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Not going to the AFL Grand Final? Read on…

To go to the game, or not go to the game? That, Mr. Shakespeare, is the REAL question. The answer though is probably not, as 99% of us couldn’t get tickets…

You probably are by now aware that the AFL Grand Final warrants a public holiday, so the decision  as to where – oh where – to watch the game is rather a big one.

In order to take the stress out of this decision for you, we’ve compiled our top picks for where to go before and/or after the big event – or to watch the game from the comfort of the indoors – around Richmond: the epicenter of the AFL action.

Katuk – 517a Chapel Street, South Yarra, VIC 3141

Situated in the heart of the Chapel Street nightlife precinct in South Yarra, boasting a decor that many other bars would blush at, Katuk is the venue for those who want to get amongst the game, but also want to retain an air of sophistication.

On offer for the game:

For $70, you can officially call yourself a VIP – at least from 12pm-6pm. To back you up on that claim, you get – brought to your very table – the following:

  • Beer, Wine, Chandon & Basic Spirits
  • 12pm til First Bounce – Burgers served (no variations or changes, beef only)
  • 1/2 Time – Homemade sausage rolls and beef pies

If you want to share the VIP goodness, go ahead and get a group of 10 people together to get one ticket… absolutely free.

Maeve Fox472 Church Street, Richmond, VIC 3121


Situated in the heart of Richmond on Church St, next door to the East Richmond train overlooking the MCG is Maeve Fox, a hidden gem of Melbourne Bars. Both levels of the venue will be open for your viewing / drinking pleasure, with multiple screens and drink specials available throughout the day. Get in quick!

On offer for the game:

Want to be a VIP, but be a little closer to the MCG? You’re covered, folks. For a cool $70, again from 12pm to 6pm, you get:

  • Beer, Wine & Chandon
  • 12pm til First Bounce – Burgers served (no variations or changes, beef only)
  • 1/4 Time – Polenta dusted calamari
  • 1/2 Time – Homemade sausage rolls and beef pies
  • 3/4 Time – Southern Fried Chicken

Maeve Fox lives by the maxim that the more really is the merrier – so get 10 of your mates together and one lucky little goose gets in for free.

 Great Britain Hotel – 447 Church Street, Richmond, VIC, 3121

If you’re looking for a spot to chill, watch the game, maybe have a pint or four, and get a feed in – yet you’re also not too keen on spending the rest of the weekend looking for loose change down the back of the couch, then you might want to consider popping down to GBH.

On offer for the game:

11am – 7pm Happy Hour: $6 pints, Spirits & Wines / $1 Chicken Wings / $5 Cheeseburgers; all of which are available in both the Beer Garden and the Main Bar (just because we all know what Melbourne’s temperamental weather is capable of). From 8pm you’re STILL covered, with a DJ ’till late.

Sporting Globe – 288 Bridge Rd, Richmond, VIC 3121


The Sporting Globe teams high quality casual dining with the ultimate state-of-the-art sports fit out, perfection for recreating the atmosphere of the game, without the hassle of ACTUALLY being there. Specially designed booths offer a unique dining experience with individual screens for your private viewing pleasure.

On offer for the game:

For a mere $25.00, you’re guaranteed entry from 11am, and they’ll even chuck in 2 pints of Carlton Draft, Little Bull, cider or special AFL Jam Jars. Not only that, but from 6pm, there will be live music and towers, beer & wine bucket specials available. What a bunch of guys.

Holliava – 36 Swan St, Richmond, VIC 3121


Open from 10.00am on game day, and located in the heart of Richmond, Holliava is a pretty sweet venue to both watch the game and get your drink on. Housing a total of three bars over two levels, Holliava welcomes individuals and groups of any size. With an extensive drinks list featuring a broad selection of draught and craft beer, cider, wine and unbeatable cocktails, your thirst will never go unsatisfied. Hungry? Holliava is a BYO food venue so you’re welcome to order food from across the road and have it delivered to your barstool.

Botherambo – 65 Swan St, Richmond, VIC 3121


Located in the heart of the urban jungle of Richmond, Botherambo offers a unique cocktail bar with a green open air courtyard. A stone’s throw from Richmond station, the events precinct of Melbourne is within walking distance. There is a large bar food menu taken directly from the restaurant next door, so dinner or a snack is on hand should you need something to soak up all that ‘excitement’ you may have ingested during the game.

Enjoy the game, everyone!

Find more information on what’s happening during the week of the AFL here


By Courtney White


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