The biggest parties to mark the 2014 official national day of Australia
Friday January 24: G’day Dubai Big Day Out at Zero Gravity This Australia Day celebration will feature a guest appearance from five-time Australian Olympic beach volleyball champion and gold medallist Natalie Cook. Music will come from former INXS frontman Jon Stevens and Guy Sebastian, the first winner of Australian Idol in 2003. Dhs300. 11.30am-5pm (free for children under 12). Skydive Dubai, Dubai Marina, abcduae.com (04 399 0009).Aussies rule at Yalumba The Down-Under inspired eatery hosts a brunch in honour of Australia Day, with an Aussie barbecue and a selection of hops and grape from the country, as well as bubbly, all available today. Dhs519 (bubbly). 12.30pm-3.30pm. Le Méridien Dubai, Garhoud (04 702 2455).
Saturday January 25: Barasti presents the Aussie Day Special You might have noticed beach bar Barasti is rather popular with the Australians, so it’s nice every year to see this place giving something back with an all-day celebration of all things Oz, promising a ‘good old’ meaty Barbie, and live music from Marty Metcalfe, Marky Marc, DJ Venus, Tom Ferguson, Soto and Dave Simeon. Free entry. All day. Barasti, www.barastibeach.com (04 318 1313)
G’Day Dubai Gala Evening at Park Hyatt Dubai This gala evening will feature live unplugged sets from two Australian musicians – the former INXS frontman Jon Stevens and Guy Sebastian, the first winner of Australian Idol in 2003. There will also be a DJ set from Danny Fai Fai. Dhs600. 5pm-10pm. Park Hyatt Dubai, Deira, www.abcduae.com (04 602 1234).
Sunday January 26: Bidi Bondi On Sunday January 26 – the REAL Aussie Day date – Dubai’s best known Aussie bar will be offering two-for-one on Aussie hops all day. Get there early, as from 10am they’ll be streaming the TripleJ Hottest 100 (non-Aussies: it’s an annual indie radio music countdown). And in the evening there'll be live music from 8pm. One for the hardened folk from Down Under. 10am-midnight. Shoreline Apartments, The Palm (04 427 0515).