life at bondi

Bondi Winter Wonderful

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Bondi Winter Wonderful, blonde on the beach at Bondi, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Anybody else loving life in Bondi right now?

We’re enjoying brilliant blue skies, crisp air, a laidback vibe and shorter coffee queues.

Saturdays at the Bondi Farmers Markets have never been busier with fabulous food stalls alongside a huge lawnful of happy locals lounging on picnic blankets.

I’ve just updated the long list of events on the winter horizon with details for 14 community cultural offerings such as art, theatre, fairs, festivals, awards, music & walks.

One such event is the launch on 22 June of a significant Street Art Mural, celebrating Social Justice for Indigenous Australians at Chapel By The Sea.

On a sad point, the Bondi Ice Rink won’t be running this year on the beach. Something tedious about sponsorship. Let’s hope it’s back again next year…

If you’re up for a fancy weekend or just want a sticky beak, the new Adina Apartment Hotel on Hall St have opened and are offering a special rate from only $159 a night.

And for those who love Bondi, Food and Hunky Bondi Bachelors (aka chef Guy Turland), you can’t get better than Bondi Harvest, a weekly cooking show featuring seasonal recipes and local produce from our very own Bondi Beach. 10/10 from me!

As we head towards EOFY, those of you with big bank balances and/or big hearts, there’s no better way to avoid a tax bill than to give to charity…donate to WAYS here.

For those of you with kiddiewinks wondering what to do in the coming weeks again, there are some great local options on offer at The Bondi Pav School Holiday Program.

There’s also been some big events for some of our local biz. Congrats to PaperPlanes who enjoyed their 1 year anniversary recently. Also to Mamasan who are set to expand their restaurant into the space next door later this week (think Moulin Rouge meets late 20s Shanghai!). And we look forward to seeing what’s on offer when the Adina shops all open…

Yours in winter wonderland … x andy


Street Art Mural

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Bondi Street Art Mural on Social Justice for Indigenous Australians at Chapel by the Sea Bondi Beach

The Chapel By The Sea Bondi Beach is launching a significant Street Art Mural, celebrating Social Justice for Indigenous Australians. The mural recognises five leading figures in that struggle. That journey continues today with the campaign for the recognition of Indigenous people in the Constitution of Australia.

The artists Etienne Cohen and Paul Davis have been on a journey too!  Their collaboration has shown that with respect we can share, yarn and create together, we are reconciled to a brighter future for all Australians.

The launch is well timed as Australia Post will be bringing out a series of stamps for NAIDOC week also honouring “Indigenous Elders”.

This mural is the third in a series of social justice murals supported by Uniting Churches, the others being “I have a Dream” in King St Newtown and “The Peace Unity & Justice” murals in the Sydney city centre.

Further information:-

Victoria Phillips:
John Queripel:



New Adina Special

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Adina Apartments open at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Opening Special at Adina Apartment Hotel, Bondi Beach.

Stay at Bondi’s hottest new address Adina Apartment Hotel, on Hall Street amongst vibrant restaurants and shops leading to Australia’s most iconic beach.

Enjoy 20% off full rates – starting at just $159.

Stay Dates: 17th June to 31st August 2013.

Head here to BOOK


Bondi Doing Good

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Surf Patrol lifeguard training at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia Andy Solo

Some people revel in the stock market, others have a passion for cooking, accounting floats some boats and crafting a cashmere cardigan is the domain of a creative few.

I’ve had a long-term passion for the wellbeing of society and have worked for many years in the philanthropic and community sector. That’s just how I am.

Life is pretty good for most of us. We mainly just deal with first-world problems such as the price of organic veggies and finding time to squeeze in a facial. But sometimes people like me feel the need to remind you that there’s still some real shit that needs fixing in the world.

The thing is, it shouldn’t make you feel bad. All you have to do is take notice of people doing AMAZING inspiring things and just back a few of them every now and again. Even just by Liking a Facebook petition or sending a few words of encouragement.

For a start, it’s Reconciliation Week from 27 May – 3 June. This year’s theme is Let’s Talk Recognition. So I found this great website that is chock full of interesting facts and perspectives from Indigenous Australians including these crazy facts I wasn’t fully aware of.

And here’s some more fabulous folk doing a gaggle of great good…


Who: Maxi & Jesse, Lifeguards from Bondi Rescue

Mission: taking off on a gruelling 2,500 km ride on jetskis

Cause: mental health research, prevention and support services

Read more and/or support them here


Who: Scotty & Luke, Bondi trainers from My Kitchen Rules

Mission: judging an MP cake decorating comp at Parliament House (eek)

Cause: cancer research, prevention and support services

Read more and/or support them here


Who: Scotty & Luke, Bondi trainers (again)

Mission: Black Dog Institute City2Surf running team

Cause: depression/bipolar research, prevention and education

Read more and/or support them here


Who: Dominic Wykanak, NSW Reconciliation Council

Mission: supporting multiple reconciliation events across Australia

Cause: Indigenous Reconciliation Week 2013

Read more and/or support him here


Who: Me and heaps of other people!!

Mission: Constitutional recognition of Indigenous Australians

Cause: Indigenous Respect & Reconciliation

Declare your support in a couple of clicks!


Yours in support of inspiring super stars … x andy


Bondi Scotty Gooding Luke Hines My Kitchen Rules for Charity  Jesse and Maxi Bondi Rescue boys for mental health charity Headspace Dominic Wykanak for Indigenous Reconciliation at Bondi Beach


Win Birichina Cafe!

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Win meal and coffee dining voucher for Birichina Cafe Bondi, Sydney

Win brekkie, brunch or lunch for two!

As one reviewer put it, Birichina Café “has a laidback vibe and a look that’s a perfect mix of beachy-cool and edgy-chic. The coffee is organic, the views and people watching are amazing and the majority of the menu hovers somewhere between cheaper-than-average and unheard-of-within-spitting-distance-of-the-beach”.

It’s also one of my favourite Bondi digs and the gorgeous owners are generously offering FOUR chances to win brekkie, brunch or lunch for two – including meals and a coffee!


Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi Facebook page if you haven’t already

2. Email with subject “I’d love some Bondi Birichina!”

3. Like the Birichina Facey page for extra brownie points!


Winners will be drawn Monday 27 May. Good luck!

Ps… congrats to Jo, Kirsten, Louisa and Mel who won the Mother’s Day giveaway.


Bondi Reconciliation

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Reconciliation Week in Bondi 2013, Indigenous event for Aboriginal people Sydney

It’s Reconciliation Week from 27 May – 3 June 2013 and this year’s theme is Let’s Talk Recognition. In the spirit of ‘talking’, I found this great website that is chock full of interesting facts and perspectives from Indigenous Australians. Some of these that stood out for me are:

- Over 3 in 4 Indigenous Australians did not survive colonisation.

- There were approximately 270 Indigenous languages prior to European settlement – only 18 strong languages (spoken by all age groups) remain in use today.

- In 1962, Indigenous Australians were given the right to vote. However, it remained illegal to encourage Indigenous people to enrol to vote. In fact, our Constitution still gives the States the right to ban people from voting based on race. Honestly.

- In 1967, more than 90% of Australian voters said YES, Indigenous people should be counted in the national census of the population.

- It was not until 1993 that the High Court overturned the notion of terra nullius (that the Australian land belonged to no one when Europeans arrived in 1788).

- In 2007, Prime Minister John Howard announced the dramatic intervention into the Northern Territory Aboriginal communities, giving the Government power to:

- Ban all alcohol
- Acquire Aboriginal land and communities for up to five years
- Hold back 50% of welfare payments, to control spending by Indigenous people
- Suspend the permit system controlling access to Indigenous communities
- Remove customary law and traditional cultural practice from criminal sentencing

Despite widespread criticism, the current policy version, Stronger Futures, passed on June 2012.

- In 2009, Australia agreed to support the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People. Previously, Australia had been one of only four nations to oppose the Declaration.

- In February 2013, the Act of Recognition Bill was passed – the first step towards a Referendum to recognise Indigenous Australians in our country’s constitution.

That’s right, our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are still excluded from our founding document.

Head to the Recognise website to declare your support to acknowledge Indigenous peoples in Australia’s Constitution. Surely it will be a 100% YES outcome in 2 years time?


Bondi Magic Mums

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Mothers Day Mums at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Funny. I initially wrote the title accidently as ‘Bondi Manic Mums’. Which is possibly not far from the truth.

You see, when you spot mums of the eastern suburbs cruising around in the sun with adorable kiddiewinks in their prams you only see a thin slice of their life. For those in the know, it’s a tough gig.

I’ve had a multitude of tough jobs and hard knocks in life but few come close to the trauma of taming a toddler. Yes, they’re cute, we’re absolutely grateful, we love them heaps and we wouldn’t have it any other way but, man, it really takes it out of you, constantly, day and night, for a really long time.

So, hats off to all mums this week as we head towards Mother’s Day on Sunday. Even if you don’t always feel like it, you’re all amazing…

And you deserve to win a fantastic pressie! Head here for details.

Yours in the magnitude and magnificence of mothering … x andy

Shore Mum at Bondi Beach with baby toddler, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy SoloMums at Market at Bondi Beach with kids, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo


Mothers Day Giveaway!

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Mothers Day Giveaway at Bondi Beach NSW

Win one of 4 fabulous Mother’s Day prizes totalling $300!

To celebrate all the wonderful work, caring, courage and love dished out by our Mum’s, you’re invited to win one of 4 fabulous prizes from some of Bondi’s most generous, fabulous local businesses including:

1 x $100 voucher to spend at Bondi boutique Me and Moo

1 x warm slippers and beautiful blanket/throw from So Gorgeous

1 x $50 dining voucher to spend at Bondi Social café restaurant

1 x handcrafted chopping board from Byron Bay Chopping Boards

(chopping boards sold at Bondi Farmers Markets 2nd & 4th Saturday of the month).


Sorry this comp is now closed!!

Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “Good on you Mums!”

3. Like any of the company Facebook pages (links above) for an extra entry into the draw.

4. Or share the competition post on Facebook to gain an extra entry into the draw.


- No, you don’t have to be a mum to enter the draw but just think how much your mum would love you if she won one of these gorgeous prizes!

- List your favourite prize(s) for a say in what you win – no promises but we’ll try to oblige!

- Winners will be drawn Friday 10 May in time for Mother’s Day. Good luck!


Live Below the Line

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Live Below the Line charity supported by Bondi Rescue Lifeguards

Live Below the Line invites thousands of Australians to eat on $2 a day from 6-10 May as a simple way to better understand extreme poverty, and make a real impact.

One of their celebrity ambassadors is Greg “Bisho” Bishop, a Bondi Rescue lifeguard and a member of the local fire brigade. One of those all round great guys.

Greg, along with some of his Bondi Rescue buddies, will be taking part in the Live Below the Line challenge next week. Head here to support the lads and this great cause.


Bondi Work Life Balance

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Work Life Balance sculpture at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

I see Work-Life Balance as one of the greatest challenges of recent times.

It’s a tough gig finding sufficient stress-free time for family, productive work, creative pursuits, exercise, deep friendships, 7.5 hours quality sleep, loving partnerships, optimal health, raising great kids, inner peace, enriching travel, philanthropic giving, community connections, shopping, meditation, cleaning and dancing.

It’s exhausting just thinking about it, yes?

So, last night when I had a moment of pure happiness I was able to instantly double my joy in the context of how bloody hard it is to actually stop and smell the roses of my life.

And what does this have to do with Bondi Beach? Well, our sunny seaside village essentially allows me to multi-task (whilst simultaneously attempting in-the-moment mindfulness).

Simply taking my son down to the Bondi skate park for a couple of hours with my camera in the afternoon allows me to manage at least 10 things on the long list above. And that doesn’t even include dancing.

Bondi offers a photogenic, colourful community with sunshine, a healthy lifestyle and a constant holiday vibe. It’s close to the city, full of facilities and positively brimming with options for fun and wellbeing. And for those of us lucky enough to live here, there’s also a great sense of community, culture and connection.

So, here’s to Bondi. Thanks for providing such a bountiful backdrop for a beautiful, balanced life.

Yours in good times and gratefulness… x andy

ps… sorry I’ve been slack getting my blog out – adding full-time work to my regular mix meant something had to give. I’ll continue writing but it will be less consistent, you know, work/life balance and all that… x


Bondi Off the Block

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Bondi Off The Block Warehouse Party by Bondi Beach Radio Sydney NSW

Ooo.  I love a good mystery. And this looks crackalackin. Anybody know the details of the new Bondi Beach Radio?

I suspect it may be Bondi FM reinvented – back bigger and better than ever (since their sudden disappearing act not so long ago…).

And who’s going to their ‘Off the Block’ Warehouse Party this Friday? Let us know if you head along and get all the goss and some great happy snaps!


Bondi Icebergs Pop Up

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Icebergs Terrace Organic Pop Up Cafe at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Pondering where to have brekkie? by Jana Hocking

It’s Saturday morning and you are pondering where to have breakfast?? You’re not feeling like anything too crazy but you are craving a really good coffee, something to eat that tastes like it’s home made and a view wouldn’t be bad either.

Well, I am happy to tell you I have found the perfect place for you… and I’m not going to lie, I may have spent the last three mornings gracing it’s doorway.. and it has nothing to do with the super hot barrister with the nose ring.. well.. ok, maybe a little, but even if he wasn’t there I would totes still go!!

The place I am talking about is the ahh-maze Iceberg’s Pop Up Terrace Cafe at Bondi. It is located on the small terrace adjacent to the Southern end of Icebergs and the view is beyond anything you have ever seen. Who doesn’t want to start the morning overlooking the ocean, sitting in the gorgeous sun?? Seriously, it feels like you are on a Greek Island.

The layout of the popup bar is designed to make the most of the view over looking Bondi in a super comfy, non-stuffy way. There are cute bar stools to sit on, a couple of tiny tables that hold some cutlery and sugar for your coffee and the barricades overlooking the ocean are see-through just in case you are too lazy to look over the top.

The first morning we went to check it out there was a range of organic (don’t forget it’s Bondi!) slices, tasty wraps and freshly squeezed juices in glass bottles to choose from. That morning I chose the spiced date, ricotta, banana and coconut bread with extra butter. It was so delicious I wished I had ordered another piece.

The second morning we arrived to freshly made pancetta wraps with egg, rocket, and some form of mexican salsa. All intentions of getting the date bread again were thrown out the window for this yummy wrap, and it did not disappoint.

They serve fresh coconuts and coffee’s that have been made to perfection, there is honestly nothing bad I can say about this gorgeous cafe.

If you feel like trying something new, and want to make the most of the sun before it hides behind a winter chill. Go check it out. You WON’T be disappointed!! Make sure you say hi to the fabulous owner Maurice Terzini, he is surprisingly lovely, and you can’t miss him in his white overalls.

Read more from our beach-dwelling, cocktail-sipping, cafe-loving reporter Jana Hocking at

Reviewer Jana Hocking at Bondi Beach


Bondi Youth

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Young skater at Bondi Beach skate park, Sydney NSW Australia, pic by Andy Solo

Even though there seems to be kids everywhere in Bondi, we only have a third of the national average of tweens and teens (they sure come in droves when they’re older though – we have triple the number of 25-35 years olds).

National Youth Week, for 12-25 year olds, runs from 5-14 April and I say we celebrate the occasion big time for our Bondi Beach youth.

These vibrant village-goers are our future. They’re gutsy and gung-ho. They’re kind and creative. They’re spirited and special.

Our youth face one of the most challenges phases of their lives. They need our support and they deserve our attention. How we treat these amazing individuals will shape how our communities progress (and, in turn, how well they’ll treat us when we lose our aging minds).

There’s many ways you can support youth this week…

Head  to the Bondi Markets this Saturday 6 April for the Bondi Creative Youth Fair and buy some of their creative wares or support their musical talents. Pass on the word to any youth you know about the Bondi Blitz Festival on Saturday 13 April. Or provide extra help for those kids who are doing it tougher than most via WAYS Bondi or Youth Off The Streets.

And if you can’t help on a practical level, how about just focusing on the strengths of our youth – show respect, applaud their efforts and celebrate their spirit during their journey into adulthood. We’ve all been there… (and good on you if you’re still there!!)

Yours in long lost youth… x andy

Young adults, blonde girls at Bondi Beach Sydney AustraliaBondi Skate Youth at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo


Win Bondi Rumba!

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Bondi Rumba restaurant competition giveaway dinner for two at Bondi Beach Sydney

Nestled on Glenayr Ave near the corner of Curlewis, Bondi Rumba brings the colours, sounds and flavours of Latin America to Bondi Beach.

Throwing it’s doors open at 4pm each day, Bondi Rumba offers everything from coffee and snacks to authentic Latin tasting plates and a massive selection of cocktails, spirits, beers and wines from all over the region.

Thanks to Adrian and the Rumba team, this week you can win a dinner for 2 (worth $70) with corn chips, 2 tapas or 1 tasting plate and 2 cocktails!

Entry is easy…

Sorry! This competition has now closed…

1. Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with “I’d love some Bondi Rumba for two!”.

