11 The Esplanade, St Kilda 3182
Opening hours:
Mon-Wed midday-1am, Thu-Sat midday-3am, Sun midday-1am

An icon if there ever was one, The Espy has been a proud bastion of live music, hard booze and romantic misunderstandings for eons. Well, perhaps not 'eons', but as long as living memory. Located on prime real estate, the hotel looks out over Port Phillip Bay and the St Kilda Esplanade, attracting all sorts of local wildlife plus those who float into the area for a spot of vicarious living. If you don't know the place by name, you'd know it as the venue of the ABC's Rockwiz. Like all places of worship (here, the God of choice is music), The Espy is a many roomed beast. While you can catch live acts in any number of the band rooms, The Gershwin Room is the one claim to fame that many acts proudly boast of. Acts like Paul Kelly, The Kills, Jet, Tiger Army, J-Live, Dallas Crane and the Spazzys, plus many more. You might have heard 'em elsewhere, but you'll never hear them as you do in the Gershwin. Emerging acts also get their chance to rock the crowd, with a weekly session of local bands and solo artists with instruments set to 'stun'. The Espy Kitchen is open for breakfast on weekends and other meals or snacks throughout the week. Of a Sunday, the porch and pavement tables outside pack with young St Kilda things, plying each other with jugs of beer and the occasional bourbon and coke, while the sun sets over the bay. Sure, you may want to check your seat before you park your designer jeans, and you may not want to know what's making you feet stick to the floorboards, but when that lead guitarist starts to shred like the world is ending, you'll forget all that crap and throw a goat head like you're the spawn of Satan.