Tag Archives: cities
Southward bound now. Some postcards from one of my favourite Australian cities…
Though I live on an island renowned for its scenic beauty, I’ve always found the built environment more inspiring than nature. You can take a boy out of the city, but you can’t take the city out of the boy, I guess. These are just a few of my favourite urban views from Sydney, New York, Penang, Hobart, Kuala Lumpur, Malacca and Amsterdam.
This week The Economist voted Melbourne the world’s third most liveable city in the world, narrowly beaten by Vancouver and Vienna. The Melbourne newspapers have run hot with the news, mainly with the emphasis that the city beat Sydney, which had to share ninth place with Zurich. As far as I can tell, the Melbourne/Sydney rivalry is only in the mind of Melbournites. Sydney, blessed with its magnificent harbour, draped with the arch of the Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House, doesn’t even have to try.
The blogs and newspaper commentaries have been running even hotter with commentary, for and against, mostly from Melbourne residents. Those against complain about the transport system; those for, seem to place a rather strange emphasis on the quality of Melbourne coffee. It’s as though they believe urban sophistication can be attributed to the quality of the bean roast and the skill of its baristas. Is this why Vienna beat them on the leader board?
One particular commentator, wrote this:
“I call Melbourne BLACK, BLAND MELBOURNE. Just walk into the city whether winter or summer and all you see is men and particularly women dressed in black. Go into a department store or any restaurant or any shop for that matter and every employee is wearing black. Boring and bland. Go to Paris and women wear all colours, hardly any funeral black. So Melbourne needs to brighten up.”
This prompted me to dive to my picture files. I was in Melbourne two weeks ago and took these picture. I love Melbourne, it’s a bright, colourful city, but that writer is right, there is a pre-occupation amongst its inhabitants to wear black. If only Melburnians would learn to relax…but it must be hard when you are continually being pumped with all that caffiene…
My good friend and colleague, Roel Loopers, regularly documents his love of Fremantle through his blog Freo’s View.
Inspired by his devotion to that beautiful city and also by a long and very fine lunch with him and some friends at ECCO a couple of weeks ago, I wandered around the city for a few hours to put together my view of his home town. Here’s my perspective of the place affectionately called Freo. If this modest taste of Fremantle intrigues you, and you want more, you can see Roel’s take on the city and its vibrant life here.