3. Like Bondi Rumba page on Facebook for extra brownie points!

The winner will be drawn Monday 8 April after 5pm.

ps… congrats to Loosie and Aliza who won the Easter Feast draw last week!


Bondi Easter Bunny…

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Bondi Easter Bunny and eggs at Abode, Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

I love Easter.

For me it’s about great food, friends, family, fun, freedom…and chocolate.

Most people consider me a pretty nice person but, I’m not even kidding, if you so much as eyeball my Lindt bunny things are going to get ugly.

And if chocolate induglence isn’t great enough, there’s also hot cross buns. Who made up this holiday? Good Friday. No shit! It’s awesome.

These days, Easter focuses mainly on Jesus Christ’s resurrection and/or the sheer joy of a super-long weekend, but it actually originated from Germanic pagan celebrations.

Most of the food and traditions come from these ancient festivals that commemorated the Goddess of Spring and fertility, Eostre. Who knew? See below for more random Easter facts, food and fables.

So, whether your focus is on the Passions of Christ, Pagan festivities, Passover or hangovers, I wish you all a very safe and happy holiday.

Yours in choc bunny bounty… x andy


The Bunny: The deity Eostra was the goddess of Spring and fertility and pagan feasts were held in her honor on the Vernal Equinox. Her symbol was the rabbit because of the animal’s high reproduction rate. The first Easter Bunny legend was documented in the 1500s. By 1680, the first story about a rabbit laying eggs and hiding them in a garden was published.

Eggs: Spring also symbolises new life and rebirth. Like rabbits, eggs were an ancient symbol of fertility and continue to be today, (for obvious reasons).

Hot Cross Buns: These date back to the pre-Christian era when small cakes were offered to Eostre. It is thought they were marked with a cross to signify the four quarters of the moon. Later the cross came to symbolise the crucifixion of Jesus. Traditionally, hot cross buns baked on Good Friday were said to have magic powers.

Fish: Many superstitions and traditions are associated with Good Friday, but perhaps the most widespread Christian custom is using fish as an alternative for meat to show respect for Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.

Roast Lamb: This traditional Easter Sunday dinner goes back to the first Passover of the Jewish people. The sacrificial lamb was roasted and eaten in the hope the angel of God would pass over their homes and bring no harm. Christians often refer to Jesus as ‘The Lamb of God’.

Fuuki Bunny Bondi street art at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy SoloDJ Bunny Bondi at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo


Win an Easter Feast!

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Bondi Easter competition Giveaway from Paper Planes and Mad Pizza at Bondi Beach

What better way to celebrate Easter than with fabulous food!

From sensational seafood to succulent lamb, two of Bondi’s favourites are offering dining vouchers to enjoy their delicious Easter offerings. Enter the draw to win either a:

- $100 voucher for Paper Planes

- $50 voucher for Mad Pizza Bondi

This competition is now closed sorry!

As always, entry is easy…

1. Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love to win an Easter Feast!”.

The winners will be drawn this Thursday 28 March in time for Easter!


Win Atlas Kiosk!

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Win at the Atlas Kiosk giveaway at Bondi Beach Sydney

Win one of TEN vouchers at The Atlas Kiosk Bondi.

Set in prime position at 14 Hall Street with a funky old milk bar feel, the Atlas Kiosk offers a range of international flavours from across the mediterranean, middle east and north Africa, combined with quality coffees or classic sundaes and milkshakes.

Thanks to our fine friends at the Atlas Kiosk, TEN lucky readers will win coffee and pastizzis for two. The perfect start to the day down in Bondi, with friendly service, free WiFi and tasty tunes, it’s one of Bondi’s best.

Sorry – this competition is now closed!

1. Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with “I’d love delicious dining at the Atlas Kiosk”.
3. Like the Atlas Kiosk Facebook to score a double entry!

The winner will be drawn Monday 25 MarchBest of luck!

Bondi Harmony…

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Woman wearing a hijab on Bondi Beach, Harmony Day, Sydney NSW pic Andy Solo

It’s Harmony Day this Thursday 21st March.

It’s a day of cultural respect for everyone who calls Australia home, from the traditional owners of this land to those who have come from many countries around the world.

Bondi Beach has always had a history of welcoming people from different backgrounds – in fact only 47.3% of residents were born in Australia. FYI, The most common countries of birth are England 9.0%, New Zealand 4.3%, Ireland 2.5%, South Africa 2.2% and the USA 1.5%.

Harmony Week also offers a chance to take another look at our Indigenous history and progress towards true reconciliation. There are 46 Bondi Beach residents who identify as being Aboriginal Australians (as per the 2011 Census) and I hope they feel truly respected and a vital part of our community.

To get in the spirit, check out the wonderful new exhibition at the Bondi Pavilion Gallery by Damian Broomhead, How to Draw Ghosts, that depicts early interactions between the British and the Indigenous inhabitants of the Sydney region.

Or head to Australia’s oldest (and best) Aboriginal art gallery, Coo-ee, to see some of the most outstanding established and emerging artistic talents in the country.

There’s also a number of great Harmony Day events in the area, including Deliciously Diverse, featuring 26 restaurants offering meals for $15 and under from Mon 18 – Fri 22 March.

Or head here  for your chance to sample some of the finest international food in Bondi Beach – for free!

Yours in happy harmony… x andy


Bondi Bachelor!

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Bondi Rescue Bachelor Mouse Michael Jenkinson at Bondi Beach Sydney

Bachelor of the Week: Michael Jenkinson (Mouse), by Jana Hocking

This week’s Bachelor is often seen patrolling the beach and savings lives on Channel Ten’s “Bondi Rescue”.

When not donning his lifesaving uniform he can be found working on his new sunscreen/zinc brand “Bondi Zinc”, surfing waves, and cutting loose at the ‘Logies’ after party dance floor.

I find out all there is to know about Michael Jenkinson aka “Mouse”…

1. Who is your current idol and why?

I wouldn’t say I have an idol but at the moment I’m drawing inspiration from Joel Parkinson the 2012 ASP World Surfing Champion. He is a legend guy and an awesome but humble athlete.

2. What are three qualities you like in a girl?

That would have to be nice eyes, a good sense of humour and intelligence.

3. If you could play any character in any movie, who would it be?

I would like to say Patrick Swayze out of “Dirty Dancing” but to be more realistic I’d probably suit Peter Dinklage, the dwarf out of Game of Thrones.

4. Are you a boxers or a brief boy?

Neither. Maybe briefs if I’m going out for a night but mainly free balling. Yeeew!

5. What is currently on your nightstand?

Radio, light, sunnies, two watches, a picture of my mum with my dog when he was a puppy about twenty five years ago that is held by a picture frame that I made in Design and Technology at school about twelve years ago, worst frame ever!

6. What is the last song you downloaded?

“Miss you” from the Rolling Stones. It’s an old thumper!

7. What has been your biggest career highlight so far?

I resuscitated a two-year old girl at Bronte Beach whilst working as a lifeguard. I brought her back to life in front of her family. That was pretty cool I guess.

8. If you were an animal what would you be?

Hmm… everyone calls me Mouse so I guess I would be a mouse. Or possibly a sperm whale.

9. If you could meet anyone in the world, dead or alive, who would it be and what would you say to them?

I would love to meet Notorious Biggy Smalls best rapper ever. I’d ask him “who shot ya”??

10. If you were stranded on a desert island, what 3 items would you take with you?

A compass, knife and Eva Mendes

Read more from our beach-dwelling, cocktail-sipping, bachelor-loving reporter Jana Hocking at

Reviewer Jana Hocking at Bondi Beach

Shop Talk March 2013

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Lox Stock Barrell cafe restaurant at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW  Mamma Mia India cafe, bar gift emporium at Bondi Beach, Sydney

Bondi Shop Talk – March 2013

I know its only been a couple of weeks since the last update but there seems to be a lot of chop and change in Bondi a the moment. Here’s the latest…


- Lox Stock & Barrel (above) has enjoyed instant success at the old Greens Café spot

- Café, bar & gift emporium Mamma Mia India (above) has opened at 38 Wairoa Ave

- Home Pics on Glenayr has officially shut up shop – rumour is La Piadina will expand!

- Alonso’s on Glenayr has closed with Mamasan possibly extending their delish offerings

- Dream Fix has also closed to make way for a temporary (I assume) construction office

- Tuchuzy Men’s store on Gould has officially shut but their women’s store is all good

- Jets Swimwear Pop-up on Hall St has closed after one summer in our sunny suburb

- In a seamless transition, 2Chillies swimwear has opened further down at 5 Hall St

- Envii opened a little while back at 40 Hall – nice to have some more healthy options

- Bronx & Banco boutique are relocating – thankfully just down to the Gould St strip

- Enshii massage have opened a second store at the south end of Campbell Parade

- Tluxe pop up is the new boutique in the old Bronx & Banco space on Glenayr Ave

- Welcome Wicked Travel (backpacker specialists) next to Cozzie Shack on Campbell

- And what the hell has happened to Bondi FM? More on that situation soon…


For any other updates, please shoot them through to me at


Harmony Week 2013

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Peachy Couple strolling along the sand at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

We celebrate  Harmony  Week  every  year  to  highlight  the  diversity  in  our  community. Harmony Week helps  to  highlight  the United  Nations  Day  for  the  Elimination  of  Racism,  which  is  held  on 21  March  each  year.  This  day  has  become  known  as  Harmony  Day  and  over  the  years  has expanded  to become  Harmony  Week!

This  year’s  theme  for  Harmony  Week  is  Many  Stories  -­  One  Australia and  Waverley  Council  will  be supporting  a  number  of  programs  in  our  local  community.  We encourage  our  community  members  to  get involved  in  the  spirit  of  Harmony  Week  to  celebrate our  differences,  our  stories  and  our  belonging.

Many  Stories  -­  One  Australia

This  event,  organised  by  Waverley  Council,  City  East  Community  College,  MTC  Work  Solutions and  Echo Neighbourhood  Centre,  is  now  in  its  second  year.

Visit  Mill  Hill  Centre  Courtyard  at  31-­33  Spring  St,  Bondi  Junction  between  10am  and 1pm for a  fun  day  filled  with  music,  dance,  information  stalls,  BBQ  and  displays  from  the  students from  the local  Adult  Migrant  English  Program  and  Language,  Literacy  and  Numeracy  Program. Friends  of Waverley  Library  will  also  be  holding  a  second  hand  book  stall  with  books  in languages  other  than English.

Deliciously  Diverse

Bondi  Junction  celebrates  Harmony  Week  with  26   local  restaurants  and  market  providers offering  a special  lunchtime  meal  deal  for  under  $15  from  Monday  18  March  -­  Friday  22 March.  This  is  a  great opportunity  to  grab  your  work  friends  and  visit  a  Deliciously Diverse restaurants  you  haven’t been  to  before!

Saltwater  People  of  the  Fatal  Shore  -­  Sydney’s  Southern  Beaches

Waverley  Library  will  be  hosting  a  talk  with  John  Ogden,  author  of  Saltwater  People  of the  Fatal  Shore  -­ Sydney’s  Southern  Beaches,  on  Thursday  21  March  at  6pm.  Entry  is  $5 which  includes  a  glass  of  wine and  nibbles.

How  to  Draw  Ghosts

The  Bondi  Pavilion  is  exhibiting  How  to  Draw  Ghosts  by  Damien  Broomhead  between  19  -­  31 March daily  from  10am-­5pm.  This  exhibition  is  the  fourth  installment  in  a  series  of colourful oil  pastel  drawings depicting  scenes  from  the  first  years  of  the  Sydney  colony  and  focusing on  the  interactions  between British  and  the  Indigenous  people  of  the  Sydney  region.

More  information

For  further  information  about  our  Harmony  Week  program,  please  contact  Joanne  Harney  via email  or  phone  9386  7923.


Bondi Autumn Ambience

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Bondi Autumn Ambience at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Who else is loving life in Bondi right now?

As we settle soothingly into Autumn we’re enjoying wonderful weather, warm ocean waters, spectacular sunrises and a return to our regular laidback village vibe.

We continue to welcome lots of visitors to our cafes, restaurants, boutiques and seaside services and the late afternoon ambience down at the beach park and promenade is postcard perfect.

There’s some lovely community events on the Autumn horizon, some great exhibitions and theatre on right now and, shockingly, I guess we can even start thinking about the Bondi Winter Magic Festival 2013 – here’s a little virtual tour of the 2012 ice-rink to get you in the mood (turn off your sound if need be).

Yours in amazing Autumn ambience… x andy

Bondi Over Icebergs at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, pic by Andy SoloBen Buckler Spectacular at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Top 10 Eats Under $10

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Gourmet Slice one of the top 10 eats under $10 in Bondi Beach Sydney

Top 10 Eats Under $10 in Bondi by Jane de Graaff, Broadsheet, 25 Feb 2013

Sure, there’s more to Bondi than the beachfront, but while the days are still hot and the afternoons are still long, we thought we’d make the most out of it and have some lazy lunches on the sand before the weather turns. And from pizza to crispy quail, there’s plenty on offer before or after you hit the waves. Maybe have a fresh salad or perhaps try some touristy snacks with the best views in town. Make it a long, lazy, inexpensive lunch at Bondi Beach with these suggestions, all for under $10.

1. Poached chicken sandwich at Chapter One Coffee & Wine Room – $9.50
With a couple of street-side seats and eclectic décor inside, this little wine den at the south end of the busy Campbell Parade strip is about more than just a great drink. On a sunny day, you’ll find it’s a relaxed haunt for breezy lunches. There’s a couple of offerings on the menu that won’t break the bank, including a prosciutto and bocconcini baguette, but the poached chicken sandwich with tomato, baby spinach and chilli aioli on soy and linseed sourdough is a regular local favourite.

2. A slice of margarita pizza at Gourmet Slice – $5.00
Just behind the showy façade of Campbell Parade, Gould Street is packing some serious food contenders. Enter Gourmet Slice, where pizzas are made in the Italian tradition of thin-crisp bases topped with simple, fresh ingredients. They’re rectangular and slices are hearty – even the margarita, which comprises molten cheese and tomato sugo. Grab some garlic bread and a drink to round out the $10 deal.

3. Wedges of roast vegetable frittata at Earth Food Store – $8.50
Looking for something a little more on the healthy side? Well, Earth Food Store has you covered. There are plenty of delicious and allergy-friendly options on offer and each dish has any potential hazards (nuts, dairy, wheat) listed. The chunky vegetable frittata sure as hell makes for a hearty and vegetable-filled lunch. And you can do your grocery shopping in the beautiful store afterwards.

4. Personal quiche Lorraine at Sonoma – $7.00
They might be known for their extensive selection of freshly baked sourdough breads (the signature Miche included), but the pastry at Sonoma Bakery Cafe is more than a little bit special too. Options change up every so often, but keep an eye out for the delicate little quiche Lorraine – the perfect size for one. Eat in at the slick little cafe fronting the Beach House complex, or get it to go.

5. Crispy quail at Misschu – $9.00
Well known for her rice paper rolls, dumplings and vermicelli salads, you might not be expecting quail on the menu at Misschu. But you’ll find it here nonetheless, listed under summer specials and with instructions to pronounce it ‘kwitpee kwaiw’. At $9 a bird, it’s a bit of a change from the usual, though it’s hard to go past a selection of steamed buns and rice paper rolls.

6. Small daily salad at Jed’s Food Store – $9.50 60 Warners Ave
Tucked into the back streets and a little walk from the mayhem of the beach at North Bondi, Jed’s faithfully serves up relaxed lunches and cold drinks to the locals. With its street-side seating and corner store feel, Jed’s daily salads keep things on the lighter side, without being all lettuce leaves and no substance. Watch out for the brown rice and lentils with roast tomato, green beans and chicken.

7. Bean & cheese burrito at Beach Burrito Company Bondi – $9.95
Back down at the beachfront, Beach Burrito is all about bringing laidback Mexican-style eats to the sands of Bondi. These guys now have a bunch of stores from Cronulla to Newtown, but this is where it all began. So kick back with a bean and cheese burrito as thick as your arm and bursting with black beans and smoky salsa, or grab the chilli con carne tacos (two per serve) and still get change from your $10 note.

8. Chicken, white bean and tarragon pie at Porch Bread & Wine Parlour – $8.00
Sitting neat, proud and just about on the corner of Ramsgate Avenue and Campbell Parade (with a glimpse of North Bondi beach), Porch Bread & Wine Parlour is almost a secret gem. Big windows open to the street and beautiful design makes enjoying a freshly baked pie or the bacon and egg one-hander ($8) a relaxing treat. And you’re just a lazy stroll from the sand when you’re done.

9. Battered fish burger at Surfish Bondi – $8.90
Okay, so it’s a little on the touristy side, but sometimes Bondi is best enjoyed that way. So grab an old-school fish burger with salad and tartare and get ready for a big slab of battered fish. Eat it with both hands and then work it off with a splash in the ocean – right in the heart of Bondi Beach proper.

10. Panini at La Macelleria – $9.90
With 11 different options, all on freshly stone-baked organic buns and made to order so they don’t get soggy, the panini at The Butcher are easily some of the best value in Bondi. Favourites include the hot, freshly carved roast pork with mustard fruits and rocket pesto, prosciutto with provolone and smashed tomato, or corned beef with sauerkraut and gherkins. But there’s also a one-foot sausage roll for $9.90 on offer. You can eat in at the little tables or take it away for later.

