The prohibition is over with the opening of the slinky, speakeasy cool of O.G.B Bar & Café resplendently housed in the grand, sandstone glory of the iconic, heritage-listed Old Government Building (see what they did there?) that’s perched on the corner of Cathedral Square.
Welcoming you with the mint, Bugsy Malone-style Austin out front, O.G.B is perfectly-placed and tricked out for a sophisticated snifter, late night bite, brekkie (from 6.30am) or bowling up to the Square’s only window bar, where retro-hip bar staff rocking suspenders and bowlers dispense classic cocktails, an international round-up of tap beers (Japan, Denmark, Czech Republic and, a little closer to home, Amberley) and bottled craft beers, Kiwi wines (alongside a few Aussie imports), French bubbles, and an intriguing selection of ‘interesting reds’ ideal for exploring over the colder months.
Resplendent in retro-cool with swag for days, the dark wood interior beyond the funky green...
‘Honest, wholesome, and simple’ are the three key words for MADE Espresso Bar - the latest coffee spot to open in the city.
Located within Warren & Mahoney House, its entrance can be found on Cashel Street (that’s if your nose hasn’t already sniffed-out the Hummingbird Coffee along with sweet and savoury treats). Once you’ve admired the beautiful interior that owners Kate Bloomfield and Michelle Burns have created for their small but funky café, and are greeted with their friendly smiles, you'll inevitably lock eyes on the cabinet, where you'll find an array of colourful salads, hearty pasties, fresh sandwiches, house-made Afghans and banana loaf. Go on, indulge – we won’t tell!
MADE Espresso Bar 254 Montreal Street03 379 2592www.madeespressobar.co.nz...
Following a months-long fundraising and planning effort the Christchurch Community Bike Share Scheme, Spark Bikes, is now up and running.
The bike share system, brainchild of local entrepreneur Rob Henderson, initially has five stations at key locations around the central city – Victoria Street, the Arts Centre, Gloucester Street, the Re:Start Mall and Epic on Tuam Street. Registered users can grab an available bike at any station and use them to get around the city as they like.
Sponsors Spark jumped on board with the idea a year ago after Henderson approached the company with his idea. A portion of the project was then crowd-funded, with donations aplenty from locals, but also as far afield as Canada and America.
To get in on the action, head to www.sparkbikes.co.nz to register (there’s a one-off registration fee of 4 bucks) – once registered you can log in at any station, grab a...
Image: Tony Stewart
Get those sweet bicycle clips out of storage, Christchurch – getting around the city is becoming easier with the arrival of a free public bike-share system, thanks to crowdfunding enthusiasm from local residents and businesses for the idea (from local entrepreneur Rob Henderson) and the corporate sponsorship of Spark.
The service puts Christchurch in the same trendy club as the likes of New York, London and Melbourne (look at us go!), and won’t hit you in the wallet, either, with all trips under 30 minutes completely free – and we all know that in a city as bike-friendly-flat as Christchurch is, you can get a long way on a bike in 30 minutes!
Bike stations will initially be set up at Victoria Street, Gloucester Street, Re:START Mall, Tuam Street and on Worcester Boulevard as part of the two-year pilot for the project. Each bike will also be...
Post-quake Christchurch has gotta be one of the world’s best blank canvases for street art, and the recent RISE Street Art Festival and plenty of big building owners getting into the spirit of things (nice one, guys) have been painting the town. The still-rebuilding Theatre Royal, Les Mills, Canterbury Museum, and The Colombo are just some of the sites arting up our city. Here’s our pick of the best and where you’ll find them.
