distance to St James Park, The Mall, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and only a little further stride to Covent Garden. Location: 3-5 Great Scotland Yard, London. See Emirates (via Dubai) and Etihad (via Abu Dhabi) fly between Brisbane and London.

SINGAPORE After more than two years of renovation legendary Raffles Hotel in Singapore reopened just weeks ago, more stylish than ever, preserving its historic architecture while providing the luxurious experience it has been famous for since the 19th century. Back in the day Raffles Singapore introduced the world to private butlers, the Singapore Sling and impeccable service – which all endure today – and its hallowed halls have played host to stars from the golden era such as Charlie Chaplin and Elizabeth Taylor to, more recently, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the stars of the film Crazy Rich Asians. Favourites are still there in newly refreshed surrounds, including Long Bar, the home of the Singapore Sling (and now you can also take a masterclass in how to create it), the Grand Lobby, the place to be seen sipping on a delicious afternoon tea, and the Tiffin Room which has been serving its specialty northern Indian cuisine since 1892. New additions to tempt discerning travellers include the opening of new restaurants by master chefs Alain Ducasse and Jereme Leung as well as Michelin threestar chef Anne-Sophie Pic. Location: 1 Beach Road, Singapore. See

LOS ANGELES The Arts District Firehouse Hotel is a nine-room boutique hotel complete with restaurant, bar, café and retail shop in a cleverly repurposed fire station that was originally built in 1927. It’s been 40 years since the bright red doors opened to screeching sirens but the building retains its storied past and architecture and today those red doors swing open to let guests into a light-filled lobby and lounge. Circles on the floor are clues to where the fire poles once stood and while the whole upper floor has been transformed into eight guest suites, original factory windows, exposed woodtruss ceilings, wood floors, and niches that used to house Virgin Mary statues watching over the firefighters are still in place. The hotel has a handy map that identifies funky shopping and dining (it is practically on the doorstep of highly sought after Italian eatery Bestia, called ‘hot and hip’ by the Michelin Guide). Location: 710 S Santa Fe Avenue at 7th Street, Los Angeles. See

Singapore Airlines flies direct between Brisbane and Singapore four times daily.

Qantas and Virgin Australia fly direct between Brisbane and Los Angeles. BNE September/October 2019 | 23



l l a h t u o S r n e r u e t n B avel adve

Images: Ben Southall and Tourism and Events Queensland


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English adventurer Ben Southall was the envy of travellers around the world when he scored the ‘Best Job in the World’ 10 years ago and became one of the original ‘influencers’, paid to travel throughout the Whitsunday Islands and Great Barrier Reef for six months and share his experiences online as part of a tourism promotion. It reportedly generated more than $200 million in global publicity for Queensland and Southall has since made his home in the Sunshine State. However, his taste for adventure has not dimmed. When his job as ‘island caretaker’, based on Hamilton Island, was over Southall continued his expeditions, filming as he went, completing a four-month, 1600km kayak along the Great Barrier Reef retracing the route sailed by Captain Cook back in 1770; setting a world record, along with two mates, for the fastest ascent of the tallest mountain in each state in Australia – the Aussie 8 – and following that with the nine Great Walks of New Zealand, completing 545km in nine days; and, after marrying in his beloved Whitsundays, he took to the road with his wife Sophee and his 11-year-old Land Rover driving 55,000km from Singapore to London, through 33 countries. It’s not surprising then that Southall, now living in Queensland, has started his own Best Life Adventures business, hosting tours that include bike riding the highest road in India, a tri-nation Arctic Challenge and a digital disconnect in Mongolia for entrepreneuriallyminded business types. But it’s Queensland he now calls home.

Where do you live? I’m really lucky to now live in the gorgeous Currumbin Valley. As soon as we had our baby boy, we talked about where the perfect place in Queensland would be to bring up our little man and decided we could get the ‘city’ life that Brisbane offers anywhere in the world. So, to celebrate the best bits of the state we needed to find a contrast between beach and mountains and Currumbin Valley was the perfect solution.

What do you like about your neighbourhood? I love the fact I can be on the Border Track (a famous trail-running route that runs all the way to the summit on Mount Cougal) within one minute of leaving my front door. When I get home I look out from the balcony, across our rainforest to the ocean and then can be on the beach 15 minutes later. It’s simply nirvana.

Cougal Cascades

Where and what would you recommend to visitors? For someone who runs an adventure travel company it’s all about the great outdoors for me. Living on the border of the Gondwana Rainforests and Springbrook National Park we’re spoilt for choice for places to head to when we want to digitally disconnect. I’d have to say visiting the Cougal Cascades at the end of our valley to refresh and cool down or watching the sunset from Currumbin Alley as surfers catch the last light and waves at the end of the day are must-dos. We also have amazing cafés where I go for meetings and catchups with friends – Dust Temple is a funky little architectural space in Currumbin Waters, and Freeman’s Organic Farm, a few hundred metres up the road from where we live, makes the perfect dog walk where I can smash a doppio and look down the valley as our little boy, Atlas, picks strawberries all year round.

What have been your best discoveries in the area? Being able to collect Atlas from day care and run along the beachfront to Kirra pushing him in the buggy, then jumping in the ocean with him, is one of my favourite weekly adventures. Plus heading to Miami Marketta on a Friday night for some live music and to catch up with friends for a beer is another absolute pleasure.

Is there something good about it that only locals know?

4WD track, Cape York

My memories are climbing hand over hand up moss-covered tree roots, jumping streams and twisting my ankle in the first half hour. We strapped it up and just kept going – there was a record at stake after all!

The Currumbin Eco Village Green Marquee event held once a month is where the locals catch up and listen to musicians as the sun sets. BNE September/October 2019 | 25



Any favourite short getaways? I discovered Lady Elliot Island during the Best Job in the World and I try and get back there at least a couple of times a year. It’s right on the edge of the continental shelf and at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef so the big stuff hangs out there – manta rays, migrating whales, nesting turtles and, of course, amazing sharks, along with some of the best coral reef snorkelling conditions on offer all year round.

You were one of the first ‘influencers’ 10 years ago winning the opportunity for the Best Job In The World – what were the standout experiences? Wow, there are so many to choose from! I think the experiences that stick with me the most are those unplanned interactions with nature. Snorkelling with dwarf Minke whales on the ribbon reefs of far north Queensland with Mike Ball Dive Expeditions really stands out as a highlight.

How did the Best Job In The World experience change your life? It confirmed to me you can build a life around adventure and having amazing travel experiences if you work hard, take opportunities and stay true to your beliefs. I’ve always wanted to share these with other people, either digitally or in person, and Best Life Adventures allows me to do both.

After that one of your adventures was to climb 8 peaks in 8 states in Australia in 8 days. What do you remember about climbing Bartle Frere, Queensland’s highest peak? It was the final climb after seven epically tough days and we’d just taken the red-eye flight across the country from Perth so we were pretty exhausted before we even took it on. My memories are climbing hand over hand up moss-covered tree roots, jumping streams and twisting my ankle in the first half hour. We strapped it up and just kept going – there was a record at stake after all! We were lucky to have one of the few totally clear days at the summit and could see all the way out to the Great Barrier Reef which was pretty awesome.