And as a bonus…if you’re really looking for a view with your meal, grab a bucket of hot chips ($8) down on the beach at The Bucket List, Bondi Pavilion and enjoy while the sun dips down over the sand.

Image: Margarita at Gourmet Slice, Pic: Alana Dimou

Sculpture by the Sea 2013

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Coastal Elk Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy Solo

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS - Applications for Bondi 2013 open!

Emerging, established and aspiring artists alike are encouraged to submit for pre-selection in the seventeenth annual Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi, to be staged along the coastal walk from Bondi to Tamarama in Sydney, Australia from 24 October – 10 November, 2013.

Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2013 Forms
Bondi 2013 Artist Application and Terms & Conditions Form
Bondi 2013 Artist Entry Form and Map

The curatorial panel for Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2013 is:

- Deborah Edwards, Curator Australian Art, Art Gallery of NSW;
- Geoffrey Edwards, Director, Geelong Gallery and Former Senior Curator Sculpture & Glass, National Gallery of Victoria;
- Dr. Michael Hill, Head of Art History & Theory, National Art School; and
- Julie Lomax, Director Visual Arts, Australia Council for the Arts.

Artist support and subsidies for Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi 2013 will include:

- A minimum artist subsidy of $2,000 for each artist who does not otherwise net over $2,000 in sales, subsidies or prizes from the exhibition;
- We anticipate announcing a major prize;
- 3 Helen Lempriere Scholarships of $30,000 each for Australian artists;
- 3 Clitheroe Foundation Mentorships of $10,000 each for young emerging Australian artists and their mentors;
- Up to $20,000 of subsidies for artists of ephemeral and site specific sculptures that by their nature are unlikely to be sold including the Art Gallery Society of NSW Site Specific Subsidy for an emerging sculptor;
- We anticipate offering an Environmental Sculpture subsidy of $5,000 for works that utilise wind, water, solar power or other aspects of the environment;
- Allens People’s Choice Prize of $5,000;
- The Andrea Stretton Memorial Invitation of $5,000 to exhibit in Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe 2014 in Perth, Western Australia;
- For Tasmanian artists: The Dick Bett Memorial Invitation of $5,000 towards freight, materials, accommodation and airfare;
- Sculpture Inside Curators Prize of $2,500 for a work in our concurrently held indoor exhibition;
- Return economy class airfares to Sydney for up to 7 overseas artists;
- Return economy class airfares to Sydney for up to 7 interstate artists; and
- Material Sponsorship of plasma or oxycut steel and scrap steel for selected artists to be used in the sculptures exhibited.

Head here for further information. 

BCYF April 2013

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Bondi Creative Youth Fair April 2013 Bondi Beach Markets by WAYS

The upcoming BCYF will be held in conjunction with Youth Week 2013 and aims to give young people a chance to actively participate in the running of their own arts and craft stalls in the established grounds of Bondi Farmers Markets at Bondi Beach Public School.

If you’re 9-21 years of age and interested in being involved in the Bondi Creative Youth Fair on Sat 6 April, call WAYS on 9365 2500 or head to their Facebook page for more.


Bondi Body, Mind & Soul

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Bondi Mind Body Spirit yogi sun salute at Bondi Beach Sydney

Despite being famous for it’s laidback lifestyle, Bondi can sometimes be exhausting.

Shopping, eating out, openair cinemas, theatre, exhibitions, events, fun with friends, crowds, media hype and a constant buzz of activity.

If you need a break from this world teeming with temptation, Bondi offers many options to peace out and nurture you mind, body and soul…

Wonderful walks

Peaceful parks

Quiet galleries

Saintly solitude

Perfect pampering

Yoga, pilates & meditation

You can also enter our competition to win a new book, Kundalini Meditation, by lovely local Kathryn McCusker if  you need some guidance on a ‘path to personal transformation and creativity’ (trust me, the book is beautiful)!

Yours in Bondi balance… x andy

Bondi Soul Surfer at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy SoloBondi Meditation, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Win Kundalini Meditation

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Win 1 of 5 meditation books by award-winning Australian opera soprano Kathryn McCusker…

Kundalini Meditation is a practical guide to awakening powerful and transforming energy through chakra-focused meditations, mantras, breathing and yoga poses.

Perfecting her practice with clients including Bjork and Rachel McAdams, author Kathryn McCusker shows you how to easily integrate Kundalini into your busy life by channelling creativity, increasing intuition and awakening your full potential.

And if you live in the area, you can put it into practice with like-minded people by visiting Kathryn’s KMYOGA Space offering Kundalini Yoga, classes, workshops, retreats and more.

Kundalini Meditation BookTo win one of FIVE Kundalini Meditation books…

1. Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love a Kundalini Meditation book”.

3. Like the Kundalini Meditation KMYOGA Facebook page for extra brownie points!

The winner will be drawn Monday 11 March. Best of luck!

ps…congrats to Kristie & Olivia who won the Topheads sunnies and Boheme Art + Design satchel!


Review: Bondi Markets

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Review on the Bondi Markets by Jana Hocking

Why Bondi Markets Rock My World! By Jana Hocking

There is nothing nicer than waking up fresh on a Sunday with no hangover in sight and feeling like the world is your oyster! This doesn’t happen to often so when it does I like to make the most of it!

Being a Bondi local, one of my absolute favourite things to do on a day such as this is make my way down to Bondi markets for a potter around.

Now I hear what you’re thinking.. What makes Bondi Markets better than any other markets?? Well I’m glad you asked dear readers!

I have put together a list to outline exactly that!

1. They sell sausage sizzles, and who doesn’t like a sausage sizzle??

2. You can buy a bunch of fresh flowers for under $10, If you currently single like myself this is a fab way to spoil yourself! You can even pretend your on a date… with yourself! Is that tragic?? Whatevzzzz!

Bondi Markets Flowers

3. It has fabulous hand-made jewellery unlike anything you may come across in large department stores.

4. They are super strict with which new designers they let sell their goods at these markets, so you’re bound to buy the next up-and-comers wears for a bargain price! It has been the launch pad for designers such as Ksubi and Lover.

Bondi Markets Ksubi

5. It is a great place for people spotting. These markets bring along the most eclectic bunch of peeps. There are your tourists, locals, hipsters, celebrities and everything in between.

6. Dogs are welcome! I don’t have a dog, but if I did I would totes bring it along!


7. Bored with giving your friends the same old dud presents? Here you can buy unique one-off pieces such as hand-made bags, artwork, candles, jewellery and gorgeous pop-up cards that will make your present stand out from the rest. Go you!

8. You can deck your whole house out in Bondi Markets trinkets. They sell retro furniture, gorgeous artworks and there’s even a wide selection of mirrors and frames. Ain’t nobody want a house reflecting an ikea catalogue!

Bondi MarketsOpening Days

Every Sunday

Opening Times

10am to 4pm


Bondi Beach Public School, Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach

Phone: 02 9315 7011


Read more from our beach-dwelling, cocktail-sipping, market-loving reporter Jana Hocking at

Reviewer Jana Hocking at Bondi Beach

Bondi’s new look

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Pacific Bondi development - artist's impression

Bondi’s new look is making waves, Susan Wellings, The Age, 28 Feb 2013

Film producer and actor Rebel Penfold-Russell bought her first three-bedroom apartment at Bondi Beach when she was studying at NIDA in the 1970s for $52,000. Today, she’s selling six for more than $5.5 million each.

Prices have been rising steadily at Sydney’s iconic beach for years but today they’ve hit dizzying highs.

At the coming Pacific development – the $440 million-plus transformation of the old Swiss Grand Hotel – a super-penthouse now being designed from the amalgamation of two oversized apartments is expected to be sold off the plan for about $25 million.

Further south on Campbell Parade, James Packer’s beachfront house – with its four bedrooms, study, six bathrooms and garaging for eight cars – is quietly on sale for about $22 million, while a price is yet to be set for the penthouse atop a new building nearby, Boheme, which is nearing completion.

Meanwhile, Penfold-Russell’s latest development, Coast, on the Ben Buckler headland, has just been finished, with its six three-bedroom-plus apartments now on the market for a price that’s risen more than a hundredfold from what she paid for her first.

”Bondi’s buildings all used to be salt-encrusted, rundown old buildings with broken wiring and concrete cancer, with very few good restaurants around,” Penfold-Russell says. ”But it’s smartening up, not in a pompous exclusive way, but it now has a lot more good property, great retail and fabulous restaurants.”

Much of the credit for that has to be laid at the doorway of the Pacific, the development of 95 apartments, a hotel of 69 apartments and a two-level retail and restaurant complex by Allen Linz and Eduard Litver’s Rebel Property Group, says the chairman of CBRE Residential, Justin Brown.

”The first weekend, we launched 76 apartments, and 74 sold immediately,” he says. ”Then we sold nine of the lighthouses for up to $10.5 million, which equates to $45,000 a square metre.

”I think it was Sydney’s most successful project last year in terms of sales and prices achieved, which has given that area a high level of confidence. People now believe in it. Pacific has created a new environment.”

McGrath agent Andrew Livingston, who’s selling Packer’s pad, agrees. ”It started a few years ago with Cadigal, on the site of the old Diggers’ club, selling for $44,000 a square metre, but now with Pacific, it’s surprising how many people have come out and are deciding to live in the area. It has kicked it on,” Livingston says.

It helps that Bondi has so much going for it.

Fabrizio Perilli, the executive general manager (development and construction) at Toga Group, which is building Boheme, says: ”Bondi Beach is a national icon, people come from around the world to see it and it just had to lift the bar a little bit from where it was. Now it’s reaching national and international standards as far as development goes.”

Architect Nick Tobias is involved in several new projects at the beach, including houses on the sites of old apartment blocks, and amalgamating units to create larger and more luxurious homes.

”I think the new development is a reflection of the realisation of how good Bondi is,” he says.

What’s happening in Bondi

The architect

”People have realised how extraordinary Bondi’s geography is, and being able to live there so close to where you work, too,” Nick Tobias says. ”There’s an organic evolution that’s happening there now.”

The politician

”Property is becoming a lot more valuable, and it is a worry how unaffordable it is,” says Malcolm Turnbull, who’s delighting in the $5.6 million upgrade of the North Bondi Surf Club. ”I’d love to see light rail there now.”

The developer

”There’s a rejuvenation of Bondi going on,” says Pacific developer Eduard Litver. ”People from the eastern suburbs used to come to visit and train here, but now they’re saying they’d like to live here, too.”

The resident

”Bondi is so vibrant and vital, it’s exuberant with a youthful feel, it’s magnificent,” says Rebel Penfold-Russell. ”There’s everything you want to eat there as well as drink, and there’s great retail in lovely little enclaves.”

‘The whole area is really changing. You can feel in it.’

The moment Alex Sorokin saw Pacific Bondi Beach advertised, he fell in love with it.

”I thought: What a great position, right on the beach!” he says. ”When I started reading about it, and seeing it had three international designers involved, I knew it was going to be a special development.”

His daughter, an international real estate expert based in London, even flew over to inspect the plans and the site, and gave her dad her blessing.

”She was really impressed,” he says. ”She also loved the large living areas, the huge outdoor balconies and the provision of a concierge and the lifestyle element. She’s selling the most prime real estate in England, so she has a very good eye.”

Sorokin, 60, a property investor now living in Avalon, plans to move into the two-bedroom apartment with his wife, Tania, 57, and the youngest of their four children, Alex jnr, 13, as soon as they’re able.

He’s always loved Bondi Beach and even though he spends much of his time on the northern beaches and at Manly, he’s looking forward to being in the middle of all the restaurants and cafes of the eastern suburbs.

”The whole area there is really changing,” he says. ”You can feel it. It’s getting much cleaner and smarter.”

Two-bedroom apartments at the Pacific started at $1.1 million. There are still two-beds-plus-study from $2.7 million.



Bowl-a-Rama Wrap

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Bowl-r-Rama at Bondi Beach Sydney

Is it just me or does this event just get more and more kick arse every year?

Bowl-a-Rama was perfect in every way… with warm weather, a light cloud cover, cooling breezes, cranking talent, great merch and a brilliant vibe only Bondi Beach can provide. Here’s a little insta-pictorial memorial of what went down (and up) at the bowl…

Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by Michael Armstrong Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by Lara Bingle Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by WeAreNotObscene
Pedro Barros                           Look up!                                  Bowl-a-Rama
@mjaphotos                           @mslbingle (Lara Bingle)        @wearenotobscene (zine)

Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by Bowl-a-Rama Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by Poppy Olsen Bowl-a-Rama instagram pic by Andy Solo
Hi Alex (Sorgente)                   Awesome Day                         Bowl-a-Rama at its Best
@bowl_a_rama                       @poppystarr (legendess)       @andysolo (yes me)


Bondi Mates…

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Bondi Rescue Lifeguard Mates Maxi and Gonz, Bondi Beach, Sydney, NSW

Things have felt beautifully blokey this week in Bondi.

We’ve had a stack of hunky Bowl-a-Rama skate pros around town. The worthy surf has pulled a swell of men from near and far. And who else totally can’t wait for the leggy lads to arrive for the Dainty Dune Dash at the Drag Races this Friday?

But above all, I’d like to tip my hat to two of our finest local lads, Maxi and Gonzo (above, as if you didn’t know), who are taking part in the awesome Mate V Mate challenge at the upcoming Top Gear Festival Sydney.

Maxi and Gonzo will take each other on as part of Cancer Council’s new initiative to fight cancer in men. They share their reasons for getting behind Mate V Mate (and spill the beans on who got a post-rescue rose on Valentine’s day). Read more…

Yours in Bondi buddydom… x andy

Bondi Rescue Lifeguard Gonzo with car from the Top Gear Festival SydneyMate V Mate Cancer Council NSW

Images courtesy of the Cancer Council NSW.


Win a Satchel or Sunnies!

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Topheads Boheme Giveaway competition for atbondi at Bondi Beach Sydney

Win one of two ‘Summer Send Off’ prizes – a sumptuous Satchel or stunning Sunnies

Yep, Summer’s ending so to help keep your chins up, we’ve got together two of Bondi’s best home-grown products to win.

Topheads Eyewear is synonymous with innovation, creativity and beach style. Using contemporary, eco-friendly materials and incorporating retro designs, every product is handcrafted out of bamboo with no two pairs the same. They’re generously offering a stunning pair of shades from the Bondi Bamboo range.

Boheme Art + Design, one of our favourite stalls at the Bondi Markets, offers gorgeous, unique, hand-crafted products to compliment the laidback Bondi lifestyle. Strong, stylish and quality guaranteed, you can win one of their timeless leather portrait satchels (as featured above).

Entry is easy but some extra effort may see you smiling your way out of summer:


You have to:

1. Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love a summer satchel or sunnies”.

3. Tell me if you’ve gone that extra mile with any of the actions below…


Gain an extra entry for each additional action:

1. Like the Topheads Eyewear Facebook page

2. Like the Boheme Art + Design Facebook page

3. Post your favourite summer pic on either/both pages

4. Share either/both pages (with your pic post) with your friends


The winner will be drawn Monday 4 March (aka Autumn). Best of luck!

ps…congrats to the winners – Aaron, Bianca, David, Geraldine, Jessica, Katie, Leila, Melissa, Rebecca and Ying – who won the $10 vouchers to spend at The Travel Café in Bondi!


Interview: Maxi & Gonzo

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Bondi Rescue Maxi Gonzo Mate V Mate at Bondi Beach for the Cancer Council NSW

Mate v Mate : Trent ‘Maxi’ Maxwell vs Troy ‘Gonzo’ Quinlan, by Cathy Stapleton, 26 Feb 2013

Try as you might, it’s hard to get a local to leave the ‘Bondi bubble’. When they do occasionally venture beyond familiar territory, you can be pretty sure there’s a good reason behind it.

Like fish out of water, Bondi Rescue boys ‘Maxi’ & ‘Gonzo’ will brave the trek out to Sydney Motorsport Park to take each other on in the Top Gear Festival Sydney MyPlates Star In a Reasonably Priced Car challenge (March 9 & 10).

Apart from living out every bloke’s dream to hang out with the Top Gear crew and tear around the race track at top speed, these guys do have an admirable reason (ahem…or a good excuse?!) for getting behind the wheel.

‘Maxi’ and ‘Gonzo’ will take each other on as part of Cancer Council’s new initiative to fight cancer in men.  Here they share their reason for getting behind ‘Mate v Mate’ (and share who got a post-recue rose on Valentine’s day…) Read more…

What is Mate v Mate about?

G : “Mate v Mate is to raise awareness about cancer in men. 1 in 2 Aussie men will now be diagnosed with cancer – and that’s too many. So we’ve got to do something about it!”

M : “If you think about it, that means it could be your or your mate and none of us want to see our mates go through something like cancer, so we’re hoping we can get more blokes to think about their health.”

You guys have been mates a while, did you meet on the job?

G : “We’ve both been lifeguarding together for quite a few years now with the rest of the boys but we met racing at the surfclub a few years before Maxi started.”

Is being mates an important part of the job?

