We’re lucky on the GC. For many reasons (we could unpack this all day long…), one of which is our cracking events, entertainment and festivals scene which becomes more awesome every year. One of the highlights is the inaugural Blues on Broadbeach festival which never misses a riff or a beat. Now in its 21st year and kicking off Thursday 19th May going until Sunday 22nd May, the line-up is lit coz you only turn 21 once AMIRITE?
With headline acts like James Morrison accompanied by his band in The James Morrison Motown Experience, Robben Ford, Karise Eden, Osaka Monaurail and Mia Dyson just to name a few, the festival is coming out swinging – quite literally! Both local parks and fave eats and entertainment spots are playing host to 12 stages, including the new addition of Federation Park, a hop skip and a jump from some jazztastic watering holes and eateries.
Speaking of, here’s a list of places to grab a bevvie and a bite whilst you listen to the smooth sounds and absorb the unforgettably cool atmosphere and vibrancy of this iconic festival. So get your crooner on and get down there!
Kurrawa Park Stage
The Oasis Shopping Centre bars and restaurants
It’s the perfect place for a stage and Blues on Broadbeach know it! With oodles of space and the picturesque Kurrawa Beach right next door, live music in this setting just sounds better! If you need a pre, mid or post-festival feed, or an hourly festival cocktail, The Oasis Shopping Centre’s hot spots have you covered. The likes of Mario’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, Sofia’s Restaurant & Bar, Spice Kitchen & Bar and The Roosevelt Lounge are all up to the task!
Where: 75 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
Victoria Park Stage
A perfect place to take in the many genres of Blues dropping in Victoria Park is the Italian Stallion of GC restaurants, the rustic Gemelli Broadbeach. With products imported from Italy infused with locally sourced seafood and meat, the menu is the real deal. Their wine list is also off the charts, awarded “One Glass” by Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine and who doesn’t love a fancy wine with their tunes?
Where: 2/2685 Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach
Federation Park Stage
The Vault Bar & Tapas
If it’s upscale ‘saxy’ tapas eats and drinks you want to get you all jazzed up, The Vault Bar & Tapas is a no-brainer. With its curated selection of high-end whiskies, cognacs and rums, and specialty cocktails, you won’t know what to drink first. Its relaxed yet sophisticated feels mixed with the opulent black, glossy and art deco fit-out suits the Blues on Broadbeach vibe to a tee.
Where: Shop 21/90 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
Surf Parade Stage
Unicorn Seafood Restaurant
With a name like Unicorn Seafood Restaurant, Captain Obvious has spoken and declared this new Mediterranean seafood-infused restaurant o-fish-ally worthy of Blues Festival hangs. Boasting an all-day menu including a seafood platter to die for, why wouldn’t you?! Set in a space rich in relaxing blue and white hues and ocean murals, grab yourself a cocktail or five and settle in for the long-haul.
Where: Phoenician Resort, 24-26 Queensland Avenue, Broadbeach
Oracle Boulevard Stage
Mamasan Kitchen & Bar
With awards up the wazoo, Mamasan Kitchen & Bar’s traditional and modern South East Asian chow will give you sustenance to bust many-a-move! Shining the spotlight on the popular share food philosophy, the authentic flavours have earned local street-cred and not just critical acclaim. The zesty Asian-inspired cocktails are all the motivation we need and side note: they also serve up a mean Sake.
Where: 3 Oracle Boulevard, Broadbeach
Den Devine Stage
It’s the home of jazz and blues so duh, naturally it was the logical choice for a Blues on Broady stage provider! Serving up an eclectic variety of homely, Mediterranean foods along with your favourite beers, wines and spirits, its old school, moody but pumping jazz bar vibes are a winner with blues and jazz enthusiasts. Even if you don’t drink whisky, trust us – you’ll start!
Where: 12/15 Victoria Ave, Broadbeach
The Envy Hotel Stage
I mean, who hasn’t had a meal, snack, drink and boogie at this place? With the recent addition of Cocktails & Keys Duelling Piano Bar, is it not the perfect location for a Blues on Broadbeach stage?! (Rhetorical question.) Opening up on to the Broadbeach Mall, there is atmosphere for days. It’s a popular stop on the Broady entertainment map for a reason.
