Generic filters
Filter by Suburb
Select all
Main Beach
Mermaid Beach
Nobby's Beach
North Burleigh
Palm Beach
Surfers Paradise
Water Fun

7 of the best Gold Coast boutiques for ball gowns

Get your hands on some fire black tie attire.

Girl in formal gown (image supplied)

So, you’ve secured your tix to the hottest little soiree in town *cue excitement* followed immediately by a sartorial tailspin at the prospect of traipsing across the entire Gold Coast to track down a glittering gala-worthy gown that’s good to glow. Unless you’re hitting the red carpet on the reg, procuring a ball gown is something that probably doesn’t crop up on the ole’ to-do list that often.

As your inside word on all things Gold Coast, of corset it’s us you can trust to guide you on your quest to track down the most glamorous gowns in town.

If this is a realm you have’t revisited since you dedicated half of high school to finding the perfect frock (… among all that diligent studying, of course), fear not. Not unlike Angelina Jolie’s iconic Oscars pose circa 2012, we’ve done all ‘the leg’ work and compiled a handy list of some local boutiques dishing up divine dresses.

(So now you have more time to doom scroll Pinterest for the perfect #hairspo, you’re welcome).

Blue Evening gown, Gearbox, Broadbeach (image supplied)
Blue Evening gown, Gearbox, Broadbeach (image supplied)

Gearbox Boutique
Broadbeach’s Gearbox Boutique is a name that’s been going strong on the GC for almost 20 years now. Owner Chris Deaves’ extensive industry experience and passion is testament to the brands continued success, going from strength to strength since the boutique’s inception in ’04 (and looking damn fine while doing it).

The spot is well-known among locals of all ages as a one-stop-shop, both for its stellar dresswear selection and next level customer service. Brimming with wall to wall racks showcasing the array of glittering gowns, Gearbox has something suit all manner of soirees. Plus, the Oasis proximity makes for a very convenient caffeination checkpoint post-shopping spree.
Where: Level 1, Oasis Shopping Centre, Broadbeach

Sonia Stradiotto of Sonia Stradiotto Couture (image supplied)
Sonia Stradiotto of Sonia Stradiotto Couture (image supplied)

Sonia Stradiotto Couture
Local brand Sonia Stradiotto Couture has been bedecking Gold Coasters in formal finery for some 30 years now. Known for her haute couture and eclectic suiting among the Aussie fashion scene, specialities of the label include bold and sequinned silhouettes – utilising rare, globally sourced fabrics such as intricate laces and lush velvets. Chances are, if you’re seeking evening attire that’s a little bit ‘la-di-da’, you’ll find it at Sonia’s swanky shopfront in Marina Mirage.

For those looking to splurge on something truly show-stopping, there’s also a designer service to have a bespoke garment whipped up just for you #fancypantsmuch.
Where: Marina Mirage Shopping Centre, Level 1, Shop 131 & 132, 74 Seaworld Drive, Main Beach

One Night Stand Designer Dress Hire, Mermaid Beach (image supplied)
One Night Stand Designer Dress Hire, Mermaid Beach (image supplied)

One Night Stand Designer Dress Hire
No need to borrow, beg or even buy – One Night Stand Designer Dress Hire is here so we can have a fashion fling with the dress of our dreams. The hero both us, and our credit cards, need.

Hunt through their extensive online catalogue to find a curated collection of sleek, spicy and stunning silhouettes – our haute hookup so we can ‘spend the night’ with some of our fave designer brands, sans commitment. From Aje to Zimmerman, the local label gang’s allll here.

The hire fee includes 5 days of rental and cleaning, which is a relief, because where does one even *find* a dry cleaner these days…?
Where: Level 1, Suite 6c, 2563 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach

Image via unsplash
Image via unsplash

One Honey Boutique
A fresh face to Bundall is the One Honey Boutique flagship showroom, ready to dress us to the nines with a 10/10 collection of exquisite evening gowns. The One Honey team are dedicated to helping you find a fabulous frock for your own Queen ‘Bey’ moment, their proud point of difference being there’s no charge for fittings nor is there a limit to how many you can try on #thelimitdoesnotexist. They’ve also got the sweet hook up as stockist for an array of local and international brands, such as sought after names like Portia & Scarlett and Sherri Hill.