Ben, Sophee and Atlas

You also retraced the route of James Cook for 1600km of the far north Queensland coastline in a Hobie Kayak. What was most memorable about that experience? Discovering the rarely-visited parts of the Great Barrier Reef that very few people get to was an absolute privilege. Being anchored in reef systems in total glass-out conditions with no land in sight and jumping off the back of the [support] yacht not knowing what we’d find underwater was a really magnificent adventure. I’d do it all again in a heartbeat. There’s a little island called Middle Percy to the south of the Whitsundays that’s an absolute gem. Only a few yachties know about it so it’s a true Robinson Crusoe experience with a little A-frame building, coconut-laden palm trees and a natural harbour – I could have spent days there.

Following these experiences you have said the Great Barrier Reef is close to your heart? Why is that and what are you hoping others will learn from your experiences there? When you take the time to put on a snorkel and mask and immerse yourself in the world of coral reefs you start to understand how diverse, fragile and important these places are for the future of our planet. Hopefully, being able to share the story of life in this underwater world with a global audience is enough to tease people to want to do it themselves, fall in love with it as I have and help protect it for future generations. I dearly hope that when Atlas is old enough, and dives on the Great Barrier Reef, the same diversity of species is there for him to enjoy and marvel at, as we see today.

Mt Bartle Frere trail

Where and how did you meet your wife Sophee? Where was the wedding? It’s a bit of a cliché this one. I was MC-ing the tourism awards on Daydream Island and saw this beautiful girl walk into the room at the start of the night, and turned to the person next to me and said, “who is she? I have to talk to her before the night’s out”. Once the formalities were out of the way I plucked up the courage and started a conversation and within an hour we were kissing outside! I must have done something right as we got married two years later on Dent Island in the Whitsundays.

Together you have started your company Best Life Adventures to share experiences for like-minded travellers. What would your best life adventure in Queensland look like? I’d love to take a group kayaking around the Torres Strait islands. Having been there during ‘Best Job’ I fell in love with the warmth and community of the people up there and would love to go back and slowly navigate my way around the reefs and islands.

Is there anywhere you have been in Queensland that has surprised you? Having driven around Africa I love the vast open wilderness areas of deserts too, so heading west from Birdsville across the Simpson Desert is still on my radar and doing it in my old Land Rover (‘Colonel Mustard’) would be a dream come true. Maybe next winter?

So Colonel Mustard is still going? Of course he’s still going – Land Rovers never die, they just get slower and lower! The clock now reads 295,000 miles so nearly 500,000km and there’s life in the old boy yet. We’ve been together since 2004 and I’d like to think he’ll be my present to Atlas for his 21st birthday. Another really iconic overland adventure I still haven’t completed is the trip to the tip – Cape York – again a 4WD Queensland winter expedition. Snorkelling, Lady Elliot Island 26 | BNE September/October 2019

Find out more about Ben Southall’s expeditions at




Escape overtourism, bypass well-trodden Insta-attractions and discover something new with Airbnb Adventures, a new collection of multi-day experiences hosted by locals who take small groups off-the-beaten-track to be immersed in unique cultures and communities. For example, a farm stay with an Amish family in the American Midwest will be even easier to access for travellers from Brisbane when new flights departing direct to Chicago take off from April 2020 (fares booking now at The farm stay is just 150km drive across the border in Indiana from Chicago and guests will join host Will and his family (right) to learn home-style cooking, local building and crafting techniques and be involved in farm projects over a two-night stay. Other Airbnb Adventures include a Warrior Bootcamp in Kenya; Seaweed and Seafood Safari on the west coast of Sweden and camping on the side of a cliff in Colorado. Find out more at

PRISTINE REEF off the radar Water sports husband and wife team Sam and Lindsay Appleton have launched new dive tours from Great Keppel Island on the southern Great Barrier Reef which is “one of the most pristine and underrated areas, featuring some of the healthiest coral I’ve seen in 14 years working on the Great Barrier Reef,” says Lindsay. Local coral reef scientist Dr Alison Jones shares her enthusiasm and goes as far as to rate it as “some of the best in the world”. However, Great Keppel Island has been off the radar of most Great Barrier Reef tourists since its last major resort closed more than 10 years ago, but there is still low key accommodation on the island with water sports such as kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, snorkelling and fishing already popular with overnighters and day trippers who have discovered it is less than an hour by ferry from Yeppoon on Queensland’s Capricorn Coast.

The new dive experiences range from introductory and refresher courses to half-day guided excursions for certified divers. “Diving through spectacular coral formations while dodging inquisitive sea turtles, reef sharks and a wide variety of colourful fish is something not to miss for visitors to our beautiful reef,” says Lindsay. For more information see Ferries depart for Great Keppel Island several times daily from Rosslyn Harbour near Yeppoon, about 45 minutes drive from Rockhampton. Fly between Brisbane and Rockhampton with QantasLink and Virgin Australia.

Fly between Brisbane and Chicago from April 2020 with Qantas, fares available to book now.


Want to feel like your holiday is doing more than giving you a good time? Adventure travel specialist, World Expeditions and Flight Centre have teamed up to create a challenge for travellers to raise $1 million for charity – and enjoy great experiences in the process. The Community Million Dollar Challenge is a program of 12 tailor-made adventures – one challenge offered for each month of the year in 2020 and again in 2021 with destinations ranging from Cradle Mountain in Tasmania and the Otago Rail Trail in New Zealand, to Annapurna in Nepal (above) and Mont Blanc in Europe. Each trip has a charity attached, such as Youngcare, RUOK, Redkite, Foodbank, and the challenge is for each traveller booking on the tour to raise $2000 prior to departure for that charity. World Expeditions’ CEO, Sue Badyari, says the idea behind the Community Million Dollar Challenge is to encourage people to become global citizens and to go deeper during their travel experiences, while raising funds for great causes. “We know that the power of people to forge change can and does happen. Our vision is to provide a platform for travellers to use their collective voice to raise awareness and funds for each of these worthwhile charities,” she says. World Expeditions will start each participant off in their quest with a $100 donation at registration and Go Fundraise has been co-opted to offer tips to travellers to reach their goal. Tours are booked through Flight Centre and hosted by World Expeditions. See the full range of tours and find out more about the challenge online at or call 1300 720 000. BNE September/October 2019 | 27


QUEENSLAND’S volcanic history


Danielle Lancaster ventures inside one of Queensland’s most unusual tourist attractions and finds a world of wildlife in hiding

Bram Collins (in hat) and Micheal Nelson watching a sunrise over the ‘100 Mile Wetland’ which fills with water only once every two decades (on average)