Where: Niecon Plaza, 17 Victoria Avenue, Broadbeach
The Oasis (Level One) Stage
Madison’s Café & Patisserie
We reckon long-time fave Madison’s Café & Patisserie on the ground level is an ideal spot for a festival caffeine hit, sugar fix, feed, or glass of vino. Their blow-ya-mind cakes are an institution on the GC, and the hospitality here is second-to-none. Always excellent for people-watching, just add the sweet sounds of live rhythm and blues and voila, it’s perfection.
Where: Level 1, The Oasis Shopping Centre, 75 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
The Loose Moose Stage
We’re a sucker for a North American-style bar and restaurant and it’s safe to say we’re not the only ones! The Loose Moose is THE spot for a couple of drinks and a bite to eat…and also now the perf spot to listen to tunes bellowing from their own special Blues on Broady stage! Plus, should you find yourself depleted after bopping away all day/night long, there really is no better place to refuel and grab a well-deserved drink.
Where: 75 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
The Broadbeach Tavern Stage
The hub for locals to meet up for a chinwag, a bite and some brewskis is also one of the music hubs for the festival! Pull up a pew either in the Family Bistro, Sports Bar or our vote, the large outdoor deck to soak up both the music and the Autumn GC rays. It’s also just over the road from Kurrawa Park Stage so you get the best of both worlds!
Where: Oasis Shopping Centre, Old Burleigh Road, Broadbeach
The Lucky Squire Stage
Beer and jazz are a match made in heaven so this joint was born to stage (literally) some Blues on Broady bangers. In case you haven’t put 2 and 2 together, The Lucky Squire brings to life the story of Australia’s first brewer, the rogue swindler James Squire. Celebrating quality craft beers and modern pub grub, it’s a must-visit on your festival rounds.
Where: 3 Oracle Boulevard, Broadbeach
Fat Freddy’s – Beach Bar & Diner Stage
Who doesn’t crave burgers, fries and all things American diner-style after drinking, scat singing and dancing up a storm? Another venue boasting a stage, you’ll not only get front-row seats to a bunch of cool acts, but also a feast of drool-worthy classics. It’s one big par-tay here so you can imagine the levelled-up fun factor when you add Blues on Broadbeach into the mix.
Where: 50 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
Words by Bianca Trathen.
There’s never been a more important time to support our local hospitality business’ and musicians for a dose of live music in South East Queensland. Whether you’re the mid-week beer sipping and knee-slapping type or the seltzer slurping weekend warrior: live music is here for us all. Across the Gold Coast, there are abundant options for you to get involved in live music, with a breadth of venues all with their unique personalities and offerings.
So tell mum not to wait up, and head out to these live music venues across our lively city (listed north to south)!
The largest AFL club in Queensland, Southport Sharks has been up and running since 1961. Every weekend they showcase local musical talent, including tribute bands and good old rock and roll (or maybe a spot of karaoke is more up your alley?). There are endless food options, but we suggest starting your night at one of the Gold Coast’s most northern rooftop bars Aviary and fuel up to power through those dance sessions.
Where: Cnr Musgrave and Olsen Avenues, Southport
Not ones to hang around, this Southport rockin’ bar has hosted over 700 live music events in their short lifespan, and on any given night of the week, there is always something going down. Vinnies is in every inch of the word a dive bar, and inside you’ll find walls decked out with album covers, and an overall moody, low-lit vibe where revellers dance up a storm.
Where: Shops A & B, 44A Nerang Street, Southport
When it comes to finding live acts and having yourself a good time in the central Gold Coast, you’ll be hard pushed to look past The Avenue in Surfers Paradise. If you don’t believe us, check it out for yourself; there is literally something on every night of the week. Feeling the work week getting the better of you? Then we suggest you hit up their Tunes Tuesdays or House Music Thursdays, but if you can survive till the weekend, you’ll be spoilt with a variety of live music and the best partygoing atmosphere.
