‘La dolce vita’. Direct translation: the sweet life. So what does ‘the sweet life’ mean…
I’ve never been one for the typical hen’s night – stumbling around in uncomfortably high heels while getting a lap-dance from a greased up stranger has never sounded like my cup of tequila.
So when the HerCanberra team told me they were throwing me a hen’s night, I was a little tentative. They didn’t reveal much; just that it was at a secret location and I was to meet them outside the HerCanberra headquarters at 6.20pm on the dot with an overnight bag. (I won’t lie; visions of them leaving me stranded in Fyshwick sprung to mind).
On a cold winter’s night I met the girls outside the office; which as it turned out was conveniently right across the road from our secret destination: QT Canberra.
Upon entering the hotel’s restaurant, Capitol Bar and Grill, our hostess warmly greeted us and the champagne was popped pretty quickly. I was given my ‘Bride To Be’ sash to wear and some gorgeous little gifts from the girls.
QT’s signature restaurant is the kind of venue you want to settle in all night, with good tunes, moody lighting and eclectic interiors. On the night we dined, the crowd was a perfect mix of groups, singles and couples. It’s all about a warm, intimate atmosphere.
To start us off, we were given some delicious crusty bread and an antipasto platter filled with cheese, meats and olives. Entrees were raw tuna tartare, hot spanner crab cakes and a fresh vegetable plate from their rooftop garden.
Trendy restaurants can often leave you feeling hungry but I was pleasantly surprised by their Two Course Feasting Menu: we had generous servings of comfort food including tender rib eye, steamed mashed carrots, Sicilian style tuna, shoestring fries and an amazing wild mushroom risotto. There were a few brief seconds of silence amongst all the chatter as we tucked in – a sure sign of appreciation.
Dessert was a set of gooey chocolate truffles, and we were only too obliged to indulge.
Good food, wine and not a greasy stripper in sight? Now this is my kind of hen’s night.
After dinner we headed next door to Lucky’s for a cocktail or few. On a cold winter’s night, having a bar next door is the ultimate in convenience.
Anyone who has been to Lucky’s knows it has a 1920s meets Modern Speakeasy vibe: it’s all comfortable lounges and private nooks with a hint of luxe. It’s the kind of place that caters for any occasion: whether you’re kicking back with a few low-key wines, or dancing the night away.
DJ Ashley Feraude was spinning some old-school 1990s hip hop as we settled into the lounges and ordered cocktails (I had the Japanese slipper, highly recommended).
After a good gossip session, a shot or two and a few too many cocktails, we retreated upstairs to our hotel room around midnight.
My bed was super comfortable and I woke up feeling completely refreshed, despite having one too many Japanese Slippers. The room included quirky furnishings, a fantastic view of the city and a rainfall shower (my favourite).
We made it downstairs for breakfast, a sumptuous buffet with everything we had hoped for and more. I tucked into the bacon, eggs, spinach, salmon and mushrooms first and later had the fresh juice, blueberry yoghurt and fruit, which were conveniently presented in individual jars. With light flowing into the room and smooth tunes, the breakfast area had a chilled vibe perfect for the morning after a night out.
We checked out feeling well fed and rested; like we’d had our own little staycation. I can now safely say QT has converted me: I am no longer against hen’s nights, if they’re anything like this.
More information on QT’s hen’s night packages is available here.