Buyer, and browser, beware – if you plan on hitting up this particular dress destination, plan those shopping expeditions in advance because bookings are required.
Where: 2/40 Bundall Rd, Bundall

The Formal Gallery
Judging by the testimonials alone, The Formal Gallery is THE place to rent your red carpet drip, hooking locals up with jaw-dropping frocks fit for everything from black tie events to the Brownlow.. and beyond. It’s not uncommon to spy their dreamy dresses strutting and sashaying across the Miss World and Miss Universe stages, and hey, those gals know a thing or two about glamour (.. and beauty and grace.… #obligatoryMissCongeniality)

You can search for your fave frock by date (efficient) and once you find a dress you’re obsessed with, book a try on at the Bundall boutique. The luxe lewk is yours for 4 days, with cleaning included in the hire fee.
Where: Villa 1/13 Vespa Cres, Bundall

Image via unsplash
Image via unsplash

Studio Minc
Studio Minc has been hooking up Southport and surrounds with all the fanciest threads going on ten years now – though it’s well worth the side quest for absolutely anyone seeking a fire frock, as of the few boutiques boasting a collection of dresses proudly designed & made ethically in Australia. We love.

A fashion-forward family brand built by the local Mother and daughter team made up of Michelle, Madeleine, and Morgan – Studio Minc is the style savvy trio’s answer to the gap they felt existed for young, elegant, and A-lister aligned gowns. And, the rest is herstory – these days, the only gap that remains is some perfectly-placed side slits for us to put our best foot forward.

Bring your bestie along for one of their dual ‘BFF’ Formal Dress Try’ appointments, and secure one of the handcrafted creations by the all-female in-house team, for an all round girl gang slay.
Where: 27 Margaret Street, Southport

Pacific Fair Summer Shopping Weekend (image supplied)
Pacific Fair (image supplied)

Pacific Fair
OK, so this isn’t strictly a boutique but this list wouldn’t be complete without making mention of the Fair-est shopping centre in all the land Coast. Not only is it packed full of big guns like DJ’s and Myer, it also houses perpetual faves like Sheike, Forever New and Aje along with fancy-pants options like Carla Zampatti and Scanlan Theodore.

As an added kicker they have personal stylists on offer, so you can shop up a black tie storm with your very own in-house fashion expert.
Where: Pacific Fair Shopping Centre, Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach

Words by Kellie Leader.

9 Gold Coast restaurants to impress your friends

Jimmy Wah's, Burleigh Heads (image supplied)
Jimmy Wah's, Burleigh Heads (image supplied)

Friends, they’re the family we choose and worth their weight in gold. But LBR, don’t we all kinda fancy ourselves as the group authority on where to go for the best nosh, vibe and cocktail list? Well stick with us kids, we’ve got this!

Here are our tried and tested (on repeat) recommendations to elevate you to Queen Bee status. XOXO.

Jimmy Wah’s
Anyone who’s someone is eating modern Vietnamese, and no-one does it better than Jimmy Wah’s. Named after Robyn Williams’ charismatic character in ‘Good Morning Vietnam’, it’s sure to get a thumbs up from your squad. If you really want to nail the dish recommendations, we suggest you handball this conundrum to the chef with the ‘Feed Me’ option. Choosing his top choices for 7 courses (plus a side), you’re guaranteed to please the posse.
Where: 1724 Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads

T’Ang Court
Srsly, the mere mention of The Langham will have your mates nodding in approval. The bougee T’ang Court honours its Michelin-star sister restaurants specialising in fine Cantonese dining. Reflecting the timelessness of the Tang Dynasty, China’s golden age, score extra points for the epic cultural nod. The authentic Cantonese dishes are complemented by the high-end, contemporary fit-out. In the words of Nike, just do it.
Where: The Langham Gold Coast, 38 Old Burleigh Road, Surfers Paradise