Text published under license from Images: Undara Experience

“Take my hand, I have something to show you,” says Bram Collins as he leads us into one of Queensland’s truly unique geographical wonders: the Undara lava tubes, about four hours drive south west of Cairns. “I think I was about seven when I first heard these words,” recalls Collins, the fifth generation of his family to call this patch of Queensland home. We stand surrounded by the prehistoric walls, weathered and browned. It feels serene, almost as if I am on another planet and I pinch myself back into reality. The cool air is tainted ever so slightly, a raw, earthy smell but also refreshing and invigorating in this tropical part of Queensland, above the path where millions of tonnes of lava once flowed. Collins’ passion for the place is obvious as he guides us through one of the oldest and best preserved lava tube cave systems on Earth. It’s also the longest lava flow from a single volcano vent and even Sir David Attenborough has marvelled at this natural wonder. ‘Undara’ is an Aboriginal word meaning ‘long way’and the lava tubes and caves were formed about 190,000 years ago when a large volcano erupted violently, spewing an estimated 23 billion cubic metres of molten lava over the surrounding landscape, flowing so rapidly it could have filled Sydney Harbour in six days. As the top outer-layer cooled and formed a crust and the molten lava below drained outwards, a series of hollow tubes was left behind providing ideal conditions for dry rainforest to grow and wildlife to shelter. Rock-wallabies and owls roost in the cool while birds shelter in the fruit-filled canopy. The lava caves are also home to thousands of insect-eating bats which create an amazing display as they fly out at dusk. To date 69 different caves have been surveyed but only six are open for public tours. Bayliss Cave is considered one of the world’s most important, stretching more than a kilometre long, 20 metres wide and 11 metres high.

NEED TO KNOW • Best time to visit is between March and October. June to August is usually the busiest. • Tours of the lava tubes last about two hours. • Access to the lava tubes and caves is only by guided tour. • Camping is not permitted in Undara Volcanic National Park but there are camp sites, different types of tents, cabins and the train carriages at Undara Experience. • At more than 700 metres above sea level, Undara’s climate is similar to the Atherton Tablelands with lower humidity and cooler evenings.

Collins’ enthusiasm for this natural phenomenon is genetic. His father Gerry led him through this adventure playground as a boy, just like Gerry’s father had done with him and it was Gerry who lobbied for the protection of the tubes by developing a sustainable visitor experience. The tubes are surrounded by the Undara Volcanic National Park which also includes the Kalkani Crater. However, there is more to do in the area than wander ancient lava tubes. There’s bushwalking with nine graded tracks ranging from less than 2km to 12km through grasslands, woodlands and to scenic lookouts – perfect for sunset – that allow close-up experiences with wildlife, and the kangaroos will hardly blink as you go by. More than 120 species of birds have been recorded, including the vulnerable red goshawk, and twitchers take note, early mornings are best for birdwatching. Don’t be surprised to find Bram Collins brewing billy tea for the Bush Breakfast at the Ringers Camp while resident kookaburras and currawongs watch from the trees. There is no better way to finish the day than back around the campfire under a million stars with local guides sharing more stories and a daily update. Then, spend the night in the comfortably renovated train carriages on site – discovered by Gerry Collins on a siding in Mareeba and now repurposed for double and twin accommodation with ensuites. Find out more at and From top: bats emerge from the caves at dusk; accommodation in renovated train carriages; inside the lava tubes

GETTING THERE Fly direct to Cairns with Jetstar, Qantas, Tigerair and Virgin Australia. Coach transfers are available between Cairns and Undara Experience three times a week, tours on the Savannahlander train include a tour of Undara lava tubes departing from Cairns, or rent a car in Cairns to drive there. BNE September/October 2019 | 29



celebrity chefs

They are the rising stars behind Brisbane’s booming food culture, and they’re learning from the best in some of the city’s most progressive restaurants. So if you haven’t yet had a taste of the talent to come, here’s an introduction...

RYAN WOODWARD, 22, DEMI CHEF, OTTO RISTORANTE, CITY Woodward (left) has been working in kitchens since he was 17, and it was while he was washing dishes in those early days, watching chefs cook and work during service, that he was drawn to pursue it as a career. Even before he finished his apprenticeship last year Woodward had shown his talent in the industry, winning bronze two years running in the Queensland Apprentice of the Year awards and, just months ago, judged Queensland Champion in the Nestlé Golden Chefs Hat Award (national winners will be announced on 11 September). Already Woodward has been able to learn from the best, previously at GOMA restaurant, and collaborating with the likes of David Chang’s venerated Momofuku. “Seeing all the different styles from different chefs has been a highlight for me,” he says. In less than a year at Otto, head chef Will Cowper has already predicted a bright future ahead for this young chef. The most inspirational chef to me in the world is... Alex Atala from Restaurant D.O.M in Brazil has a very inspiring story to me and I love what he has chosen to do with his platform for his local community. The best advice I have received in the kitchen is... “whatever negativity you’re feeling in this world you need to find a way to channel it into some positive energy. That’s what’s going to help you be a good chef,” from Ryan Ward, ex-GOMA restaurant. Ingredients I’m most loving working with now are... citrus, because I have always been a fan of sour flavours. Fresh is best. My favourite dish to make at Otto is... Lobster Spaghettini, and the Gnocchi or Truffle Carbonara when Giandrea Saccone makes it. The key to a great dish is... freshness, balance of ingredients and local produce. If I could go anywhere in the world to eat... I would go to South America; Mexico, Peru or Brazil. The South American culture and food Hand picked Queensland spanner crab, Jerusalem artichoke, Granny Smith apple has always appealed to me and there are some amazing restaurants there.

LEAHAM CLAYDON, 21, CHEF DE PARTIE, ARC DINING AND WINE BAR, HOWARD SMITH WHARVES “Waking up almost every morning to the aroma of a freshly baked loaf of bread, a cheese and bacon roll and a finger bun sitting on the kitchen counter is enough to make anybody love food and want to know more,” says Claydon who grew up with a professional baker in the house. “I learnt a lot about cooking from Dad,” Claydon continues, “but what sticks with me most is his work ethic. ‘Never walk away from your station and come back empty handed’.” Such advice has given him a head start in a competitive business, and he got his foot in the door first at age 14. Since then he’s completed his apprenticeship and joined one of Brisbane’s newest go-to restaurants under the stewardship of Alanna Sapwell at Arc. In eight months at Arc I have learned... some great seafood techniques from Alanna and a whole new style and approach to food. I’m loving working with... cascara and silver skin, both by-products from roasted coffee. It’s amazing how different the flavours are in each layer of the coffee fruit. We infuse them both into milk, then use it on desserts. My favourite dish at Arc is... Jake Warhurst’s Blue Cheese Kipfler Potatoes. If I could go anywhere in the world to eat... I would go to Restaurant Geist in Copenhagen. I’m really drawn to their simple and understated style.