Where: 3-15 Orchid Avenue, Surfers Paradise
Should you arrive by jet ski or by Uber, it doesn’t matter. Surfers Pavilion is your one-stop venue in the heart of Surfers Paradise for drinks, eats and catching a live DJ set or two. And not just any disc jockeys either; The Stafford Brothers and Peking Duk have both played to jubilant crowds here in recent times. Currently, the wheels of steel are spinning Thursday and Friday evenings and all through the weekend: perfect long weekend territory.
Where: 30/34 Ferny Avenue, Surfers Paradise
Hard Rock Café
Climb the stairway to heaven and enjoy handcrafted cocktails, impossible to ignore thick shakes, and a freshly prepared Americana menu over an impressive local rock music guest list. Since the first live music performance (Sir Paul McCartney no less) in 1973, the Hard Rock Cafe chains have been the home of live music and this Surfers Paradise institution is no different. Not just a great way to start off your weekend, there’s also mid-week events like musical bingo to cure any hump day melancholy.
Where: Corner Cavill Avenue and Surfers Paradise Boulevard, Surfers Paradise
The Home of the Arts is certainly doing the heavy lifting to finally elevate the arts and culture scene here in our section of Queensland. From headline acts performing on one of Australia’s best outdoor stage to intimate gigs indoors, variety is certainly what comes to mind when visiting a HOTA show. They’ve now decided your afternoons deserve an injection of outdoor live music too, now presenting Fridays on the Lawn. With a host of local talent scheduled to celebrate the end of the working week, we suggest you grab a blanket, acquire a drink from their lawn bar, and relax in their sophisticated sun-kissed setting as you plot your moves for the weekend.
Where: HOTA, 135 Bundall Road, Surfers Paradise
Open Tuesday to Sunday for your listening pleasure, Den Devine feature jazz and blues artists from a talent pool right here in our city. This intimate hidden venue is well-known amongst live muisc fans, so we definitely recommend booking in advance to nab a seat. Grab a bev from their serious selection of whisky (the perfect accompaniment to some moody blues), a Mediterranean dish from their menu (it might sound like an odd fit, but trust us, the food is delish!) and make yourself comfortable as you’re treated to a fine selection of the best performers on the Gold Coast.
Where: 15 Victoria Avenue, Broadbeach
Garden Kitchen & Bar at The Star Gold Coast
When it comes to star-studded acts and internationally recognised music performances, The Star Gold Coast is the place to grab a seat in a full-blown theatre and experience music as it was intended. On the regular, though, you will find Garden Kitchen & Bar’s Live on the Lawn sessions a worthy alternative between headline acts. Each week they kick things off on a Friday evening and don’t let up until late Sunday night, with different music for every taste. Local band, McKenzie invite you to bop along to their Sunday residency with their energetic mix of feel-good pop-rock — a classic way to see the week out. Once you settle in, you’ll also be looked after with their dedicated lawn bar, and container kitchen, meaning leaving is one of the hardest things to do.
Where: 1 Casino Drive, Broadbeach
Having duly stamped its authority on the Nobby Beach bar scene as the place to go for frolic fuelled nights, these guys will have you rocking out until the wee hours with a live band or DJ every night of the week. The venue also offers new bands the chance to get themselves out there, so keep an eye out for fresh talent!
Where: 2245 Gold Coast Highway, Nobbys Beach
The Cambus Wallace
Jump aboard and set sail to a nautical-infused destination full of food, rum, and live music. The Cambus Wallace awaits you for a night filled with charismatic blues, raw acoustic sets, and finger flicking vinyl delights. Depending on your taste, take your pick and be sure you try at least one of their cocktails!
Where: 2237 Gold Coast Highway, Nobbys Beach
Open from 5pm every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights, Miami comes alive with foods from all around the world mixed with local blues, jazz and independent artists. And this isn’t all — the venue is one of the prime places to catch amazing national and international acts as they tour the country and drop by. Be sure to keep an eye on their gig calendar; tickets always sell out fast!
