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Marvel at art and our city skyline at this new rooftop bar

Artist impression of The Exhibitionist Rooftop Bar (image supplied)
Artist impression of The Exhibitionist Rooftop Bar (image supplied)

For some time now the budding arts scene on the Gold Coast has been increasingly building and building. And it’s great to see, is it not!?

HOTA is without a doubt the centerpiece of all this artistic activity. And with the soon-to-be-opened HOTA Gallery, things are without a doubt, to be taken up a notch.

So, when we heard the news that the soon to be opened gallery was in fact going to have its very own dedicated rooftop bar, we naturally had to tell all of our informed readers the news.

The Exhibitionist Bar, located in the new HOTA Gallery, will provide an unparalleled venue experience. After all, what other world-class art galleries do you know with a rooftop bar — we’ll wait for an answer!

Artist Impression of the HOTA Gallery (image supplied)
Artist Impression of the HOTA Gallery (image supplied)

Doors will open the 8th of May 2021 and in our books, this is set to add a new dimension to the city’s already energetic food and social scene.

Located on Level Five of the Gallery across 233sqm of indoor and outdoor terrace spaces, The Exhibitionist Bar will have completely unhindered panoramic views of the vibrant arts precinct, the always impressive Surfers Paradise skyline, stunning Gold Coast waterways and a western outlook across our enigmatic hinterland. If this isn’t going to be a feast for the eyes, we don’t know what is!

The venue will offer guests a sophisticated tapas-style bar menu with specialty cocktails, an extensive wine list, house-made sodas and local craft beer. Of the morning time, it will be the Gallery’s go-to location for those in need of their caffeine fix.

RameshRamesh Mario Nithiyendran sculpture (image supplied)Mario Nithiyendran installation (image supplied)
Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran sculpture (image supplied)

HOTA‘s Head of Culinary Arts, David Ashford says “The Exhibitionist Bar will deliver a spectacular destination rooftop experience in a bold new venue with enticing views, share style food along with cocktail and champagne offering the showstoppers. Our intention was to create an iconic venue that provides a memorable experience for every visitor”.

Just imagine yourself finishing off an afternoon of swooning over incredible art, sipping a glass of champagne and sharing some tapas, all while watching the sunset over the Gold Coast hinterland.

Aren’t we the cultured and lucky bunch?

LOCATION: HOTA Gallery,135 Bundall Road, Bundall
HOURS: TBA

Words by Alex Mitcheson.

Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat works coming to the Coast

Jean-Michel Basquiat 1985 © Lizzie Himmel. Artwork © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York

Things just keep getting better around here Gold Coasters.

First, we were allowed out of our homes, next we were gifted quite a few exciting new venues, then we could dance again and now, a world-class art gallery, the largest public gallery outside of a capital city in Australia. Look at us go!

Let’s dive straight into that last thing shall we. Yes, it’s Home of the Arts long-awaited gallery (called HOTA Gallery) and it’s set to open on April 10th in 2021. It will span six levels and will present a jam-packed program of world premiere international exhibitions, Australian exclusives and new commissions, all of which celebrate artists from across Australia and the world.

We are quite literally jumping up and down with excitement!

HOTA Gallery (image supplied)

HOTA Gallery will launch with Solid Gold: Artists from Paradise (10th April to the 20th June 2021) and it will be presented across the Gallery and the HOTA parklands, and feature major new commissions and art work by emerging and established Australian artists with a connection to the region, including Hiromi Tango, Michael Candy, Abbey McCulloch, Samuel Leighton-Dore and Libby Harward.

Celebrating the diversity and richness of the Gold Coast, the exhibition will feature sculpture, painting, video, photography and installations, both indoors and out.

In a world premiere exhibition exclusive to the Gold Coast and Australia, HOTA Gallery will present Contemporary Masters from New York: Art from the Mugrabi Collection (13 November 2021 – 27 February 2022) featuring approximately 70 works from some of the world’s most influential contemporary artists.

Keith Haring 1985 © Jeannette Montgomery Barron / Trunk Archive

Get excited to see in your own backyard works from Jean-Michel Basquiat (largely recognised as boosting the prevalence of graffiti artists into galleries), Andy Warhol (a man who needs no introduction, but just in case… uber famous for leading the pop art movement with his Campbell Soup Cans and Marilyn Monroe works), Keith Haring (a pop artist who advocated safe sex and raised AIDS awareness in the 80s), Richard Prince (most recently known as the Instagram artist) and Jeff Koons (a sculptor most famous for his Balloon Dog sculptures).

It’s the first time these incredible works will have been shown in Australia and we are so grateful to the Gold Coast team at HOTA who have been working tirelessly to put this amazing collection together.

SOLID GOLD_Hiromi Hotel - Brain Flower

The inaugural exhibition in the new dedicated Children’s Gallery is World Upside Down (10 April – 10 October 2021). Working with Queensland artists Lowana Skye-Davies and Alinta Krauth, the Children’s Gallery will be an immersive space filled with interactive art and hands-on making activities, inspired by the themes found in the first two major exhibitions, Solid Gold and Lyrical Landscapes.