M : “Obviously the job comes first, but it helps to know someone’s got your back. So you could definitely say it’s an important part of the job”.

About 5,000 rescues are carried out over the summer period each year in Bondi – that’s a lot of rescues! Have you guys done many rescues together?

G : “I remember a pretty close call once when we were in the tower and saw these two people going under”

M :  “Troy sped over in the rhino and I grabbed the board and raced out and just got ‘em in time. I’ll never forget the guy looking at me and saying ‘thank you for saving my life, I was gone’. That’s one of the reasons why I love this job”.

G : “Yeah people are generally pretty grateful and it’s a good feeling to help people.”

M : “Like when you got given a rose after your rescue on Valentine’s Day?”

G : “Ha ha yeah… I guess so. That was pretty cool.”

What would you say is your biggest motivation for getting involved with Mate v Mate and Cancer Council?

M : “My grandpa passed away last year to melanoma so I think it’s really important to remind people that they need to go and get checked.”

G : “My grandparents also both had cancer – one had melanoma and the other had prostate. My dad has also had melanoma and was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer so that was a pretty big motivation for me. It could happen to anyone.”

Who do you reckon will win the Top Gear challenge?

G : “Maxi’s pretty sure of himself but you never know!”

M : “Ha ha Gonz, you just keep telling yourself that mate. I’m gonna win and you know it.”

G : “Nah mate, we all know I’m going to win.”

If there was one message you could send about cancer in men what would it be?

M : “Just go and get a check up. It doesn’t’ take much time and could save your life”

G : “Don’t ignore something thinking it will go away – speak up and get it checked out!.”

M : “And we want to see heaps of Bondi locals doing their own challenges down on the beach too!”


Competition In Men: It’s a fact of life.

Competition is inherent in men. They challenge each other all the time – it’s part of their very nature.

With 52% of men considering themselves leaders within their group of mates and 26% believing they are ‘top dog’ it’s apparent that they can’t all be right. This inevitably leads to competition.

Here’s the lowdown:

- 60%  of guys believe that they are smarter than most of their mates
- 40% think they are stronger
- 40% think they are better at sports
- 38% think they are faster

Some of the most popular male challenges are:

- point scoring on kicking a ball (31%)
- backyard cricket (27%)
- swimming (18%)

- doing push ups (17%)
- competing over a girl (13%)
- fixing stuff (13%)
- bulking up (8%)

**Statistics provided by Lonergan Research

Mate v Mate kicks off on March 16 – March 24

Register a challenge with your mate and get your friends, family, colleagues to back you!

For more info on Top Gear Festival Sydney, visit


Review: Beach Burrito

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Review of Beach Burrito Co at Bondi Beach Sydney, by Jana Hocking

Ten reasons why I love Beach Burrito Company! By Jana Hocking

1. The location. BB sits opposite the iconic Bondi Beach AND the outdoor work-out area. Who doesn’t enjoy chowing down into a delicious burrito while watching the scenery. I’ll take my 6-pack abs ‘to go’!

2. The layout. It feels like you’ve stepped into a mix of California’s dog town (circa 1970’s) and Mexico’s Tijuana. There are skateboards hanging from the walls, communal wooden tables, Mexican wall prints, funky coloured chairs and fun hip hop and reggae beats.

3. The variety. You will be hard-pressed trying to decide what to order on the extensive menu. They do everything from nachos, burritos, tacos and Quesadillas. Cheesy, cheesy goodness!

4. The meals are huge! You would be struggling to finish a whole burrito by yourself. They aren’t shy in filling you up!

5. Frozen margaritas. On a hot summers day you couldn’t ask for more!

6. Cheap and cheerful. With happy hipsters on the cash register and giant burritos for under $15 you can’t go wrong.

7. Walking distance from the beach. Who doesn’t enjoy an ice-cold corona after an epic sunbaking session!

8. You can break out all those fun Mexican words you’ve been dying to say for ages. ‘What’s up hombre’? ‘Take it easy essay’, and ‘you feeling loco?’

9. It’s always packed, but with communal tables you can always find a seat and they’ve now branched out to Coogee, Newtown and Cronulla.

10. Anything that comes with a side of guacamole, sour cream and hot sauce is fine by me! The perfect hangover feast!

Read more from our beach-dwelling, cocktail-sipping, burrito-loving reporter Jana Hocking at

Reviewer Jana Hocking at Bondi Beach

Bondi Up and Away!

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Bondi Up and Away at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Has anybody found this year a little slower to get going than usual?

Don’t get me wrong; I’m busy working away, jogging at the crack of dawn, eating well, out and about, and all the usual stuff. But all this only got into full swing recently (like, yesterday).

So, heading towards Autumn and with a whole, long, fresh year ahead, I’m feeling like booking in a holiday already. Does anybody else do that?

Whether it’s a short road trip, an interstate jaunt or an international extravaganza, I like to have at least something penciled in down the track to give my suitcase a sense of purpose.

I know its ridiculous wanting to leave our beachside paradise for greener pastures but everybody needs a break from there normal routine, no matter how fabulous it is.

So imagine my joy when I discovered a new concept store in Bondi – the Travel Café – with gorgeous furnishings, fine coffee, delicious snacks and everything you need to research and book a holiday!

Head here to win one of 10 Travel Café dining vouchers or head to any of the following local services to sort your travel:


The Travel Cafe, 163 Glenayr Ave

02 9130 1345,


Flight Centre Bondi Beach, 17 Hall St

02 8374 8588,


Gullivers Travel, 139 Curlewis Street

02 9130 3192


Peter Pans Travel, 110 Campbell Parade

02 9365 0790,


Yours, up, up and away… x andy


Win at the Travel Cafe!

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  Travel Cafe at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Win one of TEN vouchers to spend at the Travel Cafe!

The Travel Café is all about changing the environment in which we book holidays. Set in a gorgeous, bright and spacious café setting, expect coffee and snacks, travel magazines and books, plus iPads and consultants should you feel inspired to explore the globe.

Thanks to the team at the Travel Café, you can try their fabulous food for free by winning one of TEN $10 café vouchers. Proud to be keeping prices low and quality high, $10 will get you…

- a coffee + toast meal for 2 people

- a coffee + delish egg/bacon roll

- a coffee + healthy avocado on toast

- a freshly made roll/bagel + drink or

- a range of delicious snacks

Sorry this competition is now closed! 

Entry is easy…

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love to try the Travel Café!”.

3. Like the Travel Café Facebook page for extra brownie points!


The winner will be drawn Monday 25 February. Best of luck!

ps…congrats to Jade who won the $150 voucher to spend at So Gorgeous!


Shop Talk Feb 2013

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Bondi Boheme and Adina Apartment Hotel at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy SoloHome Pics Bondi at Bondi Beach, Sydney NSW Australia, Andy Solo

Bondi Shop Talk – February 2013

Its been a while since I’ve written a Bondi business update but that doesn’t mean things haven’t changed around the traps!

- As you can see above, the Toga Group’s Boheme/Adina development is looking mightily similar to the architectural drawings posted not too long ago. I’m guessing they’re on track for a June 2013 opening.

- On a sadder note, my local fave video store, Home Pics, is closing down at the end of the month. They’ve clearly channelled all their love and creativity into their farewell sign – go check it out at 104 Glenayr Ave and pick up a cheap movie library while you’re at it – they’re clearing out all their stock before they go!

- The Travel Café has opened on Glenayr Ave – kick back with a latte while booking London

- Bondi Rumba at 139 Glenayr Ave quickly morphed recently from Room 139. Looks great.

- Greens Café is changing colour with rumour Brown Sugar is opening up there

- Namaste Indian restaurant has opened  at 80 Hall St – keen to check it out, looks delish

-  Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream shop has well and truly settled in on Campbell Parade

-  Sparrow Café tucked away at 45 Gould St is For Lease and seems closed for good

Bondi Princess off Gould St has  closed up shop on account of family and traveling

Sydney Professional Nails are in prime possie on Hall St for  your nail and beauty needs

- Hullubullu Kids Clothing is stripped bare and ready to be leased on Gould St

- The Porch Bread & Wine Parlour has opened at  Ramsgate Ave – all cosy & rustic

- Looks like Afends on Gould St has been rebranded at The Bondi General Store

I’m pretty sure there’s a LOT more changes I haven’t covered. If you have any updates, please shoot them through to me at


Bondi Valentine

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Stick Surf Love street art at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Ah, love is in the air…

Or is it?

I’m apparently spending my night at a compulsory school info evening. Totes romantic.

I read from some statistician that the dollar amount spent on our Valentines has officially surpassed the combined perceived total value of our love. He’s clearly not bitter at all.

For those of us lucky enough to have a gorgeous Valentine, I say celebrate. There’s a lot of sadness, loneliness and challenges in the world and research (by a much more upbeat fella) says the energy created from focused positive vibes can have a very real impact on healing, wellbeing and outcomes.

Bet let’s perhaps focus on more meaningful pursuits instead of money. Make a card, take a romantic stroll on the beach, have a dusk picnic in a park, get the kids to do a show on the topic of love if you can’t go out. And if you go out don’t make is stressful. Cheap Thai, a bottle of BYO and a movie (perhaps Silver Linings Playbook instead of Zero Dark Thirty) can be just as enjoyable than spending $300 in a fancy restaurant. Do whatever makes the two of you happy and connected – not what the media has sold as the perfect evening.

Having said that, there’s some pretty great deals in Bondi for a romantic dinner:

The Bucket List – All-day Aphrodisiac Share Platters + Drinks

The Rum Diaries – 4 courses $60 p/p

Chapter One – 4 courses + matching wines $99 p/p

Ravesi’s – 3 courses + flute of Chandon $70 p/p

Brown Sugar – 3 courses + matching wines $80

And we’re lucky enough to have one of the most gorgeous florists in Sydney. Head here.

There’s also some great gift shops in town or, better still, head here for your chance to win a $150 voucher to spend on your Valentine (or, hey, yourself).

And if you’re cynical or single, why not join like-minded folk at an Anti-Valentines Dinner.

And here’s a very funny love letter from local lass, Jana Hocking, to her sweetheart, Bondi…

Dearest Bondi,

Yes, it’s me. I know we had our ‘break’ but I am back and ready for your embrace once again. It has taken some effort, and let’s face it, a pay rise, to return to your shores, but this time I know it is for good. Read more…

Yours, lucky in love… x andy

Peachy Couple strolling along the sand at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloI Heart 2026 stencil by Bondi Beach street artist 2026 at Sydney

Win So Gorgeous!

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So Gorgeous gift shop on Hall St in Bondi Beach, Sydney

Win a $150 voucher to spend at So Gorgeous!

Proudly established for over 10 years in Bondi, So Gorgeous sparkles like a box full of treasures. This stunning shop offers jewellery, eclectic homewares, decorations, furniture, lighting and unique gifts.

Thanks to owner Rebecca being ‘so gorgeous’, this week one lucky reader will win a $150 voucher to spend in store.

Entry is easy…

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love a spending spree at So Gorgeous!”.

The winner will be drawn Monday 18 February. Best of luck!

ps…congrats to Sophie and Sayah who won the $50 vouchers to Sushi St!


Dearest Bondi…

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I Heart Bondi, graffiti, street art, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

A Letter to My Love…

Dearest Bondi,

Yes, it’s me. I know we had our ‘break’ but I am back and ready for your embrace once again. It has taken some effort, and let’s face it, a pay rise, to return to your shores, but this time I know it is for good.

Oh how I’ve missed our regular coffee outings to Gertrude and Alice café, where we have rummaged through dusty old books until we found a treasure. I’ve pined for our long strolls through Bondi markets, picking up the odd wall print and flowers for my room.

I’ve missed our old trivia nights at North Bondi RSL and our Miss Chu rice paper rolls . You really knew how to wine and dine me.

I’m willing to overlook that you are seeing other people, even those pesky tourists who you know annoy me. I now know that they come part and parcel with you. Hey, everyone has their baggage!

I enjoy your outlook, particularly from the Swiss Grand rooftop, or sharing a comfy chair with you at the Bucket List. Whether it’s the shared Corona on a hot summers day, or a tasty frozen yoghurt on Hall St, you cater to my needs!

Yes you have made me fight for you, particularly when looking for somewhere to park my beach towel on a hot summers day or looking for a car spot when I’m too lazy to walk, but yes I concede I shouldn’t be so lazy. Walking is good for me. See you really do have my best interests at heart.

I love that you cater to my wandering eye. Those Bondi hipsters sure do pull at my heart strings. Whether hanging out at Beach Burrito or selling their goods at random front-lawn sales throughout the area, I never lack for eye candy. Yes, they choose to wear beanies on hot summer days, and they often look slightly homeless and dishevelled, but hey, the heart wants, what the heart wants.

No, you don’t come cheap but with your luscious grassy knoll, heart racing bondi to bronte walking track and frangipani lined streets you know the way to a girls heart.

I admit, that there will be the odd occasion where I have a discreet dalliance with a neighbouring suburb, like Surry Hills for the odd Messina’s Gelato, or Double Bay for a quick espresso Martini, but all in all, you are the one for me.

You’ve stolen my heart dear Bondi, and I look forward to us growing old together!

Big kisses!

Jana x

Jana Hocking is a local writer, totally in love with Bondi… 


Made with Love in Bondi

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Our Big Kitchen Smiles, cooking with love for the homeless at Bondi, Sydney

When good friends of mine said they were going to have a function at the place they met to host their combined Hens/Bucks party, I had visions of tacky tiara’s, too much alcohol and too little clothing at an eastern suburbs pub. In my experience, nights like this always end up ugly (on so many levels).

But no, they were having their party at Our Big Kitchen in Bondi.

If you haven’t heard of it, not-for-profit Our Big Kitchen is a community kitchen that cooks meals for those in need. Suddenly getting stonkered at the Beach Road sounded like way more fun.

But yesterday I spent some of the best few hours I’ve had in ages. About 40 of us donned aprons and nervous smiles and set to work cooking hundreds of delicious, nutritious meals for homeless men at Matthew Talbot Hostel.

There was laughter, bonding, empowering productivity and so many feel-good vibes I thought we were going to spontaneously bust out into a heartfelt rendition of What a Wonderful World.

We were there for the upcoming nuptials of two beautiful people and while I was busy labelling the food “Made with Love at Our Big Kitchen’ I was taken with how true that really was.

I enjoyed the morning so much I’m compelled to highly recommend you head there for yourselves for the perfect kids birthday party, corporate team building, school community program or any other function you can dream up.

Because bonding over a salad bowl is sometimes better than bending over a porcelain bowl.

Yours in warm n fuzzy foodie feelings… x andy

Bonding with friends and family at Our Big Kitchen in Bondi SydneyMeals made with love at Our Big Kitchen charity in Bondi Sydney


Win Sushi St!

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Sushi St Bondi cafe restaurant wine bar on Hall St, Bondi Beach, Sydney

Win one of two $50 vouchers to Sushi St!

Up on Hall Street near the growing foodie hub at Five Ways intersection, Sushi St is a slick little sushi cum wine bar serving up the freshest of seafood fare, handpicked from the fish markets daily.

You can grab a stool at the striking samurai-street-art sushi train or order a la carte from a sumptuous menu of fab Japanese food and select sake, beer and wines.

Thanks to the generous guys at Sushi St, this week TWO readers will win a $50 voucher to spend on lunch or dinner (fresh oysters for Valentine’s Day perhaps?).

Entry is easy…

This competition is now closed sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love some Sushi St!”.

3. Like Sushi St on Facebook for bonus brownie points!

The winner will be drawn Monday 11 February. Best of luck!


Bondi Kids Away!

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School Time, Sydney, NSW, Australia, by andy solo

I love spending time with kids. Really I do. But how good is school?

Who else has been excitedly unpacking uniforms, sewing labels, shopping for lunchbox-friendly food and buying new stationery (and ALL this just late yesterday afternoon) because school started TODAY?!

For those of you without children (or even if you do), head here to see how you can win a double pass to Bondi Openair Cinemas.

For those with whippersnappers, here’s a stack of great local options outside of school hours (or before they start) to get your kids engaged, fit, happy, healthy (and, let’s face it, entertained by someone else too!).


Martial Arts

Capoeira for Kids & Toddlers,

Kyokushin Karate,

ROOTS Brazilian Jiu Jitsu,

Shinbukan Ninjitsu & Karate,

Shotokan Karate,

Sydney Aikido,

Tae Kwon Do,


Art, Music & Dance

Action Atelier Theatre

Art ‘N’ Move,

Baby Ballet Academy, Bondi Pavilion

Big Steps Little Feet,

Bondi Dance Co,

Bondi Wave Music Course  Bondi Pavilion

Einsteinz Music,


Dein Perry’s Tap Pups,

Tango Chicos,


Sport & Fitness

Let’s Go Surfing,

Bondi Icebergs,

Bondi Standup Paddleboard,

Nipper Intensive Training,


Yours in cool kiddie capers…

x andy


Win Bondi Openair!

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Win double pass tickets to Bondi Openair Cinema for community film night presented by Take 3 for Ocean Love at Bondi Beach

Win a double pass to Bondi Openair

Ben & Jerry’s Openair Cinemas are a quintessential Bondi Summer event, with fabulous feature films, tasty food, frosty beverages and live music on the ‘lawn of life’, overlooking Australia’s most iconic beach.

