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My Brisbane

Tips from the ASA QLD Branch for visiting 'Brissy'.

Find out what you can do, or where to visit during your stay in Brisbane for the 2021 Archives Amplified Conference. ASA QLD Branch members share their tips for visitors to 'Brissy'. 

Colleen Sippo, Conference Co-Convenor

Brisbane, known to us locals as ‘Brissy’, the ‘River City’ and even sometimes ‘Bris-Vegas!’, is a wonderful place to spend some time. I moved here from Melbourne over a decade ago, and love calling it home. One of my favourite places is South Bank, located right on the river opposite the CBD. Known for its incredible gardens, art, culture, music and amazing dining, South Bank really has it all – including this year’s ASA conference which will be hosted at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre! There are a multitude of options, all within a stone’s throw of each other, even a sandy beach – complete with lifeguards – so remember to pack your togs! Here are some of my top things to do at South Bank:

Gardens and Riverside Walk  
Enjoy the gardens and riverside walk – walk, cycle or e-scooter your way along the wide promenades and admire the incredible gardens. One of the iconic elements of South Bank is its kilometre-long Arbour – a wonderful combination of architecture and stunning magenta bougainvillea. If you look carefully at the Archives Amplified logo, you can see its distinctive shape in the background image

Cultural Centres
South Bank is a cultural hub and includes the Qld Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art (QGOMA), Qld Museum, Maritime Museum, and the Qld Performing Arts Centre (QPAC). As well as visiting these wonderful places, some the best times I’ve enjoyed at South Bank have been attending one of their many free concerts in the open air River Quay Ampitheatre, where you can enjoy a cocktail (or another drink of your choice) with your evening picnic. The river makes a wonderful backdrop. Divine!

Eat!
There are loads of amazing eateries all around South Bank and I’m on a personal mission to sample them all! From fine river-front dining, to more casual affairs of cafes, bars and cheap eats, South Bank is a foodie’s paradise! One of my absolute favourite places is Popolo Italian Kitchen. With a picture perfect view over the river, here you can enjoy tasty share plates while watching the river ferries (known as ‘city-cats’) coming and going, and later the lights of the CBD shimmering across the water. Buon Appetito!

Image (right): Colleen Sippo enjoying Queensland's Whitsunday Islands
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Emporium Hotel and the Epicurious Garden in Southbank

For conference delegates who are able to attend in-person (and don’t forget, there will be virtual options for those who can’t) the Conference Committee is sharing some of our favourite places to explore and enjoy.


For those who enjoy a side of glamour to their conference-going, check out the rooftop restaurant and bar, The Terrace. Located at Southbank on the 21st floor of the classy Emporium Hotel, it features a very cool bespoke retractable ceiling and operable glass roof so you can bask in subtropical luxe all year round while you take in the views. For something completely different, there is also a Piano Bar located in the same building. Exuding the old-world glamour of the golden jazz era of the 1920’s, the Emporium Piano Bar offers live jazz music and expert mixologists to guide you through their extensive beverage range - so get ready to cue the martinis and dial up the jazz! 


If your head is buzzing from too many ideas and conversations and you’re looking for a quiet escape, take a walk along the river to the Epicurious Garden in Southbank. It’s a volunteer-run productive garden made up of seasonal and edible plants including fruits vegetables and herbs, and provides a tranquil haven that delights the eyes and nose (and taste buds too, if you are there when the volunteers are harvesting and the produce cart is out!). 


Image (right): View of Emporium Hotel pool overlooking the city
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European Masters From the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Need something extra to tempt you to Brisbane? A short 5-minute walk from the conference venue is Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA). From June to October this year QAGOMA will be hosting the exhibition European Masterpieces from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The exhibition will feature works by painters such as Rembrandt, Rubens, Turner, Degas, Renoir, Cézanne, and Monet. Find out more information on the exhibition.