Sizzle, spark and spice – where to celebrate the Lunar New Year in Brisbane
One of the best parts of living in Australia is the huge mix of cultures that we have going on here. Many other countries have brought their customs and celebrations to our shores, giving us even more reasons to learn about and appreciate our global community. One of the most significant events on the world calendar is Lunar New Year, a time when people from Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese backgrounds celebrate the lunar calendar ticking over into a new year. Come Tuesday February 5, we will officially welcome the Year of the Pig – here are the best places around Brisbane to celebrate!
BrisAsia Festival: Brisbane’s biggest celebration of Asian culture happens to be centred on the Lunar New Year. From Saturday February 9 to Sunday March 3, all corners of Brisbane will come alive with a range of events to celebrate traditional and contemporary Asian arts and cultural events. From the Summer Festival to Dumpling Day, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Treasury Brisbane: Known as one of Brisbane’s premier dining and entertainment destinations, it makes sense that Treasury Brisbane would go all-out for its Lunar New Year celebrations. Whether you indulge in a feast from the ultra-talented Luke Nguyen and Chase Kojima at the Chefs’ Banquet or prefer to roam and sample and the hawker-style night markets, good fortune is guaranteed here.
Jade Buddha: We don’t know about you, but one of our favourite parts of the Lunar New Year is the delicious food. Jade Buddha’s all-you-can-eat dumpling feast is the perfect way to celebrate – with a lunch and dinner sitting every Tuesday, just $12 will nab you all of the precious parcels you can handle. The Lunar New Year kicks off on Tuesday February 5, which is pretty convenient timing if you ask us …
West Village: Don’t you love it when the stars just align? West Village’s new Sunday Sessions at The Deck WV happen to kick off around the same time as the Lunar New Year, so to celebrate the first event is a delicious roaming banquet held by Mr Bunz on Sunday February 3 (a couple of days early but we’re not complaining) – did someone say bubble tea cocktails?
Doomben Racecourse: It may not be the Year of the Horse, but that’s not stopping Doomben Racecourse from taking part in a bit of Lunar New Year fun. On Saturday February 16, the Brisbane Racing Club will hold its inaugural Lunar New Year Raceday – as well as all of the track action, you can expect traditional performances, dancing lions and a range of pop-up Asian cuisine. Oh, and the first 300 racegoers through the gates will receive a red envelope and special gift on arrival– good luck!
Fortitude Valley: Okay, so this one is technically a part of BrisAsia Festival but it’s so huge that it gets its own section. On the weekend of February 9–10, Chinatown Mall will be getting amongst the festivities with lion dancers, fire shows, traditional music, cultural performances, interactive workshops and roving street performers to welcome the Year of the Pig.
Sunnybank: When it comes to celebrating Lunar New Year in Brisbane, it makes perfect sense to head straight to our city’s home of Asian culture. From February 4–10, the whole suburb of Sunnybank will come alive with traditional Asian customs and entertainment such as Dragon Dance, calligraphy, kung fu demonstrations, ice carving and (of course) oodles of authentic food to try.
Chung Tian Temple: If you’re after a taste of authentic Chinese culture, the Chung Tian Temple’s Chinese New Year celebrations are a fantastic thing to check out. This traditional Buddhist temple will be opening its doors to all visitors on Sunday February 10 – you can expect lion dances, a vegetarian food fair, a Chinese tea ceremony, puppet shows, music and loads more.
Technicolour Chinese New Year Night Market: One of Brisbane’s biggest Lunar New Year parties actually takes place every year in Newmarket, believe it or not! Held at the DiverCiti Centre, the Technicolour Chinese New Year Night Market showcases and celebrates authentic Chinese culture with delicious cuisine, performances, workshops and local vendors selling their wares.
Donna Chang: This CBD stunner truly turned heads with its opening last year, so it’s certainly no shock that Donna Chang’s Chinese New Year feast is on another level. From Tuesday February 5, the restaurant will launch a week-long celebration that includes great food, drinks and company. Book in for the banquet with matches wines and thank us later.
Little Valley: The gang at Little Valley sure know a thing or two about throwing a party, which is why we can guarantee that their Lunar New Year bash is going to be exceptional. Taking place amongst the venue’s Pijiu Garden, Mezzanine Bar and Private Dining Room, this free-entry event boasts two nights of live entertainment, DJs and delicious food to boot. Whether you want to go all out with the Royal Banquet or just keep it low-key with the Chef’s Lucky Basket and cocktails, there’s something for every appetite.
Westfield Garden City: Southsiders have a choice Lunar New Year celebration destination in the form of Westfield Garden City. From February 7–9, the shopping and dining precinct will come alive with free fireworks shows, lion dancers, drummers, fire twirlers plus live DJs.
Tai Tai: South Bank’s latest flavour-maker is getting in on the Chinese New Year action with some seriously mouth-watering specials. From February 2–4 the restaurant will be decked out in red lanterns so you can enjoy a banquet feast or a la carte dining in style. Also keep an eye on the Tai Tai Facebook page for daily deals to celebrate.
Sichuan Bang Bang: Fancy a bit of sizzle with your Chinese New Year? Purveyors of authentic Chinese flavour Sichuan Bang Bang have got you covered. Book in for a mouth-watering banquet to celebrate the Year of the Pig! You can catch the lion dancers and live entertainment at Kenmore on Wednesday February 6 and Wilston on Thursday February 7.