Sydney, Australia
Marissa, 26
Sports Broadcaster
see her Sydney city guide

a bit about Marissa

What do you do and why do you do it?

I'm currently navigating the whole work/uni juggling act. I work in sports broadcasting for Australia's largest sports television station and I'm also studying law part-time (it keeps me busy!). On the side I'm also doing some academic research on gender and the leadership development of women within professional sport organizations. Why do I do it? Sport is a powerful thing and its beauty is in its ability to transcends cultural barriers! I've got the fondest memories of watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup in tiny little restaurants in Amman and immediately feeling connected with everyone else there!

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had and why was it so effing bad?

Working in retail pretty much ruined the spirit of Christmas for me! In saying that, I can never get enough of Mariah Carey's Christmas album!

Were you born and raised in Sydney? If not, where did you grow up and what brought you to Sydney?

Sydney born and raised.

What’s your current hood in Sydney and what’s the best/worst thing about it?

Balmain - a great village vibe without the madness of Surry Hills or Newtown! It has awesome cafes, more pubs than you can poke a stick at (most of them do pretty decent food with The Balmain and Dicks Hotel among my favourites) and ridiculous views of the harbour if you pick just the right spot. I would suggest catching the ferry over, so you can take in Sydney Harbour and all its awesomeness!

What kind of music do you listen to and what kind of music do you absolutely HATE?

Oh dear! I always hate getting this question haha. I'm currently listening to a weird mix of the current Top 50, Guns N' Roses Greatest Hits, old school Madonna and Chet Faker's Built on Glass album. I also have a strong dislike for music without lyrics!

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

Is Adele too mainstream? She's the QUEEN of heartbreak hits!

Name the best TV shows of all time, and what makes them so good?

Game of Thrones - do I even need to elaborate? For me, its brilliance is in its epicness! That show does not do anything by halves. Offspring - its an Australian drama/comedy set in Melbourne which focuses on the life of a 30-something female obstetrician called Nina and her family. It uses a cool mix of conventional narrative, flashbacks, graphic animation and fantasy sequences. It's equal parts heartwarming and crazy chaos!

Name some spots in Sydney that are good for a Tinder date.

If its first or second date and you need an easy escape route, then Grandma's Bar, The Lobo Plantation and Baxter Inn are all great places to grab a drink. If you're ready to commit to a whole meal and want to impress with some pretty decent food, then The Butler & The Apollo are sure to do the trick. However, if all else fails, then a killer view always works a treat!

Which public figure would you want to see “roasted”? (every public figure is fair game).

Donald Trump. Enough said.

Who’s your hero and where in Sydney would you take them out for a serious hang?

Wow! Hero is a tough one. Two women that I have great admiration for are Gloria Steinem and Emma Watson. They're strong, articulate and fiercely independent women who have done incredible things for the feminist movement and working towards gender equality. For serious hangs I'd probably take them on the Manly to Spit Bridge walk. Walking and talking is the best!

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

Online or at sample sales. There is nothing like free shipping and I refuse to pay full price!

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?

Anywhere more than an hour by train.

What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?

I love catching the ferry but I rarely have an excuse to do so. It's a pretty nice way to get around and the ferry can drop you off at a number of great spots in Sydney including Cockatoo Island, Kirribilli and Watson Bay! If you've got time, spend the day at Cockatoo Island, it's a UNESCO World-Heritage-listed site. Head to Kirribilli on a Saturday for the general markets or Sunday for the art, design and fashion market. Alternatively, stop by the Watsons Bay Hotel anytime for lunch, drinks and a good vibe.

Where do you go in Sydney for a casual night out?

The local pub is always a great option. Sydney went through a pub-revival a few years back, so now good food and a great courtyard come standard! Favourites include the Courthouse in Newtown, Trinity or The Clock in Surry Hills, The London in Paddington and the Woolwich Pier in Hunters Hill.

Where would you go in Sydney to celebrate some freaking good news?

I would definitely make a visit to my favourite dumpling spot - Lotus Dumpling Bar down at Walsh Bay. The whole dumpling/wine combo is top notch!

What’s your choice of transportation in Sydney and why?

Sydney has too many bloody hills for a bicycle and our public transport system isn't great, so a car it is! I've got a little Fiat which means I can pretend I'm in Italy and it also fits into those tight parking spots.

What are the Sydney spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

No tour of Sydney would be complete without a visit to the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour. I would also suggest jumping on the ferry to Manly and doing one of the many coastal walks. Alternatively, grab your swimmers and head down to Bondi or one of Sydney's many harbour beaches. You also haven't done breakfast in Sydney until you've had smashed avo! Try it with Vegemite for a true Aussie experience.

What are the Sydney spots tourists should run from screaming?

Any of the cafes or restaurants along Darling Harbour and Circular Quay. They're just waiting to take your money and you'll often be paying for the view rather than quality food! However if you've got cash to splash, give Quay or Sake a try.

Tomorrow’s your last day in Sydney. How do you spend it?

I would have a picnic overlooking Sydney Harbour with an awesome spread of cheese, beers and some good tunes!

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

Just one? Florence! Incredible food, wine and architecture, and a relatively short drive to Tuscany. What more could a person ask for! The four cheese and truffle oil gnocchi I had a place called Osteria Santo Spirito is still hands down one of the best meals I've ever had!

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