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Chestnut, chocolate and cranberry hibiscus


Head chef from Italy’s two-Michelin-starred Ristorante San Domenico, Massimiliano Mascia (above), will make his Australian debut at Bacchus, South Brisbane, for five special dinners on 22-26 October. Masci worked in top restaurants in New York and Paris before returning to Italy and taking the reins at the legendary Ristorante San Domenico earlier this year and he will work with Bacchus head chef Massimo Speroni to prepare the series of four- and six-course dining experiences. Bookings at

SAVANNAH SEXTON, 24, JUNIOR SOUS CHEF, STOKEHOUSE Q, RIVER QUAY Sexton (above) grew up in Toowoomba surrounded by farms in the Lockyer Valley and Granite Belt with a horticulturist dad and a mum with an appreciation for good food so shopping at markets and growing their own food was the norm. “Food was always the centre of our house; I’ve always loved how it brought everyone together and I spent a lot of time cooking with my mum and grandma.” By age 10 she was already making five-course meals for her family and, thanks to her mother’s heritage in South Africa, curries and braais were part of her repertoire even before she became a kitchen hand at 14. More recently she’s turned the tables on what makes a good dessert with a creation made from milk and cereal, showcased last year at a headline event during Good Food Month. The chef I have always been able to draw inspiration from is... Christina Tosi from Milk Bar in New York. After working under David Chang, she was able to change perception on how to enjoy dessert. Her style mirrors my own, simple and nostalgic. My favourite dish to create is... anything that showcases underutilised products or native ingredients. It’s a good way to keep in touch with the region I live in as well as supporting local business. I also love creating dishes that remind me of familiar flavours or remix classic dishes which are thoughtful and smart. The ingredient I’m most loving working with right now is... yuzu. In season and super fragrant and sour. Goes perfectly with malted milk chocolate or using the juice in a buttermilk chicken brine! The best advice I’ve received in the kitchen so far is... from my first ever job as a kitchen hand, when my boss told me “just assume everything is hot”. It saved me from a lot of burns over the years! My favourite thing to make on the Stokehouse Q menu is... the miso caramel glaze for our duck dish! Salty and sweet caramel enriched with locally-made Brisbane miso that gets glazed over crispy duck skin and served with parsnip purée and Japanese plum. Preparing the black kingfish dish (pictured above) is one of my favourites as well. The fish is fresh as can be, thinly sliced and served raw, dressed with Riberry gin and sliced desert limes, delicious. My next go-to food experience will be... Japan. After thousands of years of food, I think there’s a lot to learn from the Japanese. Who would say no to ramen?

Best in State


athew Lee (above), sous chef at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, has been named Queensland Chef of the Year. His winning dish was a compliment to regional produce, with Hervey Bay scallops, Moreton Bay bugs, avocado and finger limes all featured in his menu. After completing his apprenticeship at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre (BCEC), Lee worked his way through Europe’s top restaurants and competed in the famous Bocuse d’Or in Lyon, France, before returning to Brisbane. At 29, Lee has a more challenging role in the kitchen than most at BCEC where he can be working with a team of chefs to prepare food for everything from a cocktail event for VIPs to trade shows with 36,000 delegates. Lee will go on to compete in the national championships in Sydney in May next year. BNE September/October 2019 | 31


Girl Power in new musical


Brisbane International Film Festival returns from 3 to 13 October at GOMA and selected metro cinemas to screen more than 170 worldclass films, including new-release features, documentaries and short films, alongside screenings with live music, conversations, panel discussions, and more. See the program at

32 | BNE September/October 2019

she joined Opera Australia’s touring production of South Pacific starring Lisa McCune and Teddy Tahu Rhodes and later landed the role of Liesl in The Sound of Music. In Muriel’s Wedding Jones has joined yet another runaway success. Since it first opened in Sydney almost two years ago it has won five Helpmann Awards, nine additional national awards and more nominations. Playing Rhonda in the touring production and singing the original songs written by Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall has been a dream come true for Jones who, above all, loves the story’s central message. “When Muriel’s Wedding came out in the 1990s it was one of the first films to highlight female friendship and a female empowering another female, and for the story not to be about a woman trying to find her Prince Charming. It was about friendship and honesty and trust and truth, and the love between two gal pals. All these years later it’s still just as important and inspiring and it’s so wonderful to be introducing it to a new generation who are eating it up. They love it,” she says. Tonya Turner

Photograph: Jeff Busby

After the opening night of Muriel’s Wedding The Musical in Melbourne, actor Stefanie Jones got a knock on her dressing room door. It was Rachel Griffiths, the acclaimed actress who made the role of Muriel’s wild and fiercely loyal best friend Rhonda famous in the 1994 film starring alongside Tony Collette. “She was in the audience and she loved the show and she came to congratulate me. If anyone ever compares me to her it’s honestly the biggest compliment on Earth,” says Jones (pictured far right). Raised in Brisbane, Stefanie, 28, landed her first leading role in the musical stage adaptation of PJ Hogan’s iconic Australian film earlier this year after originally being cast as one of the bridesmaids. After the actor playing Rhonda left the production two weeks before opening night, Stefanie was quickly promoted from understudy to the coveted role alongside newcomer Natalie Abbott who plays Muriel. “I remember my initial reaction being complete and utter shock,” Jones says. “It was a really exciting afternoon, but then of course you wake up the next day and it’s time to get to work.” With no time to celebrate and mere days to get up to speed with the new role, Jones had her work cut out for her but she showed a natural talent from a young age and won her first professional role in Cameron Mackintosh’s 10th Anniversary Tour of Les Misérables at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre. “It’s still our favourite show in our household, it means a lot to us, and it opened my eyes so wide. I definitely caught the theatre bug,” she says. After studying dance with the Queensland Ballet and finishing high school in Bald Hills, Jones moved to Melbourne to complete a music theatre degree at the Victorian College of the Arts. Straight out of university,

A favourite Aussie story comes to the stage with new original music, and propels a local talent into the spotlight

Muriel’s Wedding The Musical, at QPAC, South Brisbane, from 19 September. Tickets from $70 plus fees at

Judy and Punch

Love Opera

Following its screening at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year one reviewer called it “a twisted fairytale with a maliciously grim heart”. Certainly it turns the traditional story of Punch and Judy on its head, bringing to life a fierce and darkly comic feminist revenge story starring Mia Wasikowska as Judy and set in a peculiar 17thcentury town called Seaside (notably nowhere near the sea) where real life is wilder than anything these puppeteers can devise for the stage. Selected for the opening night screening and party on 3 October at GOMA.

Lisa Gasteen has performed on the leading opera stages of Europe and this documentary goes behind the scenes at her National Opera School in Brisbane as a new generation of opera singers aim for stardom in a dying art, and they work together to deliver a first class production over an intensive six weeks. World premiere screening at GOMA on 9 October (followed by the director Liselle Mei and producer Trish Lake in conversation) and at New Farm cinemas on 13 October.


