24 October

Melbourne is getting another escape room, and it’s also a bar

TRAPT

You may have noticed that here at Time Out, we’re fully embracing the weird new trend of escape rooms. Really, what’s not to love? Getting trapped in dark rooms, racing against time, avoiding crazed murderers – leisure time well spent, we say.

Melbourne has six escape rooms now; some created by escape room fanatics from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Flemington, some with multiple themed rooms to choose from (we’re talking vampires, secret gardens and CSI labs). None of them (except Strike’s Escapism) offer post-escape beverages.

Until now. TRAPT Bar and Escape Rooms is just weeks away from opening. It makes so much sense: you can meet your team-mates for a pre-game pep-talk, then soothe the frayed nerves (or bolster wounded pride) after an hour of high-stakes puzzle-solving.

Stay tuned for our test-drive (and taste) of TRAPT.

TRAPT Bar and Escape RoomsRead more

22 October

Cut Copy celebrates Melbourne’s dance culture with new Oceans Apart compilation

Cut Copy blog

What do you love most about Melbourne’s diverse club scene? Losing yourself to deep house at Brown Alley? Throwing shapes at a sweaty techno rave at New Guernica? Discovering your new favourite ’80s-revival electro duo at Boney? Debating the Melbourne Bounce movement?

Next month, Melbourne’s electro-pop titans Cut Copy will release Oceans Apart: a compilation of new music from 19 of our city’s most innovative dance artists, mixed into a continuous, 80-minute club set by the four-piece themselves.

The idea came to ‘Lights and Music’ frontman Dan Whitford in a local club. “We’ve always found deep inspiration in the music of our home city,” he says. “The dance scene in Melbourne has gotten so interesting over the past few years – someone should really document this!”

The result is a blissful, very danceable snapshot of Melbourne’s club culture. Somehow, the record feel cohesive, even while roaming from electro-pop to tribal funk and out into the far reaches of ambient house.… Read more

19 September

MURDER: 1920s Gangster Rules is a real-life murder mystery game

MURDER 1920s Gangster Rules

Pause that Miss Marple re-run, people: it’s time to step into the real world. Secret Squirrel, who also run immersive, interactive film night Underground Cinema, have just launched a real-life murder mystery night that’s less Colonel Mustard, more Gatsby-era pearls and prohibition. You’re invited to come and unravel the plot.

Gangland kingpins, slimy henchmen, gamblers, blackmailers: the Black Pearl’s Attic will be transformed into a dark Chicago speakeasy, filled with professional actors bringing the story to life. Tensions in the criminal underworld are high, and someone has just been murdered. The police are closing in, but it’s up to those in the club to pin down the murderer.

Your role? Dress up, for a start. When you book a ticket, you’ll be assigned a special character, along with secret information that you’ll need to play the game. During the game, you’re free to bribe, blackmail and sleuth your way to the truth: unless of course, you’re the one with something to hide.… Read more

11 September

Melbourne will be the first city to host the UK Imperial War Museum’s WW1 Centenary Exhibition

WW1 Centenary Exhibition

Herbert Hillier sketched the battlefield of Gallipoli just hours after the first landing on 26 April 1915. It’s rough, but there’s no mistaking the columns of smoke rising above the water and the debris floating below. After a century, fragments of memory like these can still feel unnervingly close.

Hillier’s sketch – along with a German calvary helmet (pictured), prosthetic hand and fragments from the Red Baron’s fallen aeroplane – was unveiled this morning at the Melbourne Museum.

The reason? For the first time ever, London’s Imperial War Museum will send a specially curated exhibition to nine cities across the world – with Melbourne as the first stop. Reliving the personal stories, collective experience and huge implications of the First World War, the WW1 Centenary Exhibition will open in April 2015 to coincide with the centenary of the Gallipoli landings.

“The First World War changed the world; it cost 16 million lives and affected the lives of many more,” said Diane Lees, Director-General of the IWN over a video recorded in London.… Read more

10 September

Dame Nellie Melba’s Coombe Estate opens to the public

Coombe Estate blog

If there’s one thing to know about Dame Nellie Melba – arguably Australia’s most famous opera singer – it’s that the lady had style. Rising to prominence in the late 19th century, Melba also became known for her refined taste in art, fashion and décor, and for her lush, seven-acre gardens surrounding her home in Coldstream, just adjacent to the Yarra Valley.

Tomorrow, Coombe: the Melba Estate opens to the public as a gallery, providore and suitably high-class restaurant. The grounds are free to explore – as is the gallery – and for $20, you can take a guided historical tour (Wed-Sun, 11am & 2pm), which includes a morning or afternoon tea.

Our tip: put on your best party hat, grab some buddies and make a fancy day out of it. After you’re finished roaming the grounds, stroll into the home and admire the gallery. The collection includes Melba’s 14-piece Louis Vuitton luggage set, Hermes riding boots and Cartier handbags from Paris (we told you she had style). Inside the providore, you can pick up exclusive Melba memorabilia and jams, and in the adjacent restaurant, you better believe Peach Melba will make an appearance on the menu.… Read more