Alongside the premiere exhibitions presented in the main space, HOTA Gallery will also present works from the $32 million City Collection. Consisting of more than 4,400 artworks (who new we had that many in storage waiting for our eyes to feast on?), the collection includes one the largest collections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in regional Australia.

So that’s a lot of epic things already and there’s plenty more to come (ie rooftop bar anyone?), stay tuned for more information as further exhibitions are announced. What an epic time to be a Gold Coaster.

LOCATION: 135 Bundall Rd, Bundall
WHEN: 10th  April 2021

Artist Impression of the HOTA Gallery (image supplied)
Artist Impression of the HOTA Gallery (image supplied)

Get your tickets to the opening of this HOT(a) Gallery

HOTA Art Gallery entrance (image supplied)
HOTA Art Gallery entrance (image supplied)

It’s no secret that the Gold Coast has been a smouldering hotbed of artistic talent and appreciation for a little while now. You don’t have to look far to see impressive murals and art inspired spaces in pretty much every suburb we have.

The highlight is of course the Home of the Arts (HOTA). Formerly the Gold Coast Arts Centre this hub of creativity has seen some vast renovations and improvements over the last few years. Being on the cusp of opening an entirely new gallery building means an exciting period awaits the venue and all those who plan to visit it.

Now, to throw some facts and figures around, the new $60.5 million HOTA Gallery will be the largest public gallery outside a capital city in Australia. Designed by award-winning Melbourne-based architects ARM, the Gallery will include over 2,000m2 of AAA-rated, international standard exhibition space, a dedicated Children’s Gallery, and will be home to the $32 million City Collection, consisting of more than 4,400 artworks (including one of the largest collections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art in regional Australia). 

An impressive building needs an impressive centrepiece and the folks at HOTA have not dropped the ball on this one.

Commissioned Melbourne Art Foundation (MAF) and HOTA, Sri-Lankan born, Sydney-based artist Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran has created a monumental six-metre-high sculpture which is on display on the lower ground entrance to the Gallery. 

Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran with his installation at HOTA Gallery (image supplied)
Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran with his installation at HOTA Gallery (image supplied)

Predominantly composed of bronze, Nithiyendran has combined a range of materials including concrete, neon and fiberglass to create a multi-coloured avatar reflecting the vibrancy of the HOTA Gallery building.

Holding a smiling neon companion and standing on a geometric plinth, this is the artist’s largest sculpture to date and his first ambitious work in the public domain.

This significant artwork will welcome visitors inside the new HOTA Gallery with outstretched arms and expressive and commanding tones when the doors open to the public for the very first time on Saturday 8th of May.

The work gestures to a range of global sources that link to my cultural background and contemporary culture,” said Nithiyendran.

“I hope local and international visitors engage with the work by considering the meanings and significance of idolatry and sculptural monuments in public spaces.”

To celebrate the opening weekend of the Gallery, HOTA will present an eclectic music program on its Outdoor Stage all day on Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 May. To further amplify the local flavour, a pop-up market will sell the finest artisan wares by Gold Coast makers, accompanied by pockets of local food and drink. The full program for the opening weekend will be announced next month.

Gold Coasters can get their hands on tickets for the HOTA Gallery opening weekend, simply by signing up via their website to receive a special booking link, which also puts them in with the chance of winning a weekend away! – Sounds good to us!

Words by Alex Mitcheson.

RameshRamesh Mario Nithiyendran sculpture (image supplied)Mario Nithiyendran installation (image supplied)
Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran sculpture (image supplied)

11 next-level Gold Coast rooftop bars

The Exhibitionist Bar (image supplied)
The Exhibitionist Bar (image supplied)

If Queensland weather doesn’t shout rooftop bars at you in a high-pitched squeal, we don’t know what will. Our climate, coupled with the amazing hospitality scene here in our city, means these open-air meccas of good times and delicious libations are the prime place to find yourself — any time of the year! It’s all about drinks in the sunshine and snapping selfies with picturesque backgrounds for Insta-bragging purposes. 

So, in honour of bars in high places, here are 11 next-level rooftop bars you should make it a priority to visit this weekend — and next weekend, and the weekend after…

The Exhibitionist Bar
When HOTA opened its brand new state of the art gallery building last year (the biggest outside a capital city, by the way), we all knew the art scene was about to go up a level or two. What we didn’t realise was that a sublimely positioned rooftop bar was a part of the deal also. The highly talented Tom Angel heads up a bar and creative cocktail list, which is a seriously good spot for a sundowner — and the ideal place to take out of towners!
Where: Level 5/135 Bundall Rd, Surfers Paradise

