Collingwood is only on the other side of Smith Street from Fitzroy, but the two suburbs feel quite different. Where Fitzroy is mostly quaint terrace houses, Collingwood has long been a hub for light industry – mechanics, sheet-metal fabricators, commercial drycleaners and the like. Gradually, though, these businesses are moving out and their spacious tenancies are being put to new uses.

Converted warehouses now hold coffee roasters such as Proud Mary and Acoffee; bars including Rupert on Rupert and Stomping Ground; and retailers such as Chappelli Cycles and Lululemon. As in most parts of inner Melbourne, developers have turned many other sites into apartment blocks.

This hasn’t changed things too much – yet. Schoolhouse Studios, a collective of 90-plus artists in another warehouse on Rupert Street, is upholding Collingwood’s freewheeling, alternative spirit. Ditto for Backwoods Gallery on Easey Street, which works mainly with local street artists.

Collingwood is also home to the Tote and the Gasometer, two of Melbourne’s most important live music venues, and the Peel, one of the city’s most famous gay pubs.

Restaurants

Lazerpig Pizza Parlour

Restaurant

Delectable thin-crust pizza and DJs until late.

New Jaffa

Restaurant

A micro Middle-Eastern diner where Israeli hummus is treated as a dish – not a dip.

The Broadsheet Kitchen

Restaurant

For 12 months this space will be home to the country’s most exciting dining concept.

Book a Table

Huxtaburger

Restaurant

It’s the simple burger joint Melburnians have fallen hard for.

Le Bon Ton

Restaurant

A late-night bar bringing the flavours of New Orleans and Texan barbeque to Melbourne.

Wabi Sabi Salon

Restaurant

A charming little Japanese restaurant with a cluttered interior that feels a bit like being in Japan.

Cafes

Cibi

Cafe

“Cibi” is Japanese for “little one”. But this cafe and homewares store is not so little anymore.

Smith Street Alimentari

Cafe

An Italian-ish cafe and food store with excellent takeaway options.

Terror Twilight

Cafe

All-day breakfasts and “feel-good” food.

Cromwell STREAT

Cafe

The social initiative has come a long way from its coffee-cart origins.

Plug Nickel

Cafe

Less a cafe, and more a flying pitstop for first-class coffee and simple food.

Acoffee

Cafe

A sleek and sparse roaster and cafe in a converted garage.

Bars

The Incubator

Bar

There’s beer, and then there’s award-winning India Pale Ale served straight from the tank. Here, you’ll get the latter.

Stomping Ground Brewing Co.

Bar

Nearly every style you can imagine is available at this convivial beer hall, and they're all made right there.

The Moon

Bar

A wine bar and shop from the guys behind The Alps and Toorak Cellars.

Rupert on Rupert

Bar

A verdant greenhouse bar with plenty of natural light.

The Gem Bar and Dining

Bar

This rowdy pub has a rockabilly theme, complete with genuine American barbeque. It's unusual, but it works.

The Tote

Bar

One of the most legendary venues in Melbourne's live music scene, still hosting punk, metal and stoner-rock bands five nights a week.

Shops

Clunes Outdoors

Shop

A cosy camping store for outdoor adventurers where everything is tested by the team inside.

The Plant Society

Shop

A plant store within cafe Mina-no-ie that comes with advice, and coffee.

BeerMash Cellars

Shop

Grab a growler to go, or sit in and take advantage of the huge range of draught, canned and bottled beers.

Lightly

Shop

Made in Melbourne and highly coveted design objects, home wares and lighting.

Motto Melbourne

Shop

A permanent store for book distributor Motto.

Hand 2 Hand

Shop

Curated men's streetwear in Collingwood.