Tiaras and Tulle: Barbie does Melbourne

Barbie is 55 and let me tell you, she’s lookin’ good.

The real, live Barbie (looking 25 and very, very tall) popped in to Melbourne for a touch of high tea this afternoon and to promote her new movie, The Pearl Princess. The Langham, Melbourne, turned it on with a High Tea in Alto, the 28th floor of the Southbank hotel, with fabulous views across the city.

While the rest of the city is learning barista tricks, brewing their own cider or perfecting a sea urchin foam, a la the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival, we were served up the Princess Menu, featuring pearl cupcakes, fairy bread, sparkling pearl pink lemonade, and popcorn cups.

Hand on my heart, I’m not a pink person. My attempts to program my Small Girl into thinking that orange is the coolest (cue to bedsheets so orange they could turn you Buddhist) have failed. The little girls soaked up the pinkness as though they were born to it.

The Langham Melbourne’s GM, Ben Sington, popped in for a photo with Barbie (I note he waited till it all started to wind down) and commented that everyone seemed very well behaved. 

True, there were no tears and no screaming, but give a bunch of little girls a long table full of pink cakes, a movie, face painting and bunch of cooing (and quite possibly champagne-infused) mamas, and who’s going to complain?

There’ll be six Barbie Pearl Princess High Teas on March 29 and 30.

About the author

Fear is found on a creaking glacier in the Caucasus mountains and joy is encapsulated in the perfect Shanghai dumpling. And while I love a $500-a-night hotel room (who doesn’t?), sometimes the best stories are found in a $20 guesthouse. With an eye always out for good markets and great street eats, I write the travel news and features for the Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne’s The Age newspapers, and features for whoever else asks. I have a particular soft spot for the wilds of the Middle East, scarves and carpets. My articles and photographs have been published in a range of consumer magazines and newspapers in Australia and abroad.

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