Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A train ride to Santaland (in Brisbane city) - Part 1

So far, so good (we hadn't left the station yet!)
It was my son's 5th birthday last Friday and I had promised him, for weeks, a train ride into Brisbane city. It's only about 22km (as the crow flies) from where we live but it takes nearly an hour on the train so an adventure in itself. My daughter had been complaining of a sore stomach all week so I decided to keep her home and she came with us. (Not sure of my reasoning in that decision. One would think if she had a sore stomach one wouldn't venture out on an hour long train ride with no toilets. Oh well. All went well.)

Waiting for the train
 I don't know what possessed me to decide to take both of them in at once. When I had given it some thought I realised that keeping two of them in check, in a busy city, with lots of kids all wanting to see the same things as we did, just had all the ingredients of a disaster but my kids were an absolute delight to take out. They stuck to me like glue and behaved extremely well. Of course there was the obligatory bribe of a small toy (which always works) but even without that, they were very well behaved. (In actual fact, I think they were a little daunted by the number of people, the large buildings and the busy vibe the city had.

Everyone has somewhere to go, in a hurry

A lovely lady offered to take our picture
Once we arrived, we headed straight for lunch at a beautiful little cafe called "Room with Roses" in the Brisbane Arcade. The Brisbane Arcade is one of those beautiful little arcades where you feel like you're stepping back in time and experiencing shopping, the way it used to be. The architecture is beautiful, as are the shops. Now, you might think I'm mad taking my kids to such an establishment rather than the usual fast food chain, but they were dressed so nicely and I wanted them to experience 'fine dining' like I did when I went to the 'big city' with my Mother as a child, even if it was only at the Coles Cafeteria.

Covered chairs, chandeliers, drapes, silver cutlery, tablecloths, fine bone china tea cups for tea and the place was full of ladies celebrating end of year functions or a mother/daughter catch up. The kids couldn't stop saying how 'fancy' it was and we were made to feel very welcome and were looked after very well. The kids were most impressed their water glasses were being continuously filled by a waiter.

My son had a ham sandwich and a Lemon Meringue cupcake with a chocolate milkshake and my daughter had a cheese sandwich with a chocolate milkshake. I had a trio of dainty ribbon sandwiches and a big glass of tropical punch. It was very retro and very delicious. Like a step back in time. Prices weren't unlike those in the major chain coffee shops which don't have anywhere near as much ambience as "Roses" does.

And who doesn't love a tea shop but I thought better of it walking into this shop with the kids jumping up and down and wanting to touch everything. From here we went onto see Santa in Santaland. Where else? Stay tuned for part 2.



  1. Looks like a beautiful place to shop and your kids are adorable, as always!

  2. SNAP! We went into Melbourne by train yesterday to do the Santaland thing too. Today I'm back to party work...

  3. I've always loved the Brisbane Arcade (except for the unfortunate period during the 80s when there was a KFC in the underground floor, complete with sign right in the middle of the arcade...shudder), but I never knew about that wonderful cafe. I'm definitely going to check it out when I'm home in January. I'm sure my husband and children will love it too. BTW, your kids are gorgeous.

  4. Really enjoyed reading about your day out! I have walked through the Brisbane Arcade so many times and never thought to stop in at that cafe... it looks so lovely! That tea shop is one of my faves though :)
    Can't wait to hear about Santaland.

  5. The Brisbane Arcade looks like a wonderful place to shop :) :) I do love the vintage look of the place :) :) It's really nice :)OH, and that tea shoppe is just gorgeous ;) :) You would have a hard time getting me to leave that shop :) Your kids are adorable. I'm glad that all three of you had a good time :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

  6. I definitely need to do a trip to Brisbane, have only ever passed through.

    Your kids looked like they had a wonderful time and what a wonderful memory for them.

  7. What a gorgeous day out with the kids. I love days like this :)

  8. wow what a great day out with kids...

  9. I wish I could have come with you! This day looks like heaven to me! xx


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