The Newport officially opens its doors this month, when Merivale launches the first phase of the venue’s landmark redevelopment on Friday 25 March. Looking out over the stunning vista of Pittwater estuary, The Newport will be a vibrant gathering place that embraces the property’s remarkable location and offers a diverse range of spaces to drink, dine and admire the unrivalled views.
Justin Hemmes, Merivale CEO, said: “The Newport is at the heart of so many wonderful memories in the local community, so it is incredibly important for us to honour this as we create the new chapter in its history. With its sprawling grounds, magnificent landscaping and team of over 450 passionate locals, this is one of the biggest ventures we have ever undertaken. We are so excited and proud to finally open the first phase”.
The Newport will be spearheaded by Executive Chef Sebastien Lutaud who has designed an extensive menu that reflects the Northern Beaches’ enviable coastal lifestyle. Guests can journey through a diverse marketplace of food and drink experiences, enjoying sizzling grass-fed beef and chicken burgers with soft potato buns from ‘The Burger Shack’; fresh seafood including classic fish and chips, salt and pepper calamari and crispy basil prawns; seasonal salads and exceptional Australian meats like smoked brisket, barbeque chicken and hot-smoked salmon; fresh juices and smoothies from ‘The Juice Bar’; or freshly-brewed coffee, pastries and donuts at ‘The Kiosk’.
The Newport will also be home to ‘Vinnie’s Pizza’, where Merivale’s own pizza superstar Vincenzo Biondini will be whipping up his lightly-charred, wood-fired creations in the open kitchen. Guests can order pizzas directly from The Newport app and simply collect when ready.
A wide selection of wine, beers and quintessentially Sydney drinks will be on offer. Frozen cocktails such as the Yuzu (made famous at the pop-Asian hangout Ms.G’s), Pina Colada, Miami Vice and Strawberry Slushie will be served alongside margaritas and classics – all drinks made to sip as the sun sets over the peninsula.
The Newport will present an exciting programme of free events and activities. Over the Easter long weekend, children can enjoy face painting, Easter egg hunts, bunny rabbits and a petting zoo, with gold coins being collected for ‘Mums for Mums’, a local charity group support families of Newport, Bilgola Plateau and Avalon Public Schools through times of illness and bereavement. For children and adults young at heart, The Newport will also feature a retro-inspired games area with badminton, ping pong tables, exercise bikes that can charge mobile phones and a giant magnetic scrabble board.
Live music will be at the heart of the entertainment experience. An expansive alfresco deck has been built to showcase amazing local talent, seven days a week. The likes of Rob Somatik, Rad Dan, Gangs of Brothers and Paper Parade will all be performing during the opening weekend.
The Newport will also play host to Sunday Sundown, Merivale’s live music series. Melbourne’s nine-piece soul outfit Saskwatch kick off the programme on Easter Sunday, followed by indie duo Gypsy & The Cat on 3 April, Tasmanian singer songwriter Asta on 10 April and Sydney synth-pop trio Mansionair on 17 April. Entry to Sunday Sundown sessions at The Newport is free.
Drawing on influences from Montauk, The Hamptons and the Mediterranean, the reimagining of The Newport has been led by a team including Kelvin Ho and Emilie Delalande of Akin Creative, stylist Amanda Talbot and Justin and Bettina Hemmes. Due to the sheer scale of the property, Merivale has planned a gradual and thoughtful approach to its redevelopment, with stages two and three set to be revealed later in 2016.