Chinese New Year celebrations can usually guarantee at least three things: delicious food, loud fireworks, and dragons of some kind. All over Brisbane, places and spaces are getting involved — staging performances, cooking huge banquets and honouring the traditions of Chinese New Year. Here are some of the events to look out for this February.
It goes without saying that Chinatown will be the hub of Chinese New Year celebrations in Brisbane so if you’re looking for a way to celebrate in the loudest, most colourful way possible – this is where you should head.
From Friday February 20 – Sunday February 22, there will so much going on and you can be part of it all. Watch the fireworks and lion dancing, catch some live music and watch dance performances or wander through the markets while eating your lifetime’s quota of dumplings.
UPDATE: Brisbane City Council has advised that tonight’s Chinese Lunar New Year activities in Chinatown Mall have been cancelled due to bad weather. However, the activities planned for Saturday 21 February and Sunday 22 February are still scheduled to go ahead.
Chinatown is located at 33 Duncan Street, Fortitude Valley. For more information, call (07) 3006 6251.
As the name would suggest, this is a festival that celebrates all things Asian and is a great way to celebrate Chinese New Year.
Running until February 28 at various venues around town, there will a range of activities to suit anyone including Taiko drumming, guided nature walks in the Boondall Wetlands, live music and performances, art exhibitions, short film screenings, food stalls, games nights and cooking classes.
Make sure you head down to the Chinatown Mall to see it come to life with performances, markets and firecracker displays. And don’t miss Taste of Asia, run by celebrity chef Adam Liaw who will be sharing his favourite recipes.
For more information, check out our event guide listing.
Sunnybank is known for its huge range of authentic Asian cafes and restaurants and so it would stand to reason, that Sunnybank Plaza would be bursting with flavoursome choices to celebrate Chinese New Year. There will be food discovery tours, see The Sound of AusOriental Orchestra, wacth Chinese Chop Carving displays plsu there will be dancing, live music and cooking classes as well.
Make sure you go and get a photo dressed up in traditional Chinese costumes and learn how to make a goat’s mask, sit down for a feng shui consultation or learn tai chi from the free demonstrations. There is so many fun and free activities happening here, you won’t want to miss any of it.
Sunnybank Plaza is located at the corner of Mains Road and McCullough Street, Sunnybank. For more information, call (07) 3345 7500 or check out our event guide listing.
The masters of street-style Asian food, Kwan Brothers is a logical choice for Chinese New Year and they don’t plan to disappoint. Starting their 10 days celebrations on February 19, there will be lion dancers and karaoke and with their reputation for delivering delicious share plates and platters, they’ve stepped it up and are putting on a Chinese New Year banquet.
Prize alert! Make sure you enter the draw to win a trip for two to Hong Kong and five nights accommodation courtesy of Cathay Pacific.
Kwan Brothers is offering everything you need – good food, music and entertainment and a chance to win a trip overseas.
Kwan Brothers is located at 43 Alfred Street, Fortitude Valley. For more information and to make a booking, call (07) 32516588 or visit our event guide listing.
Passionate about what they term “the art of the dumpling”, this is the place to be if you love dumplings (and really – who doesn’t?). As well as creating handcrafted dumplings, they also offer a range of Asian dishes including noodles and stir-fries.
To celebrate the Chinese New Year, there will be some exclusive dishes specially chosen by head chef Master Sim.
Dumpling Republic is located at L103, The Wintergarden, Brisbane City. For more information, call (07) 3210 1818.
Chop Chop Chang’s
Known for their delicious Asian street food, their menu was designed by Paul Blain and there are a legion of loyal fans in Brisbane who will be heading there for their Chinese New Year festivities. Chop Chop Chang’s ribs are infamous and they are being included in their Chinese New Year menu. The rest of the menu sounds equally as drool-worthy so if food is your focus, this would be an excellent choice.
Chop Chop Chang’s is located at 185 Boundary Street, West End. For more information, call (07) 3846 7746 or visit our dining guide.
