New Year's Eve in Wollongong set to sizzle

The Wollongong CBD will be a hive of activity on New Year's Eve, with all the usual hot spots set to farewell 2013 and ring in 2014 with style.

The annual alcohol-free family fireworks at Belmore Basin and the foreshore will be on again, with rides, food, live entertainment and more from 6pm.

Sports fans are covered, too, with the Wollongong Hawks to host the Melbourne Tigers at WIN Entertainment Centre from 5.30pm.

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But for many it's all about the magic midnight. New Year's Eve is the biggest night of the year for Illawarra nightspots, according to North Wollongong Hotel licensee Doug Sweeney.

The North Gong hotel will be the spot for many early revellers, hosting a bevy of DJs including Timmy Trumpet, AudioJack and Tigerlilly from 6pm.

Hotel Illawarra will transform into an "enchanted garden" with DJs and more, and His Boy Elroy will play host to the Parkside DJs in a more laid-back affair.

Wollongong Nightlife will be running Industry nightclub (formerly Castros) with a "wet dance" party full of performers and music, a white party at Ivory with a retro soundtrack, while the Harp Hotel will be going late into the night as well.

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"It's one of the biggest nights of the year," said Wollongong Nightlife operations and marketing manager, Lu Ristov.

"We're only running a few clubs on the night so we have a better atmosphere, but we're catering for all the different demographics at our three venues," Mr Ristov said.

For something more upmarket, some of the city's top eateries are preparing swanky dinner parties. Seacliff will host a masquerade ball with a view of the harbour fireworks, Lagoon is getting ready for a beach party, while The Little Prince will usher in 2014 on their back deck.

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Get it moving in the Gong

North Gong: DJs Timmy Trumpet, SCNDL, Chardy, Tigerlilly and UK duo AudioJack and more over three stages; 6pm-2am, $30.

Industry: Performers Victoria Vogue, Paulini Curuenavuli, DJ Adam Love and DJ Du Jour; $30.

Hotel Illawarra: ‘‘Mystical enchanted garden’’; DJs Zacc, Lazar and Keeri; $20, includes VIP express entry, drink on arrival and a VIP Hotel Illawarra NYE goodie bag.

Ivory: White party with retro beats.

Seacliff: Masquerade ball; canapés, dessert, drinks and music band; 7.30pm, $149.

Lagoon: Beach party; five-hour beverage package, dinner, entertainment by Mad Cow and Kiwi Todd (96.5 FM); $155.

Little Prince: New Year’s party on new back deck; Nom Cha canapés, premium drinks package and entertainment; $149.

His Boy Elroy: Parkside DJs, until 1am.

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