Tag Archives: romance

Romantic Melbourne: Love Locks

Melbourne love lock 1A few days ago, I walked over the Yarra Footbridge connecting Southbank to the Flinders Street station and discovered the bridge has become a new Love Lock location.

Love Locks – the phenomenon of people inscribing padlocks with their initials and those of their honey –  pop up all over the world. The practice is rumoured to have begun in Italy, in tribute to Federico Moccia’s novel ‘Three Meters Above the Sky’, but they exist in France, Germany, the USA and other countries as well.

Lovers in Sydney have been asked to remove their locks from the Sydney Harbour Bridge on the basis that this demonstration of their passion poses a safety risk. The City of Melbourne intends to have engineers check out the footbridge to determine whether too much love can be a dangerous thing.

Melbourne love lock 2

Over on the other side of the country, the Bell Tower in Perth (which traces the practice to China)  casts a kindlier eye on loving hearts, and has made an area available for Love Locks. Well, you have to buy a $30 lock from them first, so perhaps their idea of romance is a bit more focused on commerce, but at least you’ll know your lock won’t be cut down, and you’ll get a memorial folder of the occasion.

I’ve seen a great drooping metal shrubbery of them on a fence in Pécs, Hungary, the first time I’d encountered the phenomenon, though I’d read of it before.

Hungary (2)

Wikipedia of course provides a lot of information about Love Locks and any related controversy.

In the end, whether it’s a public safety hazard or a wonderful, whimsical, glorious way to declare and celebrate your love (or both!) it’s true that lovelocked bridges, gates and fences grow like vines as testaments to a moment in time when love lasts forever.

Have you seen (or attached) Love Locks? Share your stories (and pictures) with Adventurous Hearts!


Do you know of a romantic Melbourne experience? Let me know and I will selflessly explore it. SELFLESSLY.

In the meantime, read my erotic spy thrillers set in Melbourne and Brisbane: Double Edged and Expendable!

Quintette of Questions: Viveka Portman

Quintette asks writers five quick questions. This week’s interview is with Viveka Portman!

Viveka Portman

Wicked Confessions1.     What’s the name of your latest book – and how hard was it to pick a title?

The Wicked Confessions of Lady Cecelia Stanton. It wasn’t hard to chose a title: all my stories are diaries or confessions of a particular character so the titles evolve naturally.

2.     If you could choose anyone from any time period, who would you cast as the leads in your latest book?

I think Ben Barnes (Prince Caspian/Dorian Grey) would make a lovely Lord Stanton. He’d have to smile more though, because Lord Stanton is quick to laugh.

3.     What five words best describe your story?

Is four OK? Different, Sexy, Regency, Diary.

4.     Who is your favourite fictional couple?

I absolutely adore Mr Theophilus Mirkwood and Martha Russell in A Lady Awakened by Cecilia Grant. It is currently my favourite book. They are the most unlikely of couples but the author simply makes it work – and has recreated the regency norms beautifully. I highly recommend it!

5.     What song always makes you cry?

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face by Roberta Flack. It’s beautiful, and perpetually on my muse-music list.

About Viveka:

Viveka PortmanViveka Portman  has  bachelor degree in anthropology and uses it to weave historical fact into fiction and create lively, realistic and thrilling tales, sure to titillate and engage the most discerning reader. Considered an upstanding member of society, Viveka does not make a habit of eavesdropping, gossiping or making vulgar displays of impropriety — except, that is, in writing.

The Wicked Confessions of Lady Cecelia Stanton is due for release 1st December 2013 – but is up for pre-order at:

Would you like to answer a Quintette interview? Email me at nmharrisheart@gmail.com!

Romantic Melbourne: Adelphi, Dessert Hotel

The Adelphi Hotel on Flinders Lane, Melbourne, has been transformed into a Dessert Hotel! Perhaps the world’s only one! That’s something new to be famous for, alongside its iconic swimming pool that overhangs the street.

The new Adelphi’s focus is to offer an ‘indulgent sensory experiences’ to guests and diners, and it’s kicking off that theme with its gorgeous new dessert bar and menu. There are a few savoury snacks for those without a sweet tooth (or with diabetes!) but otherwise it offers lush, luscious and complex desserts, dessert cocktails, dessert wines and pretty much is a sugar high waiting to happen.

Christy Angwidjaja is the head chef for the hotel’s Om Nom restaurant and along with Pierrick Boyer, the expertise chef at that restaurant, is responsible for the inventive, subtle and Oh. My. God. Amazing! menu.

Which included macaron trees at the launch. I kid you not. Macaron. Trees. Also little glasses of the tiniest, classiest trifles you ever did see, and wee chocolate mousses in pastry cases topped by jellied coffee and a gold flake. Well, if I’m going to die of sugar overdose, I might as well go out in style, right?

I was also captivated by the little slider burgers. They are pinned together with these little sauce-syringes. You squeeze the bulbous end and sauce is injected into your burger. It reduces mess and, better still, it’s an invitation for grown adults to play with their food!

The launch also showcased the bar’s fabulous dessert cocktails, including a lemon meringue cocktail and a sort of very alcoholic banana smoothie. Mmmmm. Talk about going out in style. I did rather incautiously invite the bartender who invented these things to come and live at our house. He wisely declined, whether for his sake or my own is not clear.

The Adelphi’s cafe in the foyer has a fun, 60s-ish ambience, and is a lovely place for an indulgent pre-show, after-dinner or for-the-hell-of-it treat. A high tea is on offer too. When I get a chance to try it out, I’ll report on it so you know what to expect when you take your honey (or your bestie) along for a culinary good time.

Visit the Adelphi Hotel’s website

Do you know of a romantic Melbourne experience? Let me know and I will selflessly explore it. SELFLESSLY.

Quintette of Questions: Tamsin Baker

Quintette asks writers five quick questions: and the first interviewee for Adventurous Hearts is Tamsin Baker!

Tamsin Baker

Impossible Desires1.     What’s the name of your latest book – and how hard was it to pick a title?

My latest erotic romance is Impossible Desires, and to be honest it was titled within the first two pages. The characters both have (especially the hero) what I would consider impossible desires for the era, so it was named pretty quickly.

2.     If you could choose anyone from any time period, who would you cast as the leads in your latest book?

I suck at these questions!… ahhh.. I love Rachel Weisz and she would be a great Eleanor. For Patrick… Hmmm. Let’s go with Chris Pine.

3.     What five words best describe your story?

Daring; Strange; Passionate; Short; Romantic

4.     Who is your favourite fictional couple?

Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall/Fraser, most definitely!

5.     What song always makes you cry?

Hmmm, Hallelujah is a pretty good one. And my favourite song is Same Love which brings a tear to my eye on a regular basis.

About Tamsin:

Tamsin BakerTamsin Baker is an Aussie girl who only discovered erotic romance ten months ago. Before that she read sexy romance, skipping the plot and looking for the ‘good bits’. Since then she has written and obtained thirty contracts of varying lengths for her erotic romance and erotica novels. She absolutely loves reading and writing it! She has two other jobs, kids and a hubby too – but writing is a passion that she has to indulge for fear of insanity.

M/M is a passion of hers so even when she writes ménage, there is always an M/M story. She particularly enjoys writing female dommes, but she loves experimenting in all genres. She is learning to write and read more, one step at a time. Soon, she’ll have stories published in every sub-genre of erotic romance – well that’s her aim anyway.

Buy Impossible Desires:

Would you like to answer a Quintette interview? Email me at nmharrisheart@gmail.com!