Your New Year's Gay Party Guide
The best gay, lesbian and queer-friendly parties to celebrate the New Year in Sydney.
NEW YEAR’S EVE
Sydney Resolution Concert Series
Glebe Island, one of Sydney Harbour’s major ports, is the site of the inaugural Sydney Resolution New Year’s Party, which will play host to some of the world’s biggest dance and pop acts, including Culture Club, Pet Shop Boys, Jamiroquai and Pseudo Echo. As well as becoming a concert arena, expect Glebe Island to be transformed into a decadent playground with food stalls and multiple bars. This, with uninterrupted views of the harbour, makes it the must-do party this New Year’s Eve. Glebe Island, Sydney Harbour. Tix from $198 from www.sydneyresolution.com.au
The Luminale Supperclub
Paul Capsis curates a spectacular program of entertainment at this exclusive party at the Sydney Opera House. As well as access to top-notch food, wine and the best view of the fireworks in Sydney, guests will be treated to performances by some of the Australia’s leading cabaret and musical theatre performers including Christa Hughes, Michael Cormick and Marcia Hines. Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point. Tix from $990 from www.sydneyoperahouse.com
If the aforementioned entry is a bit pricey, then check out this other Sydney Opera House party: 11.12. Curated by a trio of party experts – Dan Single (ksubi), Angus McDonald (Sneak Sound System) and Maurice Terzini (Icebergs Dining Room and Bar), 11.12 is set to be the coolest party in the house. The grandfather of house music Frankie Knuckles is behind the decks at this uber chic soiree. Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point. Tix from $695 from www.sydneyoperahouse.com
Having played at some of the biggest party cities in North America, including New York, Washington DC and Montreal, this New Year’s Eve Justin Ryan will be unleashing his trademark style, unique house sounds and knockout sets on Oxford Street at the Midnight Shift. Joined by Sydney’s very own Matt Effect and Scott Tanner, as well as the cast of Controversy, Tomorrow at the Midnight Shift is set to be the must-do NYE party on the gay mile. Midnight Shift, 85 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. 10pm. $15 door.
Masquerade: Fantasy 4
Now in its fourth year, Stonewall Hotel’s NYE party has become to be known as one of the most memorable ways to bring in the New Year along the strip. The annual costume ball – masks and fancy dress are strongly encouraged – attracts a good mix of punters with a heavy sprinkling of drag queens. Party on until the next day with the Stonewall Hotel kicking through New Year’s Day and beyond. Stonewall Hotel, 175 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. 9pm. $30 door.
The ultra versatile Digital Damage (and by versatile we mean his musical abilities) is the special guest DJ at Arq’s New Year’s Eve celebration. From electro to progressive house and everything in between, Digital Damage is a man who can nail it. Which is why, in the past few years, the spunky DJ has been the support act of choice for some of the world’s leading DJs touring Australia. Arq, 16 Flinders St, Darlinghurst. 10pm. $55 door.
Gay hip hop and RnB party Swagger pulls out the big moves this NYE as it takes over the entire Oxford Hotel. The best RnB and hip hop tunes from the likes of Beyonce, Missy Elliot, Mary J Blige, Rihanna, Kanye West and Usher will be flowing from not one, but four massive floors. So if you’re wanting a party with attitude, bring in the New Year at Swagger. Oxford Hotel, 134 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. 10pm. $30+bf from www.moshtix.com.au
Steers & Queers
The Imperial Hotel heats things up this New Year’s Eve with a themed party. The crew have tagged their event ‘Steers & Queers’, which could mean just about anything. Methinks there’ll be plenty of chequered shirts, Akubra hats and denim cut-offs. Mixing it up between the bales of hay are DJs Craig Payne and Neil Hume. Imperial Hotel, 35 Erskineville Road, Erskineville. 10pm. $10
Shore Thing returns this New Year’s Eve with another knockout party on the world’s most famous stretch of sand. Since 2005, thousands have been descending on Bondi Beach to bring in the New Year with Shore Thing. In the past, Shore Thing has brought us Fatboy Slim, Groove Armada, Basement Jaxx and David Guetta. This year, DJ superstar Calvin Harris and Snoop Dogg lead the stellar line-up. Bondi Beach, Campbell Parade. Sold out
Apocalytpic Lesbian Zombie Rave
The Snatch & Grab crew, known for the pushing the girl party envelope, is pushing the girl party envelope even further this New Year’s Eve with Apocalytpic Lesbian Zombie Rave. To be held at the Gaelic Theatre, expect plenty of fake blood, tattered tops and zombie eyes at this killer shindig. The Girl Thing DJs will be on hand, ensuring everyone is doing the monster mash. The Gaelic, Devonshire St, Surry Hills. 10pm. $35+bf from www.daisytickets.com
Harbour Party: Luna Park
