Salty sea air, beautiful architecture and a relaxed bohemian feel. There's no other suburb in Melbourne quite like it.

There’s something about a beachside suburb that cultivates a special atmosphere. Perhaps it’s the open water views, or the diversity of a metropolis on the edge of the ocean. But ever since the railway was built in 1857, people have been flocking to St Kilda.

In summer the beachfront is magnetic; locals and visitors walk, ride, scooter and cycle along the waterfront. Architectural relics such as the Palais Theatre and Luna Park abut contemporary designs such as the Stokehouse in a melding of old and new.

A handful of health-focused cafes sate the good intentions of an early summer morning, though there’s nothing more pleasing than sinking an icy beer over a late lunch of fish and chips along the water’s edge. The suburb has an abundance of bars and pubs pairing food with drink, from wine and cheese, to tacos and mojitos, and burgers with beers. And with locals and tourists alike winding up and down Acland Street of a warm summer evening, the atmosphere can easily turn to party vibes on a weekend – even as the foreshore remains a laid-back oasis.

Restaurants

Stokehouse

Restaurant

Seafood and stunning ocean views – it's no surprise this is such an institution.

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Ichi Ni

Restaurant

This sister restaurant to Fitzroy's Ichi Ni Nana has all of its sibling's great Japanese drinking and dining, with one key difference: stunning views out over Port Phillip Bay.

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Machi

Restaurant

Meaning ‘community’ in Japanese, Machi is inspired by its St Kilda location and eclectic culture. Come here for excellent gyoza, Wagyu beef and Kyoto-inspired dishes.

Fitzrovia

Restaurant

The chef behind the pans at this all-day diner worked in some of London's top restaurants for over two decades. And you can taste that experience across even the most casual dishes.

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Captain Baxter

Restaurant

This beachside bar has stunning views out over the bay, a tight and fun drinks list filled with classic cocktails and local wines, and a kitchen doing big steaks and serious snacks. It's all set within a space that feels like a Bahamas bungalow.

Radio Mexico

Restaurant

This spot just off St Kilda Beach is one of Melbourne's original Mexican restaurants, and it's still one of its best. That's thanks to an uncompromising commitment to quality ingredients. The drinks list, which includes a handful of Margaritas, complements the fun, shareable food.

Cafes

Baker D. Chirico

Cafe

Daniel Chirico is one of Melbourne's best bakers, and his bread is some of the best in town. But it's his wildly popular cannoli and bombolini that have kept us coming back for all these years. Just be sure to get in early, almost everything here tends to sell out well before close.

Black Star Pastry

Cafe

The Sydney bakery's St Kilda shop sells “Australia’s most Instagrammed dessert”, as well as savoury pastries such as a ratatouille danish and an asparagus and ‘nduja number with a spicy kick.

The Wood Frog Bakery

Cafe

Bagels and bread are just the beginning.

Matcha Mylkbar

Cafe

Wake up to vegan eggs, mushroom lattes and smoothies.

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Sister of Soul

Cafe

Vegetarian for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Miss Jackson

Cafe

A slick but laid-back cafe, removed from the busy Fitzroy Street but still close to the action.

Bars

The Prince Public Bar

Bar

This classic St Kilda pub was reintroduced to the public at the end of 2019. Now, you’ll find classic pub counter meals – alongside more refined fare – to enjoy in the swish new interiors or outside in the sun.

Prince of Wales Hotel

Bar

A relaxed pub bar in an old art deco building with a varied crowd the heart of St Kilda.

The Espy

Bar

After a profound redevelopment, this legendary seaside pub is going strong, offering the live music, drinks, food, good times and views it always has, albeit in far more polished fashion.

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Ghost of Alfred Felton

Bar

A swish cocktail bar on the uupermost level of the the Esplanade Hotel. Say hi to the concierge for permission to come up for champagne, whisky and old-world atmosphere.

Bar Di Stasio

Bar

A polished bar by the team behind right next door Café Di Stasio.

Freddie Wimpoles

Bar

The reincarnation of Fitzroy Street’s famous George Hotel is complete.

Shops

Designstuff

Shop

Function and aesthetics go hand in hand at this light-filled, Scandinavian-leaning homewares store.

Piccolina Gelateria St Kilda

Shop

There’s fruity granita, all-natural gelato and a chocolate fountain at this beachside gelateria.

La Formaggeria

Shop

A specialty grocery store in St Kilda, boasts healthy produce and the suburb’s first micro cheese lab.

The Little Veggie Patch Co

Shop

A patch of Eden for the aspiring kitchen gardener.

Meatsmith St Kilda

Shop

As upmarket as butchers come.

Scout House

Shop

Custom-made Australian furniture and vintage pieces from Europe.