Where: 23 Hillcrest Parade, Miami
Burleigh’s original back alley after-hours haunt is always an epic time. Nightjar is known for late-night revelry and an often stellar line-up of weekly live music. With drink specials aplenty, come and enjoy local acts as they take to the floor and keep the swinging yet sultry atmosphere going long into the night.
Where: Justin Lane, Burleigh Heads
Mo’s Desert Clubhouse
Combining events, gigs, workshops, yoga classes, and collaborative office spaces, Mo’s Desert Clubhouse is a melting pot of goings-on and a principal meeting place for the Gold Coast’s coolest movers and shakers. The industrial-style venue is outfitted with a bar and has a plethora of gigs lined up for the rest of the year. Make sure you pencil in a date with Mo’s Desert Clubhouse ASAP.
Where: 6/36 Central Drive, Burleigh Heads
Burleigh Brewing Co.
Beer and music is an ensemble that will never die. Burleigh Brewery approaches their live music offering just the same way as they make their beer: balance, character and soul. Local acts are regularly paired with food trucks and your favourite brews from Friday through to Sunday. There’s also the occasional art show, movies under the stars and theatre performance for good measure. Oh and did we mention exceptional beer?
Where: 2 Ern Harley Drive, Burleigh Heads
It’s one of the Gold Coast’s favourite live music venues, having hosted local, national and international acts — but also remains one of our best-kept secrets. Find your way down to Currumbin RSL, where Soundlounge hosts acts from folk soloists and DJs to rock and roll bands. Listening to fantastic live music can be a hungry business, but this venue has you covered with food options, including pizza, an a la carte restaurant and bar snacks.
Where: 165 Duringan Street, Currumbin
The Coolangatta Hotel
Whether you’ve been catching world-class waves or lounging in the afternoon sun, Coolangatta — and specifically the Coolangatta Hotel — is the place to round out a perfect afternoon with live music. Being one of the Gold Coast’s largest live music venues, this venue features both national and international touring bands and DJs on any given weekend. The vast space has long been famous for all types of weekend warriors to dance the night away — just don’t forget that Monday morning meeting.
Where: Cnr Warner Street and Marine Parade, Coolangatta
Words by Alex Mitcheson.
It’s the suburb just south of Surfers Paradise that’s home to an ever-growing array of epic eateries, good time spots and world-class shopping and that’s only the beginning.Over the past few years Broadbeach has become one of the Coast’s most beautiful and beloved spots to spend time and here are 16 reasons why. Love ya Broady.
One of the Gold Coast’s most beloved brunch spots, Elk Espresso can be found in Broadbeach on a corner block overlooking Kurrawa Park and absolutely packed with people every single day. Andrew and the team are serving up a seasonal menu packed with epic eats that are both delicious and Insta-worthy and some of the best coffee around. There’s a reason it’s always packed.
Where: The Oasis Shopping Centre, Broadbeach
The Pink Flamingo Spiegelclub
The Coast’s newest bar and club opened in Broadbeach recently with a cabaret-style show that has received rave reviews ever since. The show is up of mind-blowing dance and acrobatics with a pumping soundtrack and all inside one of the most beautiful venues we have. After the show, there’s the after party and everyone’s invited. Don’t miss out on the The Pink Flamingo Spiegelclub.
Where: Surf Pde, Broadbeach
Fat Freddy’s Beach Bar and Diner
The latest restaurant to open in beautiful Broadbeach is Fat Freddy’s and it’s a very good time. Serving up American-style eats like hot dogs, chicken ribs and towering burgers in some of the best flavours we’ve ever sampled, the newbie is fast becoming one of the hottest spots in town. Wash the deliciousness down with a boozy milkshake and a beer or two and you’ve got yourself a good time. Perfect for a Sunday session with the gang.
Where: 2663 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach (entry via Surf Pde)
A London-stye bar hidden amongst it’s neighbours, Soho Place is the work of the Hideaway Kitchen and Mr Hizola’s team.It’s decked out in artistic graffiti and, as it’s a small bar (the Coast’s first) there are only tipples on the menu. The crew have created a very impressive cocktail menu and you can BYO food or order some in from around the rest of Broadbeach. The perfect pairing.
