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The Scene caught up with Holly Valance in Melbourne to talk shopping, nightlife and living the good life...
The Scene: Describe your relationship with Melbourne.
Holly Valance: I grew up here and I have a great love for the city. Even though I've been living overseas for many years, Melbourne will always be my home.
TS: What do you miss most?
HV: I miss our wonderful boutiques -- Chapel Street is fantastic for the most unique, gorgeous feminine clothing. There are clothes for men as well, they don't score too badly either. Reasonably priced, also. Our beautiful beaches, our great food, everything's close by, we love our arts and music, and it's just great to be able to go into any little dark alley and find some romantic jazz bar or fantastic little cafe where you can get the best coffee in Australia.
TS: What's the best and worst thing about Melbourne?
HV: I love the nightlife. You have great bars, wonderful food in all our restaurants, great nightclubs as well if you like a dance. And it's not really that bad, but I'm a bit of a summer girl and the winter can get a bit cold. But it's not too bad.
TS: How did growing up in Melbourne influence your career?
HV: I come from a very grounded, very chilled out, relaxed people which keeps you in good stead when things get mental. In the entertainment industry, it can get pretty crazy but I think being an Australian helps. Our laid-back, down to earth culture.
TS: How does Melbourne compare to some of the other cities you've lived in, like LA and London?
HV: Well, I've been around the world and seen a lot of cities now, and Melbourne rates pretty damn high in terms of being an incredibly livable city and great value for money -- you can live the good life in Melbourne.
TS: If Melbourne were a person how would you describe them?
HV: They would be good humored, artistic, down to earth and incredibly good looking.
TS: What is unique about Melbourne?
HV: It's got its very own Australian culture but it's heavily influenced by Europe. We've got a great passion for food and nightlife and love, and all sorts of exciting things that make it a very romantic city that's great to be around. To grow up in and live in Melbourne is pretty blissful. Once you travel around the world you realize how good you've got it, coming from Melbourne.
TS: How would you describe the people of Melbourne?
HV: The people of Melbourne have a great sense of humor, very dry, very playful. We like a drink, we like good food, we laugh a lot and we love our sport. Sports crazed, actually. Melbourne is the home of Aussie Rules Football, and that's something that I've been going to since I was a young girl. Huge crowds of 100,000 people all barracking for different teams and having a great day -- it's something that we take very, very seriously.
TS: What and where in Melbourne inspires you?
HV: Something that I find incredibly inspirational is our arts center. You can go and watch Madame Butterfly, see a beautiful play, watch great cinema -- we're very much into high-quality film in this country so it's great to be a part of that now.