Sarah Ryan and Damien Shaw

Melbourne Official Visitor Guide - - Neighbourh­oods -

Own­ers, Bad Love Club

Footscray is chang­ing fast. City sky­scrapers loom nearby and hoard­ings for de­vel­op­ments are a reg­u­lar sight. No two peo­ple are more aware of that than

Sarah and Damien. “It’s in­evitable really,” says Sarah. “There are peo­ple who don’t want Footscray to change be­cause they love it as it is, but you can’t ex­pect an area that’s 10 min­utes from the city to not change.”

“It’s a won­der it hasn’t hap­pened sooner really,” adds Damien, who’s a life­long res­i­dent of the western sub­urbs and has lived in Footscray for years. “It’s su­per di­verse and a bit of ev­ery­thing rolled into one. It’s like nowhere else in the world I’ve come across.” When at a ca­reers cross­roads, it was only nat­u­ral the duo would choose the neigh­bour­hood to launch their own busi­ness. They wanted to do some­thing dif­fer­ent and, 10 months ago, Bad Love Club was born. It’s a quick-serve cafe for jaf­fles and cof­fee dur­ing the day and a bar serv­ing cock­tails, craft beer and baked goods — all Sarah’s hand­i­work — at night.

“We just wanted to be our own bosses and have a bit of cre­ative free­dom,” says Damien.


When you jump off the Li­ly­dale, Bel­grave or Alamein train, start the day at airy Bawa Cafe, with its sweet and savoury of­fer­ings. Who could re­sist up­side-down pineap­ple hot­cakes? At nearby Hawthorn Arts Cen­tre, the gallery presents im­pres­sive ex­hi­bi­tions fea­tur­ing con­tem­po­rary artists. Stroll along Bur­wood Road tak­ing in the shops and, when it’s time for lunch, take a seat at

St Cloud Eat­ing House. At the in­dus­trial-style space, tuck in to mod­ern Viet­namese dishes. At mid­day, the ver­mi­celli bowls are firm favourites. bawa­ hawthornar­ts­cen­ stcloudeat­ing­

Box Hill

When you get off the Li­ly­dale or Bel­grave trains at Box Hill, you’ll be in food heaven, sur­rounded by Chi­nese and Viet­namese restau­rants. Tien Dat is an ex­cel­lent choice for warm­ing bowls of pho noo­dle soup, while Dumpling King has great Szechuan-style won tons, spring onion pan­cakes and more. tien­ dumplingk­


This cute and peace­ful bay­side sub­urb just south of St Kilda (Rip­pon­lea train sta­tion is close by) is a great spot to re­lax. Take a dip or stretch out on the sand at El­wood Beach. You could even grab some lunch from Saintly Burger to have while you take in the view.

Tatanja Ross (On Jack­son Street)

Bad Love Club Sen­sory Lab

Tien Dat, Box HillDid You Know...The world’s en­tire sup­ply of Vegemite is made in Port Mel­bourne on a street that was re­named VegemiteWa­y in 2016?

Bad Love Club, Footscray

Footscray Com­mu­nity Arts Cen­tre

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