Where: Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach (between Queensland and Victoria Aves)
Kurrawa Surf Club
Right on the sand with 180 degree views of the big blue, Kurrawa Surf Club was rebuilt not too long ago and the change is breathtaking. The Club has always been popular amongst locals and with affordable eats and ice cold beers, what’s not to love. There are daily food specials and the place is always buzzing with revellers enjoying the very best of what the Gold Coast has to offer. Do yourself a favour.
Where: Old Burleigh Rd, Broadbeach
No Name Lane
Love you coffee, you beautiful beany beast. Particularly, stay with us, the brews at No Name Lane – home of very good Broady coffee. Everything about this place will tickle your fancy from the exposed brick walls to the cosy, get-close-to-each-other vibes. There’s a simple, tasty little menu for breaky and lunch and crew are as cool as can be.
Where: The Oracle, Elizabeth Ave, Broadbeach
Social Eating House + Bar
Firstly, eating house is the best name for a place filled with food EVER. Who would not want to go to an eating house. No-one is who. SHE+B (for the sake of space) is serving up the goods guys. How does Sashimi of Hiramasa Kingfish, Smoked Tomato, Ginger Mayo, Dashi Enokii, Puffed Rice Cracker sound? Heavenly, you’re right. There aren’t enough words in the world, go there.
Where: 3 Oracle Blvd, Broadbeach
CHA CHA Japanese Restaurant
There has probably never been a place that is more loved than Cha Cha’s. It’s authentic Japanese cuisine in a super chill setting and everyone who goes there is guaranteed a jolly old time. The food is so good and so affordable and there’s a banquet menu and best of all – it’s BYO (if that wasn’t already capital letter we would have made it so).
Where: 2705 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach
Aloha Bar and Dining
Happy tropical vibes abound in this cute little tiki bar in the heart of Broady. There’s eats along the lines of crispy wonton tacos and Poke bowls and cocktails that are guaranteed to make you smile. The live music is a favourite amongst the regulars and the fitout is as cute as can be. Aloha indeed.
Where: 18 Main Place, Broadbeach
Blues on Broadbeach
Obviously we understand that this guaranteed good time isn’t a permanent fixture in our beloved Broadbeach however, it’s more than worthy of a mention. It’s the Coast’s premiere music festival and, best, it’s all free. How is something so good so devoid of payment. Because Broadbeach, that’s why. If you’ve never been, put in your annual leave RIGHT NOW.
Where: Various Broadbeach venues
Dracula’s Cabaret Restaurant
Is there anything better than having the absolute bejesus scared out of you before you’ve even set foot inside a venue? Debatable but not to worry. Dracula’s Cabaret Restaurant is beautifully disturbing and filled with otherworldly creatures intent on ensuring your eyes stay wide open throughout the entire show. There’s a ghost train, creepy cocktails, dinner and guaranteed ghouly hilarity.
Where: Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach
How pretty is Paccers these days. From water fountains to five star restaurants, there is nothing you cannot find within the recently renovated walls. They aren’t even done yet, there are still stores and food outlets to open and honestly, if there was accommodation there you’d probably move in tomorrow it’s that good. From the highest of high ends to everyone’s favourite homewares store (Kmart) you WILL manage to blow your entire pay packet at Pacific Fair. Soz.
Where: Gold Coast Hwy and Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach
The Star Gold Coast
If you haven’t experienced a night at The Star Gold Coast worth relaying to your grandchildren, are you even a Gold Coast local? Never fear, with all the fun new things happening there these days, you’ll get your chance. Five-star (get it) restaurants, live music, Garden Kitchen & Bar, there are so many things to love. Plus, there’s a rooftop bar/pool in the way of nineteen at The Star. Get it gang.
Where: Casino Drive, Broadbeach
Broadbeach Bowls Club
Who doesn’t love a game of good old barefoot bowls with a schooner waiting at each end? Rhetorical obviously. Broadbeach Bowls Club has been around as long as you (longer probs) and loved by locals for just as long. The beers are cold, the ocean breeze is salty and there’s a dinner special almost every day.