A front-row seat to the fireworks, fully-licensed bars, free carnival rides and, not to mention, world class performances from the likes of Wynter Gordon The Potbelleez and Zoe Badwi – this is Harbour Party NYE at Luna Park. Situated right on the harbour, Luna Park, with its facilities, amenities, bells and whistles, is one of the best places to bring in the New Year in Sydney. Get in quick, as second release tickets have just sold out. The Big Top, Luna Park, Milson’s Point. $124+bf from www.moshtix.com.au
Join hundreds of Sydneysiders as they make their annual pilgrimage to Lismore for the Tropical Fruits. Running for over two decades, Tropical Fruits is the annual New Year’s festival organised by the local social group of the same name. The calendar comprises a film festival, exhibitions camping activities and several parties, including the main highlight – New Year’s Eve. Lismore Showgrounds, Lismore. 8pm. Go to www.tropicalfruits.org.au
Three DJ heavyweights lead the Ivy’s New Year’s Eve party: Erick Morillo, Dimitri from Paris and Ian Carey. With equal parts talent and skill, each have achieved global stardom and fame in their respective genres and fields. To have one in a playbill is a good deal but to have all three in one line-up is a major coup. If you‘re a real dance music connoisseur and want to bring in 2012 in style, then this party is for you. Ivy, 330 George St, Sydney. $99.95+bf from www.moshtix.com.au
Bring in the New Year with fun, friendly and fabulous folks at the Taxi Club. Those wanting an elegant start can opt for dinner and show packages at the scrumptious D’Vine Restaurant. But, if you want to get straight into action, then make your way upstairs – drags shows kick off from 9.30pm. Taxi Club, 40 Flinders St, Darlinghurst. Free
NEW YEAR’S DAY
Kick start the new year at this signature New Year’s Day party at Home The Venue. Homesexual 2012 will feature a stellar local DJ line-up including Alex Taylor, Jayson Forbes, Kitty Glitter and more, along with an equally fabulous cast led by Trevor Ashley, Tora Hymen, Charisma Belle and Ripley Brett Waters. The theme is Mexico so expect plenty of gorgeous gringos and sultry senioritas. Viva Homesexual. Home The Venue, Cockle Bay Wharf, Darling Harbour. Tix $50+bf door/pre-sale from www.inthedark.com.au.
Two of Sydney’s biggest queer party brands – Fag and Bitch – reunite once more for another New Year’s Day edition of Get Together. Fag Tag and Bitch parties are all about providing a fun and friendly space for gays and lesbian respectively to come together and be merry, and Get Together will see patrons of both events party under one roof. Over ten DJs are on the bill, as well as one dance floor diva – the fabulous Inaya Day. Cruise Bar, Overseas Passenger Terminal, Circular Quay. 3pm. $55+bf from www.moshtix.com.au
UK DJ superstars Cahill and Liam Keegan join over 15 local DJ at Chinese Laundry for the annual New Year’s Day bash, Daywash, which in a short space of time has become a Gay Sydney party highlight. This is largely due to Daywash’s emphasis on awesome DJs, good music, fantastic live performances and a friendly, good-looking crowd. Chinese Laundry, 111 Sussex St, Sydney. 12pm. Sold out.
Field Day is, quite simply, a New Year’s Day institution. Up to 25,000 people will be descending on The Domain to see more than 30 DJs and artists perform across multiple stages. Every dance genre is catered for at this event, which will see a diverse range of performers including Gotye, Calvin Harris, Moby, The Ashton Shuffle, Young MC and Justice all take to the stage. The Domain, Sydney. Tix $135+bf from www.fuzzy.com.au
Colombian Hotel’s New Year’s Day recovery marathon starts at 8am. DJs Murray Hood, Luke Leal, Greg Boladian, Beatrix, Sandi Hotrod and more will be playing throughout the day and night. Colombian Hotel, 117 Oxford St, Darlinghurst.
Porn star and DJ Marco Da Silva will perform exclusively at M.I.A. To be held at My House on Oxford, Marco will be joined by a host of Sydney’s top DJs including Digital Damage, Johan Khoury, Kate Monroe and more. M.I.A. is the official Daywash after-party so expect plenty of guys and girls eager to keep the party going. My House on Oxford, 18 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. 9pm. $39+bf from www.johankhoury.com
The Beresford Hotel is the place to be on Sundays and, in 2012, New Year’s Day falls on a Sunday. To celebrate this momentous occasion, the crew are hosting a courtyard party from 12pm with DJs Kitty Glitter, Kate Monroe, Murray Hood, Eddie Coulter and Scott Tanner spinning tunes all day. Be sure you get there early to claim your spot as it can get crowded. Beresford Hotel, 354 Bourke St, Surry Hills. 12pm.
Day club Up start their New Year’s Weekend on December 31 with Frankie Shin and Luke Leal, but the big party will be on Sunday, January 1. Justin Ryan, Richie Carter, Anthony Whitlock and Johny Blue Boy are all set to play on New Year’s Day. If you’re still out and about on the January 2, stop by. The party kicks on with more DJs. Phoenix, 34 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. From 4am each day.