MBGC mag

Palm Beach - Not So Sleepy Coastal Village

The Mercedes-Benz Gold Coast Magazine - Autumn 2018

Words: James Perkins 

Palm Beach is the Gold Coast’s hottest suburb. Over the past five years it has become a thriving lifestyle destination with a unique café and restaurant culture. MBGC profiles the suburb as part of a new series called Catchment. 

 blue door on fifthImage via The Blue Door on 5th

The Blue Door on 5th was voted the Gold Coast’s best new Establishment and achieved it’s first Chef’s Hat from the Australian Good Food Guide within 10 months of opening in March 2017. Head chef and owner Dylan Cashman (formerly of Fins, Sean’s Panorama, and Paper Daisy), has crafted a unique menu using ingredients sources and foraged locally. 

The afternoon Dylan talked to MBGC, he had just returned from a foraging trip from Duranbah to Palm Beach where he picked local herbs for the menu such as beach sorrel, native parsley, warrigal green and beach rocket. “All these things feature heavily in our cooking,” he says. “You can create a proper, real restaurant and actually use local ingredients and local suppliers”. For example, the plates are form a Tugun potter and many of the unique ingredients are sourced from Buck’s Farm in Chillingham. “We are showcasing creative cooking using local farmers and local products.” Dylan adds.

The Blue Door on 5th will challenge its diners, in a welcoming and engaging dining experience. The food is complimented by a stellar wine and beverage list compiled by wine guru Florent Elineau. It is a high-class yet unpretentious addition to the thriving suburb.

Other Palm Beach dining haunts: Burgster, Lester and Earle, The Collective, Balboa, Wilderniss Café and Bar, Palm Beach Hotel, The Scottish Prince, Lee’s Cakes and Pastries.


Barefoot Barista 
The arrival of Barefoot (Barista) at Palm Beach around a decade ago is what many see as the catalyst for the suburbs change. Founders Dean Hyland and Liz Ennis created a café that made people want to visit the area with its well-crafted coffee house-brand. Story Coffee, and its unique menu. Since founding Barefoot, Dean and Liz have gone on to establish Borough (Barista) in Burleigh Heads and Background (Barista) at Mermaid Beach.

Other coffee haunts: Espresso Moto, Spikexx Espresso, Department of Coffee, AVVIA, Genki, Hessian and Bean Boutique, and more.


Craft Parlour
This bright and delightful studio was founded in August 2015, and is found  next door to Spikexx and The Store – Artisan Grocer. Crafty people come to the regular workshops, which include all kind of subjects, such as macramé, screen printing, watercolour, string bag making, and more. In addition, the space is used for bridal and baby showers, and parties. Founder Rachel Valentine says she has found her true calling through the Craft Parlour. She studied fashion and millinery and worked in sewing alterations for six years before starting the Craft Parlour, and she says it has made her heart happy. Rachael Valentine yearned for something that was creative and fulfilling and the Craft Parlour was born. 

Ritual Yoga
Sophie and Rose Lamont founded Ritual Yoga just over two years ago, and since that time it has expanded to host 55 yoga and pilates classes each week and under the tutelage of 20 instructors. The sisters were teaching yoga classes to earn some money while studying at university and came across the space on Palm Beach Avenue in their last semester. “It really resonated with us; it felt right to open a studio here, so we did it” says Sophie.

They timed the decision perfectly, and are pleased with the response to their studio. “We are super thrilled that we have created a nice little community on the southern end of the Gold Coast. We really love the lifestyle”. Plans for Ritual Yoga and Pilates in the new year include teacher training and opening a second venue, either on the Gold Coast or in northern New South Wales. “We would eventually like to go national and have Ritual Yoga and Pilates studios in every major city in Australia” says Sophie. She says it has been exciting seeing the suburb grow and evolve over the past two years. “We think we are really lucky in that we got in at a really good time to open a studio at Palm Beach as it is growing fast and there are heaps of new little shops, bars and cafes opening all the time. It is a new little hub”.


Palm Beach is around 4km long and is bordered by the edges of Currumbin Creek to the south and Tallebudgera Creek in the North, and the Pacific Highway in the west. The Gold Coast Highway connects Palm Beach to Currumbin and Burleigh Heads by road, and there are three arterial roads west to Elanora: Sarawak Drive, Palm Beach Avenue and 19th Avenue. At Palm Beach, the Pacific Highway comes within 1,500m of the Pacific Ocean.

The Natural Reef
A natural reef extends northwest from a few hundred metres off 11th avenue and stretches for around 1.2km offshore. It is a haven for anglers and divers, and when there is good conditions, dozens of boats and kayaks can be seen from the shoreline enjoying the incredible natural environment that is a breeding ground for sea life.

The Beach
Palm Beach is the most vulnerable section of the coastline on the Gold Coast and council has undertaken a two-stage project to help protect it from storm events and erosion. Phase 1 of the $26 million Palm Beach Shoreline Project was completed in 2017 and included beach nourishment. A large barge deposited 470,000 cubic metres of sand onto the beach in mid-to-late 2017 in what became an iconic “rainbowing” process.

The next stage is the planning and construction of a large artificial reef a few hundred metres offshore.

The project is expected to be completed in 2019. Current lifesaving facilities at Palm Beach include five City of Gold Coast lifeguard towers, and three surf lifesaving clubs: Tallebudgera, Pacific and Palm Beach.

Tallebudgera Creek
The suburb terminates on the southern bank of the Tallebudgera Creek, which is a popular place for families to swim in seawater while protected from the breaking waves. The City of Gold Coast has a lifeguard tower in the area, to keep an eye on swimmers in the creek.

The median house price at Palm Beach is $818,500, up 16 per cent in 2017 and 60 per cent in five years. The median unit price, meanwhile, is $435,250, up 8.68 per cent in 12 months.

Infrastructure – Light Rail
Stage Three of the Gold Coast light rail project is expected to end at Burleigh Heads. Vocal opposition has emerged against the preferred route – Tallebudgera Creek and along the Gold Coast highway. Opponents argue the line should go west from Burleigh Heads and then follow the Pacific Motorway south to the Gold Coast Airport.

FULL STORY story via The Mercedes-Benz Gold Coast Magazine, Autumn 2018