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The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel & Indulgence - SU­SAN KUROSAWA

THE buzz is bright and easy at the new Beach Club at the Wat­sons Bay Ho­tel on Syd­ney’s east­ern penin­sula. Bang by the har­bour ferry pier and next to the fa­mous Doyles, the bar and diner has a cool Mi­ami-meets-the-Caribbean vibe — or maybe that’s just the happy-hol­i­days size of the co­conut rum cock­tails and Itsy Bitsy Bikini carafes of fruity punch with vodka and Mar­tini Rosso. Hoe into, say, lightly bat­tered fish and chunky chips; gar­licky yab­bie and crab lin­guine; buck­ets of tiger prawns with chilli mayo and cia­batta; or sal­ads with chilli-pepped dress­ings. (Mains from about $22.) Many dishes are served in enamel bowls or on wooden boards; a va­ri­ety of rel­ishes and sides (and wasabi-spiked bloody marys) come in old-fash­ioned glass jars. There are high ta­bles and stools in the for­mer beer gar­den or ca­sual un­der­cover seat­ing with an open kitchen and sparkling views be­yond the har­bour­side prom­e­nade. It’s been a pop­u­lar hang­out for trendy beach bums this sum­mer and is eas­ily reached by ferry from ci­ty­side Cir­cu­lar Quay in about 30 min­utes. The ad­join­ing her­itage ho­tel has 32 gue­strooms; open daily for break­fast, long lunches and din­ner. More: wat­sons­bay­bou­tique­ho­tel.com.au.

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