Image: Alamy

Have we really seen the last of Peggy Carter in the Marvel Universe? Fans might get the answer from Captain America’s flame in person when British actress Hayley Atwell appears as a special guest at Oz Comic-Con. Atwell’s character was so popular after her first appearance in Captain America: The First Avenger, (pictured left) it led to the spin-off TV series Agent Carter, and rumours abound that she may still show up in the final season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D set to air next year. Aussie actor Keiynan Lonsdale, who stars as Kid Flash across the universe in DC Comic territory and appeared in two of the three ‘Divergent’ movies is also in the guest line-up of actors, authors and comic illustrators. Oz Comic-Con is at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, 21-22 September. Experience packages from $230. See

New Woman

EXHIBITION A new exhibition presents a snapshot of the art, personal stories and enduring legacies of Brisbane’s trailblazing women artists over the last 100 years. ‘New Woman’ features artworks from more than 80 artists in painting, photography, sculpture, performance and installation, supported by a program of workshops, talks and tours led by artists, academics and historians. Special events include life drawing and sketching sessions, performances and a special morning tea, hosted by Museum of Brisbane chairman Sallyanne Atkinson AO, on 15 October to celebrate a century of women artists. At Museum of Brisbane, City Hall, from 13 September to 15 March 2020. Exhibition entry free. See

Believe Women, 2018, by Alice Lang

Jane Eyre

The Beach Umbrella, 1930 by Gwendolyn Grant

With a cast of only four – and one of them multi ARIA Award-winner Sarah McLeod who performs original music she has written just for this production – Brisbane’s shake & stir theatre company stages a new production of the Charlotte Bronte literary classic, Jane Eyre. At Cremorne Theatre, QPAC, South Brisbane, from 18 October to 9 November. Tickets from $65 plus booking fees. See

Measure for Measure

Pain and Glory

The Souvenir

Another classic is reworked in the adaptation of William Shakespeare’s play of the same name, now a modern crime drama set in a seedy housing commission estate in Melbourne. Hugo Weaving stars as Duke, an ageing crime lord who just wants business to keep going as usual as tensions rise around him. Themes of justice, loyalty, love and revenge run through this moody retelling of an iconic play. At GOMA (followed by a talk with director Paul Ireland) on 4 October and Dendy, Coorparoo, on 12 October .

Director and writer Pedro Almodóvar is in a reflective mood in his latest film which was nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes and scored a Best Actor award for star Antonio Banderas. The film follows Salvador Mallo, a director in decline, as he reflects on the key moments of his life — childhood, past loves and artistic glories — that weave back into the present. The film also stars Penelope Cruz. At GOMA on 6 October and The Elizabeth cinema, city, on 12 October.

Australian writer and director Joanna Hogg’s reflective, semi-autobiographical film stars Honor Swinton Byrne in a breakout performance as Julie, a young aspiring filmmaker who falls for an older, unstable and mysterious man. A Grand Jury prize winner at Sundance earlier this year, the film is an intimate portrait of a young woman’s conflict between her career and an increasingly consuming relationship. At Reading cinema, Newmarket, 11 October and Dendy, Coorparoo, 12 October. BNE September/October 2019 | 33



l a v i t s Fe

0 1 p To Fangirls [1] If Edna’s obsession with boyband star Harry from True Connection in Fangirls sounds familiar, you’d be correct in thinking it was inspired by a real life story. As creator and performer Yve Blake entertainingly revealed in a Tedx talk a while back, a friend’s young cousin provided all the fodder she needed for her latest project – and so began her own four-year obsession with fangirls of boybands. As Blake says, it transformed the course of her life and changed everything she thought she knew about being an adult, being a woman and being truly happy. This is a hot ticket, already almost sold out. At Bille Brown Theatre, South Brisbane from 7 September to 5 October. Tickets $35-77.

Invisible Cities Staged in a huge suburban warehouse, this world premiere production is a mix of theatre, choreography, music, architectural design and projection by some of the world’s great artists who bring to life a series of fantastical places inspired by Italo Calvino’s iconic novel. At 880 Fairfield Road, Yeerongpilly, 24-28 September. Tickets $59-75.

Communal Table Only 88 guests are invited to each performance in this world premiere by innovative contemporary dance company, Dancenorth. Over a meal of Mediterranean-inspired 2

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dishes by caterers Chez Nous Corporate, eight dancers draw their audience into the power of a shared experience – food, wine, conversation and dancing – to build friendships and communities. At The Joinery, West End, 18-21 September. Tickets $90-100.

Fire Gardens [2] French artists Compagnie Carabosse have been putting landmarks to the torch around the world from Stonehenge to the Kremlin. For Brisbane Festival they have created huge spheres of leaping flames, sculptures that flicker and dance, and fiery urns that cause shadows to play, accompanied by a pumping soundtrack. At City Botanic Gardens, 11-14 September. Tickets $27-33.

1000 Doors [3] Another mind-bending tour for the curious by installation wizards Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney. Visitors are challenged to find their way through a maze of doors, screens, portals and passageways that lead to more doors, rooms and some dead ends in an experience that will be different for each person. At Treasury Brisbane Arcadia, Cultural Forecourt, South Bank, 6-28 September. Tickets $10-15.

A Not So Traditional Story [4] Two friends and an alien meet a host of hilarious characters on an epic quest of bravery and friendship, playfully brought to the stage with a mix of masks, shadow puppetry and physical theatre by Terrapin Puppet Theatre. At Cremorne Theatre, QPAC, South Brisbane. Tickets $32. 6




Evening Lights New artwork by Ngugi woman Elisa Jane Carmichael, inspired by the poetry of Aboriginal writer Oodgeroo Noonuccal, includes an installation and exhibition (15-28 September), guided tours (16 and 23), spoken-word poetry sessions (18 and 25) and workshops for children and adults. King Street, Bowen Hills. Free event.

Riverstage [5] Brisbane’s Riverstage has hosted hundreds of top acts over its 30 years and celebrates with four weekend concerts during Brisbane Festival. The Jezabels rock the stage with other guests in tandem with Riverfire on the closing night. City Botanic Gardens, 28 September. Tickets $89.90.

Regurgitator’s Pogogo Show Brisbane mashup rock/electro/punk outfit has created a new sound in a debut album for kids cheekily called ‘The Really Really Really Really Boring Album’ and bring it live to the stage for fans young and old. At the Tivoli, Fortitude Valley, 14-15 September. Tickets $24.

From Darkness [6] Black Comedy’s Steven Oliver is at his darklyfunny best when spirits intervene to reconnect a family in crisis in his new play. At La Boite Roundhouse Theatre, Kelvin Grove, 7-28 September. Tickets $35-56 Brisbane Airport Corporation is a silver partner of Brisbane Festival which is on 5-28 September. For program and tickets (prices here do not include booking fees) see




A teenage star is born

As a toddler playing a dancing munchkin in the Wizard of Oz Ella Macrokanis (above) may not have realised she was on the Yellow Brick Road to stardom, but a future as a musical theatre star seems assured. Now 16, with lead roles in the Wizard of Oz, Beauty and the Beast, Snow White, and Macbeth: A Contemporary Rock Opera already behind her, as well as a growing list of TV credits including Safe Harbour and The Family Law, Macrokanis has been snapped up by Passion Productions to play the lead in its mainstage debut, Daddy Long Legs. This two-person musical play is a Cinderellastyle story about a teenage orphan sent to college by a mystery benefactor who develop their relationship through writing letters. Brisbane Powerhouse, from 26 September to 5 October. Tickets from $49 plus booking fees. See

Troye’s triumphant return Since kick-starting his music career on YouTube, Troye Sivan (above) has performed with Taylor Swift and good friend Ariana Grande, earned a Golden Globe nomination for the song he co-wrote and recorded for the film Boy Erased, which he also appeared in, played the young James Howlett in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and has appeared on Saturday Night Live and Jimmy Fallon. Since releasing his second album ‘Bloom’ last year Sivan, now with more than seven million subscribers to his YouTube channel, has been touring the US, Europe and Asia and lands at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane, on 23 September. Tickets from $102.75 plus booking fees.


