There are few things more quintessentially Sydney than hitting the beach with your mates followed by drinks and dining at your favourite waterfront or beachside spots.
With summer just around the corner and the silly season already in full swing, we’ve taken the liberty to list five of our favourite venues spread across the fair city that boast incredible ocean views, epic drinks and delicious menus.
If there’s one thing 2020 has taught us, it’s to not take the simple pleasures of a beach trip, lunch date and exceptional open-air views for granted.
The iconic establishment of Icebergs is beautifully positioned overlooking Bondi Beach and Bondi Icebergs swimming pool. Whether you’re indulging in cocktails by the bar with spectacular views, or feasting on freshly shucked oysters with your friends in the dining room, a trip to Icebergs is a consummate Sydney experience. Inspired by Italian cuisine, the menu is full of sustainable seafood, artisan-produced smallgoods and a hint of native Australia. Standouts include the cacio e pepe with fresh ziti, pecorino and black pepper, and the O’Connor grassfed beef Tartare served with traditional accompaniments. A trip to Icebergs offers a slice of Italian-style luxury that deserves to be experienced by all.
Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel
An east Sydney icon for over 180 years, Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel is the perfect place for drinks and lunch with your pals while taking in the jagged city skyline and dazzling harbour filled with luxurious yachts. The Beach Club fit out resembles old-world seaside charm with bright hues of mint green, stripy umbrellas, schoolyard benches and Breton-striped waitstaff. The relaxed vibe makes it easy for lazy lunches filled with sashimi and extravagant seafood platters to flow into afternoon spritz sessions while indulging in epic sunsets and the perfect Instagram moments.
Situated on the stunning Balmoral Beach, the iconic Bathers’ Pavilion is bursting with beachside elegance and Mediterranean charm. The heritage-listed establishment has undertaken a refurbishment that retains its art deco soul and beachside vibes through the pavilion’s brand new bistro, lounge, Sunroom bar and fine dining restaurant. The rooftop terrace welcomed a champagne bar where you can grab a glass, bask in the panoramic views and go hard on freshly shucked oysters too. The food is French inspired and includes classics on the bistro menu like Angus beef sirloin, fish’n’chips and fresh linguine. In the restaurant, expect three-course set menus and a degustation option.
One of nine venues, The Boathouse is a group of unique and iconic hospitality venues located at beautiful waterside locations across Sydney. Shelly Beach is their fourth location on Sydney’s north shore and boasts a rustic coastal fit-out filled with natural lighting, greenery, and small pops of colour. Whether you’re a beach-goer, tourist, or local, The Boathouse has you covered with mouthwatering breakfast, lunch and dinner options, like their grain salad with avocado, kale, miso, seasonal greens and seeds, or their classic ricotta hotcakes served with lemon curd, mascarpone, poppy seeds and berries. The best part? The cafe-restaurant is only accessible by foot and will make you feel like you’re on your own secluded island.
El Camino Cantina
One of four Sydney locations, El Camino Cantina in Manly features unparalleled ocean views partnered perfectly with epic fiesta vibes. The 365-seat restaurant, 100 of which claim the outdoor terrace, makes it prime real estate over summer for guests to enjoy complimentary tortilla chips and fresh salsa. The interior showcases exposed bricks, stone finishes and cacti mixed with neon lights, and rock’n’roll soundtracks, making it the perfect haunt for happy hour, long and boozy lunches and sunset soirées. The food lineup is nothing short of delicious with dishes like buffalo wings served with blue cheese mayo, cheeseburger tacos and lime & pepper steak fajitas. If you’re after a specialty cocktail you can’t go past ‘Light My Fire’, made up of Captain Morgan, jalapeno syrup and topped with organic ginger ale.