European people are exceptional at many things; equality, being ridiculously good looking, fashion, architecture they don’t knock down for the sake of a few dollars, literature, okay, okay they’re exceptional at everything.
At the very top of that list though, Europeans are connoisseurs of fine coffee and good food, made with love and conveniently, those are two of our favourite things.
Which is why it makes us extremely happy that a brand new European-inspired eatery opened in Robina recently bringing all the fine coffee and good food we could possibly wish for.
The newbie is called Dark Fluid Espresso and it’s the work of two absolutely delightful Europeans (obviously) whose goods you’ve probably sampled, and loved, before.
Sonia and Jovan Ivanovski owned the much-loved deli (plus a few others across the Coast) that once lived where The Kitchens now stands at Robina Town Centre stocking all of the European meats and cheeses and coffee and what an absolute treat that place was.
Anyway, all that goodness has now been moved just a short stroll away to the Easy T Centre and that’s good news for everyone.
The space boasts indoor and outdoor seating with ALL of the car parks out front and a cosy, welcoming vibe that’ll make you feel right at home.
Menu-wise you can expect the very best brunch goodies sprinkled with a little of that European flair and washed down with Wilde coffee fresh out of Melbourne.
A couple of favourites included the Black Truffle Eggs with semi-dried tomatoes, grilled asparagus, prosciutto, Parmesan cheese, sourdough and truffle oil. Perfectly balanced tastiness.
We also enjoyed the Smashed Avocado (of course) because there was a whole lot of avocado plus feta, Parmesan, cherry tomatoes, radishes, roasted seeds and fresh mint on rye bread – perhaps the best we’ve ever had.
There’s also a delightful Haloumi Burger and Vanilla Pancakes and we would like to eat every single one a few more times thank you very much.
For an after-brunch treat there are homemade (by Sonia) cakes and slices, European specialties and also of the good old caramel variety and if you’re more into takeaway type situations there’s delicious sandwiches, wraps and salads for your lunching pleasure.
In summary, if you’re after a homestyle, flavour-packed feast with a side of fine coffee and that European welcoming vibe you no doubt love, look no further than Dark Fluid Espresso.
They would love to have you.
LOCATION: Easy T Centre, 510 Christine Ave, Robina
HOURS: Monday to Saturday 6.30am to 4pm and Sunday 7am until 3pm
Words and photos by Kirra Smith
If there’s one place on the Gold Coast where you can both shop up an absolute storm and wander amongst stunning natural parklands, it is Robina; a Gold Coast suburb set slightly back from the coastline and offering a huge variety of eats and experiences.
In honour of showcasing the Coast in all its’ unique glory, we’ve compiled a list of 15 reasons locals love Robina, so you too can experience all the fun there is to be had.
My French Pastries
A venue called My French Pastries needs no introduction but since they’re some of the most delicious pastries around, they get one anyway. Jen and Antonio Marchesi have created something really special here with French pastries made from scratch and taste absolutely divine. Think Key Lime Chantilly, Lemon Meringue, Blueberry and Chocolate tarts, all so very beautiful. There are also life-changing savoury goodies and you’ll want to sample everything.
Where: Robina Quays Shopping Centre, 5/361 Robina Parkway, Robina
Eddy + Wolff
The trendiest of the Robina bunch, Eddy + Wolff opened in early 2019 bringing exceptional, modern Asian eats to the people. It’s a sleek, 22-seat venue by the people who also offer the most delicious eats up north at Can Tho Kitchen and it’s an absolute must-try. The menu is made up of BBQ-style dishes, snacks, bigger plates and sides, all of which are designed to share and hail from Thao and Vien’s home country of Vietnam, China, Japan and Korea to name a few. The drinks list is tight and perfectly curated to match the food with a lemon sake you definitely need to try. One of your absolute faves.
Where: 44 Commerce Drive, Robina
A hidden gem that may just be the reason the term ‘hidden gem’ was coined, Cocotte Dining offers a fusion of French and Japanese cuisines and it is hands down some of the best food on the Coast. Found a little off the beaten track at Robina Quays, Cocotte are producing dishes like Slow Cooked Ox Tail and Beef Cheek with red wine, sake and miso stew and it is a melt-in-your-mouth dish if ever you’ve tasted one. An exceptional spot, get down there and sample their degustation menu.
Where: Shop 16A, 361 Robina Parkway, Robina
Foodie marketplace-style situations are one of life’s greatest gifts. So many edible options in one area, heavenly. The Kitchens is one of those market-style situations with an array of exceptional venues all within the one beautifully appointed area. Think tasty teppanyaki, big old burgers, a vegan foodie venue and even a craft beer bar also offering delicious eats. There is more choice than any one person needs and it is all of the high quality variety.