Coast Beach Bar, Surfers Paradise (image supplied)
Coast Beach Bar, Surfers Paradise (image supplied)

Dripping in coastal-styled furnishings and high-quality on-fleek accents, COAST is the restaurant with the most! This spectacular $2.5 million-dollar venue adorning the first floor of the brand-new Ocean by Meriton is all about fine modern Australian shared cuisine, and breathtaking uninterrupted views of the big blue. Sink a margi with your gang at the 14m marble bar, a second one outside on the stunning terrace, and the next (several) with your designer dinner in the main dining room.
Where: Ocean by Meriton, 86 Esplanade, Surfers Paradise

Occupying arguably the most iconic turf on the Coast, Siblings packs wow-factor for days. This modern Aussie brunch and dinner hot spot at Kirra Beach Pavilions is dripping with 1950s Miami beach vibes from pillar to post. Beautifully styled with a colour palette and décor celebrating its glorious surroundings, a meal here should be on every Gold Coaster’s to do list. The food is on-point and there are 52 signature cocktails to enjoy with your chums. Nuff said.
Where: 15 Marine Parade, Coolangatta

Siblings Kirra, Coolangatta (image supplied)
Siblings Kirra, Coolangatta (image supplied)

When The Australian Good Food Guide awards you 14 points and two chef’s hats, you’ve officially arrived. With accolades like this, your fancy friends will be all over it like Pro Hart on a Stainmaster commercial. Situated in the stunning HOTA Gallery, Palette takes inspiration from artworks on display and major exhibitions to show just how naturally art and food blends. Fresh ingredients sourced locally where possible create a showstopping modern Australian menu guaranteed to woo.
Where: HOTA, Home of the Arts, 135 Bundall Road, Surfers Paradise

Labart (image supplied)
Labart (image supplied)

Restaurant Labart
There just aren’t enough stars for this Burleigh blockbuster. Another modern Australian restaurant to dine for, it is fine dining at its, well, finest. The work of passionate husband and wife team Alex and Karla Munoz Labart, Labart offers a seasonal, share-style menu made with only the best produce and a sustainable wine list to match. The earthy, refined and understated interior creates a warm and welcoming ambience, providing the perfect setting for an intimate meal with friends.
Where: 8 West Street, Burleigh Heads

Rick Shores
Focusing on fresh, locally sourced produce with the intention to share, soz but we don’t want to #TooGood. At one with the ocean, the infamous Rick Shores overlooks beautiful Burleigh and serves up some of the very best eats in town. With awards up the wazoo, it’s a sure thing when you want to impress. Speaking of, insist your mates order the Fried Moreton Bay Bug Roll and don’t be surprised when they weep tears of joy. Wash them down with a few of Rick’s cocktails and this is not the time to volunteer for DD duty. Happy days.
Where: 43 Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads

Rick Shores (image supplied)
Rick Shores (image supplied)

The Glenelg Public House
If your peeps are fangirling/fanboying over perfectly cooked, juicy steaks of the highest quality (paired with the tastiest sides to level up the yum factor), look no further than Glenelg Public House in Mermaid Beach. The vibe of the low-lit space is relaxed and welcoming, encouraging you and your crew to settle in – with a glass of red in hand of course – for the long haul. May we recommend the banquet for a well-rounded, standing-ovation-worthy nosh-up. You’re welcome.
Where: 2460 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach

The North Room
An intimate little beauty tucked away in Mermaid Beach, The North Room is the ultimate pocket rocket. Seating a maximum of 20 people, you feel extra spesh with super attentive service and food that embodies the ‘ole ‘you eat with your eyes’ adage. The seasonal menu encourages you to try something new each visit, with a focus on fresh, ever-changing dishes crafted from the highest quality produce. Add a sophisticated fit-out and Mind = Blown vibes are a given.
Where: 2527 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach (between Ventura Road and Cronulla Avenue)

Words by Bianca Trathen.

The North Room, Mermaid Beach (image supplied)
The North Room, Mermaid Beach (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.

© 2024 All Rights Reserved.