Taking it outdoors in Central Geelong

Cafe Go. (Pictures: Supplied)

Alfresco dining is alive and well in Central Geelong with many cafes and restaurants reopening as COVID-19 restrictions ease. The days are getting longer, and the weather is warming up, which means it’s time to get back to some of your favourite venues. From urban outdoor spaces to leafy courtyards and stunning Waterfront views, there are so many alfresco dining options in Central Geelong. The only question is .… which one?

The Greek – Customs House
Inspired by Greek traditions and modern styles of cooking, The Greek – Customs House offers family-style, beach cuisine. Now open for table service, The Greek has a gorgeous, north-facing alfresco courtyard overlooking the Customs Park lawn and a sensational Waterfront backdrop. From delicious spanakopita to mouth-watering, slow roasted lamb and grilled king prawns, The Greek – Customs House is not to be missed.

The Arborist
The Arborist has a stylish, urban vibe and offers alfresco dining five days a week from Wednesday to Sunday. Designed and built around a stunning ash tree, The Arborist offers comfortable outdoor seating and a fireplace for the cooler spring days. Its ‘feed me’ option allows you to sit back, relax and avoid any tough decisions!

Bay View Bar and Grill
The name says it all at the Bay View Bar and Grill on Eastern Beach Road. This bistro-style venue is open 7 days a week and is a wonderful spot for an alfresco breakfast or brunch in the sunshine. Fit for a king (or queen), their Breakfast King Platter feeds 2-3 people and will keep you going for hours.

The Inn Hotel
Just about everyone loves a good pub feed and The Inn Hotel in Corio Street’s spring menu offers a mouth-watering combination of pub favourites and modern tastes. After recently reopening, The Inn’s beer garden, with outdoor, under cover seating, comes alive each Saturday and Sunday with the addition of its ‘Day Drinks’ sessions, complete with live acoustic music and afternoon eats from 3pm.

Sailors’ Rest
The historic Sailors’ Rest building on the corner of Moorabool Street and Western Beach Road offers alfresco dining opposite Geelong’s spectacular Waterfront. Sit street-side in the alfresco dining area and watch the world go by or enjoy the relaxed beer garden fronting Customs Park. With a walk-in service for groups with less than 10 people and room for 50 diners outside, be sure to add Sailors’ Rest to your alfresco ‘to-do’ list.

Westend Geelong
For the ultimate people-watching experience, reserve an alfresco table at Westend in the heart of Little Malop Street’s burgeoning arts and cultural precinct. With a pub meets restaurant feel to it, Westend has plenty of alfresco dining tables under large striped umbrellas for you to try out the new spring menu. Westend caters for little people too so it’s a great family option.

Cafe´ Go
Located right on the corner of Bellerine and Little Malop streets, Cafe´ Go’s jungle-style courtyard oasis provides safe seating for up
to 30 people. With its fun and eclectic decor, Cafe´ Go’s all-day breakfast menu and exciting, daily lunch specials are best enjoyed in the sunshine.

Edge Geelong
Fronting the lush lawns of Customs Park, the alfresco deck at Edge Geelong is a wonderful location to enjoy contemporary dishes and old school favourites. With full table service and kids eating for free every Monday and Tuesday, Edge is perfect for the whole family. Bookings are essential.

Mav’s Restaurant
Named after the owner’s family name Mavromoustakos, meaning ‘black moustache’, Mav’s Restaurant in Little Malop Street, offers fresh, homemade Greek cuisine with a combination of smaller sharing dishes and bigger, heartier fare. Let Mav’s treat you to an authentic Greek lunch or dinner spread in its alfresco space. You will love feasting in the fresh air, amongst the brightly coloured, hanging pots.

Novotel Geelong’s Waterfront Restaurant & Bar
Novotel Geelong’s Waterfront Restaurant & Bar boasts a warm and sunny, north-facing alfresco space, located directly opposite Geelong’s stunning Waterfront. Diners can relax under a shady umbrella and soak up the atmosphere while sipping a sunset drink and enjoying a Mediterranean-inspired menu. View their menu, featuring fresh local produce and seasonal specials online.

Geelong Hotel
With its retractable roof and heating if chilly, the Geelong Hotel in Yarra Street’s edgy, rooftop space is perfect for Saturday afternoon drinks and snacks or dinner in any spring weather. Its recently updated spring menu and comprehensive cocktail list makes for a lovely afternoon or evening under festoon lighting with friends.

Wharf Shed
Located right on the water’s edge, Wharf Shed’s view is hard to beat! With plenty of tables in the sun, Wharf Shed diners can practically reach out and touch the bay while enjoying breakfast, lunch or dinner. Sip on a latte under towering palms and watch the boats bobbing around on glistening Corio Bay while you enjoy casual dining and an extensive menu.

Centra Hotel
With historical features of a traditional corner pub, Centra’s leafy, undercover courtyard
can cater for the ever-changing Geelong 
weather – rain, hail or shine. Located on the
corner of Yarra and Myers streets, the Centra’s
rustic Italian menu – including all your favourite antipasti, pizza and pasta dishes – are being served in the courtyard, several days a week. Open for lunch from Thursday – Saturday and dinner Tuesday – Saturday, book a table to ensure you don’t miss out on courtyard seating.

So say cheers to warm afternoons, daylight savings and balmy evenings and start planning your alfresco dining wish list. With so many venues to try out, visit www.centralgeelong.com.au or download the Love Central Geelong App to find out more about alfresco dining options in Central Geelong and how you can continue to support local businesses. Please adhere to ‘Third Step’ restrictions and wear a face mask when you leave home.

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