Where: Robina Town Centre, Robina
The famed German bier bar opened in Robina, much to the delight of locals, slinging giant pretzels, hotdogs and of course, an array of German biers. Not only that goodness, there’s also a ping pong table to hit a few rounds on, a sunlit courtyard and lots of drink and dining specials. Get in there for guaranteed good times.
Where: The Kitchens, Robina Town Centre, Robina
El Camino Cantina
A good time Mexi-joint opened up at Robina Town Centre bringing one of the most colour-filled interiors we’ve ever come across, a menu packed with family-friendly Mexi eats and frozen margaritas (the best thing). El Camino Cantina, The legendary venue is one of four Queensland restaurants and it’s known for neon signage, sweet sombreros and a time you won’t long forget. Gather the crew and get on it.
Where: Robina Town Centre, Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina
CBUS Super Stadium
Home of the Gold Coast’s beloved Titans, CBUS Super Stadium one of the best regional stadiums Australia and it’s ours, all ours. Not only do Gold Coasters spend their weekends cheering on the boys here but we’ve also been lucky enough to watch A-league and international football games, the Nitro Circus and the Rugby 7s as part of the Commonwealth Games. Yay CBUS bringing us all the sporting joy.
Where: Centreline Place, Robina
An old Robina favourite got quite the glow up late recently, transforming it into sleek new venue complete with a deck overlooking the water, a specialised kids area and plenty of good vibes. Robina Pavilion boasts a menu packed with epic eats from woodfired pizzas to stacked burgers and you can also get involved in the impressive cocktail menu featuring the one and only, Mr Consistent. It’s the perfect spot for sun-soaked afternoon sessions with the crew.
Where: 229 Ron Penhaligon Way, Robina
Robina Parkway Dog Park
Obviously one for the locals with hairy mates but if you’ve got one too, we highly recommend letting him or her have a crack at this place. There are all kinds of fun things for your doggo to explore including tunnels and hurdles and they’ll no doubt make a new friend or two in the process. If you don’t have a pooch, get down there to try and score a free pat anyway.
Where: Lot 21, Robina Parkway, Robina
Taboon Modern Middle Eastern Café
Middle Eastern is an absolute favourite, all spice-filled and flavoursome and some of the very best varieties of it can be found right here on the Gold Coast, in Robina conveniently. Taboon Modern Middle Eastern Café has been around for quite some time and the menu is one that must be sampled ASAP. Taboon is Arabic for stone oven and the cuisine draws influence from Marrakesh to Istanbul and Cairo to Beirut. Think authentic hummus, grilled skewers and slow-cooked Moroccan tagines. Everything is absolutely incredible and you must go today.
Where: Easy T Centre, 514 Christine Avenue, Robina
The newest of the bunch is Parkway Coffee by the clever gals who also created Third Base in Palmy. The newbie is similar in laidback, community vibes and is also serving up the same level of tasty brunch eats. Like their famous Egg and Bacon Turkish – a larger (and yummier) version of the B&E roll we all love so much. Pop in and spend some time in the garden devouring all of the goodies.
Where: Robina Quays, 16b, 361 Robina Parkway, Robina
If open spaces and all of the greenery, in the middle of a city no less, is your thing (yes please), Cheltenham Park is a lovely place to frequent. There are plenty of areas to run around with the kiddies or the dog, bushwalking tracks and big leafy trees to stretch out beneath with a picnic and your favourite people. It’s the perfect spot if you’re keen to escape the city but don’t feel like driving too far to find some greenery.
Where: Cheltenham Drive, Robina
Dark Fluid Espresso
A sweet, European-inspired coffee and brunch spot at the East T Centre in Robina bringing big, perfectly balanced flavours and some of the best coffee around. Owned by the husband and wife team who once brought us the very best deli goods at Robina Town Centre, this cafe is bursting with all your favourite breaky and lunch eats with a hint of that European flair you know and love. Plus there’s plenty of parking out front and lots of lovely, welcoming vibes inside. Love.
Where: Easy T Centre, 510 Christine Avenue, Robina
The Sporting Globe
The spacious, sports-themed bar and restaurant made a big splash on Robina Town Centre when it moved in late last year. Within The Sporting Globe there are 50 high definition screens including two, 5m2 screens and a nine-screen video wall, so there’s absolutely no way you’ll miss a second of any sporting action. They’re also serving up perfect sport-watching food, frosty beers and lots of fun. Can it be summer already please?
