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Sydney: Car Friendly Valentine’s Day Locations

As love takes over and the shopping centre florist and chocolate connoisseur store lines stretch out this Valentine’s Day, here’s the places that will impress that special someone and (just as importantly) offer parking relatively close by in Sydney!

Night Locations

Palmer & Co

Source: automated.net.au
Source: automated.net.au

What:  Underground bar (so cocktails & charcuterie style food)
Where: Abercrombie Lane, Sydney NSW 2000. Map
Why: Themed to the prohibition era of the 1920s
Cost: Cocktails from $20. Food from $15
Parking: Book it with Merivale and get 10% off. Check out the link here.

What you need to know

If you want to impress and take a break from modern day Sydney, this is your chance. Quietly tucked away on Abercrombie Lane and a stroll away from Circular Quay is Palmer & Co – an underground bar set in the prohibition era of the 1920s. This place is amazing. It’s the perfect blend of smokey secrecy and sass, and will impress with its selection of spirits and seasonally curated cocktails.

Everything about this den of goodness is so on point that it pulls you back for another look. The barmen, the wait staff, the furniture, the artwork, and live music stay true to the time and make you feel like you’re in on a secret so popular it’ll make you blush.

Now the drive is very doable, and parking pretty affordable if you book in advance. See the discount above. The parking bays are fairly tight though (it’s what you’d expect) so maybe don’t take your 7-seater unless you’re super comfortable with your turning circle.

More info

Grandmas

Source: broadsheet
Source: broadsheet

What:  Small, quaint bar
Where: Basement 275, Clarence Street, Sydney 2000. Map
Why: Perfect for a relaxing first date (no loud music or crowds)
Cost: Drinks from $16 (“supper” snacks are around $8)
Parking: Undercover parking nearby

What you need to know

If a (very) small, intimate setting is just the thing your relationship needs – this one might just be perfect for you. Grandma’s is a quirky little venue outside the hustle & bustle of Sydney CBD that does cozy and delightful in equal portions. If we were to describe it, we’d say it’s kinda like old-school cosmopolitan (think Mad Men) meet all the things you love / loved about your grandma’s place… sounds weird, we know, but here’s what we mean:

…the setting is retro with a good dose of mischievousness humour…

…the drinks are deliciously naughty. Seriously, they named one of their rum drinks the knickerbocker. ‘nuf said….

…the artwork is 60’s faded and packed with enough drama to make conversation easy. It’s what makes this place so great. Do note though, there is a little taxidermy up and about so if that’s not your or partner’s speed, better you don’t board this ship…

Being outside the main CBD precinct makes the drive very achievable. I will warn you though, after visiting this place you’ll wish you had a vintage Aston Martin or Toyota Roadster from a bond movie to make the night complete.

More info

 

Marble Bar

Marble-Bar_@marblebar

What:  Drinks, live music and dance
Where: Level B1, Hilton Sydney, 488 George Street, Sydney, 2000. Map
Why: Go here for the RNB
Cost: Happy hour drinks from $8, cheap bar snacks, and share platters / pizza is on hand
Parking: Undercover parking nearby

What you need to know

A great night out for lovers of RNB, cheap drinks, and a live band (ah, hello, Brown Sugar) – Marble Bar is the place to be for the funky at heart. Set in the heritage-listed, Gotham city like, underground of the Hilton Sydney (FYI – it’s the former Adams Hotel), this place is set to impress if getting your bum off the plush leather seats is your partner’s thing and, of course, you don’t totally suck at the two-step.

The spirits and cocktails are by no means in short supply here*. And there is always music happening so this is must do for an active night out.

*Be smart people. Double date it to avoid the awkwardness of drinking alone and still benefit from having a designated driver.

More info

 

Earl’s Juke Point

Source: undercoverbars.com.au
Source: undercoverbars.com.au

What:  Hidden away bar; solid variety of drinks and cocktails
Where: 407 King St, Newtown NSW 2042. Map
Why: Casual night out
Parking: Undercover parking nearby

What you need to know

Tucked away in the suburb of Newtown and hidden behind a retail Butcher facade is Earls. A bar specialising in a variety of cocktails, staff who are likely to remember you by name, and of course bloody good times.

Now the vibe of this place isn’t intimate, more casual and played to a soundtrack of urban and hip hop music. So if you’re up for a not so intense first date or maybe a ‘let your hair down’ night away from the kids, this is probably a safe bet.

