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Melbourne secrets unlocked in The Great Melbourne Treasure Hunt

 Tuesday, 8 February 2011 

Melbourne secrets will be uncovered by treasure hunters this month as they race around the city in the City of Melbourne’s inaugural Great Melbourne Treasure Hunt.

Hunters will scramble to solve word plays, picture puzzles and brain teasers that will take them on an adventure through the city’s key lifestyle and retail precincts from 12 to 26 February. Six prizes will be on offer to the lucky hunters who have their names drawn at the completion of each race.

Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said the hunt – an initiative of Council’s Melbourne Retail Advisory Board – would give Melburnians the opportunity to discover Melbourne and attract visitors to shops, restaurants and businesses during a traditionally quieter time in the CBD*.

“People who don’t usually come into the city are encouraged to join the hunt, and Melburnians who already know their city well will get to rediscover Melbourne all over again,” the Lord Mayor said.

Deputy Lord Mayor Susan Riley said the hunt would lead participants to the ultimate treasure trove prize.

“The hunt will end with a $25,000 prize that will pamper and spoil the winner. The treasure trove will include an accommodation package at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne, and vouchers to some of Melbourne’s finest stores, so treasure hunters are encouraged to see the race through to the end,” The Deputy Lord Mayor said.

Chair of the Advisory Board, Susan Renouf, said the hunt celebrated all that was great about Melbourne’s CBD.

“Anyone who enters the hunt will be reminded that Melbourne is a city of neighbourhoods and diverse communities and has a hospitality, retail and dining offer unparalleled anywhere else. Australians travel all over the world with guide maps of cities, exploring them and loving them. Melbourne itself is a treasure. This is a chance to rediscover your own city, and its unique offering,” Ms Renouf said.

To take part in the treasure hunt participants will need to pick up a map in the Herald Sun on Tuesday 8 February. A clue will be released through the paper every few days from 12 to 26 February to reveal the starting point of each of the six competitions. Competitors will have to make their way to the location – whether that be a well-known street, a garden, a building, a public square or a landmark shop - and all competitions will run from noon to 2pm during which the clue will be solved.

The map and clues will later be made available on the website ( Treasure hunters can participate in as many of the clues as they like, but will need to hang onto their maps and answer all the clues in order to go into the draw for a chance to win the grand prize.

The six treasures to be won by Melbourne detectives taking part in the hunt are money-can’t-buy experiences:

  • Winners will be taken through the labyrinth that is Melbourne’s streets and laneways in the Secret City Tours prize.
  • They will be able to meet some of Melbourne’s quirkiest and most interesting characters in the Table for Two prize. 
  • Treasure hunters will be transformed in the Beauty and Fashion Makeover at Myer’s spectacular cosmetics hall. 
  • Contestants will have the chance to run against the clock at Melbourne Central in an effort to be the best dressed couple and win thousands of dollars in vouchers in The Valentine’s Day Romantic Wardrobe Runaround. 
  • Sportsgirl will have its pyjamas and fluffy slippers on when it hosts a slumber party at its flagship Bourke Street store for a winner and nine friends. 
  • The grand prize of $25,000 will be a treasure trove of gifts offering the winner celebrity access to the city.

The Great Melbourne Treasure Hunt will have participants traversing the streets of the central city area, but they don’t need to do it with all their shopping bags – they can drop them off at the free City Concierge service located at the Town Hall over the two weeks.

The first clue, released through the Herald Sun on the morning of Saturday 12 February, will direct treasure hunters to a secret location where contestants will compete for a chance to win a Table for Two with some of Melbourne’s high-profile people.

Everything you need to know about The Great Melbourne Treasure Hunt is available at So visit the website and get your magnifying glass out to take part in this great city event!


*Australian Retailers Association data reveals February is traditionally the slowest month for retailers with Victorian sales totalling between five and seven per cent of the yearly trade.