Drip World, hip hop urban festival

Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills


Jacob Collier

Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane


Chinese Moon Festival

Chinatown, Fortitude Valley


Brisbane Afrobeats Festival

Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills


Bill Bryson, Observations on Life and the Human Body

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane

From 14 Terry Pratchett’s Maskerade, Brisbane Arts Theatre

Petrie Terrace, Brisbane

From 14 John Molvig ‘Maverick’ exhibition

Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane


Thai Festival

Roma Street Parkland, city


Birds of Tokyo

Fortitude Music Hall, Fortitude Valley


Business Chicks with Elle Macpherson

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane

From 21 Shirley Macnamara, ‘Dyinala, Nganinya’ exhibition

Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane


Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane

Guy Sebastian


Listen Out dance music festival

Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills


The Bard and the Bird, Brisbane Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Chen Yang

The Old Museum, Bowen Hills


Dame Edna, My Gorgeous Life

Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane


Hans Zimmer Live

Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Boondall


The Sky’s the Limit, student cabaret showcase

Cremorne Theatre, QPAC, South Brisbane


Australian Burlesque Festival

The Tivoli, Fortitude Valley


Tex Perkins, The Man in Black

Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane


Kris Kristofferson

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane


(ABC Kids) Andy’s Amazing Adventures, for families

Brisbane Powerhouse, New Farm

From 11


Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills


Hemp and Health Innovation Expo

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane


Mosaic Multicultural Festival

Roma Street Parkland, city


World Travel Expo

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane


John Waters (US film director, writer, actor) , Writers and Ideas, ‘Make Trouble’

Brisbane Powerhouse, New Farm


Explain Normal, contemporary dance

Metro Arts, city


The Music of James Bond

Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane


Women in Voice

Brisbane Powerhouse, New Farm

From 19

The Glass Menagerie, Brisbane Arts Theatre

Petrie Terrace, Brisbane


The Cat Empire

Fortitude Music Hall, Fortitude Valley


Dami Im

The Tivoli, Fortitude Valley


An Evening with Sir Michael Parkinson

Concert Hall, QPAC, South Brisbane


Dad’s Fastest Swimmers, debut EP launch

The Old Museum, Bowen Hills


Busby Marou

The Tivoli, Fortitude Valley


Gigs and Picnics

City Botanic Gardens, Brisbane

From 30 Josh Thomas, ‘Whoopsie Daisy’, comedy

Brisbane Powerhouse, New Farm BNE September/October 2019 | 35



but not


Writing flash fiction, even though they’re very short pieces, is not necessarily a quicker process. In flash fiction, every word has to do a lot of heavy lifting. For me, the hardest part is almost always starting the story. That can sometimes feel agonisingly slow, but then characters and plot begin to take shape, and away it goes!

What’s the shortest story you have ever written? Certainly one of the shortest stories I’ve ever had published is Tying the Boats, which appears in this book, and is just 168 words long.

Why do you like writing short fiction?

There are short stories and then there is flash fiction – stories so short sometimes they can be just a few words. Brisbane-based author Amanda O’Callaghan (above) has mastered both and entices readers with a collection of her best in This Taste for Silence (UQP). The former advertising executive has won a fistful of awards for her individual works but this is her first published collection of stories and it is already garnering high praise from fellow authors and critics. The stories may be short but they are a haunting collection of fractured relationships and family secrets exposed; murder and death loom large. In a flash interview with Amanda O’Callaghan we discovered... How long does it take you to write a story? It’s quite a range. Sometimes, a story appears quickly, unfolding in a matter of weeks. Some stories hang around for months (even years) waiting for that last bit of magic to really make them work, make them sing.

To some extent, I think the type of fiction chooses the writer, rather than the other way around. I like short fiction because it’s very challenging to write well. The constant striving towards concision and clarity, without losing the emotional pull of the story, is a difficult task to get right. It cannot be achieved without lots of writing and, crucially, lots of reading.

Is there a story in this collection that is most poignant to you in some way? A piece of flash fiction in the book called The Mohair Coat is a good example. It’s really a story about emigration, and the losses and gains that come from leaving behind one country, one life, in order to begin anew elsewhere. I use the mohair coat as a symbol of the triumph of building a new life, but also the sadness in what is left behind. In fact, I wrote this story with my grandmother in mind, so it has quite a lot of personal significance for me.

Is there a place that has been particularly inspirational to you or that has triggered an idea for a story? I’ve been lucky enough to live in three countries, so there’s quite a mix of locations in my book. A longer story, called Legacy, about two brothers caught up in a murder, has a strong sense of place; it’s set on a cliff walk along the southern coast of England. Another story, The Memory Bones, is based on my grandparents’ property, just outside Childers, here in Queensland. However, sometimes the locations choose themselves. The longest story in the book, The Painting, is set in America, in Brooklyn and Ohio. I’ve never been to either place.

MORE TOP READS BY LOCAL AUTHORS Lapse (Text Publishing) is a debut of a very different kind for former lawyer Sarah Thornton who weaves a thrilling crime fiction around small town footy coach Clementine Jones; while dark secrets come unstuck in a rural town in Lapse, Bribie Island State High School teacher Ben Hobson says he had TV show Fargo and film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri in mind when he created his own complex tale of morality, family loyalty and violence in Snake Island (Allen & Unwin), also set in a rural town; meanwhile Melanie Myers’ detailed research recreates the tensions of the Battle of Brisbane in 1943 in her fictional murder mystery Find more good Meet Me at Lennon’s (UQP); and young adults may relate to characters reads at Watermark Books & Café, Newslink, Astrid and Jacob who struggle to please controlling parents while Aero and News Travels, trying to pursue their dreams of musical careers in The Astrid Notes Domestic Terminal Level (Pan Macmillan) by Sunshine Coast author Taryn Bashford. 2 and at News Travels, 36 | BNE September/October 2019

International Terminal Levels 2, 3, 4.