Nest Restaurant and Bar
Found tucked away in Hotel Jen, Nest Restaurant and Bar is becoming known for its approach to Asian fusion cuisine and this makes it a great choice for Chinese New Year celebrations. The chefs use an open-minded approach to create the dishes and the results are delicious.
On February 12, there will be a Chinese New Year VIP Dinner $98 and many of the Chinese community leaders from Brisbane will be in attendance and you are welcome to come along to enjoy the traditional feast as well. The dinner itself will showcase 6 course with delicate Chinese culinary art and is sure to be an interesting experience.
Or pop along between February 11 – 14 and sample the wares from visiting master chefs from China as part of the Kung Hei Fat Choi Celebrations. If you are a guest at the hotel during this time (staycation, anyone?), you will receive Chinese specialties when you check-in.
Nest Restaurant and Bar at Hotel Jen is located at 159 Roma Street, Brisbane. For more information, call (07) 3238 2222 or visit our dining guide.
You don’t have to go to a fancy restaurant or into Chinatown to be part of the Chinese New Year celebrations. Head to the Nando’s carpark at Westfield Chermside on February 20 for their very first Kung-Fusion Night Market.
Running from 4-9pm, there will be a fireworks extravaganza, pole dancing lion dancers, live music and lots of fun family activities. And the best part – a huge range of Asian market stalls to feast upon as you wander around.
Westfield Chermside is located on the corner of Gympie and Hamilton Roadds, Chermside. For more information, call (07) 3117 5300 or visit our event guide listing.
Indooroopilly Shopping Centre
Head along to Indooroopilly Shopping Centre on Friday, Saturday and Sunday February 19-21 for free fun activities to celebrate CNY. All performances will take place on Level 1 in Gourmet Fresh in front of Yum Cha Cuisine Indooroopilly.
On Friday there will be a traditional Lion Dance featuring two performers and percussion musicians on Level 1 at Gourmet Fresh in front of Yum Cha Cuisine Indooroopilly in the morning and then another inside the restaurant at night. Pop back on Saturday to see a seven dancers perform a vibrant Tibetan and Chinese Fan Dance and Sunday’s activities include a Water Sleeve and Chinese Umbrella Dance.
Indooroopilly Shopping Centre is located at 322 Moggill Road, Indooroopilly. For more information, call (07) 3378 4022 or visit our event guide listing.
They’re going all out with their Chinese New Year activities at Sanctuary Cove on the Gold Coast and if you get yourself there between February 19 – 22, you will experience traditional lion dancing, fire cracker and kung fu displays, Chinese-inspired craft workshops, entertainment and be able to sample some authentic cuisine. You will also have the opportunity to interact with the lions, pat them for good luck and learn the art of kung fu in a supervised and safe environment.
Griffith University’s Tourism Confucius Institute will offer traditional Chinese activities and workshops including kite making, mask painting and Chinese calligraphy. Plus, visitors to Sanctuary Cove’s Chinese New Year celebrations can enter the draw to win a $500 Marine Village Gift Voucher, as well as vouchers for free kung fu training and private 30 minute kung fu lessons with the Mantis Kung Fu Academy. Good luck!
For more information, call (07) 5577 6500 or visit our event guide listing.
It’s always a good time to Yum Cha but Chinese New Year is probably the best time to indulge as there are so many options and places to go. From February 16-22, the Brisbane Marriott will be offering their own, specially created Yum Cha Menu and it will be available over the Chinese New Year period.
Get ready to pick your plates wisely for as we all know, you can only fit so many in, and you definitely don’t want to miss out on their signature dishes. For $88 per couple, you can take your pick from Prawn on Lemongrass, Pork Buns, Vegetable Gyoza, Kai Lang, Fried Rice, Satay Chicken Skewers, Fried Whitebait, Soy and Ginger Pork Belly, Moon Cakes and Mango Tarts and luckily there are two sittings per day – lunch from 12pm-3pm and dinner from 5pm-10pm.
Brisbane Marriott Hotel is located at 515 Queen Street, Brisbane. For more information, call (07) 3303 8000.
Do you know of any other Chinese New Year celebrations happening in Brisbane? Share your hot tips in the comments below.