Etihad brings worlds 50 best chefs to Australia

Etihad Airways has flown out the world’s best chefs to Melbourne for the announcement of the world’s 50 best restaurants. The food and wine capital of Australia served as the perfect host for the unique event. The week-long event in Australia saw the world’s biggest names in gastronomy take part in a range of different activities.

At end of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants gala event, attendees were given a brief taste of the dishes available on the Etihad Airbus A380. Guests were given a glimpse into the array of different cuisines available for Etihad customers, as the airline was innovatively able to turn the event into a marketing outlet. Guests were also given the chance to remove pieces of chocolate from an edible world map in a special contest giving participants the chance to win two business class tickets to anywhere in the world on the Etihad network.

Vice president of Etihad Airways’ Marketing Partnerships, Patrick Pierce stated, “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants program has given us an unprecedented opportunity to showcase the quality of our food and beverage offering and unique approach to hospitality to some of the biggest names and influencers in the culinary world today.”

Guests flying with Etihad in the Airbus A380 from all across the globe to Australia, are given a world-class dining experience in the air. The airline offers its flyers an onboard dining service matched by no one else in the business. Each A380 has its own pantry on board, always stocked with fresh ingredients, allowing for creative meals to be prepared that are not on the menu. Etihad currently has 235 in-flight chefs and 495 food and beverage managers, ensuring that everyone has the best dishes possible on their flight. 

Virgin Australia introduces in-flight Wi-Fi

Virgin Australia has just taken a major step towards its goal of becoming Australia’s first domestic carrier to allow passengers access to the internet while in the air: starting from mid-April, the carrier will be trialling in-flight Wi-Fi for select routes for the first time, it has announced.

The Wi-Fi will be available for free during the 3 month trial period on one 737 plane operating between Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. If this goes well, Wi-Fi will then be added to the rest of the 737, 777 and A330 planes throughout the late summer and fall. This will include a host of international flights to Asia and the United States.

Virgin announced its plan just days after Qantas decided to delay its trial of in-flight public Wi-Fi. John Thomas, Virgin Australia Executive, stated that they were confident that this trial will run smoothly and successfully and that customer experience feedback will be key to delivering the most reliable internet and entertainment access possible while in the air.

“Feedback from our guests during the customer testing period will help us tailor our in-flight Wi-Fi offering to their needs,” he said.

After the initial trial period, it is expected that Virgin Australia will begin to charge passengers for in-flight Wi-Fi use. The prices should range between a reasonable 8 and 14 dollars for basic connection. There will also be an option for higher-speed connection which will range between 15 and 21 dollars. The first 30 minutes of every journey are also expected to be free for every passenger.

If the trial is successful, this move from Virgin looks set to revolutionise the air travel experience and will be a welcome added convenience to make that trip an extra bit easier.

 

Soak up the sun at Bondi Beach

Few people touch down on Australian shores without being familiar with Bondi Beach. The scene of many a movie and TV show, Bondi is one of the world’s most iconic stretches of sand. If you’re planning a personalised Australia holiday, and you’re keen to catch some rays on your adventures, here is some useful information about spending the day at brilliant Bondi.

 

Soaking up the sun at Bondi Beach

Bondi is one of Oz’s most famous sun traps, and if it’s a hot day with clear blue skies, you definitely won’t be alone in your pursuit of sunshine at Bondi Beach. This spot is a tourist trap, and you’re likely to be greeted with huge crowds on a warm day. If you’re keen to enjoy the magic of Bondi without hundreds of people for company, it’s best to get there early or visit later in the day. At dusk, the beach is much less busy, but no less beautiful.

Bondi Beach is not just a sunbather’s paradise. You can also surf here or hire a paddleboard. If you’re new to surfing, you can book a lesson, and you’ll be provided with all the gear you need.

If you fancy a swim, but you’re keen to dodge the surfers, take a trip to Bondi Baths, which are located at the south tip of the beach. You can swim lengths here, and you can also enjoy beautiful views of the sprawling bay.

Bondi to Coogee

If you’re keen to stretch your legs after a day of soaking up the rays, there’s no better way to blow away the cobwebs and enjoy the vistas than taking the Bondi to Coogee coastal hike. This 6km stretch takes around 2 hours if you’re going at a moderate pace, and it will treat you to beautiful views of the water crashing against the cliffs. When you get to Coogee, you’ll find plenty of cafes and bars to quench your thirst.