Eve, Mahko and Rebecca Chaumont on their way to Noumea

Sophie Sartena and Linda Rogan departing for Sydney after a holiday in Brisbane

Nils, Zelie and Isabelle Purcell departing for a holiday in Cairns Fred and Sadie Buchanan waiting to depart for Melbourne for a family holiday Zaidyn, Jaxton and Brady Holzheimer farewell relatives departing for a holiday in England Mariann and Lockie Nagy waiting to welcome a family friend from Austria who will join them on a four-week road trip

HOLIDAY TIME is family time at BRISBANE AIRPORT where shops, cafĂŠs and free WiFi keep passengers ENTERTAINED on their journey to any of 85 CITIES accessible direct from BNE

Sukhminder Singh on his way to San Francisco with Angad Singh

Photography by Marc Grimwade

Van and Vincent Vo farewell their Grandma who is departing for Vietnam

Eden, Ally and Lila Hodge departing for Cairns

Lisa, Shiori and Mie Ishida arriving from Japan for a holiday with friends in Brisbane


Enviro-friendly BUSES

A new fleet of electric buses transports passengers between Brisbane Airport terminals and Skygate retail precinct or the long-stay AIRPARK. The buses are quieter and better for the environment, reducing carbon emissions equivalent to taking 100 cars off the road each year. Interiors, too, have been designed with travellers in mind, with plenty of luggage racks, three fullsized double doors for easy entry and exit and GPS next-stop announcements.

Brisbane Airport is the first Australian airport to introduce a fleet of 11 electric buses for passengers and services operating between the Domestic and International Terminals from 4am to 11pm daily; between the terminals and Skygate from 6.30am (weekdays, and from 8.30am weekends) to 6pm; and 24/7 between terminals and AIRPARK. Terminal Transfer Bus services are free. For timetables see


TERMINAL TRANSFERS Passengers transferring between the terminals can travel via the free Transfer Bus which departs at regular intervals from Level 2 International Terminal and Level 1 Domestic Terminal. See the BNE app for timetables. 38 | BNE September/October 2019

BNE PARKING Convenient, secure and undercover short and long-term parking is available within walking distance to both terminals. For more information about special offers and full product offering including valet, car washing, AIRPARK and more see

RIDE SHARE PICK-UP ZONES Look for the signs indicating Pre-Booked Express and Ride Booking (Ride Share) zones outside each terminal.

PUBLIC TRANSPORT TransLink is the local bus, ferry and train public transport network stretching north to Gympie, south to Coolangatta and west to Helidon. For information and timetables see or call 13 12 30.


Domestic Terminal: A dedicated pick-up waiting area provides free parking for the first 30 minutes for drivers arriving to collect passengers from Domestic Terminal, located beside the P2 long term car park and accessed from Dryandra Road. Passengers can contact the driver when they are ready for collection and the driver can proceed to the pick-up location. For easy how to use instructions see International Terminal: The dedicated passenger pick-up area for international arrivals is located at ground level at the northern end of the International Terminal. It is accessible only to drivers collecting passengers who are ready and waiting at the kerb. Alternatively, waiting areas with longer parking options can be found at the pick-up waiting area accessible from Dryandra Road (up to 30 minutes), Skygate shopping and dining precinct or Kingsford Smith Memorial (both up to two hours), all just minutes from International Terminal. Drivers collecting passengers with a disability or mobility limitation from International Terminal can stop in accessible waiting bays on the Level 4 ‘Departures’ Road.

Domestic Terminal: On the central road between the taxi pick-up and passenger drop-off on either side of the Skywalk. International Terminal: Outside the terminal at the southern end on ground level. A Brisbane Airport access fee of $3.90 applies to all pick-ups from the Ride Booking zones, which will be added to your booking by your ride sharing service. For location maps see transport-options

Coach, rail, limousine and corporate car bookings can be made at the Visitor Information Centre, Level 2 International Terminal or Level 1 Domestic Terminal.

TAXIS AND AIRTRAIN Taxi ranks International Terminal Level 2, kerbside Domestic Terminal Level 1, kerbside Airtrain provides regular rail links between Brisbane Airport, Brisbane city, Gold Coast and TransLink network as well as terminal transfers. Tickets available in the terminal or at the station.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION VISITOR INFORMATION CENTRES For information about accommodation, tours, transfer tickets and general enquiries, Visitor Information Centres are located on Level 2 International Terminal and Level 1 Domestic Terminal Central Area.


CURRENCY EXCHANGE Travelex currency exchange and transfer facilities are on Levels 2, 3 and 4 International Terminal and Level 2 Domestic Terminal near Gate 23.

Skygate is Brisbane Airport’s retail and dining precinct, a short free ride on the Transfer Bus from the terminals. There are more than 160 stores, including brand-name factory outlets, a 24/7 supermarket, hairdresser, gym, restaurants, chemist, medical clinic, hotel, beauty services, barber, tavern and golf leisure centre.


AIRPORT ambassadors Welcoming volunteers are available to answer questions and offer directions to visitors within Brisbane Airport’s Domestic and International Terminals. Look for ambassadors wearing bright blue shirts if you need assistance and our team of Chinese-speaking ambassadors wear red shirts.

TAX REFUND SCHEME (TRS) The TRS enables international travellers to claim a refund, subject to certain conditions, of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Wine Equalisation Tax (WET) that you pay on goods bought in Australia. For details see passenger information at If your purchase is part of your carry-on luggage: The TRS office is located past security and passport control, just to the right of the JR/Duty Free entrance. If your purchase is packed in luggage you intend to check: Before you check-in your luggage make your way to the Australian Border Force Client Services Office, located on Level 1 International Terminal. For further information call 1300 363 263 or see

TOUR BRISBANE AIRPORT Do you have a question about the new runway? Would you like to go ‘behind-the-scenes’ of airport operations? Brisbane Airport hosts free tours for community groups. Find out more at

ROTARY CLUB OF BRISBANE AIRPORT The club is a vibrant group of professionals with a shared passion to support the local community who meet weekly and new members are always welcome. For details see

Find small, medium and large lockers for short and long-term hire at the terminal entrance to the public car park at International Terminal, at either end of Domestic Terminal, or next to the bus stop at Skygate.

DISABILITY ACCESS Airlines are responsible for assisting passengers with disabilities within terminals. Passengers should refer to their airline’s policies prior to booking their ticket. Dedicated Changing Places bathroom facilities for the use of travellers with special needs are located on the central ground floor area of Domestic Terminal (near Qantas baggage carousel 3) and on Level 4, International Terminal, near Flight Centre. Facilities for assistance dogs are available at International Terminal Level 3 Departures and Domestic Terminal Level 2 Central Area.

POLICE For assistance at Brisbane Airport telephone 13 12 37.

LOST PROPERTY International Terminal  Visitor Information Centre, Level 2; call (07) 3406 3190 or email

Domestic Terminal  Enquiries first to airlines –

Qantas (gates 1-25) call +61 7 3867 3264 Virgin Australia (gates 38-50) call +61 7 3114 8150 Jetstar (gates 26-36) call + 61 7 3336 1752 Tigerair email before contacting Visitor Information Centre, Level 1; call (07) 3068 6698 or email

Car parks and buses

Contact Visitor Information Centre as above.