Where:169 Surf Pde, Broadbeach
Hands down one of the most sweetest spots on the Coast for brunch dates and coffee stops. The goodness starts with the Superfood Salad (it has haloumi), continues with Nutella Martinis and from there, it’s all gravy. The menu – packed with goodness. The coffee – brewed to perfection. The location – listen to those waves a-crashin. The crew – cool as cucumbers (and friendly too). It’s a must visit Coasties.
Where: 2 Queensland Ave, Broadbeach
The Loose Moose
A US-style bar that’s always got a crowd, The Loose Moose is THE place to be for after work drinks or if you’re in need of some mouthwatering comfort food. Think juicy burgers, spicy chicken wings and yummy cocktails to match, not to mention constant good vibes and pumping music. It’s always a fun time at The Loose Moose, put your party pants on and gather the gang.
Where: The Oasis Shopping Centre, Broadbeach
Words by Kirra Smith
We all like the finer things in life. Opting for premium, over the everyday and spoiling ourselves when we have the chance is just part of being human. One new venue opening on the Gold Coast this week slots into this train of thought seamlessly. The two go hand in hand. A divine high-end drink offering, stylish settings and enticing contemporary tapas menu await you at Broadbeach’s hottest new venue, The Vault.
The focus of this new bar is to bring a premium high-end spirits experience to the central Gold Coast. By way of some of the finest whiskies, rums and cognacs you are likely to ever find within Australia. No expense has been spared, with products sourced from around the globe including Japan, the Scottish Highlands and the Caribbean and a scintillating food menu that draws inspiration from various much-liked cuisines. To say this bar will deliver an international experience is to put it lightly.
The owners behind The Vault are well-travelled hospitality veterans with experience of owning venues in the USA, London and Dubai. So after discovering the Gold Coast, naturally, they fell hard for our little slice of heaven here on the Coast. They aim to bring a premium drinks experience with great share style dishes to the bustling Broadbeach social scene; giving their guests not only incredible drinks in their glass but only the best eats on their plate also.
The venue’s mood mixes dark and sophisticated with a spattering of jazz-era art deco feels. The U-shaped bar is central to the space and means you can watch the masterful bartenders mix up your next drink or catch the eye of the intriguing person you’ve noticed across the bar. All up, the venue has a capacity for 150 people (when restrictions relax) and will make use of an alfresco area to the front, which will allow guests to soak up the renowned ambience of the suburb.
For the spirit enthusiasts out there – and in particular whisky lovers – the venue’s top-shelf offerings include 21-year-old Hibiki and 18-year-old Yamazaki, both extremely hard to come by Japanese whiskies that come with a price tag to match. However, if whisky isn’t your thing, then luxury rum Zacapa XO might be more in line, as well as superior choices of vodkas, gins and tequilas.
Once you feel hungry, the internationally-inspired tapas-style menu with such highlights as Butter Chicken Gnocchi and Scallop Ceviche Tostada will continue to impress your senses. A considerable effort has been made to include some stellar vegan dishes – no half efforts here. The signature Vault Ensalada with winter leaves, Gorgonzola, balsamic marinated strawberries, and spiced almonds is sure to impress any palette, vegan or not!
A unique aspect to the business will be their very own memberships for the most discerning customer. Ranging from Gold, Silver and Bronze, members will have exclusive access to offers, gifts and invites to events. Those purchasing an entire bottle will automatically have gold membership and receive a key and personal locker space to leave their bottle for safekeeping until the next time they swing by. We’ll say this though, there’s room for more than one bottle in there!
Should you feel the need to take things up a notch and visit somewhere where you can indulgence yourself over signature cocktails, first-class spirits and memorable share plates, we think stopping by at The Vault is a wise decision.
Where: Shop 21/90 Surf Parade, Broadbeach
When: Mon-Thurs 5pm-9pm | Fri 5pm-11pm | Sat 11am-11pm | Sun 11am-9pm
Words by Alex Mitcheson.