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Mums, you’ve made it! Another year down, another term of lost property, last-minute homework frenzies and project preparation done and dusted. While the kids are winding down from school and making Santa lists, it’s time for a mums’ night out. Where to go? Check out our Five Fave venues for a girls’ get-together – from ladies’ lunch to relaxed Sunday sesh, we’ve got something for you and your tribe. Cheers!

1. Palm Beach just keeps on getting better, and Balboa Italian is the latest to add to the foodies’ stable. But put all thoughts of Sly Stallone and Eye of the Tiger to the side, because this is one Italian restaurant with a seriously schmick fitout. Brought to you by the same duo who have built a loyal following with Aviva, think chandeliers, exposed brickwork and a gorgeous mezzanine – perfect for groups. And the woodfired pizza is to die for. Save your carbs and load up here, ladies.

2. Garden Kitchen & Bar is part of the Jupiters Gold Coast’s $345 million refurbishment – and it is the perfect place for a ladies’ lunch . . . that might just turn into twilight cocktails . . . followed by dinner. Designed to bring the outside in, choose from communal dining, the semi-private dining room or the sun-seekers’ deck. Sav blanc in a sunny spot with the girls? Yes, please.

3. Relaxed vibes more your style? We get it. When you’re exhausted from end of year concerts, parties and deadlines, all you really want to do is sit back, relax and feast on comfort food with a chilled drink or two. So head to this hidden gem in the back of Burleigh – JFK Woodfire Kitchen & Bar. Think amazingly amped-up pizzas (wood-roasted pork belly with crackling and pineapple? Sold!) while the burgers will soon fill your mouth – and belly – with deep happiness. Add some craft beer or zesty cocktails and you’ve got a chilled mums’ night out. (P.S. the kid-friendly menu makes it a great family venue too. If you can’t bag a babysitter, make it a group gathering and let the littlies join in on the pre-Christmas fun.)

4. School mums, you’ve seen each other all year rocking up to the school gate in activewear (whether or not you’ll actually make it to the gym), no makeup and no sleep. Why not dress it up for your end of year get-together, at Rick Shores, Burleigh. Sling on some heels, slick on some gloss and prepare to let another year of lunchboxes, permission slips and lost library books sail away on the waves as you enjoy some of the best beach-front dining you can imagine. Lunch or dinner, the menu doesn’t disappoint, and neither does that view. 

5. Sometimes you simply can’t schedule yet another lunch or dinner in an already-packed December calendar. And yet, there’s always room for caffeine. Make your catch-up a coffee date and head to Paradox Coffee Roasters for consistently good coffee, a light menu that will tide you over till school pick-up and an amazingly relaxed vibe in the heart of Surfers. Or for something a little bit different, check out the cupping class or barista workshop.

As we wind up another year of haven, we join you in a raising a glass to another year of family fun, school adventures and exploring our local ‘hoods. Here’s to all the mums and dads striving to get that work/life balance right – now it’s time to take time for you!

Tell us your favourite places for mums’ night out @havenhub or share your pics with us.

Courtney Robinson

Courtney Robinson  

Courtney Robinson is a Gold Coast mum, passionate foodie, whole foods recipe creator and personal trainer certified in holistic digestive health and nutrition. Follow @athletist_ or visit athletist.com.au for recipes, workout tips and training hacks.