For all its ups and downs, 2021 has brought some happy news to New Zealand - we're arguably the best place in the world to host an international show right now. And so it's come to pass that Happy Place - a tangible kaleidoscope of colour - is coming to town.
Happy Place is a pop-up exhibition that has toured the world - with sold-out residencies in LA, Chicago, Las Vegas. Its mission: to spread happiness, through colour, multi-sensory immersive experiences, and pure whimsy.
Here's a taster of what a visit to Happy Place will include. Start with the world's largest indoor confetti dome, a giant rainbow with a pot of happiness to jump into, and a rubber ducky bathtub. Then make your way to the upside-down room that defies gravity, one that is filled with the scent of freshly baked cookies, and Super Bloom, a space filled with tens of thousands of handmade flowers. The team behind the experience are also promising a unique Kiwi twist… You'll have to head along to find out more.
If you're looking to grab a bite afterwards, perhaps you should wander away from the city and up to the slopes of Parnell, where you'll find the gorgeous little tapas restaurant Barulho tucked in just off The Strand on Watt St. Barulho is small and lovely, with both indoor and outdoor dining - blankets are available for the evenings when the weather is chillier. On the menu are tapas and sharing plates, from empanadas and croquetas to hearty meatballs and cazuela, a seafood stew. The atmosphere is casual dining, but they take great care with their dishes here. Barulhoparnell.com
Further up the hill, you'll need to book for Boxer, the intimate and experimental bar owned by Ed Verner of Pasture infamy. Open Wednesday to Sunday, the bar has three seatings per evening, where you'll be taken through a theatrical display of clever and interesting cocktail making, alongside an ever-changing array of tasting dishes. pastureakl.com/boxer
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So go on, and find your happy place.
Happy Place is coming to Auckland's Spark Arena from Friday April 23. Read more at happyplacenz.me