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Cartier: A Girls Weekend

 

We're living by the 'treat yourself' mantra as of late, and we think you should too (trust us, it's fun) and what better way to treat yourself than with a girls weekend!

As the official accommodation sponsor for Cartier: The Exhibition, exclusive to the National Gallery of Australia, showing from March 30 - July 22, we've designed the ultimate girls weekend package, and the perfect itinerary to match! We've rounded up a night's worth of our favourite things to do, all within walking distance of Avenue Hotel, from a blow dry (and bubbles) at Saloon, to dinner at one of Canberra's many hatted restaurants, eightysix.

Our Girls Weekend package looks like this...

  • Accommodation for up to four in a two-bedroom apartment
  • Watermelon martinis & a Deli Board at Marble & Grain
  • Tickets to Cartier: The Exhibition
  • Full buffet breakfast at Marble & Grain
  • 12pm late checkout
  • Free parking & wifi

To book in your Girls Weekend accommodation, click here and scroll to select the 'Cartier: Girls Weekend' package.

Package is priced at $480 and is based on four people, in a two bedroom apartment.

This time, we're taking on the role of that friend in the group who proposes an itinerary for your trip. Our ultimate girl's weekend looks a little like this...

DAY ONE

3pm

Now that you've settled into your room, it's shopping time. Hit Lonsdale Street for some of the best boutique shopping Canberra has to offer! Because although you may have packed multiple outfit options (hello, it is a girls weekend after all!), who doesn't need another?

Head into the Ori building, starting off at Rebel Muse where you'll find some of Australia's best clothing designers from Acler, to Dion Lee, to Romance Was Born. All the beautiful things, amongst the most luxurious monochrome marble setting! Hello, interior goals!

If you're after some vintage finds, step inside Designer Op Shop, on Lonsdale Street, where you'll find everything from vintage Gucci, Chanel & Dior, to jewellery, homewares, furniture and more.

A must, whilst in Braddon, is a look into Moxom & Whitney, where you'll be transported into pure floral heaven. We promise you, not a single gerbera or carnation in sight. Think terrariums (unlike any you've seen before, trust us), 'unconventional' bunches of blooms and staff that are sure to put a smile on your dial...

4pm

I think we'd all agree that shopping is tiring, right? It's practically a sport (well thats how seriously we take it, anway). So, what better way to relax, than with a blow dry and bubbles? Newly opened Saloon offers just that. Located on Lonsdale Street, it's the perfect way to start off your night! Choose your preferred blow dry style from their 'hair menu', with options including the 'Super Straight Supermodel', (come in Naomi Campbell!), and the 'Classic Claudia', for a truly sophisticated vintage curl.

6pm

Now that you've ticked shopping off your list (because what girls weekend is complete without it?), and your hair has been styled to perfection, we'd say it's time for another drink, and a bite to eat, to get the night started. Who'd argue with that? Once you've chosen which of your outfits you'll don for the night, head down to Marble & Grain and enjoy your complimentary Watermelon Martinis & Deli Board. Venison terrine, house cured meats, cheese, olives... need we say more? Whilst you're there, check out the cocktail list, where you can opt for something sweet like the Passionfruit Margarita, or for something with a real kick, like the ginger and rum 'Spiked Dark and Stormy'. Alternatively, choose from the extensive list of over 80 Australian & international wines. Since you're in Canberra, we'd recommend trying a local wine by Nick O'Leary, Clonakilla or Eden Road. We promise you won't be dissapointed.

8pm

Just a few minutes walk away lays eightysix, a hatted restaurant, known for it's upscale modern Australian offerings, the eclectic mix of tunes that fill the room, from Biggie Smalls to Queen and it's 'less-than-traditional' way of doing, well, pretty much everything. The restaurant is based around an open-counter kitchen, where you can choose to sit amongst the action on the long bar, or be seated at a table. There's seriously something for everyone on the menu, but our recommendation is the lemon & ricotta gnocchi with asparagus & chevre. P.S. they do an all you can eat option, for $86. Just sayin'...

11pm

Feeling up to trying out another Braddon watering hole? Head to Tipsy Bull, grab a seat in their gin garden, and opt for their signature deconstructed G&T, with your choice of over 65 gins and different tonics, with your choice of flavour enhancers! We can assure you, you'll be settling in for the night.

DAY TWO

9am

Start your day off right with a full buffet breakfast at Marble & Grain!  Whether you're feeling like you'll need a big breakfast to make up for a big night, or are after something light, all bases are covered!

Cartier jewellery on display at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
Pierre Rainero from Cartier, handling the crocodile necklace/brooches made for María Félix in 1975 at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

10am

Head to The National Gallery of Australia, for what is sure to be the highlight of your weekend. Let's break it down for you. 7716 diamonds, 1246 emeralds, 301 sapphires and 249 precious stones. Total combined carat weight? 3500.

On display will be an array of jewellery, timepieces and precious objects produced between 1900 and 1975, capturing fascinating changes in taste and design in the context of global social, political and economic trends.  Through the displays of the world's most exquisite jewels, this exhibition explores the Maison Cartier's glittering history.

The Queen's 'Halo' Tiara, as worn by Kate Middleton at her wedding to Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Princess Grace of Monaco's 10.48ct diamond engagement ring, Dame Elizabeth Taylor's diamond and ruby necklace, are just a few of the magnificent pieces on display.

What a way to finish your weekend. We're pretty sure you'll be dreaming of diamonds for the next little while... but who's complaining?