On Wednesday 6 Feb (well after the warm sun returns to our seaside village), non-profit organisation Take 3 are presenting an inspirational Bondi community night celebrating our love of the ocean.

An intimate evening of special guests and live music from former Beautiful Girls frontman Mat McHugh & The Seperista Soundsystem, the program features two fabulous films about surfing: the award-winning Minds in the Water (featuring Hayden Panattiere & Isabel Lucas) and Here & Now (Shot in one day with 25+ filmmakers and surfers working in unison).

Thanks to our fine friends at Ben & Jerry’s Openair Cinemas one lucky reader will win a double pass to this wonderful community event. To enter:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love some Bondi Openair tix”.

The winner will be drawn Monday 4 February. Best of luck!

ps…congrats to Felicity Kendall who won the fabulous Bondi Vixen Fitness Pack!


Bondi Four-legged Friends

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Walking a happy dog along the promenade at Bondi Beach, Sydney

One of the wackiest ways to spend your time in Tokyo is in a cat café (trust me).

Yep. Due to the high number of apartment dwellers and their penchant for cute fluffy things, Tokyoites spend big bikkies for the privilege of lounging in a room with 10 or so cats.

So this week I’d like to pay respects to the cats and dogs of Bondi Beach. I’m so grateful you can prance along the promenade in the fresh ocean air in our gorgeous seaside suburb instead of being couped up in a kooky city café.

If you lack feline or canine company like me, I hope you enjoy these pics of our local leggy set. And if you’re lucky enough to own a furry friend, here’s where to get your local supplies and services…

Bondi Veterinary Hospital

Bondi Junction Veterinary Hospital

Bowhouse Bondi

The Dandy Dog

Yours in prancing pooches… x andy

(perhaps the pooch in the papoose below isn’t the prancing type?)

Beach Pooch poodle dog at Bondi Beach, Sydney, NSW pic by Andy SoloBondi Fetch dogs running at the park in Bondi Beach NSWMan and his dog playing soccer down at Bondi Beach, SydneyHappy Cat sitting in the sun on a window sill at Bondi BeachDainty Dog puppy sitting happily at a cafe at Bondi Beach SydneyPapoose Pooch dog in a carrier at Bondi Beach

Win Bondi Vixen!

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Bondi Vixen giveaway competition for a fitness pack at Bondi Beach

Win a fantastic Bondi Vixen Fitness Pack worth $300 for you and a friend!

To help you along your way to a fit & fabulous 2013, local fitness legend Bondi Vixen is offering a lucky reader:

- 2 weeks of unlimited classes

- a Bondi Vixen cap

- a Bondi Vixen tote bag

And the best bit? You get ALL that for a friend as well!

The total package per person is worth over $150 and includes as many classes as the 2 of you can handle in 2 weeks, including X Fit, Boxercise, Power Pilates and Soft Sand Slaughter – joining either the Bondi Vixen or Mama Moves sessions down at Bondi Beach.

Bondi Vixen specializes in strong and effective beach workouts, focusing on all the essential body parts to create bikini bodies for women wanting to look hot and feel great!

Entry is easy…  This comp has now closed sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love to train with Bondi Vixen!”.

The winner will be drawn Monday 28 January. Best of luck!

Oh, and as if that wasn’t generous enough, head to the Bondi Vixen Facebook page to check out her offer for an Australian-wide $1000 holiday accommodation voucher for everybody who signs up for her Bikini Body Challenge before 2 Feb 2013. Brilliant.


Bondi Reflections

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Bondi Reflection graffiti, street art, at bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

I know many of you are well and truly back in the rhythm of life but I’ve taken a little more time than usual to kick things off this year. In fact I’m only up to reflecting on 2012 (I’m blaming it on the laidback Bondi Beach lifestyle).

So as we gear up for another great year, I hope you enjoy some of my favourite photo moments from our wonderful, colourful, diverse little village.

Yours in happy reflection… x andy

ps… head here to see how you can win one of the photos framed.

Deco Delight art deco building at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloBondi Skate Park at Dusk with a lone skateboarder in Sydney NSWPink at the Park, girl looking at the view at bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloBondi Winter Walks around the town, promenade and coast cliffs to Bronte including guided tours in SydneyBondi Rock Face rugged cliffs at Bondi Beach Sydney NSWBondi Poppy, skater girl at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloWild Waves, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloLong Blonde surfer chick at bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloBondi Kids, girl on scooter, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloBondi Good Times people having fun at events at Bondi Beach Sydney pic by Andy SoloThe Grab, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloSplash Shallows, bondi beach, bondi, beach, gallery, black, white, monochrome, photo, picture, image, sydney, nsw, AustraliaDad and son surfing in the waves at dusk at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Win Bondi Photo Art!

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Bondi Salt & Smoke, photographic exhibition at Bondi Pavilion, Sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Win Bondi Beach artwork worth $195

To set the tone right for a wonderful new year, one reader will have the chance to decorate their home or office with a Bondi artwork finished in a contemporary white wooden frame.

The image can be chosen from any of the images shown on the blog here. Entry is easy…

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love some Bondi photo art…”.

The winner will be drawn Monday 21 January (open to Sydney residents only sorry).

Best of luck!

Congrats to Augusta Goldsmith who won the awesome Topheads Sunnies. Jealous…

* Note: image above is of the stunning Salt and Smoke exhibition by Simon Davidson.


Sizzling Summer

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Hot summer sunrise sun at the ocean shore at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

After a couple of summers with lacklustre performances from the sun, this year is shaping up to be an absolute corker.

I’m pretty sure everybody is aware its hot today but is this usual for a Bondi Summer? Are we breaking any records? Do we start getting a little more concerned about global warming now?

Here are a few little meteorological morsels…

The highest Sydney temperature ever recorded was 45.3 °C (113.5 °F) on 14 January 1939 at the end of a four-day heatwave across Australia. Ouch.

The BOM also reported that 2002 through 2005 were the warmest summers in Sydney since records began in 1859.

If we reach the forecasted 43°C, it will be the third-highest temperature ever recorded.

And it is said to be the most dangerous day Sydney has ever faced in terms of fire danger.

Did we all go a little overboard hoping for a hot summer this year? Hey?

Fear not though, it should be back down in the mid 20s again tomorrow.

And surely that deserves a few cold drinks and a dip in the cooling Bondi waves in the mean time.

Yours in sizzling summer… x andy


Win Topheads Sunnies!

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Win sunglasses by Topheads sunnies at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Topheads Eyewear is an Australian made and owned company from Bondi Beach.

Topheads created a brand beachgoers could call their own. One that’s synonymous with innovation, creativity and beach style – that can fit some bloody good heads.

Topheads uses contemporary, eco-friendly materials and incorporates retro designs – to create a unique line of shades. In fact every product is handcrafted out of bamboo with no two pairs the same.

To score your own stunning pair from the Bondi Bamboo range, here’s how to enter:

This competition is now closed sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love to win some Tophead sunnies!”

3. Like the Topheads Facebook page for extra brownie points!

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 14 January. (Oz only sorry!)

Good luck!


Bondi New Year!

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Dusk and birds over the ocean waves at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Well, it’s the start of a new year and, yes, I’m working. Lucky I love it.

In fact I love this time of year altogether.

Ordinarily I’d worry about all the unattended emails, the amount of food I’m eating, the domestic duties I’m ignoring and the To Do List I’ve dumped.

But I know you’re probably doing much the same.

Suddenly all the things that seem so important and urgent can just wait a week or two. Chill a bit on the chores, technology and communications already.

But after the parties have been polished off and the holidays had, it is time to look to the future a bit. Many of us make New Year’s resolutions and although the odds are stacked against us for success, it’s a great opportunity to take stock and consider the things you’d like to change or improve.

One of the most popular resolutions is to attack the muffin tops, blitz the beer gut and tone the toosh. So head here to score a personal trainer to help you get there…for free!

And even if there isn’t anything inspiring on the horizon, it’s a great time to just take a break, be grateful and gear up for another great year.

So a very Happy New Year to you all.

Yours in rest and resolutions… x andy

Art Deco building at Bondi Beach at dusk in Sydney NSWDad and son surfing in the waves at dusk at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW


Win 3dpt!

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Win 3DPT personal training sessions with Luke Walsh at Bondi Beach

3dpt is a quality personal training service focusing on real and measurable results.

With nearly 10 year’s fitness industry experience, Luke Walsh from 3dpt provides a wealth of knowledge and experience, ensuring your weight loss, fitness or strength goals are well within reach.

To help you kick off a healthy the new year, Luke is generously offering PT services valued at $210 including:

- 3 x 45min, one-on-one training sessions

- a food & exercise accountability program

- education on exercise and nutrition specific to your goals & ability

* Bondi or other eastern suburbs locations, such as Queens Park.

* for top results, session are to be completed in a 4 week period.

To enter:

This competition is now closed sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love to train with 3dpt!”

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 7 January.

Good luck!

Merry Bondi Xmas!

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Christmas street art graffiti at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

Merry Christmas to you all!!

Yes, all of you. Whether you’re Christian, Jewish, Islamic, Hindu, Pagan, Jedi Knight or any other of the 4,000-odd religions around the world.

Because it doesn’t really matter. And I’ve been reminded of that in Japan where apparently 70–80% of the people tell pollsters they don’t consider themselves believers in any religion.

Now lord knows I’m not Christian, but I consider myself to have a healthy sense of spirituality, functioning moral compass, common sense, compassion and desire to love and help others.

Regardless of your beliefs, this time of year should be about things like family, friendship, food, fun and love.

Granted not all of us are fortunate enough to enjoy these things – so this is where gratitude, compassion and giving come in – read here for a quick, wonderful way to help bring joy in the local community.

So amongst Japan’s dazzling illuminations, decorations and secular Christmas craziness, I wish you a very safe, warm and joyful silly season… x andy


WAYS Xmas Appeal

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WAYS Youth Services Xmas Appeal at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Over the year, lucky locals have won nearly $10,000 via so this week let’s give a little back!!

WAYS Youth Services at Bondi are holding their Christmas Appeal via a crowdfunding campaign to continue their fabulous work supporting our local tweenies and teenagers.

PLEASE please please help me give them a Christmas surprise by giving their campaign a huge, last day boost!

Head hear to support the WAYS Youth Service Christmas Appeal for 2012.

All donations are tax deductible and you’ll feel WAY better than spending it on yet another bottle of mediocre wine.

Once again, head hear to support the WAYS Youth Service Christmas Appeal for 2012.

Thanks good people of Bondi and beyond!


Bondi Silly Season

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blog about the silly season during christmas and NYE at Bondi Beach Sydney

Well I’m still in chilly (awesome) Japan but I hear things are heating up in Bondi.

I assume you’ve all been to at least 7 Chrissy parties by now. A bunch of BBQs, endless drinks, shopping heaps and playing hard. ‘Tis the season after all.

Well you know it’s going to get even better. And one of the biggest and best constitutes just 3 little letters…N…Y…E.

If you haven’t starting organising things now is the time. And we’re going to try and make things a little easier for you…

Simply head here for a heap of chances to score free NYE tickets worth a total of $1000 – at the click of a button!

Yours in easy peasy party mode…

x andy

Party Bunny street art at Bondi Beach Sydney NSWStick Surf Love street art at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Win NYE party tix!

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Bondi New Years Eve at Dudley Page Reserve Dover Heights Sydney Dec 2012 Bondi Bon Voyage NYE 2012 party at Swiss Grand Hotel by Cream Tangerine


Win your pick of $1000 worth of NYE party tix!

Whether you’re into full-tilt parties, 3-course banquets or family-friendly fireworks, we’re super-thrilled to offer free tickets to the top of the Bondi NYE and NYD gigs. Thanks to the generous NYE event organisers including:

- Cream Tangerine’s NYE and NYD parties (a double pass for each event. 18+)

- Paper Plane’s 3-course banquet, live music & DJ evening (2 tickets – $250. 18+)

- Waverley Council’s family-friendly food, fun & fireworks (6 family passes – 1 adult, 3 kids)


This competition is now closed sorry!

To enter the draw:

1. Make sure you Like the atbondi Facebook page

2. Email with heading “I want some NYE tix!”

3. Make sure you tell me which tix you want (in order if you want them all!)


The lucky winners will be drawn Monday 24 December.

Good luck party people!


Bondi Skate

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Bondi Skate Park at Dusk with a lone skateboarder in Sydney NSW

I’m not going to pretend I know a lot about skateboarding.

I know its cool. I know its crazy (aka wheels + concrete). I know you can hurt yourself (boy do I know). I know many of the tricks defy biomechanical logic.

It can stop your heart, churn your stomach and leave you holding your breath for too long.

I’ve lived through the broken bones stage of my brother. The mega scabs of my son. And the mad antics of my old-enough-to-know-better husband.

And yet I love it. I can’t help but watch. Like a bird-eating spider documentary, or a car crash scene or that bad show about weird body part surgery (I’m lying – I totally can’t stand to watch that).

I love seeing the camaraderie and backslaps of support. I love that it’s a healthy outlet and bonding sport for energetic youth.

And what a skate park Bondi has.

It hosts regular community and competitive events. And although it’s for capable skaters only, I’ve seen it used and enjoyed by everyone from 2-year-old girls to 60-year-old guys.

If you want to know more: head here for a page on skate events and rules, or here for local skate clubs and lessons and here for an article on local skate legend Poppy Olsen.

Yours in skate respect…

x andy

ps… Apparently the first pic below is of Alex Hayes who the young female audience assured me was “totally famous on facebook”.

Facebook Famous Alex Hayes at Bondi Skate Park Bondi Beach SydneySkate Motion teenage skateboarders at Bondi Skate Park Sydney NSwSkate Posse teenage gang at the Bondi Skate Park Sydney NSWScooter Dude at the Bondi Skate Park Sydney NSWSkate Chick at the Bondi Skate Park Sydney NSWBondi Blue Sky and Skate Park Bowl at the beach Sydney NSW

Win a Skate Book!

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One-x-One-x-One skate book by the Three Sixty project

Win a skate book and help the world, one skateboard at a time…

The Three Sixty Project supports established programs all over the world making a difference in the lives of underprivileged and at-risk youth through the sport of skateboarding.

Does it get any cooler than that?

Well, yes! On 12 December they’re having their 12.12.12 Relaunch with an exhibition of incredible new one-off artist-created decks up for silent auction, including this amazing artwork by Alex Lehours.

They’ll be rocking it at The Tate in Glebe with an exhibition, live art and other surprises. Head here for further info. To win a gorgeous book created for their previous exhibition ONE x ONE x ONE, enter here:

This comp is closed now sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love to win a skate book!”

3. Like the threesixtyproject facebook page for extra brownie points!

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 17 December.

Good luck!


Bondi Summer Lovin’

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Bondi Summer people at Bondi Beach ocean scene Sydney NSW

Wooohoooooo! Summer is here!!

And what better way to celebrate than to leave. To a cold country in winter. And the snow.

Yes summer-loving bumpkins, tomorrow morning I’ll be jetting off to Japan. Don’t feel bad for me though. For a start, that’s one more space on the beach for you to lay your towel. One more sunny sidewalk spot for you in a hip Bondi café.

Seriously don’t feel bad. Japan is one of my favourite countries in the world. And those of you who know me know that, as much as I love my Bondi home, I have an unquenchable desire to travel.

I’m not talking about enjoying a holiday break as most people do. I mean every fibre of my being is in a constant state of compulsion to move. All the time.

Not a day goes by where I don’t think about taking off exploring the world, engaging in other cultures, tasting different foods, seeing new events, being amazed and challenged. I thrill in the task of finding the perfect place to stay, stretching resources and getting from A to B in a unique way.

I love being overwhelmed by the diversity of our world. And grounded by the common threads that run through all societies.

I’m coming back soon of course. Life is a little more complicated than continually being free to roam the world. Or is it? I’ll be exploring these concepts in a project called Gyspy Gene if you’re interested (or indeed inflicted in the same way…).

I’ll still be sharing the Bondi summer love each week as usual. We have some great giveaways coming up, including $1000 worth of tickets to 3 fantastic New Years Eve events, and a bucket load of Bondi hip happenings, as always.

So slap on the sunscreen, slip into the summer and think of me gallivanting blissfully across the globe!

Yours in winter wanderlusting… x andy

Bondi Bucket List Summer at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy soloBondi Grassy Knoll at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo


Win a PAQUA Pack!

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Bondi Rescue Hoppo wearing Paqua at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Win a 100% waterproof PAQUA smartphone cover!

Now we have Free WiFi on Bondi Beach (read below), it time to get serious about protecting your tech.

PAQUA is an awesome local company with quality products designed to keep your valuables safe and dry, in and out of the water.

With built-in arm/leg straps, the ability to use/speak through the membrane and fully submersible to 2m, PAQUA products are used by the Bondi Rescue lads, Surf Lifesaving Australia and all the top sport, safety and industry pros.

Equally useful and affordable for recreational use, PAQUA packs and accessories are a must have on the beach this summer. To win the PAQUA-midi (above left):

This competition is now closed sorry!