Parking is a little tighter here as you won’t get anything out front. BUT you will find a few sides streets, like Hott St, where you could up your car or motorbike for a couple of hours (8am-10pm people). So check it out…

More info

 

Day Locations

The Grounds of Alexandria

Source: Travel Drink Dine
Source: Travel Drink Dine

What:  Food, scenery… and animals
Where: Building 7A, 2 Huntley St, Alexandria, NSW, 2015. Map
Why: Low key and chill
Parking: A plenty. read more

What you need to know

Located 15 minutes from Sydney CBD, The Grounds of Alexandria and the copper mill offer up a relaxed, yet unique dining experience. Here food can be served on shovels and other miscellaneous gardening paraphernalia in a setting surrounded by live vegetation and a beautiful Macaw.

During the day, The Grounds offer a farmers market setting (similar to the Carriageworks) complete with animals, cheeses, meats and a variety of food options for all eaters – even the fussy, hard-to-pick-types. In the evening, watch the setting sun and snuggle up around the fire with marshmallows if the moods right.

Read more

 

Blue Mountains, but not the usual

Source: Frugal Frolicker
Source: Frugal Frolicker

What: New adventure, sweet flavours, and creativity to burn
Where: 176 Lurline St, Katoomba NSW. Map
Why: Something for everyone
Parking: A plenty

What you need to know

Take a fresh look at the Blue Mountains and visit one, two or all three of these day time locations.
Important: Before packing up the car, make sure there are no fires near your intended location by checking out the NSW Rural Fire Service website.

Location: Flavour Seeker

For the love of chocolate, do yourself a favour and enjoy the delicious treats of the Blue Mountains Chocolate Company. Inconspicuously set amongst houses and trees, the chocolate-ly treats and drinks served are to die for. Our tip: don’t leave without trying the hot chocolate.

Location: Adventure Seeker

Wentworth Falls is a ~45 min walk (one way) nestled amongst some breathtaking waterfalls and scenic treescapes. The walking trails are reasonably accessible – no disabled access, unfortunately – and involve some steep runs, so you and your partner just need to dress appropriately and be up to be impressed by the views. On entry you very quickly feel like you have been transported to another world. The falls are perfect for both fitness or romance.

Location: Arts Seeker

The Street Art Walk located at Beverly Place in Katoomba proves you don’t need to located in the CBD to find high quality International and Australian art. The streetscape delivers a curated, edgy, no ‘tags’ perspective of modern graffiti and crosses over genre lines. Side note: when we visited, there were some clever indigenous art pieces weaved in which were very impressive.

 

Spice & Culture

Source: Time Out
Source: Time Out

What: food from around the world
Why: try something new
Parking: Surrounding streets and valet

What you need to know

For chilli, spice, and all things nice these locations should not be overlooked.

Location: Spice Alley
10 minutes from the CBD and tucked behind the Kensington Street laneway in Chippendale is Spice Alley, a melting pot of hawker style Singaporean and Asian cuisine. There’s tonnes to choose from at this lantern lit, open-air smorgasbord. Anything from Viet, to Malay, to Thai and more, Spice Alley never fails to serve up something delicious to quench your appetite. On the parking front, there is limited availability in the surrounding streets, but valet parking from $45 to $50 overnight is a great option for those who want to get the most out of the night.

Location: Govindas

Offering a dining experience like no other, Govindas is set to feed your belly and soul. Run by the Hari Krishna’s, a superb vegetarian buffet awaits under dim lit light to be followed by a film (yes, a film!) which you can enjoy on the comfortable bed like seating. Our tip: If you’re looking for something more relaxing, try the Lotus room. There you get your mindfulness game on and calm and serene environment. Parking is available in the streets surrounding the restaurant.

 

Gordons Bay

Source: Sydney.com
Source: Sydney.com

What: Calm water but and fewer tourists
Where: 1 Major St, Coogee NSW. Map
Why: A secluded spot away from trigger happy photographers
Parking: You’ll need to park in side streets, then walk to access

What you need to know

Lesser known as far as NSW coast locations go, Gordons Bay offers a nice and secluded spot to kick back and enjoy the water with fewer tourists. Located 20 minutes from the CBD, this surprisingly untapped little gem is offers calmer waters and is the ideal spot for diving types who seeking an underwater nature trail that impresses.

Read more

Bonus: A close second to Gordons Bay is Mahon Pools in Maroubra. It’s also 20 mins from the CBD and isn’t a melting pot for tourists. Feeling hungry and not fussed by a crowd? Try Coogee Pavilion for food, coffee, drinks and a very diverse interior and crowd.

 

Luke Samuels

Luke is the Marketing guy at FitMyCar. He's been writing & selling stuff online since the day he got his licence to drive and despite a lack of taste in cars, he's managed to work in one automotive role or another for half his working life.

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