WiFi access

Brisbane Airport has the fastest uncapped free WiFi in Australia available at International and Domestic Terminals.




South Korea

Tokyo (Narita) Japan

Shanghai (Pudong)




Shenzhen China


United Arab Emirates

Hong Kong

Abu Dhabi


United Arab Emirates

Taipei Taiwan





Kuala Lumpur

Bandar Seri Begawan




Nauru Nauru


Port Moresby

Munda Honiara

Papua New Guinea


Solomon Islands


5 8

Espiritu Sa Vanuatu

Port Vila Vanuatu



New Caledonia


New Zealand


New Zealand


New Zealand

Queenstown New Zealand


New Zealand



Air Canada


40 | BNE September/October 2019

Air Niugini

Air New Zealand

Alliance Airlines

Air Vanuatu

China Airlines

Cathay Pacific

China Southern Airlines China Eastern Airlines



Fiji Airlines

Eva Air

Fly Corporate

Australia’s largest domestic network


Domestic destinations



San Francisco* USA

Chicago* USA

Los Angeles USA










Mt Isa

Port Hedland


Nadi Fiji



Moranbah Barcaldine


Alice Springs



Whitsunday Coast (Proserpine) Hamilton Island Mackay Rockhampton Gladstone

Biloela Bundaberg Windorah Charleville Fraser Coast (Hervey Bay) Birdsville Roma Miles Quilpie BRISBANE St George Toowoomba Thargomindah Cunnamulla Norfolk Island Moree Inverell Narrabri Coffs Harbour Tamworth Armidale Dubbo Port Macquarie


Newcastle Orange Sydney Lord Howe Island Wollongong Canberra Melbourne

Launceston Hobart

*Coming in February (San Francisco) and April (Chicago) 2020. Map not to scale. Airlines and destinations current at time of print.

Hainan Airlines


Hawaiian Airlines

Malaysia Airlines Korean Air

Nauru Airlines Malindo Air

Qantas/ QantasLink Philippine Airlines

Royal Brunei Airlines Rex

Singapore Airlines Samoa Airways

Thai Airways Solomon Airlines

Virgin Australia Tigerair

BNE September/October 2019 | 41




About 20km south west of Noosa and 120km north of Brisbane, this historic rural village has become a haven for artisans, entrepreneurial farmers and small business operators who are happy to share their passion for their community with visitors... Becky at Big Heart Bamboo

Eumundi Markets, 80 Memorial Drive, began 40 years ago with just three stalls outside the CWA Hall and has grown to a massive 600 stalls sprawled between two street fronts in the middle of town which is visited by more than 1.6 million people every year. The original market policy that goods be locally made continues today under the banner “make it, bake it, sew it, or grow it” and more markets have spread across Napier Road at Eumundi Square and at the park, creating a town centre hub of arts, crafts, fresh produce, food and entertainment every Wednesday and Saturday. Deadly Espresso, 79 Memorial Drive. Open Wednesday and Saturday at the ‘Pavilion’ Markets across the road from the original markets, this social enterprise serves up a taste of bush tucker flavours, from its lemon myrtle latte to the Bush Tucker Bake, while providing Indigenous people with hospitality traineeships. Coffee is certified organic, fair trade and carbon neutral while non-dairy milk options are available too. The Imperial Hotel, 1 Etheridge Street, is far from your typical country pub. Around every corner of the hotel, colourful works by local artists decorate walls, ceilings, stairs and even the toilets. It’s also the home of Eumundi Brewery (you can book a tour), and there’s live music every week. Look out for the Offbeat Music Festival coming on 2 November with a line-up of local artists as colourful and unique as the hotel’s artworks. For tours and entertainment details see Berkelouw Book Barn & Café, 87 Memorial Drive. Australia’s oldest bookseller has found a home for its only Queensland store in the historic Eumundi Trading Post Building where shelves are stacked to the rafters with more than 100,000 second-hand books, rare books, new releases and imported titles not available from local publishers. On Thursdays local clairvoyant Monika Chrysta provides psychic readings (book ahead at the shop). 42 | BNE September/October 2019

Eumundi Dairy

Bees and Honey, 3/77 Memorial Drive. Gayle Currie is a mine of information about bees and the benefits of honey and her shop is filled with products made from pure, raw and unheated honey sourced from Australian beekeepers. On Wednesday and Saturday there’s an observation hive on display. Open Wednesday to Sunday. Agave Blue, 97A Memorial Drive. Zoe Kennedy has been wearing western boots since she was a teenager and these days wears them “anywhere but the beach” but it’s become more than a fashion fad since she started selling them, first at a market stall and now at her store, Agave Blue, in town and online. The boots are handcrafted in Mexico, from top brands as well as her own designs, and have won a legion of followers, commanding prices between $399 and more than $4000. One dedicated fan has 15 pairs and counting, with others not far behind. Open Tuesday to Saturday. Eumundi Conservation Park. Shared trails for walkers, mountain bikers and horse riders pass through open eucalypt forests, small pockets of rainforest, along creeks and sheltered gullies just a few minutes from town. Tracks are easy to intermediate ranging from just over 3km return to more than 13km return and the Figbird Trail includes a creek crossing. For more information and a park map search Eumundi Conservation Park at

Imperial Hotel

Agave Blue

Big Heart Bamboo, 1171 Eumundi-Kenilworth Road. Rebecca Nary-Dart (‘Becky’) grew up on a 50-hectare bamboo plantation nestled into the foothills of the Mapleton National Park ranges so it’s no surprise she has a big heart for bamboo and, while her father supplies bamboo for projects from Antarctica expeditions to Woodford Folk Festival, Rebecca has turned her talents to making the most of the nutritional benefits of bamboo shoots in products under the Big Heart Bamboo label. From September she will share her knowledge and her passion for ethically-made edible bamboo on personal tours of her family’s ‘parkland’ on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, cost $22 plus tasting plates on request, advance bookings essential by email at bigheartbamboo@ or call 0416 275 239. Eumundi Dairy, Grasstree Road. Just five minutes from town this beautiful homestead and a renovated milking shed provide luxury accommodation for family and friends to stay in a breathtaking rural environment on a working farm. Together the Homestead and the Dairy can accommodate up to 14 guests with fullyequipped kitchens and all the comforts of home (and more, for example the Dairy has a woodfired pizza oven outside) and both houses boast large undercover outdoor dining areas, although popular eatery Il Mio Posto in town is highly rated and open Tuesday to Saturday if needed! There are also mid-week specials for couples. For a getaway straight from the pages of Country Style, this is the place,


We respectfully acknowledge the Turrbal people, the Traditional Owners of the land on which Brisbane Airport stands, and pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging. *The general locations of larger Indigenous language groups of South East Queensland on this map are indicative only, based on the AIATSIS Map of Indigenous Australia published by Aboriginal Studies Press.

Map illustration by Eun-Young Lim. Map is not to scale or exact and an indication only.

BNE September/October 2019 | 43


w w w. b n e a h g . c o m . a u

Profile for Brisbane Airport

BNE Magazine Issue 34