I'm an experienced corporate communicator and editor with an eye for interesting events and an attachment to my trusty Oxford dictionary.
Published August 16th 2011
I have to say right up front that I've never lived in Melbourne. I'm a Sydneysider by birth and a Brisbaneite by choice and habit. But Melbourne is my very favourite city to visit, for a host of reasons.
To me Melbourne is a kaleidoscope - a city of ever-changing reflections, colours and patterns, not to mention the weather. It's an entertaining, rich, diverse and vibrant city and here are a few of the things I love about it.
I love Melbourne's city streets. Those wide tree-lined boulevardes are lovely in any season, and something that's missing from most other Australian capital cities. I think they add a distinctly European flavour. And who hasn't peered down those little narrow laneways and arcades full of the promise of discovery? They are Aladdin's caves of wonders brimming with hidden shops and cafes - treasures just waiting to be uncovered.
image from flickr.com
Architecture and Design
I know that interesting public architecture isn't on everyone's list of priorities for a city, but I subscribe to philosopher Alain de Botton's theory that architecture is, and should be, a reflection of our society and times. I realise that a city is much more than a collection of buildings, but buildings, bridges and parks provide the skeleton over which we stretch the muscles and skin of its life.
So now I'm finished with the philosophy lesson I'll say that while Melbourne's public architecture ranges from the grand and stately to the garish and stupid (should I say Federation Square now?) it nearly always hits the mark. And besides it gives us something interesting to argue about.
image from flickr.com
Footy So obviously I've moved from the aesthetic to the passionate, but a city needs both, right? I love footy, and with my pedant's hat on I really must insist that the name of the game is Australian Football - sometimes Aussie Rules or just plain footy for diehard lovers of the game - but never AFL. AFL stands for the Australian Football League. It's the name of Australia's professional top-tier competition, not the name of the game itself.
Now that's sorted I can extol the virtues of footy - its pace, skill, athleticism, great physical contests, high-flying marking, and of course those theatrical goal umpires for a dash of comedy relief. And take it from me, footy just isn't the same when played in a one-team town like Brisbane. Melbourne is its spiritual home and the place where it's at its most vibrant.
image from flickr.com
So what is it about Melbourne that presses your buttons? Whether you're a recent convert, a home-grown resident, or just passing through, what do you love about Melbourne?
Melbourne, Melbourne, how I adore it!
When I came to Australia from London, I went to Sydney to live ...HUGE mistake...then I discovered Melbourne and moved here in a heartbeat. And still after 10 years I am thrilled and greatful to be part of this glorious city and its beautiful people. Melbournians have nothing to prove....they stand alone, thinking, dignified and gracious, warm, interesting and interested, humanitarians, with passion and a strong sense of confidence and individuality. Its a very european city, where you can be who ever you are, and no one minds. The city itself is a labarynth of constantly unveiling mystery and beauty, which you couldnt even discover all of in a lifetime. Theres always a vibe, its a city thats loved by the locals and it shows!...eveyone revels in and enjoys all it has to offer....rich or poor, it makes no difference, everyones included and welcomed ... this is a glorious city indeed...just enjoy every morsal....thats some of what I love!
By glend16 - reader Friday, 19th of August @ 03:51 am
Well, I do adore Melbourne, but for a few different reasons (I just don't get footy). I love that Melbourne is a bit arty, a bit cynical. I love that you never know what you'll see from one day to the next - it's such a diverse city of wonderful strangeness and there are a lot of bars, restaurants, galleries, and even whole areas that embody that.
I love the way so many get involved in whatever is on offer. Theaters are full, gardens are visited,cafes are populated and the city library is a gem that is crowded with students.
By jalex - reader Friday, 19th of August @ 02:39 am
HI, Melbourne is most certainly very European in it's vibe & very culturally diverse.
The place is bustling with a vibrant & diverse energy i haven't seen in other city!
The vegetarian restaurants & cafe's are simply amazing & i'm always discovering something New!
When i am in Melbourne i feel like a kid in a candy store.
By Anonymous Friday, 19th of August @ 07:01 am
the ability for everyone to enjoy their city despite the weather: cycling, bbq along the river, quirky shops, great coffee, art and our lovely public spaces (state & city library, Feb square, southbank) etc
By Renatmat - reader Friday, 19th of August @ 10:21 am
Melbourne is full of so many beautiful things. I love the old architecture, the trams, the hustle and bustle. The shopping, the foody culture (head down Lygon St) the cafes dotted everywhere, old book shops, quaint stores in unexpected side alleys...the parks and gardens, the boulevards, the trees in autumn, the crazy weather...all the Victorian terrace houses and yes...that European feeling...
By Louise Massey - senior reviewer Thursday, 25th of August @ 01:23 am
1) late afternoons on St Kilda beach watching the sunset having a few beers on a Friday
2) Park Road and Smith Street for unreal shopping
3) Young and Jackson Pub
4) Melbourne Comedy Festival - unreal week
5) Queen Victoria Markets - browsing the wide variety of clothes, food, shoes and people!
I love that it is cosmopolitan, attractive, interesting, vibrant, easy to get around and so inviting to all (locals and visitors)
By kerrieann - reader Wednesday, 30th of January @ 07:57 am
I love Melbourne when it's NOT winter! I love the NGV, the state library, my youngest daughter who lives there with her wonderful partner, & 2 beautiful grand-daughters. The Botanic Gardens are marvellous.Trams & trains are very good to get around on with a Myki ticket. We fly down, from Sydney, about 5 times a year.
By miro_ - reader Thursday, 7th of September @ 10:41 pm