Bondi safety tips

To make the most of your day at Bondi Beach, make sure you pay attention to the swimming flags, stick to the designated areas and listen out for advice and instructions from the lifeguards on patrol. It can get very hot in the summer months, so take sunscreen with you, and avoid the midday sun. There are plenty of places to duck into for a quick bite of lunch or a refreshing beer in the shade.

 

Perth and Adelaide set to host historic Ashes Tests

The latest instalment of cricket’s greatest rivalry is set to begin on November 23 in Brisbane, with five highly-anticipated Tests taking place across Australia until January 8, 2018 – two of which will be played out in the captivating coastal cities of Adelaide and Perth. If construction is completed in time as expected, Western Australia’s capital will crown the occasion by giving the brand new Perth Stadium its debut, while Adelaide, state capital of South Australia, is set to make history by becoming the first venue to host a day-night Ashes Test.

The vibrant city of Adelaide is a hive of creativity, with an exceptional small bar scene and remarkable variety of restaurants as well as world-class galleries, museums, luxury hotels and beautiful white sandy beaches close to the city centre. Be sure to explore everything else this marvellous city has to offer when you visit for the cricket!

With the test starting at 2pm, there are plenty of options to make the most of the time before the beginning. Take in the sun in the Adelaide Hills as you tuck into some lunch and sip a glass of local wine, spend time on the beach looking out onto the glistening ocean, or enjoy a wildlife experience with native koalas, kangaroos and even the elusive echidna at Cleland Park.

Whilst Adelaide will no doubt be one of the great spectacles of the cricket series, Perth may well be where it is decided. Both sides are in a strong run of form, with players and journalists alike expecting a tough series between these two old foes. Joe Root’s men currently hold the prestigious trophy and conquered South Africa in 2016, so they will be confident of victory at this key battle ground.

If you are thinking about travelling to Australia for the Ashes Series, you should certainly make the wonderful city of Perth one of your stops. Out of the 5 cities set to host the series, Perth is the quickest to reach from the UK with a journey time of just 18 hours, 4 hours quicker than a trip to Sydney. With over 3,000 hours of sunshine a year, it’s also the sunniest of Australia’s major cities, offering perfect weather to enjoy one of the 19 pristine beaches, wildlife and a thriving bar and restaurant scene.

So whilst the Ashes Series will make the headlines, make your own journey by exploring everything South Australia and Western Australia have to offer.

Sand, Surf and City in Australia’s Gold Coast

One of Australia’s hottest tourist destinations, the Gold Coast is a sunny city just south of Brisbane that boasts an adventure playground-esque range of unique attractions for holidaymakers to enjoy. From beaches and theme parks to golf courses and shopping centers, the Gold Coast truly has it all. Its majestic skyline and miles of stunning sands make Australia’s Gold Coast a must on every traveler’s bucket list.

 

Sand

With over 57km of beaches, you will have no difficulty finding a sandy spot to relax here. There are several perfect beaches for anyone looking to enjoy a nice day watching the waves roll in. Nobby Beach, or as the locals call it, Nobby’s, is ideal for delving into a good book and taking a soothing nap in the sun. It is relatively uncrowded, and offers a host of barbecue and picnic shelters, making it ideal for a full family day by the beach. Mermaid beach is just south of the Gold Coast city centre, enjoying a central location while remaining less crowded than Broadbeach. The small swells make it safe for swimming and there are many playgrounds scattered about to keep the children entertained.

Surf

The Gold Coast is known across the globe for some of the best and most consistent waves imaginable. The beaches are patrolled all year round by lifeguards and no matter what board experience you have, there are beaches with conditions to suit your skill level. Kirra Beach, the Gold Coast’s most famous stretch, is renowned for its combination of both testing waves to challenge any expert surfer and smaller waves which break close to shore – perfect for beginners. Snapper Rocks are also considered home to some of the best waves on the Gold Coast, comprising several points which combine to form what is known as the Superbank. The waves around the Superbank’s break are a must for any avid surfer. Burleigh Heads attracts a crowd all year round with its consistent waves, as well as offering the added appeal of the chance to book lessons with former world professional surfer Michael Barry.

City

The city itself also offers plenty of enjoyable activities when you want to swap sand for sightseeing. The Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens are free to visit and its lakes, barbecue locations and delightful greenery are perfect for families. If you’re a keen sports fan and up for watching something new, take in an Australian Football League game at the 25,000-capacity Carrara Stadium, home to the Gold Coast Suns.

 

The Gold Coast offers a host of attractions and activities for everyone. If you are looking for the perfect family getaway or you are simply a surfer looking for some great waves, Australia’s Gold Coast is a fantastic option.