The Sydney Opera House is such an iconic landmark that it would be virtually impossible to write anything original so I have gathered together the pictures I took of it from various perspectives and times of the day. The architect of Sydney Opera House, Jørn Utzon was a relatively unknown 38 year old Dane until January 29, 1957 when his entry, scheme number 218, was announced winner of the ‘International competition for a national opera house at Bennelong Point, Sydney’. With his vision the City of Sydney was to become an international city. The completion of this building created a piece of architectural art that became iconic, a symbol of the times, like the Pyramids, the Parthenon of Athens, the Colesseum/Aqueducts of Rome, the soaring Gothic cathedrals of medieval Europe and in more modern times the Eiffel Tower, the skyscrapers and the San Francisco Golden Gate Bridge made possible by cheap steel from Henry Bessemer in Europe and Andrew Carnigie in America. No matter the perspective or time of day, the Sydney Opera House gives you that little chill that tells you that you are in the presence of greatness.
When we were in Sydney I wanted to take Lisa for a nice birthday dinner and the hotel suggested the O Bar. Previously known as The Summit restaurant, O Bar and Dining has a revolving floor which captures a 360 degree view across Sydney as well as two bar areas – one which forms part of the building’s stationary center floor and the other which makes up part of the revolving outer section of the restaurant. It sits forty-seven floors above Sydney, in Australia Square Tower, which was built in 1967. O Bar may be Sydney’s loftiest landmark, but still manages to retain some neighborhood warmth. The food is based on chef/owner Michael Moore’s healthy eating philosophy from his best-selling book Blood Sugar. Moore still owns it, but he recently made the move of installing fellow Englishman Darren Templeman to run the kitchen as executive chef. His is a great “High Anglican” cooking of the sort you find in Michelin restaurants in London and around the world, French-influenced but not dominated.
On our first day in Sydney, we decided to visit the iconic Sydney Opera House and more particularly the group of bars and restaurants on the harbor level one floor down. The area is always crowded both due to the views, the bracing sea air and the variety of bars and restaurants available here. In the words of the bar; “Set amongst the hustle and bustle of the city’s most iconic landmarks, Opera Bar is a Sydney experience that will stay with you for a lifetime. Unveiling a fresh new look in December 2014, the renowned food and beverage destination has been updated with an innovative, modernised offering that showcases local suppliers, provenance, seasonality and sharing.” The horrible experience will stay with you, preventing you from even considering seafood for a while.
After tramping around the zoo for a few hours, we began to get hungry. The zoo has many kiosks and the kid friendly Taronga Food Market but for a sit down restaurant with a waitresses, great food and unbeatable views, The View restaurant is the place to go. Overlooking Sydney Harbour, The View is not only Taronga’s first a la carte restaurant but is also the first Marine Steward Council (MSC) certified restaurant in Australia. All of their seafood has been sourced from fisheries that promote and support the MSC guidelines for sustainable fishing practices. Designed by executive chef Sebastien Lutaud, The View menu offers a range of options from light snacks through to more substantial meals. The View is open from 10am – 4pm daily.