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “Hook me up with a PAQUA pack!”

Winners will be drawn Monday 10 December. Good luck!


Bondi Bonanza Giveaway!

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Bondi Bonanza Giveaway to win prizes in our Birthday competition at Bondi Beach


Win one of 22 prizes in the $1,750 Bondi Bonanza Birthday Giveaway!

What better way to celebrate than to give! To celebrate the 1st anniversary of, readers from all over the world are invited to enter our Bondi Bonanza giveaway.

Bondi is full of brilliant businesses but this week’s generous prizes are bought to you by some of Bondi’s best. Up for grabs is:

1 x gorgeous ‘Preen’ gift pack of quality Aesop products – $100

1 x Balance Moves 5-class Pilates or Barre Attack pass - $110

1 x delectable dining voucher for Bondi Trattoria - $50

1 x stunning Bronx & Banco one-size-fits-all dress – $150

1 x coveted dining voucher for the Bucket List – $100

2 x 5-class passes for Finding Lotus Yoga – $200

1 x scrumptious Mad Pizza Bondi dining voucher – $50

1 x so-hot-right-now Miss Chu dining voucher for – $50

1 x luxury facial & hand treatment from Passion Beauty - $100

5 x double passes to Psycho Beach Party theatre show – $66 each

1 x Sniff Soy Candle pack with 2 quality candles – $60 (interstate ok)

1 x delicious dessert pack from Twisted Frozen Yoghurt – $50

1 x 5-ride pass for Vicious Cycle indoor cycle studio – $75

1 x framed Bondi Beach artwork from - $195

2 x small framed photos or artblocks – $50

1 x unframed artwork from atbondi – $75 (international/interstate readers)


Sorry this competition has now closed…


Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “Happy Birthday!”

3. Then share the competition post on Facebook to gain an extra entry into the draw!


* List your favourite prize(s) for a say in what you win – no promises but we’ll try to oblige!


Winners will be drawn Monday 3 December. Good luck!!


Happy Bondi Birthday!

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happy anniversary birthday bonanza for

Happy Bondi Birthday to us!!

Yes, the baby was born on the first day of summer, 1st Dec, a year ago.

It was as exciting as flicking a switch, literally, but it was also the beginning of a fabulous life journey. Not in an I’ve-just-won-X-Factor kind of way, but pretty good regardless.

So I just wanted to send huge thanks to all of you who have supported with kind words, encouragement and visits to the website (over 20,000 uniques a month now).

Thanks also for all the Follows, Likes and Comments on Facebook, the Blog, Flickr, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and Pinterest!

And a special shout out to those generous businesses who’ve either advertised or donated to the weekly giveaways. You’re my absolute BFFs. All of you.

Speaking of which, what better way to celebrate than to give! Yes, this week we have the (insert excitable cheesy voiceover) Mega Bonanza Bonus Birthday Giveaway.

We’ve given away over $7,500 worth of prizes to stacks of happy winners so far and to celebrate, there’s another 20 chances to win over $1,500 worth of local goodies this week!

Head here for details on how to enter

Yours in winning & grinning and humble thanks…

x andy


Bondi Backpackers

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Bondi Backpackers on the Beach at Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

I have to say straight up that I am pro-backpacker.

Because about 25 million years ago I was one myself. Though these days a private bathroom, carrying more than 2 pairs of underwear and eating meals beyond bread and cheese is more my style.

Backpacking is a unique and wonderful way to explore the world. It’s about culture and engagement. Learning and appreciation. Adventure, fun and people.

Backpacking forces you to be resourceful, practical and imaginative.

No matter how grounded and competent you feel in your everyday life, if you truly roam the world in this way you will be taken out of your comfort zone and this is where you begin to learn about yourself.

How long can you share a studio bedsit with 8 other people? Is it sensible to hitchhike from Mexico to Guatemala? How hard is it to fly for 12 hours on a plane with food poisoning? Should you take a photo when an angry elephant is charging you? What happens when you’re caught with bullets in your bag crossing the border from Israel to Egypt? How much vodka-flavoured benzene can one person drink?

Ah yes, so many ways to challenge oneself in the big wide world.

So, next time you see a backpacker around Bondi, firstly thank them for supporting Australia via their big spending (over $3 billion a year) and then take a second to appreciate their journey. They are the ones fostering global cultural understanding, whether they do it with a beer in their hand or not.

And if you’re visiting Bondi Beach, here’s details on our hostels.

Yours in crackalackin’ backpacking…

x andy

ps. I have the answers to the above questions if you’d really like to know…

Girls playing the guitar on the beach at BondiFringe Fashion bag at the Bondi Beach Markets pic by Andy Solo


Win Bondi Backpackers!

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Win a private room at Bondi Backpackers opposite the Beach in Sydney NSW

Win 2 nights at Bondi Backpackers!

Thanks to the team at Bondi Backpackers, one lucky person is set to win 2 nights in a private room opposite the beach!

Located in the heart of Bondi, seconds from shops, cafes and bars, Bondi Backpackers is the only hostel situated directly across from the world famous waves of Bondi Beach. An owner-operated business, Bondi Backpackers pride themselves on offering quality affordable accommodation to travellers from all walks of life.

Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with “I’d love a private room at Bondi Backpackers!”

Note: subject to availability, excluding dates 15 Dec 2012 to 15 Jan 2013. Valid until 30/6/2013.

Winners will be drawn Monday 26 November.

Good luck!

Free Surf Lessons!

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Free Surf Lessons for local residents at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Yeeha! Lets Go Surfing is providing FREE surf lessons this November for members of the local community (adults or kids) who have always wanted to give surfing a try!

All equipment is supplied including safe soft surfboards, wetsuits, UV rashvests and sunblock and all participants receive a commemorative certificate.

“We all live and work in the local community and have the privilege of teaching surfing this is our thankyou to Waverley residents from our team!”, said Brenda Miley, Surf School Founder.

The Free sessions are from Mon 19 Nov – Sun 25 Nov 2012.

Monday to Friday: 7.00 – 8.00am

Saturday to Sunday: 12.00 - 1.00pm

Call Lets Go Surfing on 9365 1800 or email Bookings are essential as places are limited.


Bondi Film Fest

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Bondi Openair Festival summer cinema from January to March 2013

The warm weather in Bondi is a magnet for more than just beach lovers and café cliques.

We’re totally choc-topped full of culture too!

In just 2 weeks time, we enjoy a run of fantastic film festivals down at the Bondi Pav.

First up is the 12th Annual Bondi Short Film Festival on Sat 24 Nov. With sell-out crowds, great prizes and a focus on the filmmaker, this festival has firmly established itself as one the finest short film festivals in the country. Head here for your chance to win a coveted double pass!

Next up is Flickerfest. Renowned as Sydney¹s first outdoor beachside cinema, it kicks off on 11 Jan for 10 days, screening some of the best short films from Australia and abroad in a unique, relaxed summer environment.

Lastly, Bondi Openair Cinema (above) sets up under the stars from January to March with an eclectic mix of classic hits and popular flicks, gourmet food, great music & licenced drinks (note: I blatantly stole, manipulated & re-published their photo. But isn’t it pretty!).

So grab your friends, shine your specs and head to Bondi for a film festival extravaganza.

Yours in corn-popping anticipation…

x andy

Bondi Short Film Festival 2012 showcase event at Bondi Pavilion Sydney Bondi Openair Cinema movie film festival from January to March 2013 Flickerfest Short Film Festival 2013 at Bondi Pavilion Sydney NSW Australia

Win a watch & movie tix!

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Bondi Short Film Festival at the Bondi Pavilion in November  WeWood Watch to win with the Bondi Short Film Festival

Win a wicked watch and film festival tix

Thanks to our fabulous friends at the Bondi Short Film Festival, we have two fantastic prizes up for grabs.

Now in its 12th year, the Bondi Short Film Festival brings bite-size cinema seaside with a showcase of 14 of the finest short films from across Australia.

Festival buddies WeWood watches create unique high-tech timber timepieces made of 100% natural wood. One reader will win this savvy green fashion statement just in time for summer.

Or score a rare double pass to the matinee of the Bondi Short Film Festival. A sell-out every year, these tickets are for the 3pm session on Saturday 24 November.

Sorry! this competition is now closed!

Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love a WeWood watch or Film Festival tix”.

Winners will be drawn Monday 19 November. Good luck!


Bondi Graffiti Upgrade

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There’s been a spate of tasty new art on the Graffiti Seawall at Bondi. Here’s a little selection in case you don’t stroll past every day, as I’m lucky enough to do.

Bondi Swaze graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy SoloBondi Phibs graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy SoloBondi Wavemaker graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy SoloBondi Sykoh graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy SoloStreet Art Striking graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy SoloEye on Bondi graffiti street art at bondi beach Sydney NSW photo by Andy Solo

Note: full respect and thanks to Swaze (Top L), Phibs (Top R), Sykoh (Mid R) and all the other artists who offer their time and talents to make our seaside walk that extra bit awesome. Sorry I haven’t credited you all…


Bondi Film Flashback

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bondi kings theatre, bondi beach history, sydney, nsw

In 1919, there were 750 picture theatres in Australia and attendances for 1919-1920 ran to an astonishing 67.5 million.

This is a photo of the delicious deco Bondi Beach Kings Theatre, 1937*. Located opposite the beach on Campbell Pde, on the corner of Roscoe St, the Theatre started life as a dance hall before being converted to a cinema in 1937. It closed in 1969 and became a club and disco.

The Bondi Six Ways Theatre, located at the six ways intersection on the corner bounded by Hall St, O’Brien St and Glenayr Ave, met with a similar fate. After opening in 1923, the cinema was acquired by Hoyts in 1937 and screened its last program in 1959. It was later demolished.

Thank goodness we still have The Pav!

* Courtesy the Hood collection, State Library of NSW.

Note: excerpts taken with thanks from Waverley Council records.


Bondi Best Bites

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Blog about Beachside Bites at The Bucket List at Bondi Beach Sydney pic by Andy Solo

With summer upon us, most people are busy pounding the footpath and pumping iron.

Being a fashion rebel from way back, I tend to turn to food at this time of year. And I think you should all join me in exploring the vast, delicious offerings in our seaside suburb.

(Just trying to look after your health and wellbeing, mind you. Nothing to do with bikini beach body sabotage. At all).

I’ve just done a little number crunching in the Directory and have found we have about 150 food outlets for your dining pleasure.

No wonder people are coming here for more than just the beach these days. I’m putting it out there that Bondi Beach has officially become one of Sydney’s top dining spots.

But where to start? It’s the question I’m most asked – where’s the best place to eat in Bondi?

Now I’ve eaten out a lot over the years to provide you with the lowdown on the best local nosh (such a martyr, I know) so here they are below, my top tips for dining out in Bondi.

Yours in gastronomic gluttony…

x andy


Asian Tasty Tapas

Mamasan, 57 Beach Rd (Glenayr Ave) tantalizing Asian tapas in gorgeous, quirky surrounds

Paper Planes, 178 Campbell Pde (Gould Mall): classy & tasty ‘Tokyo Pop’ dining experience


Beachside Bevvies

The Bucket List, Bondi Pavilion at the Beach: brilliant vibe for beachside drinks & events

Bondi Icebergs Bar, 1 Notts Ave (south beach): a classy, killer view over the beach to Bondi


Secret Squirrels

Café Zohara, 38 Wairoa Ave: one of Bondi’s best kept secrets, gorgeous café with heart

Café Lilliputien, 112a O’Brien St: locals love this cute café at the top end of town. Shhh…


Crackin Cocktails

Miss Chu, 178 Campbell Pde: the food’s great but I’m ALL about the Vodka Lychee Crushies


Perfect Pizza

Mad Pizza, 15 O’Brien St: My regular dinner spot – brilliant mix of service, food, music & vibe


Café Charmer

Gertrude & Alice, 46 Hall St: cosy bookstore café with character and heart, always packed…


Authentic Asian

Hobbit’s Café, 262 Campbell Pde: amazingly tasty Malaysian Mon-Thu in a cute corner café

Nina’s Ploy Thai, 132 Warners Ave: affordable, authentic & tasty Thai with old school decor


Wine & Cheese Feast

Chapter One, 34 Campbell Pde: classy rustic charm with quality charcuterie, cheeses & vino

The Shop, 78 Curlewis St: for those in the know, quality wines with warm afternoon sunshine


Sensational Seafood

Bondi’s Best, 37 Campbell Pde: fabulous, fresh seafood fare up on the hill at the north end

Deli Bottega Tuesday Might Mussels, seriously scrumptious. Make sure you book. Trust me.


Fine Fast Food

Gourmet Slice Pizza, 87A Gould St: delish, crispy gourmet pizza slices to take to the beach…

Thaina Box, 148 Curlewis St: design-your-own pretty damn tasty Thai. In a box. You know.


Best Places I’ve Never Been

Beach Burrito Co, 252 Campbell Pde: I’ve tried and tried but it’s always packed = awesome

TruckStop, Level 1 Beach Rd Hotel: perfect mix of Japanese food & street art. Must try soon.


Super Service

Bondi Trattoria, 34 Campbell Pde: honing their service for 25 years has sure paid off here


Delicious Desserts

Sean’s Panaroma, 270 Campbell Pde, delicious everything but the desserts are to die for…


Sumptuous Sushi

Raw Bar, Cnr Warners & Wairoa Aves: classy surrounds and fresh, fabulous Japanese cuisine

Sushi St, opening today (Nov 6) – can’t wait to try the sushi in this cute n classy place (+wine)!


Drink & Dine

Anchor Bar, 2-8 Campbell Pde, The Canteen, 180 Campbell Pde, Rum Diaries, 288 Bondi Rd

Drinks with the Bondi cool set isn’t my area of expertise but I’d try these spots first if it were


White Cloth Café

Trio Café, 56 Campbell Pde: when you’re after a touch more class with your coffee…


Great All-rounders

34 Degrees South, 34 Campbell Pde: fab views, food, service & music (Wes Carr, Nov-Dec)

Ravesi’s Hotel, 118 Campbell Pde (cnr Hall St): as they say, great place to eat, play and stay!


Go the Fro Yo!

Twisted Frozen Yoghurt, 36 Hall St: delicious and (kind of) nutritious frozen yoghurt fun


Fab for Families

Moo Gourmet Burgers, 70A Campbell Pde: family-friendly fun, fine food and a top spot


Top Notch Newcomer

The Atlas Kiosk, 14 Hall Street: Great food, service, space, wifi, coffee…the list goes on


Super Sanga

Club Sandwich, 2a Jaques Ave: gourmet sandwiches on Luxe sourdough. Top coffee too…


Happy Hippies

Earth Food Store Café, 81a Gould St: fine fresh, organic, wholefood heaven to eat and shop

Funky Pies Café, 144 Glenayr Ave: chunky, funky food with fab philosophies & friendly charm


Best Bakeries

Organic Republic Bakery, 98 Glenayr Ave: laidback local vibe, great bread and tasty treats

Tin Pin Organic Bakery, 296 Bondi Rd: gorgeous gluten free & organic breads, friendly service


Lunch with Locals

Jed’s, 96 Glenayr Ave, Harry’s, 136 Wairoa Ave & Luigi’s, 154 Glenayr Ave

Always packed with brunching & lunching locals (and so popular they don’t need websites)


Alrighty then. Seems like I’ve covered nearly every one of the 150-odd options to wine and dine in Bondi. What can I say? They’re all pretty damn good…so which is your favourite?


Win at The Atlas Kiosk

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Win at the Atlas Kiosk giveaway at Bondi Beach Sydney

Win delicious dining at The Atlas Kiosk Bondi.

Thanks to our fine friends at the new Atlas Kiosk Bondi, two lucky readers will win a delicious breakfast, brunch or lunch valued up to $30 each.

Set in prime position at 14 Hall Street with a funky old milk bar feel, The Atlas offers a range of flavours from across the mediterranean, middle east and north africa combined with classic sundaes and milkshakes.

With friendly service, free wifi for customers and tasty tunes, it’s already one of Bondi’s new favourites (you’ll find me there most mornings).

This competition is now closed sorry!

Entry into the draw is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with “I’d love some delicious dining at The Atlas Kiosk”.

* Score a double entry if you Like the Atlas Kiosk page too!!

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 12 November.

Good luck!


Holiday Accommodation

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Holiday Accommodation at Bondi Beach accomodation options hotels apartments backpackers

For a spot as brilliant as Bondi Beach you’d think there’d be a stack of places to stay.

However, great accommodation options seem to be as rare as local ice-cream joints. I’m joking of course, there’s frickin HEAPS of those.

Here’s a list of sites to check if you plan to visit (or indeed if you have family coming from out of town that, well, you’d rather enjoy their own space. Because you love them. Really. They deserve to enjoy their own space in Bondi). a great selection of options from backpackers to luxury ocean view pads.
atbondi Top 10: the best options in each category. Though I haven’t stayed everywhere.
Bondi Beach Rentals: (tell Vanessa I sent you): options in Bondi and surrounding ‘burbs.
Stayz: the No.1 way to book holiday rental accommodation properties online in Australia.
Air BnB: the latest, greatest way to book private accom…there’s quite a few Bondi pads.