124 Peterborough Street
167 Lichfield Street
169 Gloucester Street
203 Cashel Street (Les Mills)
268 High Street
370 Colombo Street
CPIT, Madras Street
YMCA, Hereford Street
Les Mills (front)
Isaac Theatre Royal (Gloucester Street)
Still missing the late, lamented Cartel of pre-quake days? Us too. Hope blossoms though, with the creators of the His Lordship's Lane late-night legend nearing the sure-to-be-massive June launch of their new entertainment precinct in the heart of the city. Since Cartel, The Britomart Hospitality Group has established similar iconic venues in Auckland including 1885, The Britomart Country Club, Mexico, and Orleans. Now with their return to Christchurch, the boys from Britomart are set to offer an exciting new Christchurch playground for day or night – Strange's Lane.
Situated on the former Strange & Co Department Store site, in the eye-catching new building you've probably noticed on the corner of Lichfield and High Streets, Strange’s Lane bridges the gap between the past and the future. Odes to the original building’s industrial roots are evident in inspired architectural references, which lend a dynamic and convivial atmosphere to the precinct. At the entertainment...
Cityscape trawls the watering holes along the city’s hottest party scene – we’ve also thrown in a few food matches where applicable (‘cos we’re responsible like that!). Victoria Street has been a focal point for the rebirth of the city's hospitality scene post-quake, with a wide range of bars/restaurants now open and more to follow in the early part of the new year. Cityscape runs 'em down for you ahead of your next big Friday night.
Carlton Though technically not on Victoria Street, we'll bend the rules for this legend reborn, which offers some banging live music on Friday and Saturday nights.
Smash Palace Under the sun fun pairing demo-chic, service from a bar bus and crazy-good made-from-scratch burgers.King of Snake The venue that started it all! We’ll never get sick of the Millionaire Mojito (no matter how many we drink!) or crispy pressed half duck with caramelized mandarin sauce.Mexicano’s...
“A people’s tomorrow” arrives in the central city this week with The Powerful Event, an immersive theatre/performance art experience from recently-formed New Zealand theatre company Two Productions. A unique experience for audiences / participants, with entry by donation, The Powerful Event is based on concepts of the dystopian-future and science fiction films, as well as the theatre works of Gob Squad (Berlin/UK), Barbarian Productions (NZ) and Future Hotel (NZ). It is 2028. Mega-corporation Nouveau Monde Global is taking over the world. Their next step is Christchurch, where an empty lot on the corner of Cashel and Manchester has been set up as a press conference with a backdrop of shipping containers and a labyrinth of construction fencing. This is where NMG's flagship ‘Inspirational Development Hub' will be erected. The corporation has called the public to the site to provide an insight into their values and ambitions. However, a simple press...
International divas, burlesque royalty and top comics are among the line-up this year for the city’s iconic annual street performance event, the 2014 SCIRT World Buskers Festival, running January 16 – 26.The biggest street performance festival in Australasia is always a highlight of the Christchurch summer, and this year looks to be no exception. The 2014 event will see the return of last year’s stand out hit Le Gateau Chocolat, and in addition local-boy-made-good Sam Wills will take time out from his busy international touring schedule to bring The Boy with Tape on his Face back home to Canterbury.Featured comedians include Jeremy Elwood, Urzila Carlson and Michele A’Court, while clowns, contortionists, acrobats and the frankly indescribable are descending from Israel, USA, The Netherlands, Mexico, the UK, Australia and Christchurch suburbia. All told, the festival will feature 55 acts from 10 countries.Organisers have commented that the need to get in early to...
Christchurch will be the canvas this summer when the Oi YOU! street art festival arrives this year to make the Garden City its permanent home, kicking things off this year with RISE at the Canterbury Museum. The museum will host the huge Oi YOU! collection of street art, featuring the southern hemisphere’s most comprehensive collection of work by internationally-recognised street artists (including 22 works by renowned l’enfant terrible Banksy).
In addition, the museum will also play host to a show from New York-based artist Kid Zoom, and On The Street, a uniquely interactive ‘virtual street’ art piece extending across 400 square metres. Beyond the Museum, Big Walls will see a number of huge walls around the city transformed by some of the best street artists from home and abroad.
Among the the stellar line-up will be ROA (pictured at above right in Johannesburg), whose work (featuring monochrome depictions of animals native...