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New Year’s Eve in Sydney is sure to go off with a bang, so after our top-five tour of London Christmas events last week, we turned our attention to New Year, and to one of the world’s first cities that gets to celebrate it. To help you plan a fabulous intro to 2012, here’s our guide to the best parties around Sydney, from money-is-no-object galas to family-friendly firework displays.

1 Hang with the cool kids The boys behind You Only Live Once are throwing the ultimate house party in Australia’s most famous musical abode, the Sydney Opera House, with tunes from Frankie Knuckles, Riton and Dangerous Dan, and a spectacular harbour backdrop.

You Only Live Once House Party, Sydney New Year's Eve 2011

2 Dance all night on Bondi Beach Get down with Snoop Dogg, Calvin Harris and Pendulum, as Shorething takes over Bondi’s world-famous stretch of sand for one hell of a party.

Shorething Bondi Beach, Sydney New Year's Eve 2011

3 Party and play at Luna Park If you like the idea of canoodling on a rollercoaster while the Potbelleez and Wynter Gordon do their thing, then hightail it to Harbour Party at Luna Park funfair, where you’ll get unlimited rides and a knockout view of the fireworks.

Harbour Party, Luna Park, Sydney New Year's Eve 2011

4 Channel the Great Gatsby Get your Charleston on at The Luminale Supperclub, a chichi soirée in the Sydney Opera House with free-flowing champagne, canapés from acclaimed restaurant Aria, and entertainment by cabaret star Paul Capsis and disco diva Marcia Hines.

Luminale Supperclub, Sydney New Year's Eve 2011

5 Catch the fireworks Few places can match this pyrotechnic spectacle, so get yourself front and centre for the Sydney Harbour fireworks. The festivities begin with a family session at 9pm, before the Bridge, city buildings and a flotilla of boats send out the big guns when the clock strikes 12. Free and fabulous.

Sydney Harbour fireworks, New Year's Eve 2011

Need a place to crash? Give the Smith24 team a call and see whether they can sort you out with a last-minute booking at a Sydney boutique hotel.

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