One of my favourite places is the Bondi Beach House who are generously offering a free night in one of their gorgeous suites to one lucky reader. Head here to find out more.

We’ll soon have more exciting options to lay your sun-kissed heads too…

The first will be Adina Bondi on Hall Street.  Due for completion mid 2013, it will offer 111 apartment-style hotel rooms with an outdoor pool and spa, gym, yoga room and parking.

And due for completion about 2016, is Pacific Bondi which will comprise a 69-apartment boutique hotel and two-level retail and restaurant complex.

At least the boffins at these places obviously put a great deal of thought into the number of apartments. Here’s hoping they’re gorgeous and amazingly cheap (you never know).

Yours in the lap of hotel luxury…

x andy

Adina Apartment Hotel at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW Pacific Bondi Apartment Hotel at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Adina Apartment Hotel Bondi                            Pacific Bondi Apartment Hotel


Win Bondi Beach House!

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Win accommodation prize at the Bondi Beach House at Bondi Beach

Win a night at the boutique Bondi Beach House!

Thanks to our fabulous friends at the Bondi Beach House, one lucky reader will win a night in a gorgeous beach-chic suite!

Nestled amongst the frangipani trees, you’re perfectly positioned just a short stroll to the beach, cafes, restaurants, galleries, yoga studios, surf school, iconic Icebergs, coastal walk and much more.

Enjoy superb service and genuine comfort amongst Australian art in your unique Bondi Beach House haven.


This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with “I’d love a night in the Bondi Beach House haven”.

Note: booking must be taken before Sunday 9 December 2012.

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 5 November. Good luck!


Flashback: Hotel Bondi

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Hotel Bondi 2012 on Campbell Pde after renovation at Bondi Beach Sydney NSw Old historical Photo of Hotel Bondi in the 1920s at Bondi Beach Sydney

On the topic this week of Bondi Accommodation, let’s take a look at the Hotel Bondi.

Designed by E Lindsay Thompson, the Hotel Bondi has a distinctly 1920s style, although construction ran from 1915-1945. Commercially, it struggled initially due to relative isolation (can you believe it?) but it soon became the popular destination it remains today.

The design mixes Federation, Italianate and Free Classical influences, and earned heritage listing for historical, social and aesthetic significance. It was renovated in 2011 as part of The Beach House development next door with a much needed paint job and exposure of the southern side of the hotel,  which was previously obstructed by an adjoining part of the hotel.

Budget accommodation is available: Hotel Bondi.


Shop Talk Oct 2012

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bondi fashion shopping atbondi, bondi beach, bondi, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Bondi Shop Talk 30 Oct 2012

Sheesh its hard to keep up with developments in Bondi these days! Here’s the latest round of changes to our café and shopping options in the hood…

- The Atlas Kiosk seems to be the new hip hang on Hall (Hugh Jackman thinks so anyway)

- Yellow Bungalow is a fab new offering of furniture, homewares and coffee on Bondi Rd

- The Seafood Bar in the Roscoe Street Mall has been stripped out and gone

- Taking the place of the Seafood Bar soon will be newcomer Fogo Brazilian Churrasco

- I’m very excited about Sushi Street which is due to open soon on Hall St

- Apparently a new salad bar will be going in next to Sushi Street – watch this space!

- Firefly Pop Up shop will open this Thursday 1 November at 83 Gould St

- Opposite Firefly is new fashion here to stay – uniik boutique at 94-96 Gould St

- The Lamrock Café on the corner of Campbell Pde is back –anyone been?

- The Original California Burrito Company has opened in Roscoe St Mall

- The Hurricanes to-go window has moved around the corner to Gould St

- Because 27 isn’t enough, a Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream will open soon on Campbell

- Long-time locals Platypus Shoes are renovating and will reopen shortly

- As I have mentioned, Alex the Barber on Glenayr Ave has retired. Sad face

- Greens Café has also closed on Glenayr Ave. Sad to see you go Pete!

- Porch Organic Bakery (& coffee) will soon open at the old Betsy Blu spot

- Ugg Australia has moved into Bondi Pizza on Campbell Pde. Whatevs.

- The Bondi Courthouse has opened in that dodgy mall on Campbell. Hm.

- The Bondi Courthouse also has a little café open from 12pm – called Tuck In.

- A new little fashion office, Joveeba, has also snuck into the mall upstairs

- Body Bright massage therapy is available on Warners Ave. Very handy…

- Tiny fashion spot Zayira has closed on the corner of Glenayr & Curlewis.

- Bucklers Canteen has rebranded to The Canteen on cnr Campbell & Beach


Shoot an email to with any other news, updates or changes.


Bondi School Profits!

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Market Magic, shopping at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Source: The Daily Telegraph, Education Reporter Katherine Danks, Oct 29 2012

PUBLIC schools pocketed more than $16 million last year by leasing out buildings and playgrounds to community groups and private organisations for ballet practice, sports days and market stalls.

Education department data shows 49 primary and high schools earned more than $50,000 for commercial activities last year, helping pay for everything from library books to support teachers.

All schools – many with multi-purpose halls and buildings provided with government BER money – earned a total of $16.23 million, up from $14.5 million in 2010.

The commercial agreements include dance classes, weekend markets and sporting clinics, and provide a welcome revenue stream for cash-strapped schools.

Bondi Beach Public School topped the list, with its popular weekend fashion and farmers markets contributing to an annual income of more than $197,000.

The market is held in the beachfront playground every Saturday and Sunday and charges stallholders between $70 to $120 per week.

Markets also boosted cash reserves at Glebe Public School ($160,000), Rozelle Public School ($137,000), Orange Grove Public School ($101,000), Riverside Girls High School ($118,000) and Como Public School ($8600).

According to department guidelines, private organisations must pay higher fees than non-profit groups. For example, a private organisation would pay $43.50 per hour for use of a large hall, but a not-for-profit would only pay $26.

Private companies can lease playing fields for $17 per hour, the canteen for $9 per hour and the staff common room for $7 per hour. Schools offer a 10 per cent discount for arrangements involving 50 or more hires per year.

Dance Sensation owner Elizabeth Cooper said she hires the hall at Rydalmere East Public School on an hourly basis three afternoons a week for ballet, hip hop and musical theatre classes, contributing to the school’s income of about $6000.

She opened the school two years ago, charging 60 students a minimum of $105 per term. “We stumbled across Rydalmere East and we liked that it had a beautiful hall and the principal was really excited for us to be there,” Ms Cooper said.

“The facilities are great, they’ve got a stereo available, so it’s easy for us.”

Food as Medicine

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Food as Medicine Crave event at Bondi Farmers Market at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

The Bondi Farmers Market will plate up a Food as Medicine theme for their celebration of the Crave Sydney International Food Festival on Sat 27 October.

Local residents are invited to join experts Shakti Grace, founder of The Holistic Chef; Georgia Lienemann, founder of Stirring Change and Belinda Randell, founder of The Organic Cook for a day of festivities. All three women will be available for the day to answer questions.

“It’s so great to access the knowledge and passion of these three woman for the Crave Festival…The Bondi Farmers Market is dedicated to improving the health of locals through food, offering fresh farm produce every week along with supporting the Kitchen Garden program run by the Bondi Beach Public School”, spokesperson Jane McDermott says.

On the day:

9-10am – Shakti Grace on Food as Medicine

10-11am – Belinda Randell on Food and Fertility

11-12pm – Georgia Lienemann on the relationship between the gut and health

More information here.

The Bondi Pavilion

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The Bondi Pavilion under glowing night lights at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

Overlooking the beach in prime central position, sits the iconic Bondi Pavilion.

It has morphed many times from the early 1900s, but has always figured large in the local landscape. It has housed everything from a military club to kids capoeira classes, from bathing sheds to ballrooms.

The Pav is the proud centrepiece for most local events. It showcases superb art in the Gallery, cutting-edge shows in the Theatre and shines at night with glittering lights in winter.

But the harsh light of day exposes sadly neglected and underutilised spaces. And, ugh, don’t get me started on the toilets…

This will all change once the new Plan of Management is finalised over the coming months. Have you had your say? Here’s the Council’s 5-10 min survey to complete.

If you find filling out a government survey about as exciting as, well, filling out a government survey, you can send a direct email to and rant on about anything you like!

(Note: bondipom refers to ‘Bondi Plan of Management’, not the local British backpackers. Those crazy cats at the Council…).

From what I understand, the majority of community views put forth so far centre around restrictions from concerned citizens…”ditch the debaucherous Bucket List, no volleyball on the beach, no outdoor seating, further restrict local licensing”, etc. So, for the love of fun in the sun, please have your say or we’ll be stuck with the consequences for 10 years!

Read a bit more about the grand ol’ dame here.

Yours in Pavilion politics…

x andy

The rear view of the Pavilion at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloReflection on the Pavilion rear view and amphitheatre at Bondi Beach Sydney pic by Andy Solo

Win Theatre Tix!

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The Interview show at the Bondi Pavilion Theatre presented by Tamarama Rock Surfers Bondi Theatre The Interview with Kip Gamblin and Alison McGirr

Win Theatre Tickets at the Bondi Pav!

Thanks to our friends at Tamarama Rock Surfers, TWO lucky people will win a double pass to fabulous new theatre at the Bondi Pavilion – The Interview.

Set in a beachside apartment in Bondi, the show examines the power struggle between a B-grade actress and a political reporter. But who’s playing who…?

Originally written by Dutch playwright Theo van Gogh and made into a movie staring Sienna Miller and Steve Buscemi, you can now see the classic remade for local audiences right here in Bondi.


This competition has now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love to see The Interview at Bondi…”

Stay in the loop with developments here at The Interview Facebook Page.

And check out the interview with former Home & Away actor, now Director Sam Atwell here.

The lucky winners will be drawn Monday 29 October. Good luck!


Bondi Flashback 1911

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bondi castle pavilion history at Bondi Beach,Sydney NSW

The first Bondi Pavilion was affectionately known to locals as The Castle, or The Castle Pavilion because of its whimsical fairytale-like turrets. Its official name was the Bondi Surf Sheds.

Despite its pretty appearance the building was, in reality, simply a dressing shed, a private place to get in and out of your swimming costume which was built by Council to stop the increasingly common practise of swimmers (mainly male swimmers) changing on the beach in full view of the public. (A sad waste of money if you ask me!).

The Castle Pavilion had a short life span, however, with the order for its demolition carried out on 6 June 1928. More on the Bondi Pavilion over the years here.

Source: excerpts above taken from Bondi Pavilion: a short history.


Bondi Sunrise Proposal

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Bondi Sunrise Proposal at bondi beach on Ben Buckler, Sydney NSW australia pic by andy solo

Source: The Daily Telegraph, Petra Starke, Oct 16

Photo: Andy Solo (me!!)

WHEN Steven McConnell got down on one knee to propose to his girlfriend at Bondi Beach on Sunday morning, he wanted the moment to be sensational – but he never suspected they would end up an internet sensation.

But he and new fiancee Irene Kotov set Australian social media buzzing yesterday after photos of their romantic moment, accidentally snapped by an amateur photographer, went viral on the internet.

Mr McConnell’s proposal on Bondi’s famous North Head was captured on film by Sydney University student Michael Keane, 20, who was photographing the sunrise from the shore, hundreds of metres away.

Mr Keane, a visiting engineering student from Texas, said he only realised what he had captured after he got home and zoomed in on the photos.

“I saw the couple’s silhouette on the cliff, so I started taking pictures with them in it because I thought it would be cool in the pictures,” Mr Keane said.

“It wasn’t until I got home and was looking through my camera that I realized `holy crap, he is down on one knee in this one, holy crap in this one before it he is in the PROCESS of getting down on one knee,’.

“That’s when I realized I had completely by accident just captured a wedding proposal.”

Mr Keane immediately posted the series of snaps to sharing website, where they quickly went viral as people tried to track down the anonymous lovers.

Mr McConnell, 32, and Ms Kotov, 29, who are ironically both photographers themselves, were totally unaware of the photos until the story appeared on the Daily Telegraph website yesterday.

“We just got phone calls and messages from friends saying `you’re famous, you’re in the Daily Telegraph’,” said Ms Kotov, who also celebrated her birthday on Sunday.

“I didn’t believe it, I thought it was our friends having a joke,” said Mr McConnell.

Now that the Daily Telegraph has put the couple in touch with their accidental photographer, they say they plan to have the photos framed.

“It’s really awesome. We are definitely going to frame the photos,” Ms Kotov said.


So I also snapped the happy couple with my ultra zoom lens. This post-proposal embrace is my favourite actually… x andy

Bondi Proposal Embrace at bondi beach on Ben Buckler, Sydney NSW australia pic by andy solo


Sculpture by the Sea

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Bondi Sculpture Splash Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012

I feel like I keep saying the same thing every week but this time I mean it (again)…we have one of my FAVE events starting this week… Sculpture by the Sea!

Melting ice-cream trucks, giant tyre turtles, skeleton conductors and leaping lemmings. There’s not much fabulous, freaky and fascinating art we haven’t enjoyed in Bondi over the years.

As if the stunning coastal walk and parks weren’t lovely enough, when you add a spattering of sculptures every few metres, life doesn’t get much better.

Oh hang on, yes it does because the event is also FREE!

If you can’t make it along this year (sucks to be you), below is a little reminder of the kind of quality coastal culture you’re missing.

And if you can’t get enough art here’s a list of galleries around town from a previous post.

Yours in arty infatuation…

x andy

Soaring Kiss Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy SoloMagic Mosaic Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy SoloSenior Sculpture Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy SoloSculptured Stare Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy SoloCoastal Elk Sculpture by the Sea art event at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW 2012 pic by Andy Solo


Win Bondi Art!

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Wild Waves, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Win Bondi Beach artwork worth $195

To celebrate everything arty this week, one reader will have the chance to decorate their home or office with a framed Bondi artwork!

The winner will select one artwork from over 400 options on the gallery to be finished in a lovely white wooden frame.


This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy…

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love to win some Bondi art!”.

The winner will be drawn Monday 22 October.

Best of luck!

Bondi Jobs Oct 2012

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Bondi Jobs, employment at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Bondi Jobs: October 2012

There’s another spate of job ads up around town. Get copies of your resume and hit the streets! Here’s a selection:

- Raw Bar Japanese, Assistant Restaurant Manager

- Le-Paris-Go Cafe, Experienced Chef

- Noah’s Backpackers, Front Desk Receptionist

- Sejuiced Juice Bar Cafe, Counter Staff

- Boost Juice, Counter Staff

- Fresh at Bondi, Counter Staff

- The Pitstop Juice Cafe, Counter Staff

- Icebergs Dining Room & Bar, Experienced Waitstaff

- Wet Espresso Café, Experienced Chef

- La Macelleria Butcher, Chef & Service staff

- Blow Dry Bar, Hairdressers & Apprentices

- Sushi Street (coming soon!) 76 Hall St, Chef staff

- Gourmet Slice, Pizza Chef

- Bondi Pizza, Pizza Chefs

- Truckstop Restaurant, Young chefs & apprentices

- New Zealand Ice Cream, Counter Staff

- Hurricane’s Grill/Express, Kitchen Staff

- Busby on Bondi, Salon Junior/Assistant

- Beauty on the Beach, Beauty Therapist

- Inch Hair Salon, Hairdresser

- Lamrock Café (opening soon), Chefs, Baristas

Simply enter the business name into our Search Bar above to find contact details – or email me on for further info. Good luck!


Bondi Silicon Beach

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Silicon Beach digital economy at Bondi Beach creative innovation hub

While we’re talking futures this week, I fully support the move to create an Australian ‘Silicon Beach’ to rival California’s Silicon Valley and compete with the world’s leading digital economies.

Though I’m well aware that, at this stage, it is a distant dream.

On Friday, Prime Minister Julia Gillard held a forum on the Digital Economy where Google Australia’s MD, Nick Leeder, put the Silicon Beach idea straight to the PM.

I’d like to take it one step further and offer Bondi Beach as the location for a creative innovation hub.

Many Waverley Councillors support the move and the first baby step has been taken by offering Free Wi-Fi in Bondi Beach as of December. Yaaaahooo!

If you’re interested in this topic, perhaps hook up with like-minded people at Silicon Beach entrepreneur group (from whom I blatantly stole their cute logo above).

And if you’re not sure what the hell I’m talking about, here’s PM Julia Gillard’s opening speech at the Digital Economy Forum that provides an overview of the topic.


Bondi Future Focus

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Bondi gold sunset view of the beach and village in Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

Bondi seems to be in a flurry of flux at the moment.

In fact my whole centre of gravity shifted today when I read the sign on the door of Alex the Barber announcing his retirement after nearly 50 years of service on Glenayr Avenue.

His old school shop is replete with faded photos, vintage hydrolic chair and swirly red & white barber’s pole and, though I’m a huge proponent of change, I don’t want to see this pole go.

(Side note… it represents bloody bandages wrapped around a pole because during medieval times barbers cut hair, performed surgery and did tooth extractions. Eeew).

As much as I love the barber shop though, nobody I know has ever been there. In fact, I’m shortly booking in for a haircut at the swanky new Franck Provost French salon on Hall St.

