Departure Lounge - Jetsetting to Zimbabwe

African dummers Ki Fetch
There’s nothing that says ‘I need a holiday’ like the prospect of another day at the office during blustery winter July.   With grey clouds gathering at the window, the Microsoft paperclip your most riveting company, the closest beach in sight is in facebook photos travelling friends have tauntingly posted.
Departure Lounge at Piano Room provides a novel escape from the winter blues that doesn’t bite into your leave balance, cost a fortune or require hours of preparation. 

Rich Coombes, Vincent Stander and Daniella Alhadeff (lifeafterfive*) preparing for departure
Transforming into the departure lounge of a different country each week, the event is an initiative by the foodies and fashionistas behind Eat Drink Play and Fashion Palette.   At the Zimbabwe event on Thursday 30 June, charming hostess Sonya Mefaddi hands us a boarding pass and shows us to our seats.  With Shakira and Freshly Ground’s Waka waka (This Time for Africa) playing on arrival and a pair of Cheetahs lounging on the bar, we may be in the heart of Kings Cross but the spirit of Africa is in full force as we order our first cocktail from a safari clad waitress.
The ‘Lion King’ cocktail may not be strictly traditionally Zimbabwean, but no one is complaining as they’re served the delicious frangelico based drink infused with cinnamon and orange peel.   A chef’s tasting plate of African food is served as the skilful Ki Fetch Band of African drummers warm up the crowd. 
2 x Lion  King cocktails & chef's plate - only $15

Chef's african tasting plate

The concept is the first collaboration between Fashion Palette and Eat Drink Play. Both companies have a focus on showcasing up-and-coming talent such as emerging fashion designers and inspiring young chefs.
“Sonya and I wanted to combine food and fashion to create something unique and different for Sydney but with an accessible price tag that everyone can enjoy” said Alex Adams, the fabulous foodie behind Eat Drink Play. 
“Guests can expect anything from Brazilian dancers to a mariachi band. Each night will be like stepping off a long-haul flight into a completely different country” added Adams.
Whether you want to samba with the Brazillians, celebrate Bastille Day in true Parisian style or sample Spanish cuisine, Departure Lounge is an opportunity for Sydneysiders to escape to the far corners of the globe – even if only for a few hours.  

Ki Fetch jamming with the crowd

Keen travelers, foodies and fashionistas can purchase a boarding pass online from preferred ‘travel agent’ Our Deal for $15. In exchange for a boarding pass guests will receive entry, two cocktails and a plate from the ‘Chef’s Global Menu’ and a night of worldly entertainment.

Travel Itinerary
9 June - Mexico
16 June - Japan
23 June - Greece
30 June - Zimbabwe
7 July - Morocco
14 July - France
21 July - Old England
28 July - Spain
4 August - Vietnam
11 August - Brazil

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  1. Wow, this looks really cool. Great find. Although, what are you all looking at in that photo? The coke sign?

  2. Checking the skies before our imminent departure!

  3. Sophie JamesJuly 04, 2011

    Woo I know what I'm doing on Bastille day

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