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July 31 2014

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The Insider’s Guide to Oz: An Australia Fashion Week Itinerary

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Dion Lee, Tome, and Zimmermann helped prove that Australian designers are a force to be reckoned with. And while two of the trio have decamped to New York’s catwalks, plenty of talent remains Down Under for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia. Headed to the shows and unfamiliar with Oz? RUSSH editor in chief and Style Map contributor Jess Blanch has curated her insider’s picks to see you through Sydney well-fed, -clothed, and –cultured. Happy trails!

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Wine and Dine
There’s never a wrong time to go to Fratelli Paradiso in Potts Point. The charming Italian owners Enrico, Giovanni, and Marco have made it the place to meet for a coffee and biscotti or pasta at any time, on any day. They also have a wine bar called 10 William Street Paddington, with an equally great wine list and a tiny upstairs balcony—the best place to be if you can find a spot.

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Swim and Steam
All the off-schedule action happens in the early morning at Bondi Beach, where the water is at its warmest this time of year. Take your swim at North Bondi early and head to Porch and Parlour for a green bowl and coffee made by its friendly baristas. Weather permitting, on the other end of the beach, go for a swim and steam at the Icebergs pool, then upstairs to the dining room and bar for organic bircher and Orchard Street Juices. It’s got to be the best view in the world.

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Shop Paddington
Paddington is a neighborhood shopping spot and home to many of our authentic Australian brands. Go to Jac + Jack for luxe basics in linen jersey and cashmere; Ellery for something beautifully on-trend; and visit Jane behind the blue door at the Land’s End Store farther around Glenmore Road for some Céline, Balmain, and Proenza Schlouler. It’s a one-off, special boutique like your mum used to shop at. Also, at Paddington’s The Intersection, you can find Scanlan & Theodore, Bassike, Camilla and Marc, Zimmermann, Willow, Bianca Spender, and Josh Goot.

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Eat Cantonese
The best way to slow down after fashion week is with a Chinese food coma, and Mr. Wong is the best Cantonese in Sydney. Ask its charming maître d’ Jonny Rockstar (really his name) for a table upstairs and experience the best prawn toasts and dim sum outside Guangzhou before eating wok-fried lobster with champagne. It’s old-school heaven.

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See the Biennale
The only place you’ll spot more fashion people than at the shows is at art venues around Sydney, as this is Biennale time (our biggest and best contemporary visual arts festival). Running until the start of June, the nineteenth iteration, You Imagine What You Desire, will run across multiple venues, but I particularly love exhibitions at the Art Gallery of NSW, the original venue for the event.

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Dept. of Culture