Similarly, I bought something once from the old Hall St hardware store but have frequented the Hardware Café too many times to count since it opened not long ago.

So what of Bondi’s future?

Everybody seems to have an opinion via Council’s 10-year Plan of Management… year-round volleyball, creative innovation hub, unearthing indigenous artefacts, light rail, winter marketing and parking parking parking! Read it all here and have your say too.

No matter what happens, I’m confident Bondi will be able to retain its beachside character; laidback lifestyle; community bonds; welcoming outlook and wonderful village charm.

And I’m pretty sure the sun will keep on shining.

Yours in chop and change…

x andy

Bondi Barber Alex Poulos sign in his shop on Glenayr Ave Bondi Beach pic by Andy SoloBondi woman with coffee walking through Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo


Win a Salon Experience

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Win a Franck Provost hair salon experience at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Win a salon experience worth $129!

Franck Provost is the leading hair salon in Paris and throughout France.

There are more than 650 salons in 30 countries around the world and they’ve finally made their way to the Sydney seaside.

To celebrate their grand opening in Bondi Beach, the Franck Provost team are offering one lucky reader a salon experience worth $129.

Enjoy a shampoo, scalp massage, haircut, blow dry and glass of champagne!!

This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with “I’d love to win a Franck Provost Salon Experience…”

The winner will be drawn Monday 15 October, after 5pm.

Good luck!

Bondi Facelift

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pavilion and beach, at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Time for some new ideas as city’s playground prepares for a facelift

Source: SMH, by: Nicole Hasham, Monday 8 October

A NEW vision is being sought for Bondi as Waverley Council devises a 10-year blueprint for Sydney’s most famous stretch of sand, including ideas such as year-round beach volleyball.

Submissions are invited on the future of the area, which attracts 1.8 million people a year, including up to 50,000 beachgoers a day in summer.

The plan of management covers the beach, park, pavilion and promenade, including Queen Elizabeth Drive, Wally Weekes Pool and Biddigal Reserve.

The stately, ageing pavilion – long a drain on the council’s maintenance budget – could be transformed into an “incubator hub” for emerging IT and creative businesses, the Labor councillor John Wakefield said.

It would expand the council’s push towards a “creative economy”, including a free Wi-Fi trial at Bondi beach and park, expected to start in December, to cater for the suburb’s large number of creative professionals. ”We have a fair bit of space … it’s time to give consideration to what the pavilion is used for. Some of the arts and craft space is very much technology of an older era,” Cr Wakefield said.

The council will also consider introducing year-round ball sports. It played host to beach volleyball for the Sydney Olympics in 2000.

Traffic and parking will likely dominate debate, amid claims by business owners that parking restrictions continue to stymie trade. The council is expected to consider the viability of underground parking to eliminate cars from the beachfront.

The federal MP Malcolm Turnbull, whose electorate, Wentworth, takes in the beach, said congestion was one of Bondi’s biggest problems, and more public transport was needed. “Ideally, we would bring light rail back running down Bondi Road and right up Campbell Parade to North Bondi – bring back the tram in other words. But I recognise the cost would be formidable,” he said.

The vice-president of the Bondi Chamber of Commerce, Mary Anne Cronin, called on the council to raise the suburb’s profile as a winter destination, through better marketing and building on events such as the Winter Magic festival.

The Greens councillor Dominic Wy Kanak said improved co-operation between the council and Aboriginal groups was required to manage unearthed artefacts along the beachfront.

The vagaries of bureaucratic endeavour have not always been kind to Bondi.

In World War II, officials ordered that tunnels from the beach to the pavilion be destroyed, fearing an invasion. But the army used too many explosives, blowing out the windows and spraying chunks of concrete into neighbouring buildings.

By 1975, the pavilion had fallen into disrepair, derided by one observer as a ”damp, mildewed, mock-Spanish mansion”. It prompted a councillor to declare “I’d like to put a bomb under [it]”.

But Waverley’s mayor, Sally Betts, said the public should not fear any “drastic” changes over the next decade. “We are not going to turn it into another Westfield, or demolish it, and I don’t think the community wants that.”

A Bondi lifeguard, Bruce Hopkins, 43, said: ”My vision would be that everyone could learn to surf better than they do now, so we’d have fewer injuries.”

A resident, David Jackson, 33, would like more parking ”and I think they should do more with the pavilion”.

The restaurant owner Iraklis Poulos, 50, agreed that parking was a problem. ”If you don’t live close to the area it’s a nightmare.”.

The public can make submissions via an online survey at Responses close on November 30.

A ”Have a Say in the Park” day will be held on November 17 at Bondi Park.


Bondi Flashback 1890

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Bondi Flashback to 1890 children swimming at Bondi Beach South end Sydney

This photograph of summer bathing at Bondi shows children enjoying the shallows around the rocky area at the southern end of the beach.

Besides a large group of people enjoyed the water, not a lot compares with the same area today. Though check out that girl at front left exposing skin below the knee – downright scandalous.

The photo, part of the Tyrrell Collection at the Powerhouse Museum, was taken by Henry King (1855-1923), a successful Sydney photographer.


Bondi Good Times

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Bondi Good Times people having fun at events at Bondi Beach Sydney pic by Andy Solo

Sydney was once again selected as a leading global Event City this year.

Technically, we were one of five chosen in the annual IFEA World Festival & Event City Awards that “recognize the best in community leadership and festival and event partnerships around the world.”

We won last year but were pipped at the post by Dubai this time around.

New York wasn’t in the final and neither were Tokyo, Paris or other sizeable cities (which makes my cynical side think we’re probably also finalists in “The City Most Dedicated to Entering Random Competitions”).

Either way, we do put on a good show and I think Bondi must contribute significantly to our award-winning reputation as it takes a good chunk of time each week just updating the local event calendar.

Head here for the full annual listing of Bondi Beach events or click here for the good times on the near horizon.

Yours in festival fun & frivolity…

x andy

Win a Bondi Pilates Pass!

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Bondi Pilates Giveaway prize for competition Pass at Bondi Beach Sydney

Win a Bondi Pilates Pass worth $200!

Thanks to Michelle, Debby and the fabulous team at Bondi Pilates, one lucky reader this week will win a 7-class pass valued at over $200.

Enjoy an extensive choice of quality classes including Pilates Reformer, Xtend Barre®, Corefitnessroller® and Pilates Mat.

With talented and friendly professionals in gorgeous surrounds, this is the perfect way to get fit and healthy for summer.

This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook

2. Email with subject “I’d love to win a Bondi Pilates Pass…”

The winner will be drawn Monday 8 October.

Good luck!


Interview: Sophie Alize

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Bondi Bellydance, Sophie Alize dancing at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW australia, pic by andy solo

Sophie Alize, in Association with Tamarama Rock Surfers, presents Aether – A Belly Dance Spectacular at the Bondi Pavilion Theatre for one special performance on Sunday 7 October.

Aether, featuring Sydney’s top belly dancers, revolves around the four elements of the natural world – earth, wind, fire and water.

Producer, and one of the stars of the show, Sophie Alize, talks to us about Aether


How long have you been belly dancing?

I’ve been dancing my whole life, belly dancing for 12 years.


What do you love most about belly dancing?

I love entertaining people. I love it when you burst into a room and peoples eyes light up. I love the passion I have for the dance and for the music, the violins in Arabic music really lift me and move me by my heart strings. I love the freedom I feel when I’m dancing. The outpour of creativity and expression, the way it fills my whole being with love and purpose.


Is belly dancing a good way of keeping fit?

Yes it’s great exercise and a great expression of femininity.


The costumes are spectacular. Where do they come from?

Most of my costumes are from Egypt. There are designers worldwide that make costumes – Brazil, Argentina, Turkey, Egypt. I tend to have my costumes tailor made these days as you know the fit will be perfect and you can have input in the design.


Are there any places in Bondi where you can try belly dancing?

Rachel Bond of Inspire Bellydance teaches in Bondi Junction. She is fabulous as she teaches all the folkloric styles of Egyptian dance as well as the more popularly known cabaret style of bellydance.


Can you tell me a bit about Aether – A Belly Dance Spectacular?

The show came from the idea of balance. How does one achieve balance? How easily one can fall out of balance. I believe all artists struggle with balance. I know I do! To represent this idea I thought to use the four elements, earth, wind, water, fire. I invited Sydney’s top belly dancers to interpret the elements. The name of the show Aether means the heavenly sphere in Greek mythology. The idea being with all the elements in balance, Nivarna is achieved.


What do you think people will love most about the show?

This show has the WOW factor. You don’t have to be a dancer to appreciate it. There’s lots of colour, movement, special effects lighting, 19 dancers, 7 drummers, bubbles, glitter and fire!


Thanks Sophie! Sounds amazing… For more details on the show and to buy tickets head here.


World Tourism Day

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Glorious Golden Afternoon, Bondi Beach, Sydney

World Tourism Day on September 27 ”raises awareness on the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide”.

Whatevs. Bondi draws people to her golden shores and vibrant village – this much we know.

You can read up on Bondi Beach Tourism here – did you know as many as 40,000 people can flock here on a hot weekend day?

Or check out some Bondi Beach Tours – from Harley Davidson’s to Discovery tours. Fun…


Bondi Flashback

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Cheap units for sale at Bondi Beach history

Don’t you wish you’d scooped up these ‘bargain units’ at 55 Gould Street Bondi not so very long ago?

At $22,950 each, including a lock up garage, they’ve increased in value about 72,000%.

Oh the agony of retrospect!

Or perhaps my own flat will be worth about $528,000 million soon…??

Thanks to the Bondi Tratt’s Facebook page from whom I stole this with cheeky and reckless abandon.


Bondi Block Life

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Deco Delight building at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW Australia pic by Andy Solo

Years ago I lived in a house and never once met my neighbour – until I read the name tag on his backpack in a bus queue in Glasgow on the other side of the world. Only then did I introduce myself and have a chat.

I’ve lived in everything from a Japanese shoebox to a sprawling penthouse (ah no, not mine) but have resided in an apartment for most of my adult life.

There’s a particular way of life found within a block of flats.

There are social chats on the stairs, a quiet bond shared while pegging sheets on the line and the borrowing of milk or sugar.

I’ve helped No.4 when she locked her baby in her unit, No.3 saved me when I did my back and I now work with the great gal from No.1.

Many sunny afternoons are shared in the communal garden with lovely people – without a single phone call required or diary entry made.

There may be nights when a baby is screaming, the odd party keeps you awake or the stomping of heels on floorboards penetrates the brain. But I wouldn’t have it any other way. These are the sounds of life.

I cherish this form of living where space is respected, help is mere metres away and the joy of community is found amongst strangers…who often become friends.

Bondi Beach is fertile ground for block life and is one of the many reasons I choose to live here. I hope many of you enjoy this life too…

Yours in community culture…

x andy

Top Left Living apartment building at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW Australia pic by Andy SoloPalm Views apartment building at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW Australia pic by Andy SoloBen Buckler Boxes  building at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW Australia pic by Andy SoloDeco Living art deco apartment blocks at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloDeco Bright building at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW Australia pic by Andy SoloHigh Life at Hotel Bondi and The Beach House at Bondi Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

Win Goldilocks Tix!

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Win tickets to Bondi Pavilion Theatre production of Goldilocks at Bondi Beach

You know the story… the porridge is too hot, the bears go for a stroll to pass the time. Enter Goldilocks – cute little troublemaker extraordinaire.

On during the school holidays, this wonderful adaptation encourages kids to engage with the story through gentle audience interaction, teaching children through song and play about respecting other people’s property, and that a “sorry” never hurts.

This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I love Goldilocks…”

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 24 September.

Good luck!


Bondi Jobs Sept 2012

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Bondi Jobs, employment at bondi, bondi beach, sydney, nsw, australia, andy solo

Bondi Jobs: September 2012

Sometimes it seems every second Bondi shop has a Staff Wanted sign up in its windows. Here’s some I’ve seen or heard of over the past couple of weeks:

- 34 Degrees South, experienced chef, Campbell Pde

- Gusto cafe, floor & counter staff, Hall St

- Abode retail staff (both stores), Hall St

- The Atlas Kiosk, chef staff, Hall St

- Busby on Bondi, casual hair salon worker, Hall St

- Truck Stop Bondi (new), 10 staff needed, Beach Rd

- Sejuiced Juice Bar, counter staff, Bondi Pavilion

- Bondi Trattoria, wait staff, Campbell Pde

- Sun Café, wait staff, cnr Blair & Glenayr

- Pompei, wait & bar staff, cnr Roscoe & Gould

- North Bondi Italian Food, wait & bar staff, Ramsgate Ave

- Capriccio, Barista, Roscoe Street Mall

- Bavarian Bier Café, chef staff, Campbell Pde

- Bondi Beach Community Market, Manager, Roscoe Mall

- Lilliputien Café, chef staff, O’Brien St

- Jed’s Café, floor & grill staff, Cnr Glenayr & Warners

- Flight Centre Bondi Beach, travel consultant, Hall St

- U-turn Recycled Fashion, Shop Assistant, Hall St

- Le Paris Go Café, chef and floor staff, Hall St

- Sabbaba Café, chef and floor staff, Hall St

- Bondi Beach Cellars, sales staff, Hall St

- Glicks Café, chef, service and floor staff, Hall St

- La Piadina, wait and service staff, Glenayr Ave

The moral of the story is, if you are a half decent person, now is the time to walk the streets of Bondi with copies of your resume in hand.


Bondi Beach Dwellers

Posted by & filed under blog, featured.

Group of people on the promenade at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

Who are we?

Deep, I know. But really. Who resides within the walls of the 6105 private dwellings in Bondi Beach?

If you’ve been anxiously awaiting Census data releases for the past year, you can head here for the full details of our seaside suburb as at August 2011.

Or digest it right here in bite size chunks…

- 10,748 residents (10,171 5 years ago)

- 48.5% female

- 2260 families

- average age 33

- 7.8% aged 65+

- 25.2% married

- 28.9% studying

- 47.3% born in Australia

- 31.1% no religion (all NSW: 17.9%)

- 68.7% English only spoken at home

- $1,050 weekly income (all Australia: $577)

- 22.1% did 5-14 hrs unpaid housework a week

- 54.7% are couples with no kids (all Australia 37.8%)

- 30.9% are couples with kids (all NSW 45.5%)

- 1.6 kids per family (uneasy to think about, yes?)

And if demographic stats aren’t your thing (why ever not?), then check out some of the actual local folk and the places they recommend to shop, eat and play… read more here.

Yours in statistical fascination…

x andy

Peachy Couple strolling along the sand at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloSea Dreams girl staring at the waves at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy SoloSurf Seniority older man with his surfboard at Bondi Beach Sydney NSWBondi Stretch healthy woman stretching on the sand at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo


Win Passion Beauty!

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Passion Beauty Giveaway of Facial, hand treatment and spray tan at Bondi Beach

Win $135 worth of Bondi beauty

Thanks to the lovely Jessica at Bondi’s Passion Beauty, one lucky reader will win a boutique beauty package valued at $135.

The treatment includes a luxurious hour-long facial, plus hand treatment and organic spray tan – the perfect combination as the weather warms up for Spring.


This competition is now closed sorry!


Entry is easy:

1. Simply Like the atbondi page on Facebook
2. Email with subject “I’d love some Passion Beauty…”

The lucky winner will be drawn Monday 24 September.

Good luck!


Bondi Big Bucks

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The Bondi luxury living apartments at Bondi Beach in Sydney NSW pic by Andy Solo

I was forbidden entrance to a Bondi Beach property on Sunday.

“Do you have an appointment with an agent?”, inquired one of the ridiculously-gorgeous, perfectly-manicured, tight-black-dressed property hostesses.

Um. “No”.

“Are you just sticky beaking”? (Insert mild head tilt and charming smile).

Um. “Yes”.

I was at the grand opening of the Pacific Bondi - our new megalopolis. Unfortunately I can’t tell you much about it, as they wouldn’t let me in.

Now I’m not rich. But I could be soon. And though my preference is for glorious art deco gems, I’m not opposed to these new developments (am I sounding sufficiently blasé)?

And when I’m ready to bathe in nothing but Perrier water, I’ll be handing over my millions to the Toga Group on Hall St. They welcomed me in, schmoozed me and made me feel like the cosmopolitan buzz of their new development Boheme would be my perfect place to live and shop. And I was wearing well-worn thongs at the time.

So who is moving in to Pacific Bondi in 2015-2016?

In terms of penthouses, a European paid $9M, a Hong Kong expat paid $10.3M, a local buyer $10.5M and the $15M pad is expected to sell this week to a local empty-nester. More from the SMH article here.

With at least 30% of the units expected to be sold to investors, weekly rents are estimated at about $600-700 for studios, $850-1,200 for 1-bedders and $950-1,600 for a 2 br unit. More from The Property Observer here.

I’m confident Bondi Beach can maintain its village charm and character through these gentrified times but with real estate prices set to skew sky-high, hopefully we won’t have to top rich Aunt Beryl to afford to live here.

Yours in the big bucks…

x andy

Pacific Bondi Penthouse at Bondi Beach Sydney NSW

Pacific Bondi penthouse. Image source: Australian Financial Review