Clockwise: Kingfish ceviche, Creamy coconut rice with dulche de leche and Patacones with black beans at Tropic Vice (Image: © 2021 Inside Gold Coast)
Clockwise: Kingfish ceviche, Creamy coconut rice with dulche de leche and Patacones with black beans at Tropic Vice (Image: © 2021 Inside Gold Coast)

Tropic Vice
Glitzy, glamorous, and generally a wonderful time all around, Tropic Vice was the rooftop bar Nobby Beach was yearning for, and it came to fruition in 2021. The ideal spot for a weekend catch up, a mid-week cheeky cocktail, or an epic bottomless brunch every Sunday. Do yourself a favour: find yourself here sipping a cocktail whilst drinking in the gorgeous hinterland view.
Where: 2215 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach

The Island Rooftop
Find the Gold Coast’s largest open air and much-loved rooftop bar perched on top of the The Island in Surfers ParadiseThe Island Rooftop is part nightclub, part bar, part live music venue, and all the parts are a fun time no matter the day of the week. Head there for the epic weekend Grazy Days lunch or just to feel like you’re on Island time.
Where: 3128 Surfers Paradise Blvd, Surfers Paradise

Nineteen at The Star poolside (image supplied)
Nineteen at The Star poolside (image supplied)

Nineteen at The Star
The fanciest of the bunch is undoubtedly Nineteen at The Star, complete with velvet booth-style seating, an infinity pool and ocean views for days. Found atop the The Star Gold Coast’s The Darling, Nineteen is the perfect place for people-watching, dressing up and sipping on fancy tipples while dancing the night away. Oh and be sure to take a snap on the runway that stretches out in the pool!
Where: The Darling, Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach 

Frida Sol
The Palm Beach Mexi restaurant doubles as a rooftop bar with views out to the ocean and lots of salty ocean breezes. The eats are fresh and flavoursome, and there’s many a margarita on the list to soothe that sweltering summer humidity we’re currently experiencing. Get into Frida Sol.
Where: 1176 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach

Mr PP's Deli & Rooftop Bar (Image: © 2017 Inside Gold Coast)
Mr PP's Deli & Rooftop Bar (Image: © 2017 Inside Gold Coast)

Mr PP’s Deli & Rooftop Bar
A game-changer in Southport’s food and beverage scene was Mr PP’s, a deli and rooftop bar boasting city views and plenty of good vibes in the century-old postal building. There is a generous menu full of pizzas, tapas and charcuterie boards and this, folks, is the reason we love rooftop bars. Plus cocktails and local tipples, of which there are many at Mr PP’s. Live music on Sundays too.
Where: 43 Nerang St, Southport

The Collective
Everyone’s favourite multi-restaurant establishment, The Collective also boasts a sweet rooftop bar with some epic cocktails for your sipping pleasure. You can also order eats from one of the five menus on offer and watch the sunset over the ocean while you’re at it. We HIGHLY recommend.
Where: 1128 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach

Justin Lane (image supplied)
Justin Lane (image supplied)

Justin Lane
A much-loved favourite and the Gold Coast’s first official rooftop bar, Justin Lane is still one of the most popular rooftop’s since it’s opening in 2011. The space is intimate with booth-style seating overlooking Burleigh and plenty of cocktails to tickle your fancy. Downstairs is all the delicious pizza you could possibly need, so fill up on that, then head upstairs to mingle with the gang.
Where: 1708-1710 Gold Coast Hwy, Burleigh Heads

Last Night on Earth
Pretty sure that if it were, in fact, your last night on Earth, you would want to spend it at a sweet rooftop bar with bulk cocktails at the ready. Which maybe isn’t the point of Southport’s Last Night on Earth but a good intro nonetheless. Last Night on Earth is the work of local legend Arran Wollams and his crew; it’s a somewhat underworld themed rooftop bar in the heart of Southport offering good times aplenty. It’s a dive bar, but not as you know it. Check it out.
Where: 50b Nerang St, Southport 

 

Moxy's Rooftop Bar (Image: © 2019 Inside Gold Coast)
Moxy's Rooftop Bar (Image: © 2019 Inside Gold Coast)

Moxy’s Rooftop Bar
This rooftop bar located down in southerly Coolangatta has beautiful glimpses of the ocean, lots of live music and an impressive cocktail menu that’ll keep you coming back for more. Whilst they may not do eats, you can order from the Mexican joint downstairs, and we’re fairly sure there’s nothing that pairs better than bulk cocktails and tacos. Always lively and worth the trip down the Coast.
Where: 2/152 Griffith St, Coolangatta

Aviary Rooftop Bar
Perched atop Mantra on Sharks, Aviary Rooftop Bar’s views are as stunning as their extensive drinks list. With 180 degree views over the Surfers Paradise skyline and the ocean, it’s the perfect place for an after work beverage or Sunday arvo session with the crew. Ohh and don’t even get us started on their authentic Italian pizza’s, and tapas… if you know, you know.
Where: Mantra at Sharks, Melia Ct, Southport (next to Southport Sharks)

Words by Alex Mitcheson.

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