Where: The Promenade, Robina Town Centre, Robina
Alpine Indoor Climbing
Robina’s state-of-the-art climbing centre is a very good time if you’re looking for a new challenge or simply enjoy climbing things as an adult (same). Alpine Indoor Climbing opened last year and it’s become a favourite of both professional and beginner climbers since. There are varying levels of challenges and you can go across, or straight up, anyway you like really and there are cushioned pads underneath should you lose your grip. Good times.
Where: 86 Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina
Words by Kirra Smith
Remember as a child when climbing to the top of things was the absolute greatest achievement possible? Well turns out, even as an adult, reaching (literal) new heights makes you feel like a million dollars.
So much so that Robina has recently acquired a brand new, state-of-the-art space so we Gold Coasters can climb things to our hearts’ content (but in air-con).
It’s called Alpine Indoor Climbing and it’s an extremely interesting (and aesthetically pleasing) venue designed for everyone from beginners to the advanced among us, to experience the challenging satisfaction of bouldering (with pretty coloured, faux boulders because, indoors).
Created by husband and wife team Jamie and Kirsty Booth along with Jamie’s brother Joe Booth, Alpine Indoor Climbing opened as the only climbing space on the Coast of its’ kind and let us tell you, it’s impressive.
The actual space itself was designed by an innovative German company by the name of Blocz and the process of creation is fascinating. Jamie and Kirsty created a model which was built and scanned in and over numerous months in design phase the project came to life.
And said project is a room with geometric shapes built onto the walls and brightly coloured boulder-like blocks (technical) placed on said shapes to resemble climbing an actual cliff face.
You can go straight up, up at an angle, upside down, any which way you please really, following tracks built at different grades. Which means you can practice on climbing walls the pros train on and yes, there are soft mats beneath to cushion you, should you fall (climbing back down is recommended of course).
Basically it’s the good time your younger self would have absolutely loved, but built for your adult self (strictly 10 years old plus) wanting both a challenge and a fun time.
Not to mention you can get coffee and have a chat with other climbers, many of whom can give you tips on becoming your very best climbing self.
If you haven’t climbed a boulder in quite some time (same), you can get a casual visit pass and then once you’re hooked, go for a 10-visit pass or a membership for six or 12 months or a no contract membership. And you will get hooked!
Alpine Indoor Climbing was built by climbers for both those who are already passionate about the sport and those who don’t yet know they are.
We highly recommend getting down to Robina to give it a go for yourself, you’re guaranteed to work up a sweat and probably have a laugh while you’re at it.
Plus, your inner child gets to feel like a million dollars and there’s nothing better than that.
LOCATION: 86 Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina
HOURS: 6am until 8.30pm Monday to Friday, 8am until 6pm Saturday and 10am until 6pm Sunday
Words and photos by Kirra Smith
STORY SPONSORED BY ALPINE INDOOR CLIMBING
Magic is in the air Gold Coasters and it comes in the form of an interactive art gallery that has opened Robina Town Centre just this week.
Fresh out of Melbourne, where it has captured the imaginations of people from all walks of life (from the Insta-set to the wee ones), ArtVo Illusions is turning the traditional art gallery experience on its head and we are here for it.
15 artists worked on the space, creating over 80 art works and the idea is for visitors to take photos (read: selfies) with the art, which will include the likes of wild animal scenes, really quite terrifying King Kong-esque experiences and many other incredible murals, yet to be revealed.
If you’ve ever wanted to stand beside a lion in the African jungle but aren’t quite that brave, ArtVo Illusions has created the opportunity for you. Platform 9 3/4 is there, as is Marilyn Monroe, a terrifying shark and an escape from the jaws of a hippo.
The rest of the concepts and themes are still tightly under wraps but we locals can expect to be wonderstruck by the clever artistry and incredible craftsmanship that goes into creating each body of work, not to mention the hundreds of litres of paint.
Upon entering the space, you can choose your own gallery adventure, exploring each immersive art-piece and zone at your own pace and stopping to put yourself in the picture (literally) along the way.
You’ll spot a few well known locations and paintings that have been recreated to make you feel as though you’ve stepped back in time, or, across the ocean, without ever having left the comfort of the Gold Coast.
By creating optical illusions through colour, shape and pattern, the installations trick the eye, which can be captured in your photos (making you look very handy with the camera). Unlike many other museums where photography is prohibited, iPhones and cameras are essential for the very best time.
Look at us, getting all arty on the Gold Coast.
Go get involved, you’ll definitely get a giggle or two out of it.
LOCATION: Robina Town Centre, Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina