Arriving at NightQuarter, you can immediately hear the heavy drum of music from every corner. The space is lit with neon signs and fairy lights, and the glow coming from the many food and drink stalls. Although the venue is nothing original – Eat Street Northshore in Brisbane is the closest example – NightQuarter still finds its own charm and uniqueness here on the Sunshine Coast.
It’s a place that markets a little bit of everything: food, bars, market shopping, live music, and entertainment for all ages. It almost delivers.
The food is a stand-out, both in value and quality. You could easily get your fill of food and drink for under $40, and that includes the entry ticket. The Rusty Crab shocked even me with a burger stacked over 30 centimetres high, and the Brazilian BBQ had a rich flavour and meat that melts in your mouth. With the options available my advice is to take a few friends and share, to make sure you get the most out of the experience.
The bars are limited, especially if you want a good cocktail, but what they do have on offer is good quality and interesting mixes for an average price.
Unfortunately, the music slowly but surely chips away at the charm. The selection is not bad, just unmemorable, and when different songs are playing from three different locations right next to each other it becomes unnecessarily loud and distracting. There is a large space dedicated to live music, concerts and special events, NightQuarter Live, however this is ticketed separately to the rest of NightQuarter.
As the night continues the atmosphere quickly turns from what was still family friendly, to one more akin to a nightclub without the dancing. Spilled drinks of every kind started showing up on tables and around the stalls. They were gradually being cleaned, and the few kids still around were either in the underwhelming kids’ area, Wonderland, or being entertained by the surprisingly agile Spiderman performer. The atmosphere could have been improved by more friendliness from the staff, and while some were fantastic, they were let down by others who were a little cold.
Despite some small issues that take away from the charm of the otherwise wonderful NightQuarter, it’s well worth a visit, and is perfect for a night out with friends that won’t break the bank.
NightQuarter 8 The Avenue, Birtinya, Sunshine Coast
Hours Friday & Saturday 4pm-10pm plus special events.
Ticket Cost $5 entry, extra for event tickets. Booking in advance is essential.